The 9 Best Android Tablets to Buy in 2017

Shop for the best Android tablets for gamers, kids and more

So you’re ready to buy a tablet and you're more interested in using Google’s Android platform over Apple’s iOS. Perhaps you’re not a fan of Apple, or you just prefer the look, feel and customizability of Android (not to mention its much lower price tag; tablets start under $75). Whatever the reason, there are many Android tablets on the market ranging from the super light and portable to a powerful Google-made tablet that can practically replace your laptop.

If you're still unsure about which tablet might be best for you, consider how you'll primarily use it. Do you want something that's geared toward gamers? Are you buying it for your child? Or do you just want something that lets you connect to the Internet to stream content and is relatively inexpensive? Our 10 best Android tablet picks below will help you find the one that's best for you.

ASUS released the ZenPad as a direct challenge to rivals at Samsung and Apple, including similar specs and build quality, but with more storage and at a lower price. This is the ultimate tablet for most people, delivering the latest and fastest technology at a stomachable price point.

The smart and sleek design gives priority to the 9.7-inch 2k IPS screen, which runs on ASUS proprietary VisualMaster technology for a stunning 2048 x 1536 resolution. It scores 264 ppi, which is the same as the iPad. The gorgeous screen has an impress 78 percent ratio compared to the body, leaving just enough room below for a super accurate fingerprint sensor that is quick and convenient. In addition to the fingerprint scanner, the device has a microSD slot for additional storage and a USB-C port for quick charging. There isn’t room for much more, as the bezel is less than a quarter inch thick, which ASUS claims is the thinnest in the world. The back sports a smooth premium anodized aluminum body that is both strong and attractive.

Most impressive of all is the lightning fast performance, thanks to a beastly hexa-core 2.1 GHz processor, 4GB of RAM and the Android 6.0 Marshmallow OS. Just for good measure, ASUS threw in dual five-magnet speakers, an 8MP camera and a high-capacity battery to make this tablet the best overall package on the market at an unbeatable price. 

If you’re looking for an inexpensive Android tablet that can do just about everything more pricey tablets can do, the seven-inch Amazon Fire is your best choice. The price means the tablet might not be the fastest on the market (it has a 1.3 GHz processor) or have the best picture quality (1024 x 600 screen resolution), but it’s a solid choice for reading e-books through the built-in Kindle app, or watching videos through Amazon’s streaming service. (Netflix, Hulu, and other services are also available.) The Amazon Fire only has 8GB or 16GB of storage, though that can be expanded locally with a microSD card or via cloud storage. The seven-inch tablet is also incredibly lightweight at just 11 ounces, about the same weight as a paperback book.

The Fire runs Amazon’s own OS, which is based on Android, but doesn’t have any of the official Google apps. That means no Google Play Store for apps, though Amazon does have its own app store that includes access to 38 million TV shows, songs, movies, books, apps and games.

Huawei proves that a $100 tablet can be worth buying with its new Mediapad T1. The compact seven-inch screen sports a slim and lightweight design, just 8.5MM thick and weighing just 15 ounces. The screen resolution is a respectable 600 x 1024 pixels with oncell IPS to reproduce over 90 percent of Adobe RGB color space for bright color and contrast. That may not rival the latest Samsung Galaxy, but it combines with a 178-degree, wide-view angle for a pleasurable viewing experience on an entry-level tablet.

The device’s real standout value comes in its mighty battery that can last over 300 hours on standby time or continuously browse the Web for eight hours without a recharge. The battery is housed in a light silver metal unibody case, which prominently features Huawei’s logo. Performance, while not blowing away any benchmarks, delivers for the pricetag. It runs on a Spreadtrum SC7731G chip with 28nm quad-core 1.2 GHZ ARM, and runs the Android 4.4 KitKat operating system and EMUI 3.0 powered by Huawei.

Every element of Huawei’s premium tablet is designed to indulge the senses. As such, this 8.4-inch tablet boasts a beautiful 2560 x 1600 IPS screen to treat the eyes to vibrant and colorful images in Ultra 2k display. The screen is accentuated by a stylish and narrow bezel that bleeds into the edges. It sports an aluminum body that is thin, light and easy to hold, making room for a Micro SD slot. But Huawei also partnered with audio titans Harman Kardon to deliver the best acoustics on any tablet. With a speaker on both top and bottom, the MediaPad 3 produces high-fidelity audio louder than any other tablet on the market.

In addition to the stunning audio-visual design, this tablet packs impressive hardware. Expect fast speeds, thanks to the 2.3 GHz processor and 4 GB DDR3 RAM. You can choose between 32 GB and 64 GB of internal memory, almost none of which is wasted on pre-installed bloatware.

This widescreen Android tablet from Lenovo sports an innovative design and a battery life that can last the entire waking day. The distinctive black case holds a 10.1” 2560x1600 Full HD screen with IPS crystal-clear display, which allows for wide-angle viewing and brightness even outdoors. At the bottom is a cylindrical bar that houses built-in dual speakers with Dolby Atmos for one of the most immersive audio experiences on a tablet.

Forget the Bluetooth speaker at home? No problem, the sound is loud and dynamic enough to fill a room and the long battery life means you will have no problem using it as a sound system for an entire day. The 15 hours of battery life also means you can watch movies on the gorgeous screen for a trans-Pacific plane ride. Snapdragon 652 processor, 3GB RAM and a 32GB SSD provide enough computing power to handle any application, and at a lightweight two pounds, it can go with you anywhere.

With a high-resolution (2560 x 1800), 10.2-inch display, an NVIDIA Tegra X1 processor and a battery that lasts for more than 10 hours, the Pixel C is the best Google tablet available at the moment. The Pixel C receives all the latest Android updates as soon as they’re available, something that many other devices struggle to do. And unlike many other tablets, the Pixel C starts at 32GB of storage, with a 64GB version also available. The Pixel C also features an 8MP rear-facing camera that can take quality photos, and it weighs just 1.13 pounds.

If you want a powerhouse tablet but can’t stand typing on a glass surface, Google has you covered with the optional keyboard that doubles as a screen cover and extra charging battery. The keyboard connects to the Pixel C magnetically, and can adjust to multiple angles unlike keyboards on other tablets. With the keyboard and the side-by-side multitasking features found in betas of Android N, the Pixel C practically doubles as a laptop.

Many of the best 2-in-1s run Windows because of its superior desktop capabilities, but the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 will make you forget you ever knew that. Design-wise, it’s a worthy competitor to the iPad Pro. It has a vivid 9.7-inch Super AMOLED display that claims to be the world’s first HDR-ready tablet. This produces higher contrast ratios and brighter highlights, which does wonders for darker scenes, but don’t expect to find a lot of HDR content just yet. You’ll have to wait a bit until streaming services catch up. At least you’ll be ready when they do.

The S3 runs Android 7.0 Nougat with a Samsung overlay that’s easy to navigate. At the heart is a Snapdragon 820 processor, which is powerful enough for your computing needs, but unfortunately not as good as Snapdragon 835, which rolled out in the Galaxy S8. It also has 32GB of internal storage and a 6,000mAh battery that yields above-average performance.

Perhaps the biggest advantage of this tablet over an iPad is the inclusion of its S Pen. The S3 version is bigger and more pressure-responsive than those used with Samsung phones, and that helps users truly unlock the potential of the 2-in-1. Of course, to do that you’ll also need the keyboard attachment, which is sold separately.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 is a great Android tablet for those who want something that resembles an iPad but don’t want to use iOS. Samsung is known for adding a lot of superfluous software to Android (eye-tracking software that is often wonky and its own Siri-esque virtual assistant), but some of the features found in the Tab S2 like split-screen multi-tasking and the SideSync app that mirrors your Samsung phone on the tablet are incredibly useful. 

The eight-inch version of the Galaxy Tab S2 features a 1.8GHz quad-core processor, making it one of the fastest tablets on this list, and the 2048 x 1536 screen resolution means it's perfect for watching videos or reading. The Galaxy Tab S2 is also available in a nine-inch model, for those who prefer a slightly larger display.

Samsung’s Galaxy Tab A 10.1” is designed for entertainment and performance. The vibrant high resolution screen has a 1920x1200 resolution and a gorgeous image, thanks to the powerful Octa-core 1.6Ghz processor and 2GB of RAM. You can expand the memory from 16GB to an additional 200GB with the microSD reader. You can also connect directly to a TV or another device with the microUSB.

Android Marshmallow 6.0 is the latest and greatest version of the operating system, making for a clean UI and easy transfer. It also lets you open up two apps side by side, for easy multitasking between messaging and games. And if you have additional Samsung devices, Quick Connect makes transferring videos and photos between TV easy. All this comes in a device that weighs barely over a pound and has a battery life that can last up to 13 hours.

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