Best tablet 2018: from slim and great media tablets to productivity powerhouses

Best tablet 2018: from slim and great media tablets to productivity powerhouses

We look at your iOS and Android options (because, yes, there are alternatives to the iPad)



If you're looking for the very best tablet to buy, get Apple's 10.5-inch iPad Pro. It's the ultimate combination of premium design, specifications, paired with powerful software and an unrivalled ecosystem of accessories and apps.The best thing about it, has to be the design but there's a lot more going for it including the powerful specs, decent battery life and versatility. The breadth of accessories (including the awesome Apple Pencil) is quite something, too.


Let's face it, tablets aren't the most exciting devices in the world of tech right now, there's not that much innovation going on, and they're not exactly flying off the shelves.

But bear with us, because most households in the UK still own one (or more), and buying a tab should be a big decision, because, unlike smartphones, your tablet will stick around for longer than two years. So what should you look out for in a tablet?

A great screen is a start, as that's what you'll be staring at most of the time, great speakers are also important, as these are devices primarily used for consuming media.

Key features to look out for include water resistance (so you can watch Netflix in the bath), and a MicroSD slot to fill up with plenty of media. If you're planning on using the tab for work a physical keyboard or stylus could be useful.

Now, you may notice that our three top tablets are iPads, that's because we think iOS is much better suited to larger screens than Android, and the app ecosystem is much better. Of course, we have the best choices for Android users as well.




Simply the best tablet around, don't even bother looking at the rest

No prizes for guessing the top spot. The iPad Pro 10.5 is the best tablet ever created - and that's not us getting excited over an Apple product for the sake of it (before you accuse us of being paid by Apple). Yes, it's expensive, but for that money you're getting one of the most versatile tablets available.

Read the full review: Apple iPad Pro 10.5

The battery life is more than acceptable, the camera has been massively upgraded (although, obviously we don't recommend you use it), and the screen upgrades genuinely make viewing web pages or videos on the go a joy. The best thing about it, however, has to be the design, it's premium build quality, and the 4x3 size ratio makes it just feel 'right' in the hand.


2. APPLE IPAD 9.7 (2018)

The new iPad got better and cheaper

If the iPad Pro 10.5 is a little too pricey and over-specced for your needs, you can always go with the brilliant non-Pro iPad.

For its price, we think the iPad 9.7 is an excellent buy. It’s the VW Golf of tablets: you can go cheaper and get something that works great, but miss out on the level of quality, reliability and finish; you can get something flashier and more powerful, but for a lot more money.

Adding an Apple Pencil for note-taking does increase the price significantly (it costs £89), but even then it’s still about £100 cheaper than the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3, which is the same size, and comes with a stylus. The Tab S3 has an HDR display and strong quad speakers, but we’d still take the iPad at that price difference.


Adding a TrueTone screen and stereo speakers would make it more of a killer product but as it is, Apple still makes the mid-range tablet to beat. It’s sure to continue to dominate its market, even if owners of iPads from the last few years have little reason to upgrade. Why buy anything else?

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