Best tablet 2023: 8 best tablets from Apple, Samsung, Amazon and more

Best tablet 2023: 8 best tablets from Apple, Samsung, Amazon and more

Best tablet 2023: 8 best tablets from Apple, Samsung, Amazon and more

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Tablets are versatile tools that can be used for everything at school, at work or at home. Whether you’re checking email, managing your finances, testing your artistic skills, or browsing YouTube and watching videos, a tablet can do it all. Finding the best tablet isn’t hard either, but knowing where to start can be overwhelming, and that’s where CNET’s tests and reviews can help.

Let’s start with Apple, which updated its entire iPad lineup in 2022. Along with faster processors on all the latest models, Apple introduced the 10th generation iPad with an all-new design. However, the updated looks and features come at a higher price, so Apple still sells the ninth-generation iPad as its cheapest option.

Elsewhere in Best Tablet Land, Microsoft launched a new Surface Pro 9 model in fall 2022. Meanwhile, Android tablets come in a wide range of sizes and price points, from Amazon Fire tablets to top Galaxy Tab models from Samsung who are strong competition for Apple’s iPad Pro.

In the value segment, Amazon’s Fire tablets remain the best tablet option for cheap, kid-friendly models. But if you’re looking for something good for productivity and entertainment, there’s an affordable Chromebook that blurs the line between laptop and tablet.

What is the best tablet?

The ninth generation iPad of 2021 is the best tablet we continue to recommend, despite the availability of new iPad models. This is mainly for its features and reasonable price. If you’re definitely going for an iPad, we highly recommend Discover the full iPad range because there might be a better option for your needs.

Not interested in an iPad? Our other top picks for the best tablets 2023 has to offer right now are below. All offer ways to get popular apps, but you’ll want to check that your must-have apps are available on the device before you buy (don’t search Fortnite on iPad via the App Store, for example). We’ve included budget tablet and premium tablet options, as well as mid-priced laptop replacement devices, including Android tablet and Apple iPad options. We’ve even added tablet PC and Chromebook options. All of these products (or their previous versions) have been fully reviewed or anecdotally tested by CNET editors.

Learn more:How we test CNET products and services

The best tablets of 2023

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We’ve always liked the entry-level iPad for its affordability. Last year’s entry-level model is cheaper than the new 10th-gen iPad and still very functional: its older A13 chip and Touch ID home button with Lightning charger all look a bit outdated but work well. This iPad’s screen size is perfect for everyday work and play, there’s an auto-zoom front camera and unlike the 10th generation iPad, the first generation Apple Pencil doesn’t need a dongle to work. It is also compatible with a range of keyboard cases.

Apple iPad (9th generation, 2021) review

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Apple’s 2022 iPad Pro refresh added a more powerful M2 chip, faster Wi-Fi 6E and optional 5G connectivity, and a new Pencil 2 “hover” feature that enables the display when the pen is at close range. Few apps take advantage of hover, however, and the rest of this iPad’s design is the same as the previous model. The iPad Pro line is still the only models with faster 120Hz variable refresh rate displays, an improved Mini LED HDR display on the 12.9-inch model, depth-sensing Face ID and lidar cameras, and a port Thunderbolt 4 faster. If you don’t mind that the front camera isn’t yet landscape-oriented like the 10th-gen iPad – and you’ve got the cash to spend – this is the more advanced model, but it doesn’t get you closer to being a Mac.

Apple iPad Pro 2022 review

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The Galaxy Tab S8 Plus is essentially the Android equivalent of Apple’s iPad Pro. Samsung’s DeX interface gives it a productivity edge if you’re looking for a more laptop-like feel to the tablet. It’s built around a gorgeous 12.4-inch, 2800 x 1752 pixel Super AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate for smoother visuals. Samsung also includes one of its awesome S Pens, so you’re ready to start drawing and taking notes right out of the box. The tablet can also act as a wireless display so you can expand your Windows laptop’s screen real estate on the go.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Plus Review

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Apple refreshed the iPad Mini this year with an A15 processor, which is faster than the A14 in the iPad Air. Now that the 10.2-inch model has (almost) caught up to it in terms of specs, it’s hard to swallow the fact that this smaller 8.3-inch model has a higher price tag – although it should be available at a reduced price during the holiday season. Some people like this model as a smaller and lighter mobile device option that’s well-sized as a high-end ebook reader.

Apple iPad Mini (2021) review

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Amazon continues to make the best cheap tablets for media consumption. The Fire HD 8 is in the middle of the range, hitting a sweet spot for price and performance. The 2022 model sports a thinner and lighter design, a faster processor and an hour longer battery life (13 hours versus 12) than its predecessor. It’s certainly a good low-cost option for video streaming, ebook reading, and web browsing, but we’d still recommend waiting to pick it up when it’s discounted, which Amazon does on a regular basis. We also recommend spending an extra $20 on the Plus version, which adds 1GB of RAM, wireless charging, and a 9-watt power adapter.

Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus (2022) review

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The 10-inch Amazon Fire HD tablet is faster and better than the 7 or 8-inch Fire tablet, and it’s still a pretty low price of $150 (or less). For the Amazon Fire HD 10, there are two storage options, 32 and 64 GB. The Amazon Fire HD tablet also charges its battery via USB-C now. A Plus version of the tablet adds wireless charging, 4GB of RAM and a soft-touch finish.

Amazon Fire HD 10 (2021) review

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Although there are several imitators, the Surface Pro continues to offer the best two-in-one detachable PC experience. The 2022 version upgrades from an 11th Gen Intel processor to a newer 12th Gen processor and switches to a slightly faster type of RAM. There’s also a 5G version that switches from Intel to a Microsoft/Qualcomm ARM-based chip for faster mobile wireless with long battery life. Unfortunately, unless you get a bundle, the keyboard and active stylus are still separate purchases. Plus, the Surface Pro 8 is still around and worth considering, especially because it’s at a better price.

Microsoft Surface Pro 9 Review

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The Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3 is a great little 11-inch ChromeOS tablet with a detachable keyboard and touchpad. It’s a good choice if you’re looking for an affordable ultraportable device for working on the go, sketching or taking notes in class, or doing simple things like email, web browsing, gaming, reading and video continuously.

Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3 review

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