What's the best tablet for 2014? Today's latest tablets compared and rated - constantly updated

Tablets are taking the world by storm. Just a few years ago they were an unknown for many people, but nowadays you've got more choice than you can shake a mildly agitated badger at.

And with choice comes decisions - difficult decisions. Do you eschew Apple's high prices, join the Android brigade and find the best iPad alternative? Or jump on board Cupertino's lovetrain, and use one of the most popular tablets on the planet?

We've made it easy for you and pulled together the top 10 tablets of the moment available in the UK.

It's a difficult process divining which place each of these excellent tablets should occupy in our list, so we take into account multiple elements including performance, battery life, screen quality and more. Price plays a minor part, as does age: a tablet that's been replaced by a sequel will tumble down the rankings as you can get all the great features on a better slate.

If none of the top 10 tablets here take your fancy then head on over to our tablet reviews pages, where you'll find in-depth reviews for many more models.

Let us know your thoughts on the top 10 (and whether you think we've got the order wrong) in the comment box below.

10. iPad mini

iPad mini

Apple's former CEO Steve Jobs famously slammed small tablets a few years back, leading many to believe the Cupertino-based firm would never dabble in the budget end of the market, but here we are.

In terms of consistency in the tablet market Apple cannot be matched, as it now lays claim to the the top spot in our top 10, although the iPad mini is no longer the jewel in an already glistening crown - it's already been usurped by the upgraded Google Nexus 7 and its successor.

Just because we have all the Retina magic we'd hoped for on the new Mini 2 doesn't mean the old Mini isn't a bad device - we'd just recommend you heavily look at the newer model before you plump for this one.

Quick verdict

When it landed we dubbed the iPad mini "the best iPad Apple has ever created", and while the iPad Air now claims that title now, this pint sized slate is still an OK choice on a budget.

If the screen puts you off, fear not, for the iPad mini 2 with Retina display is now out - but at least it hasn't shoved the Mini off the list altogether.

9. Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 7

Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 7

Leaner, meaner and more powerful than its predecessor, Amazon has stepped its game up with the Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 7 as it looks to keep pace with the new Nexus 7.

On paper Amazon's latest 7-inch tablet is more than up to the job with a 2.2GHz quad-core processor, 2GB of RAM, full HD display, up to 64GB of storage and prices starting at £200.

In reality however it's not the complete offering the Nexus 7 is, with Amazon's heavily modified Fire OS 3.0 stripping out a lot of the functionality of Android and putting the retailer's services front and centre.

Quick verdict

For the customisation you give up, you gain simplicity and ease of use on the Kindle Fire HDX 7. We'd like to call this the sort of tablet you give to someone who is less than tech savvy, but those devices don't usually have such good hardware.

If you're a Prime subscriber, or heavily invested in Amazon's ecosystem, the Kindle Fire HDX 7 is a smart purchase. For those who want a little more functionality reach for a Nexus 7, or if you have deeper pockets check out the iPad mini 2.

8. Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2

Note Pro 12.2

Never one to leave a tablet niche unexplored, Samsung pushed screen sizes up to new heights with the Galaxy Note Pro 12.2.

Thankfully that's not all it has going for it, as the Note Pro 12.2's 3GB of RAM and quad-core processor give it superior performance, while the S Pen becomes truly useful in combination with the slates large, bright screen.

It's an obvious choice for digital artists or anyone else who wants a device they can be productive on, but the bigger screen makes it great just for web browsing and watching videos too.

On the flip side the increased size makes it a little unwieldy and the build quality is a touch creaky, but you can't have everything.

Quick verdict

Its big screen and S Pen support make the Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 an extremely useful productivity tool but a high price and decreased portability hold it back a little.

7. Microsoft Surface Pro 3

Surface Pro 3

Most tablets aren't true laptop replacements, but the Surface Pro 3 isn't most tablets. Microsoft has positioned its flagship slate as a true hybrid, that can fill the roles of both tablet and computer and for the most part it's up to the task.

With a whole lot of power, an impressive display and a useful Type Cover for when you need to get some serious work done it's got the muscle to compete with Ultrabooks and the portability and ease of use to be an iPad alternative.

It's not perfect. The battery life is seriously weak by tablet standards and it's a pricey bit of kit, but if you really want one device to fill both roles then this is the best option out there.

Quick verdict

The Microsoft Surface Pro 3 is an impressively powerful and versatile device. There's a sense that it's a jack of all trades, master of none, but it's the best hybrid around and that's reason enough to consider it if you don't want or can't afford both a tablet and an Ultrabook.

6. LG G Pad 8.3

LG G Pad 8.3

Well, when you make an Android tablet with a design language like this one, perhaps it's time to quietly worry at Samsung. In place of plastic, it's got a lovely aluminium shell, and connectivity with other Android phones makes it a viable option for a wider range of users.

Some might question whether the Snapdragon 600 chip is too low-power for a tablet that costs around £200, but it allows for a sleeker design according to the Korean brand.

Quick verdict

We really liked the G Pad 8.3, and it was only lower down in our list thanks to a slightly higher battery drain than we were expecting - plus the overlay can take some getting used to.

But its one of the closest competitors to the iPad Mini out there in terms of design, and it's a tablet we're not ashamed to pull out of a stylishly slim bag.