Best Android Tablets of 2021
With so many Android tablets to choose from, deciding which is right for you can be a difficult task. To aid in finding the right device for you, we present our list of the best Android tablets currently available (as voted on by the Phandroid staff).
Google’s latest Nexus slate may have launched without too much fanfare, but the reception has been more than warm. The first device to officially ship with Android 5.0 Lollipop, it’s 8.9-inch display straddles the line between popular 7-inch and 10-inch form factors, making it a great compromise between portability and productivity. All the power and cutting edge tech we have come to expect from Nexus devices makes it a no brainer for the top spot on our list.
- Nexus device with direct software support from Google
- 8.9-inch form factor meets a variety of needs
- Android 5.0 Lollipop out of the box
NVIDIA’s Shield Tablet continues to shine, rising this month to the number two spot on our list. It’s a must-have for hardcore gamers, but equally at home with casual users. The hardware is built with NVIDIA’s dedication to graphical prowess and it was graced with an upgrade to Lollipop in recent months. Whether it’s all fun and games or something a bit more productive, the Shield Tablet has you covered.
- Play great games anywhere
- Powerful hardware perfect for any user
- Included stylus and optional gaming controller
Samsung’s premium Galaxy Tab S makes for an attractive, portable, and powerfully productive tablet in both its 8.4 and 10.5-inch form factors. An ultra hi-res Super AMOLED display is best in class when it comes to viewing video and web content. It drops a spot on our list this month; the lack of an update to Lollipop might have something to do with that.
- Available in two sizes: 8.4 and 10.5-inch
- Software enhancements easily interface with Galaxy smartphones
- High resolution Super AMOLED display
The Nexus 7 last saw a hardware refresh in the summer of 2013, but it isn’t quite outdated. Its relevancy can largely be attributed to the Android 5.0 Lollipop update; the Nexus 7 was among the first devices to receive the much clamored about Android upgrade. While it lacks the powerful processing and ultra high resolution displays of some other tablets on our list, it holds its own at what amounts to a bargain price.
- Android 5.0 Lollipop update
- Bargain pricing
- Portable 7-inch form factor
Don’t be fooled by the name of Sony’s latest tablet. The Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact might utilize a smaller 8-inch form factor than it’s 10.1-inch cousin the Xperia Z2 Tablet, but its no less qualified in the hardware department. PS4 owners will love the ability to play their favorite games remotely via the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact, and, as is the standard for Sony mobile products, it features waterproof design.
- Sleek form factor with stylish design
- PS4 remote play capabilities
- Waterproof construction
- Dell Venue 8 7000 – Stylish design and powerful productivity make the portable Venue 8 the dark horse of the tablet market.
- LG G Pad 8.3 Google Play Edition – If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it, and the LG G Pad 8.3 while a little long in the tooth is still a great tablet made greater with Google Play Edition support.
- Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet – The Z3 Tablet Compact might be the apple of our eyes, but the larger Z2 tablet is just as powerful and equally appealing.
- Lenovo Yoga HD 10+ – Perhaps the most unique on our list, a built-in kickstand provides a variety of ways to interact with Lenovo’s impressive Yoga HD 10+.
- HP Pro Slate 8 & 12 – Newly released and geared toward productivity with HP’s Duet stylus, the Pro Slate line offers two extremes when it comes to size.
Jide Ultra Remix
Microsoft’s Surface has inspired many competitors, but perhaps none is as intriguing as the Ultra Remix by newcomer Jide, a company formed by three ex-Google Engineers. It features a respectable hardware compliment including 1080p display and quad-core processing, but the big kicker is the inclusion of a snap-on keyboard with touchpad. It also features a variant operating system dubbed Remix OS, a take on Android KitKat that seeks to replicate a very Surface-like experience. The Ultra Remix is expected in North America sometime during Q2 or Q3 this year.
Nokia has had an interesting journey since Microsoft took control of the company, experimenting with low-cost Android handsets among other things. With the Nokia N1, Android once again is featured, only this time on a low-cost tablet. In actuality, the slate is the result of new licensing initiatives by Nokia, and the tablet was developed and is being manufactured and sold by Foxconn. Available soon in China, it should spread to other parts of the world later this year.
Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 Lite successor
We haven’t heard much from Samsung lately about their future tablet plans. Things have seemed to slow down since the launch of the excellent Galaxy Tab S, and CES was devoid of any major device announcements from the Korean company. Still, rumors are starting to surface that suggest at the very least Samsung is developing a successor to the low-cost Galaxy Tab 3 Lite. While little is know, expect another mid-range device at a very competitive price.