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Last Update: Apr 29, 2019

Top 6 Tablets for Gaming

Published 15:21 PM
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Get hands-on with a top of the range gaming tablet. 📱 👐

A gaming tablet is a great alternative to a flagship smartphone and a luxurious gaming PC. They aren’t as discreet as modern phones, nor are they as powerful as a laptop. Nonetheless, gaming tablets are great for simply browsing the web, watching movies, and gaming on-the-go and in that case, it can be as good as the best gaming laptop.

They even have the ability to stop a child from crying! 👼🏼

Yet with the rise of 2-in-1 hybrid laptops and gaming tablets, knowing where to start can be tricky. Do you go with an iOS or Android tablet, or do you opt for a Nintendo Switch? You won’t have to fret for much long as we have several options for you to choose from, regardless of whether you’re an Apple or Android lover. From best choice gaming tablet options to budget-friendly cheaper options that don’t sacrifice important features.

1

Best Choice: Huawei MediaPad M5 Lite

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Specifications:

  • Resolution: 1920 x 1200
  • Screen Size: 10.1 inches
  • Dimensions: 9.58 x 6.39 x 0.3 inches
  • OS: Android
  • Battery: 11 hours
  • Weight: 1.05 lbs
  • CPU: Huawei Kirin 659 Octa-core
  • Graphics: Mali-T830 MP2
  • RAM: 3 GB
  • Storage: 32 GB
  • Front Camera: 8 MP
  • Rear Camera: 8 MP

Huawei MediaPad M5 Lite Review

Huawei are known for their high-grade phones with exceptional cameras (yes, multiple), so we couldn’t leave a Huawei made tablet off our list. For that reason, our best choice gaming tablet is the Huawei MediaPad M5 Lite, and weighing in at just 1.05 lbs, the title matches the description perfectly.

The M5 Lite features 5 eye-comfort modes making it a child-friendly tablet suitable for all types of gamers. Plus, if you’re a “hardcore gamer”, you’ll never have to stress about storage capacity with the included expandable hard drive of up to 256 GB, enough to hold a whole host of different Android games.

For the price, Huawei’s M5 Lite gaming tablet comes with a whole host of superior hardware that you can throw any high-setting game at. From the Huawei Kirin 659 Octa-core CPU, to the Mali-T830 MP2 GPU, it’s one powerful tablet, and the pros don’t end there.

Multilayered, 3D surround sound co-engineered with Harman Kardon allows for an immersive experience, no matter what game you’re playing. In addition to this you’ll get around 12 hours of battery life depending on what you’re doing, and with quick charge, it takes as little as 3 hours to fully charge the M5 Lite.

The cameras aren’t great, but it prevents you from being “that guy” with the big tablet out in public taking photos of anything and everything.

+Pros
  • 5 eye-comfort modes
  • Expandable microSD to 256 GB
  • Quick charge
  • Quad-speaker system
  • Child-friendly tablet
-Cons
  • Poor cameras
2

Best Quality: Nvidia Shield K1

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Specifications:

  • Resolution: 1920 X 1200
  • Screen Size: 8 inches
  • Dimensions: 8.8 x 5 x 0.36 inches
  • OS: Android
  • Battery: 5 hours
  • Weight: 0.78 lbs
  • CPU: NVIDIA Tegra K1 processor
  • Graphics: NVIDIA Kepler GPU
  • RAM: 2 GB
  • Storage: 16 GB
  • Front Camera: 5 MP
  • Rear Camera: 5 MP

Nvidia Shield K1 Review

NVIDIA are known for their superior GeForce graphics cards that enhance any gaming PC, but are you aware that they also sell gaming tablets? We aren’t surprised if you weren’t aware, so here’s our best quality gaming tablet option.

Design wise, the NVIDIA Shield K1 is slim and minimalistic as a consequence of the black rubber shell that protects it from falls. This textured rubber surface is excellent for extra grip, so you don’t have to worry about dropping the tablet during intense Fortnite for Android sessions.

To make these Fortnite games even easier, you can purchase a NVIDIA Shield controller for an extra $60. Though to be honest, any old Bluetooth controller is compatible with the Shield K1 tablet, so save your money for a rainy day.

Onto hardware, demanding titles run flawlessly thanks to the use of NVIDIA’s Tegra K1 processor and 192-core NVIDIA Kepler GPU. Not to mention how good games look on the full HD, 8-inch display which is smaller than the Amazon Fire 10 HD, except the performance makes up for it.

Alas, the NVIDIA Shield K1 has now been discontinued since mid-2018 on the Shield website, just a year after it was first released. It’s still available from sellers, although getting your hands on this thing may be a job in itself.

+Pros
  • Stream games up to 1080p from the cloud to the tablet
  • MicroSD slot for expandable storage up to 128 GB
-Cons
  • Heats up after gameplay
  • Discontinued and only available from sellers
  • No micro USB charger in the box
3

Best Value: Fire HD 10 with Alexa

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Specifications:

  • Resolution: 1920 x 1200
  • Screen Size: 10.1 inch
  • Dimensions: 10.3 x 6.3 x 0.4 inches
  • OS: Fire OS
  • Battery: 12 hours
  • Weight: 1.10 lbs
  • CPU: Quad-core (up to 1.8 GHZ)
  • Graphics: PowerVR GX6250
  • RAM: 2 GB
  • Storage: 32 GB
  • Front Camera: VGA
  • Rear Camera: 2 MP

Fire HD 10 with Alexa Review

Amazon Prime members will benefit from the first tablet on our list, The Amazon Fire HD 10. First released in 2017, this gaming tablet boasts a large, full HD display suitable for watching Amazon Prime videos and movies on.

It’s also fitting for non-Prime members who can make the most of Amazon’s Apps and Games, some of which are completely free–you’ll just have to deal with a bunch of annoying ads to avoid paying for the games you want to play.

Still, with 32 GBs of storage, you’ll be able to play without the worry of running out of space fast. You’ll also be able to relax knowing that if you choose the marine blue or punch red color options, you won’t go losing this thing down the side of a car seat or sofa. We’ve all been there!

This Amazon tablet is one of the cheapest on our list, hence, it’s our best value gaming tablet, and it doesn’t cut corners either. It boasts a quad-core CPU, battery life of up to 12 hours, and a 10.1-inch screen size. However, despite all the pros, the bezels are pretty thick, taking up unnecessary space.

Nevertheless, for $150, you can’t go wrong with this Amazon Fire HD 10 tablet that’s suitable for casual and young gamers.

+Pros
  • Hands-free mode with Alexa
  • 64 GB option available
  • 3 color options
-Cons
  • Poor camera quality
  • Build quality
4

Best Resolution: iPad Mini 4

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Specifications:

  • Resolution: 2049 x 1536
  • Screen Size: 7.9 inches
  • Dimensions: 8 x 5.3 x 0.24 inches
  • OS: iOS
  • Battery: 10 hours
  • Weight: 0.65 lbs
  • CPU: 64-bit Apple A8 + M8 motion coprocessor
  • Graphics: PowerVR GX6450
  • RAM: 2 GB
  • Storage: 128 GB
  • Front Camera: 1.2 MP FaceTime
  • Rear Camera: 8 MP

iPad Mini 4 Review

This next one’s for you Apple fanboys out there, an iPad mini. To be specific, our best choice iOS gaming tablet is the iPad Mini 4. A more affordable, compact iPad available in 3 classic Apple color options: Space Gray, Silver, and Gold.

It’s slim, 8 x 5.3 x 0.24-inch body is easy to grip using both hands, perfect for a round of PlayerUnknown’s Battleground or even a guilty game of Minecraft that you won’t admit to playing.

In fact, you can store a tonne of games on this thing owing to the 128 GB storage capacity, likely the reason this iPad is $400. If not that, then it’s probably just the Apple branding that contributes to the price. On the topic of application and games, all of your apps, bank details, and rare memes will be safe as a result of the handy fingerprint sensor over the home button.

The resolution on this tablet is surprisingly better than our best choice gaming tablet option, although resolution isn’t everything. For those who care about crisp image quality, 2049 x 1536 is a suitable resolution to aim for. So for $400 you could grab this iPad Mini 4 that features a high-resolution screen, Apple’s A8 processor, as well as a PowerVR GX6450 GPU for smooth gameplay.

+Pros
  • Fingerprint sensor
  • Compatible with Bluetooth keyboards
  • Thin and lightweight design
  • 3 color options
-Cons
  • Pricey
5

Best for Movies: Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro

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Specifications:

  • Resolution: 2560 x 1600
  • Screen Size: 10.1 inches
  • Dimensions: 9.72 x 7.05 x 0.18 inches
  • OS: Android 6.0
  • Battery: 12 hours
  • Weight: 2.6 lbs
  • CPU: Intel Atom X5-Z8550
  • Graphics: Intel HD
  • RAM: 4 GB
  • Storage: 64 GB
  • Front Camera: 5 MP
  • Rear Camera: 13 MP

Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro Review

Gaming on a small tablet screen is great and all, but what about those days where you just want to relax in bed with a game, some snacks, and a widescreen TV?

Well, we have you covered with Lenovo’s Yoga Tab 3 Pro, a 2-in-1 projector tablet suitable for gaming and watching your favourite Netflix series on a larger screen. But wait, surely a Lenovo projector tablet must come at a cost? You’re right, it does, and a hefty one at that.

For $500 you’ll receive a compact projector tablet with a 10.1-inch screen—just like the Amazon Fire HD 10—a crisp resolution of 2560 x 1600, alongside a battery life of up to 12 hours. There is an 8-inch version of the Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 available at a much cheaper price, though you’ll be missing out on the projector and Intel Atom X5 quad-core processor.

Whilst the Yoga 3 Pro won’t handle games like our best choice gaming tablet will, and we wouldn’t say the overall performance is top-notch, the display, battery life, and overall design won us over. So it deserves a spot on our list.

+Pros
  • Built-in 70” projector
  • Great battery life
  • A large amount of storage
  • QHD display
-Cons
  • Expensive
6

Best Gameplay: Nintendo Switch

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Specifications:

  • Resolution: 1280 x 720 portable, 1920 x 1080 console
  • Screen Size: 6.2 inches
  • Dimensions: 4 x 9.4 x .55 inches
  • OS: Nintendo Switch system software
  • Battery: 6 hours
  • Weight: 0.65 lbs
  • CPU: Nvidia customized Tegra
  • Graphics: Nvidia customized Tegra
  • RAM: 4 GB
  • Storage: 32 GB
  • Front Camera: None
  • Rear Camera: None

Nintendo Switch Review

Ok, we understand that the Nintendo Switch is technically a mini handheld console, we just couldn’t leave it off our list, so hear us out. Nintendo’s Switch was the hottest thing on the market when it first came out back in March of 2017, and with new and exciting games being thrown at us each year, sales aren’t slowing down any time soon.

Both Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and The Legends of Zelda: Breath of the Wild run as smooth as butter on the Switch. How you may be wondering? The use of NVIDIA’s customized Tegra CPU and GPU, alongside Nintendo’s software and OS.

You might think I’m kidding here, but the Nintendo Switch is more powerful than Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 in terms of hardware. The Switch came out years later, so it might be obvious to some, nonetheless, it may come as a shock to others.

Every single Switch game operates at a consistent frame rate, without a frustrating quality hit, allowing you to enjoy each game without lag. The gameplay is also made simple on the Switch thanks to both of the detachable joy-con controllers that can be used independently or with a charging grip.

+Pros
  • Great for multiplayer gaming
  • Large range of games
  • Expandable storage via microSD, microSDXC or microSDHC
  • Built-in stand
-Cons
  • 6.2 GB of memory is reserved for use by the system
  • No camera

Top Gaming Tablet Buying Guide

Here are some of the most important things to look for in a gaming tablet when you decide to get one.

Dimensions and Screen Size

It is vital that you pick out a tablet you feel comfortable holding in both hands during gaming sessions. Not only that, but you must choose a big enough screen size for an immersive experience. It won’t be the size of the best gaming monitor, but its size will serve its purpose.

These days, tablets fall into the 7 to 10-inch range, small enough to fit into your bag. On the other hand, more premium gaming tablets offer a screen size between 11 and 14-inches wide, suitable for immersive gameplay and movies.

3d gaming tablet

Operating System

There’s always going to be a debate between iOS and Android fans about which OS is best. Unfortunately, that argument doesn’t stop at gaming tablets. When it comes to Apple iPads, hardware options are limited, although the games library is pretty diverse. On the contrary, Android tablets offer plenty of games with a range of hardware and software options to choose from.

Processor

Much like a gaming PC, the processor is an important piece of hardware. In Apple tablets, a custom A-series chip is used. Whereas Android tend to use a variety of manufacturers for their tablets, rather than their own designed processor. Our best quality gaming tablet, the Nvidia Shield K1, uses Nvidia’s Tegra processor commonly found in Nvidia tablets. Contrasting both systems, Windows tablets tend to use Intel Processors, common among gaming PCs and laptops. So choose your weapon wisely.

winkpax android tablet

Storage

A gaming tablet with a storage size of 8 to 16 GB is enough for casual gamers, however, the “right” storage capacity depends on what the user wishes to play. Many of our chosen tablets give you the option to expand the storage space using a microSD, others cut costs by decreasing the storage size.

Resolution

A high resolution screen doesn’t just make image quality look crisp. Instead, resolution combined with panel type determines how good viewing angles are, how sharp videos and images will be, the maximum brightness of a screen, and color accuracy.

1920 x 1080 is a common screen resolution, whereas higher quality tablets boast a sharper, 2560 x 1600 pixel resolution, like the Lenovo’s Yoga Tab 3 Pro.

nvidia shield

Battery Life

Gaming tablets are usually used on-the-go, so decent battery life is necessary. If you’re just browsing the web, a modern tablet should last you all day. If, however, you’re stuck in a game for a while, battery life will drain faster. Saying that, the standard time until tablet batteries run dry is around 7 hours, enough for a short road trip or commute to work.


Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best Android tablet for 2018?

Our best choice Android gaming tablet is the Huawei MediaPad M5 Lite. It’s lightweight, comfortable on the eyes, and as it’s child-friendly, it’s great for all types of gamers.

Which tablet is best for watching movies?

If you want to watch movies on a tablet, aim for a widescreen display or even a 2-in-1 projector tablet—like the Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro—to project your movies across your wall.

Is a tablet worth buying?

If you’re constantly travelling and out-and-about, it’s definitely worth investing in a gaming tablet. Plus, they are usually more affordable than a gaming PC, so they don’t put a massive dent in your wallet. But if you’re more into professional gaming, it might be better for you to check out our list of the best budget gaming laptops or maybe even best budget gaming PCs, depending on your gaming style and preferences.

What are the advantages of having a tablet?

Not only are gaming tablets lightweight, great for travelling gamers, they are also perfect for late night, cosy gaming sessions in bed or on the couch.


Conclusion

With all that said, tablets are superb devices to game on, and more often than not, they are cheaper than a gaming laptop or PC. They still have a long way to develop before they come close to the performance of a modern console such as a PlayStation 4 or Xbox One. Nevertheless, they are perfect for daily tasks and quick gaming sessions on-the-go.


Sources:

  1. Cameron Sherber, The Pros & Cons of a Tablet PC, Chron
  2. Tablet Computers, Wikipedia
  3. Tablet Frequently Asked Questions, James Hutton Institute
  4. Tablet Comparison, Lenovo FAQ
  5. Mary Jane, The Advantages of iPads and Tablets in a Business, Chron
  6. What is a Tablet, Techopedia
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