The best Android tablets in the world

Anti-iPad? Then have we got the top slates for you!

Looking for a tablet and thinking about an Android device? Well, there are other options out there with Windows 10 tablets such as the Surface Pro 4 - but tablets running Android remain the main rival to the iOS 10-toting iPad Pro, iPad Pro 9.7 and iPad mini 4.

And there are plenty of options to consider. Some Android tablets have 10-inch screens, others seven, some land somewhere in between and a handful even push the boundaries past 10 inches. There are also big differences in battery life, processing power, RAM and price.

We've gathered together the best the Android tablet market has to offer, across all prices and size points, so read on to see which Google-powered slates you should be considering.

Samsung Galaxy S2

1. Samsung Galaxy Tab S2

Samsung's latest flagship Android slate is super

Weight: 256g/389g | Dimensions: 198.6 x 134.8 x 5.6mm/237.3 x 169 x 5.6mm | OS: Android 6.0.1 | Screen size: 8.0-inch/9.7-inch | Resolution: 1536 x 2048 | CPU: Octa-core | RAM: 3GB | Storage: 32GB/64GB | Battery: 4000mAh/5870mAh | Rear camera: 8MP | Front camera: 2.1MP

Thinner, lighter design
Great screen
So-so battery life
Camera is mediocre

There are plenty of reasons to invest in the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 - especially if you're after one of the best Android tablets on the market.

It's reading and web surfing-friendly, while the new 4:3 screen and general size and shape is better suited for most things. Videos work better on its predecessor thanks to its elongated aspect ratio - but they don't exactly look bad here.

You can pick the Tab S2 up in 8-inch and 9.7-inch variants, to challenge Apple's iPad and iPad mini ranges, with the smaller option being more portable and cheaper.

Almost impossibly thin, pumped full of power and with a slick version of Samsung's TouchWiz interface on board the Galaxy Tab S2 gives the iPad Pro 9.7 and Pixel C a real run for their money.

Read the full review: Samsung Galaxy Tab S2

Google Pixel C

2. Google Pixel C

Pure Android on a premium tablet

Weight: 517g | Dimensions: 242 x 179 x 7mm | OS: Android 7.0 | Screen size: 10.2-inch | Resolution: 2560 x 1800 | CPU: Quad-core 1.9GHz | RAM: 3GB | Storage: 32GB/64GB | Battery: Up to 10 hours | Rear camera: 8MP | Front camera: 2MP

Fantastic screen
Premium design
Heavy
Keyboard is a pricey option

Google's done it – it's made one of the best Android tablets around. The Pixel C has it all: a fantastic display, heaps of power and a premium design.

Okay, it's not quite got it all - it's a little on the heavy side and the pricey (yet rather clever) keyboard dock isn't fully utilised by the Android interface, which is made very much for touch and not physical keys and productivity.

Those points aside, the Pixel C goes toe-to-toe with the iPad Air 2 and even the iPad Pro 9.7 with its clean stock Android interface, sultry metal body and super screen.

If you're looking for the best of Google in a tablet, the Pixel C gives you just that.

Read the full review: Google Pixel C

Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet

3. Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet

A stunning, waterproof tablet with a great screen

Weight: 389g | Dimensions: 254 x 167 x 6.1mm | OS: Android 6.0 | Screen size: 10.1-inch | Resolution: 2560 x 1600 | CPU: Octa-core 2.0GHz | RAM: 3GB | Storage: 32GB | Battery: 6000mAh | Rear camera: 8.1MP | Front camera: 5.1MP

Gorgeous display
New improved design
Expensive price tag
Problematic UI

Sony's Xperia Z4 Tablet is one of the best Android tablets on the market right now, ensuring the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2, Pixel C and iPad Pro get a real workout.

We'd like to see a 64GB option, but 32GB plus the inclusion of a microSD slot will suit most people, and while the cameras don't cover themselves in glory they're more of a vanity feature on a tablet.

The Xperia Z4 Tablet is a great slate, and it's one of the genuine alternatives to the iPad. Android is still not the perfect ecosystem for tablets, but with a 2K display on the front and such a nice-looking design, Sony has made something rather lovely.

Read the full review: Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet

Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact

4. Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact

Solid specs in a compact frame

Weight: 270g | Dimensions: 213.4 x 123.6 x 6.4mm | OS: Android 6.0 | Screen size: 8-inch | Resolution: 1200 x 1920 | CPU: Quad-core 2.5GHz | RAM: 3GB | Storage: 16GB | Battery: 4500mAh | Rear camera: 8.1MP | Front camera: 2.2MP

Waterproof, slim design
PS4 Share Play
Annoying port flaps

When it comes to watching videos or playing games, the Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact excels with a decent slug of power and its eye-pleasing display.

Add in the thin, light, waterproof body and you have a great tablet for long trips and boring work commutes, which can be happily slid into a bag without taking up too much space or weighing you down.

The components inside the Z3 Tablet Compact are getting on a bit now, and it doesn't have the slickness of the 8-inch iPad mini 4 or Galaxy Tab S2 - but it's certainly still worth considering.

Read the full review: Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact

Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro

5. Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro

Taking 'Netflix and chill' to the next level

Weight: 665g | Dimensions: 246.9 x 179.1 x 4.6mm | OS: Android 5.1.1 | Screen size: 10.1-inch | Resolution: 2560 x 1600 | CPU: Intel Atom quad-core | RAM: 2GB | Storage: 16GB/32GB | Battery: 10,200mAh | Rear camera: 13MP | Front camera: 5MP

Integrated projector
Great audio
Heavy
Glitchy interface

The Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro is packed full of media-focused features and sports a unique, distinctive design.

There's a built in stand to take the heft off your hands, while the integrated projector means you can enjoy big screen entertainment away from your TV, though the screen is sharp enough that you won't always feel the need to use a projector anyway.

All that tech does make it less portable than most tablets on this list and the UI could be better, but it's a fairly unique option.

Read the full review: Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro

Amazon Fire HD 6

6. Amazon Fire HD 6

Small enough to be a smartphone, it packs a punch

Weight: 290g | Dimensions: 169mm x 103mm x 10.7mm | OS: Fire OS | Screen size: 6-inch | Resolution: 1280 x 800 | CPU: Quad-core 1.5GHz | RAM: 1GB | Storage: 8/16GB | Battery: Up to 8 hours | Rear camera: 2MP | Front camera: VGA

Compact size
Sharp screen
A bit too chunky
Awful cameras

The Fire HD 6 is one of the most enticing tablets to come from Amazon, mixing efficient integration with the Prime services and a compact footprint that makes it easy to drop in your bag.

It's no tablet king, but it does what it sets out to well, and considering its price tag the Amazon Fire HD 6 is difficult to knock.

The cameras are worth avoiding, and the built in speakers aren't great, but as long as you can get over Amazon's slightly restrictive Fire OS and the lack of Google's services then the HD 6 is a perfect pocket slate.

Read the full review: Amazon Fire HD 6

7. Amazon Fire HD 8 (2016)

The best you can get at this price

Weight: 341g | Dimensions: 214mm x 128mm x 9.2mm | OS: Fire OS | Screen size: 8-inch | Resolution: 1280 x 800 | CPU: Quad-core 1.3GHz | RAM: 1.5GB | Storage: 16/32GB | Battery: Up to 12 hours | Rear camera: 2MP | Front camera: VGA

Decent gaming performance
Very low price
Dreadful cameras
Poor speakers

The Amazon Fire HD 8 (2016) is among the best of the retail giant’s tablets, as while it’s in many ways lower end than the similar HD 10, the smaller screen is sharper as a result, and the price is lower.

It also delivers surprisingly strong gaming performance, with a decent amount of power for the money.

The speakers aren’t great and the cameras are awful, but tablets aren’t for taking photos and you can always use headphones.

What you do get is solid if not spectacular performance, and tight integration with Amazon’s other services through Fire OS, all at a price that’s well below most of the non-Amazon branded competition.

Read the full review: Amazon Fire HD 8 (2016)

8. Amazon Fire HD 10

An affordable way to enjoy Amazon's media

Weight: 432g | Dimensions: 262mm x 159mm x 7.7mm | OS: Fire OS | Screen size: 10.1-inch | Resolution: 1280 x 800 | CPU: Quad-core 1.5GHz | RAM: 1GB | Storage: 16/32/64GB | Battery: Up to 8 hours | Rear camera: 5MP | Front camera: HD

Low price
Impressive speakers
Weak screen resolution
Plasticky design

The Amazon Fire HD 10 is the company’s flagship tablet, but to call it a flagship is misleading, as while it’s top of the range it still sports middling specs at best, but that’s okay, because it’s also very affordable.

Its 10.1-inch 1280 x 800 screen doesn’t provide a very sharp picture, but audio fares much better thanks to loud and clear stereo speakers, and with up to 64GB of built in storage plus a microSD card slot there’s plenty of room for apps, games and other media.

Which is good, because this being an Amazon product you’re faced with things to buy, download, rent and stream at every turn.

Read the full review: Amazon Fire HD 10

9. Amazon Fire

Almost unbelievably cheap

Weight: 313g | Dimensions: 115mm x 191mm x 10.6mm | OS: Fire OS | Screen size: 7-inch | Resolution: 1024 x 600 | CPU: Quad-core 1.3GHz | RAM: 1GB | Storage: 8/16GB | Battery: Up to 7 hours | Rear camera: 2MP | Front camera: VGA

Family friendly
Fantastically cheap
Dated screen
Questionable interface

Tablets don’t get any cheaper than this – well, functional ones don’t anyway. The incredibly low price and sturdy design make the Amazon Fire a great choice to give to a kid – in fact, Amazon’s even built a (pricier) version specifically for children.

But even for a grown audience the Amazon Fire far exceeds expectations, with a fairly bright 7.0-inch screen, acceptable speakers, solid battery life and even reasonable performance, with a snappy interface and the ability to run most games.

Fire OS won’t suit everyone and this isn’t a tablet that impresses once you take the price out of the equation, but for what the Amazon Fire costs it would almost be rude not to buy it.

Read the full review: Amazon Fire

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Global Phones, Tablets and Wearables Editor

Gareth (Twitter, Google+) has been in charge of phones, tablets and wearables at TechRadar for the best part of a decade. He can instantly recommend the best phone for you, or can be found running around the nearest park with the latest fitness tech strapped to his wrist, head or any other applicable body part.