iPad vs Android tablets: which Prime Day tablet deals are best?

Prime Day tablet deals
(Image credit: Apple / Samsung / TechRadar)

While we bid adieu to the Prime Day deals, with the clock ticking in some regions and already run out in others, there are still a few people desperately trying to pick up last-minute deals and discounts.

There have been Prime Day tablet deals covering the three main groups on the market: iPads, Amazon Fire devices and Samsung Galaxy Tabs. Some of them are over, but some remain.

If you're buying a new tablet, especially if you haven't owned one before, it can be hard to know which to buy. Do you go for an iPad, an iOS device, and get in on Apple's ecosystem? What about Amazon Fire tabs, tied to the company's suite of apps? Then there's Samsung Galaxy Tabs, pure Android slates that work as close iPad rivals.

To help you get your head around these three food groups, and understand the Prime Day deals that are on for them right now, we're going to run you through them.

(Not in the US? Scroll down for deals in your region).

Prime Day iPad deals and reasons to buy

We're seeing a few iPad deals on Apple's entry-level range of slates, and its Pro range of top-tier slates, and here and there the Mini line of tiny tablets and Air range of mid-rangers have seen price cuts too.

If you already own an Apple device, especially an iPhone, an iPad might be best for you. You'll be used to the software, and lots of the apps you already own can easily be ported over.

Plus, iPads are designed to be easily accessible to people who aren't necessarily up on their tech, so they'll be easy to use for all.

On the downside, iPads are pretty expensive, even during Prime Day, as the deals aren't knocking too much off the asking price of these slates. That price just goes up if you want accessories like a keyboard or stylus.

iPad 8th generation (32GB): $329

iPad 8th generation (32GB): $329 $299 at Amazon
Save $30 -
Amazon currently has the latest 8th generation iPad available for its lowest price yet thanks to a $30 discount. This is a particularly popular offer but you'll find the Space Gray, Gold, and Silver models available here.

Apple iPad Air (2020): $599

Apple iPad Air (2020): $599 $519.99 at Amazon
Save $79
 – this is a phenomenally well-made tablet that improves upon the last-gen version in a variety of ways, with a stylish design update and plenty of power for all your tablet needs. These are the lowest prices we've seen at Amazon, so this could be your chance to snag a bargain on a great tablet.

Prime Day Amazon Fire tablet deals and reasons to buy

Amazon's own-brand range of slates are perhaps the most popular Android tablets, although you're technically getting a fork of the Android software that's designed by Amazon.

These slates are super affordable, costing just a fraction of other devices. Even if you go for the bigger Fire HD 10 devices, you won't be paying too much. Prime Day deals bring the prices down even lower.

The slates are also hardy with plastic shells and big batteries, so they've got lots of stopping power for adventures and long journeys.

The problem with Amazon Fire tablets is that they're locked to Amazon's ecosystem of apps, as they're designed for entertainment. So if you want a portable tab for Prime Video, Prime Music, Netflix, Spotify and the like, they'll be perfect - but they're not great for productivity or creativity.

Amazon Fire 7 Kids tablet: $99.99

Amazon Fire 7 Kids tablet: $99.99 $59.99 at Amazon
Save $40 -
This is a return to a record low price on the Amazon Fire 7 Kids Edition, now just $59.99. You're paying a little more than the standard Fire tablet here (though that cheaper device isn't on sale right now) but also getting a kid-proof case, a range of parental controls and a year of Amazon's FreeTime subscription service as well.

Amazon Fire HD 8: $89.99

Amazon Fire HD 8: $89.99 $44.99 at Amazon
Save $45 -
The Amazon Fire HD 8 is at its lowest ever price right now with a brand new $45 discount dropping it all the way down to $44.99. That's $10 cheaper than its previous cheapest price, which makes this an excellent buy for anyone after a cheap tablet this Prime Day.

Amazon Fire HD 10: $149.99

Amazon Fire HD 10: $149.99 $79.99 at Amazon
Save $70 -
The Amazon Fire HD 10 is taking its first ever price drop in today's Amazon Prime Day deals - and what a price drop it is. You're saving a massive $70 on this 10-inch tablet making it one of the best value options out there right now.

Prime Day Samsung Galaxy Tab deals and reasons to buy

Samsung's Galaxy Tab devices are close iPad rivals. The Tab A line consists of affordable slates and the Tab S devices are top-end Android powerhouses.

The Android ecosystem is a bit more open than iOS, with a bigger selection of apps and different ways to customize the way you work. Plus, it'll work better alongside an Android phone.

Plus, Samsung tablets are pretty powerful, with long-lasting batteries and, most importantly, beautiful screens.

On to the negatives: the Android OS still doesn't work well for tablets, compared to smartphones. Plus, sometimes Samsung's slates can be a little pricey for what they are, and the stylus experience isn't as good as on iPad.

Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8-inch 64GB: $199

Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8-inch 64GB: $199 $139 on Amazon
Save $60 -
This $139 sales price on the 8-inch Samsung Galaxy Tab A beats the previous record low by an additional $20. The Tab A is a budget tablet that's even more affordable now, with an HD display (1,280 x 800 pixel resolution), 64GB of storage (expandable up to 512GB via microSD card slot), and up to 13 hours of battery life per Samsung.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite with S Pen 128GB: $349

Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite with S Pen 128GB: $349 $319.99 at Amazon
Save $30 -
Sure, it's not the biggest discount, but it's still a price drop on a solid tablet that includes an S Pen stylus, 10.4-inch HD Plus (1,920 x 1,200 pixel resolution) display, Exynos 9611 chipset, 4GB of RAM, 128GB of storage (up to 1TB via mciroSD), and up to 12 hours of battery life, Samsung claims.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Wi-Fi (128 GB): $649.99

Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Wi-Fi (128 GB): $649.99 $484.49 at Amazon
Save $165 - Samsung makes the best Android tablets today, and you can snag the base model for 25% off this Prime Day. That's an extra 5% off compared to the price we were seeing earlier today, which leaves us with a brand new record low price. This model has been stuck above $520 since March so you're getting a great price here. We would also strongly recommend the larger storage options as well, for even better value for money.

256GB: $730 $526.99 | 512GB: $830 $594.99

Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ Wi-Fi (128 GB): $849.99

Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ Wi-Fi (128 GB): $849.99 $654.49 at Amazon
Save $195.50 - Our unchallenged best Android tablet pick, and the only one to seriously challenge the iPad Pro for tablet supremacy, the Galaxy Tab S7+ offers some serious upgrades on the S7: a 12.4-inch OLED display (instead of 11-inch LED), in-screen fingerprint reader, and a much larger battery. We have seen a slightly lower price than this, but not for a few months now.

256GB: $930 $696.99 | 512GB: $1,030 $764.99

Other tablet deals

No matter where you live, you'll find all the lowest prices for the various tablets from around the web right here, with offers available in your region. 

More Amazon Prime Day deals

Tom Bedford

Tom Bedford was deputy phones editor on TechRadar until late 2022, having worked his way up from staff writer. Though he specialized in phones and tablets, he also took on other tech like electric scooters, smartwatches, fitness, mobile gaming and more. He is based in London, UK and now works for the entertainment site What To Watch.

He graduated in American Literature and Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia. Prior to working on TechRadar, he freelanced in tech, gaming and entertainment, and also spent many years working as a mixologist. He also currently works in film as a screenwriter, director and producer.