Best Android Tablets [October 2014]



Last month’s IFA show had the potential to really shakeup the tablet rankings, but surprisingly few slates of note emerged. We do still see a slight shakeup in our monthly rankings. See how things sift out below.

Previously: SeptemberAugust | July | June | May | April

5. LG G Pad

lg g pad family

LG’s G Pad lineup doesn’t have the flashiest spec sheet, but for the price (started below $200) it’s hard to ask for much more. With the DNA of LG’s powerful G3 smartphone, it would be difficult for the G Pad line to disappoint. It doesn’t do more than it has to, and what it does do it does extremely well.

4. Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact


Sony’s Xperia line continues to be a favorite of the Phandroid staff, so is it any surprise that their latest, the Z3 Tablet Compact, enters our list at number four? With the power of Sony’s latest Xperia Z3 smartphone, a sleek and portable design, and built-in Playstation support, this tablet has plenty to offer.

3. Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet


The Z3 Tablet Compact might be Sony’s latest, but it hasn’t supplanted the old guard just yet. There is a reason Sony didn’t introduce a new 10-inch tablets, and that’s because the Xperia Z2 Tablet remains a compelling option for those in the market for a tablet in that size class. Great looks, plenty of power, and waterproof design keep the Z2 Tablet afloat.


nvidia shield tablet

NVIDIA surprised with the SHIELD Tablet, and they are keeping the momentum going with the recent introduction of an LTE-enabled version of the slate. Don’t let the fact that this device is built by one of the leading names in PC gaming fool you, the SHIELD has a lot to offer beyond what it brings for gamers.

1. Samsung Galaxy Tab S


Samsung has staked its claim at the top of the Android world again with Galaxy Tab S. A tablet designed to duke it out with Apple’s iPad line, the feature set has just about everything a user could ask for: great media capabilities and a gorgeous Super AMOLED display, powerful processing for productivity, and a portable design to take it anywhere you go.

Honorable Mentions

New Nexus 7 wm

You may have noticed one long-running member of our top five list was absent this month. Don’t worry, we’ve dropped the Nexus 7 in our honorable mentions below along with a number of other slates worth consideration.

  1. Nexus 7 — The upcoming Nexus 9 leaves Google’s current pure Android tablet as a slightly dated but still reasonable choice when it comes to affordability.
  2. Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook — If you want a mid-sized Galaxy Tab, might as well get one with the added benefit of Barnes & Noble’s ebook library.
  3. Lenovo Yoga HD 10+ — This slate provides a flexible option for those interested in a device for both work and play.
  4. Amazon Kindle Fire HDX — A different take on Android with the familiar digital content options of Amazon.
  5. Samsung Galaxy Tab Active — If you want a mid-sized Galaxy Tab, might as well get one with added protection against wear and weather.

Upcoming Tablets

If it’s not out but announced, it might be worth holding out for (if you’re in the market, that is). Here’s a look at what’s just over the horizon.

LG Tab Book

lg tab book android

Since its announcement over the summer we haven’t heard much about LG’s latest Tab Book. The Android-infused multitasking machine might ultimately be destined, like many of LG’s more out-of-the-box designs, to remain exclusive to its manufacturers home country of Korea. Here’s hoping we see this powerful hybrid netbook/tablet get a wider release.

Rumor Mill

The rumor mill churns for only one tablet this month, but it might just be the biggest Android slate to launch this year. What’s the latest?

Nexus 9

google nexus devices

The latest buzz suggests Google could host an event this month to launch their Android L update. Starring could be the HTC-made Nexus 9, the long-rumored slate that just can’t seem to keep its cover. A recent WSJ report says Google and HTC have collaborated closely on the release, which is likely to feature a display in the range of 9 inches (hence the name). Interestingly, there is reason to believe the Nexus 9 might not target the low-end market in terms of pricing, instead debuting as premium flagship Android device.

What Say You?

Are you still clutching your Notion Ink Adam and looking upon our tablet rankings with disdain? Let us know what we got right and where we went wrong in the comments below.

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  1. I’ve been personally pretty pleased with my Tab Pro 12.2. I got it on one of those endless refurb deals recently – and with the Google Now Launcher on it, its almost de-Samsung’d completely.

    If you want a large tablet, its pretty much the only one in this space running android.

    1. Absolutely – same experience as yours. This is hands down the first legitimate tablet that I could see replacing my laptop. I bought the Samsung Keyboard(cover) and they fit together so well…sleek package, good looking and huge screen. When other manufacturers start making 12″ screens, maybe I’ll take a look but for now, this is the best tablet around (for what I need it for – work, play, portability).

  2. I just ordered my Shield Tablet. Wish I wasn’t working late, it’s been delivered!

    1. Don’t kill your self trying to get home :D

  3. Kind of wish you would have waited a couple weeks until the nexus 9 is released. I feel like that will change this list pretty substantially.

    1. I think they do a new one every month or so.

      1. ah, k then my bad, disregard :)

  4. I had no idea the Z3 could play PS4. When I eventually get a PS4 Sony is a viable option.

  5. I love my galaxy s 8.4! from a nexus 7, I couldn’t wait any longer for the nexus 9. no regrets! by far an excellent tablet!

  6. I am confused out the Sony Xperia z2 is on the list when you can’t even download HD content from Google Play or Sony its not compatible nobody is talking about that?

  7. This is a very good list, personally I think the Shield looks most promising (though I would have prefered them to release a 10-inch model) as a tablet.
    P.S. There should always be honorable mentions in top 5-10 articles in my opinion, way to go Phandroid!

  8. I might switch my 2013 Kindle Fire HDX 8.9″ out with a Nexus 9 depending on the screen quality of the Nexus 9 since the Shield Tablet has a worse screen then what I currently have. I basically want at least a sidegrade to my screen if I can’t get an upgrade to it that is.

    1. dont let specs fool you…go see them side by side ive heard good things

  9. Anyone else notice that they left out the ASUS Transformer Book V this month? That device running an i5 and Windows 10+Android would be sweet.

  10. I just got the Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4 yesterday from Best Buy on sale for $249.99. I’m coming from the 2012 Nexus 7, so it’s a pretty big leap but I’m loving it so far. Build is sturdy and comfortable, screen is gorgeous and the battery life isn’t as bad as some reviews have made it seem. I really wanted the S-AMOLED screen of the Galaxy Tab S, but I’m not complaining at all.

  11. Got my Nvidia Shield Tablet LTE yesterday. Just what i need. #NvidiaIsAwesome

  12. waiting for the shield tablet to dip in price a tad…its priced well dont get me wrong im just broke lol…i need a replacement for my og n7 and i dont think the n9 is going to be it esp if its going to have a 4:3 aspect ration…smd ipad wanna be

  13. If only the Galaxy Tab S used K1.

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