The Best Cheap Tablets [July 2019]
The Apple iPad revolutionized personal technology, and with good reason. They’re undeniably awesome products that allow users to do everything from read eBooks and send emails to watch movies and utilize an endless stream of apps—all on an incredibly slim and minimalist device that advertises itself as being somewhere between an iPhone and a MacBook.
The only problem is that the iPad is also undeniably expensive, and even the lower-end versions can mean a serious investment unless you’re lucky enough to be uber-rich.
The good news, however, is that we live in a capitalist society, and other companies were soon able to adopt similar technology in order to build their own versions of Apple’s famed tablet and sell them at a much lower prices.
Similar in style and function to the iPad but far more affordable, the relatively cheap tablets on this list (all of which are priced at $200 and below) may not pack all of the processing power of an iPad, but are likely just as capable of getting you through the day and beyond.
That’s because the truth is that most of us simply don’t require the processing power of an Apple iPad has in order to do 90 percent of our daily tasks—such as writing and sending emails, watching the occasional show on Netflix, or organizing our work and personal schedules through a series of increasingly powerful apps.
So before you go and invest an exorbitant amount of money in one of those shiny Apple iPads, check out our list of worthy competitor tablets that will offer many of the same perks without breaking the bank.
We’re fully aware that one of the reasons this well-known tablet tops the Amazon search rankings is because it’s created by Amazon itself. This classic conundrum can make it exceedingly difficult for potential buyers who want to trust that a product will be amazing despite a promoter’s bias, and this problem persists in the world of tech wherever you look.
But just because something may get a little extra push by its maker doesn’t mean that the maker is necessarily wrong, and that’s precisely the case when it comes to this incredibly versatile and affordable tablet, which now comes in a variety of colors and configurations.
The first thing you’ll likely notice about this tablet is that it’s incredibly fast and responsive—thanks in no small part to a 1.3 GHz quad-core processor that the fact that it comes loaded with 50% more RAM than the previous Fire iteration.
The second thing you’ll likely notice is its incredibly brilliant and vibrant HD display, which boasts over a million pixels that bring everything from Netflix shows to HD movies to life with ease. (It also dramatically reduces glare when compared to the Fire 7, thanks to in-plane switching.)
Another big change that the Fire has made from its previous version is that it comes loaded with two times the internal storage space as before—meaning you’ll have 16GB of space that allows you to store your files and media without having to resort entirely to the cloud. This storage is also expandable by up to 400 GB if you use a microSD card, and you’ll even get a bit of free cloud storage with your purchase.
This tablet also features an HD, 2 MP rear-facing camera for taking photos or shooting 720p video, and you get a whopping ten hours of mixed-use battery life so you won’t have to worry about running out of juice when you find yourself without an outlet for prolonged periods of time.
And last but not least, this latest Fire tablet is extremely durable, and has past over fifty tests that replicate every possible drop, tumble, spill, and kick you could possibly throw its way.
If, however, you’ve seen one too many Fire tablets out and about and you prefer to stay a bit more off the beaten path, we highly recommend checking out this Vankyo MatrixPad, which packs a more-than-impressive punch at a very similar price point.
Packed with a super-powerful and energy-saving 64-bit quad-core processor that runs at 1.5GHz and 1GB of RAM, this tablet facilitates quick app launches, smooth video streaming, and a great overall performance that’s ideal for those of us who need to stream lots of media content on the fly.
It features the latest and greatest Android OS (which has earned rave reviews for being the most efficient version of the OS to date), and you’ll be able to rid your tablet of those horrible ads thanks to full access to Google Play.
You get a super-crisp 7-inch IPS display that’s bright enough to bring movies to life but not so bright that it strains your eyes, and you’ll be able to read comfortably thanks to a new feature called Eye Health, which enables the tablet to automatically adjust and optimize the backlight for a more comfortable and effective reading experience in low-light environments.
This tablet is also extremely lightweight and portable, and features a robust 2500mAh lithium polymer battery that will allow you to enjoy up to eight hours of use on a single charge.
And since it comes with 32GB of onboard memory and includes a microSD card slot that allows you to an an optional 128GB or memory, you’ll be able to store large media files and books directly on the tablet without having to rely entirely on the cloud.
If you’re even remotely familiar with the tablet market, you’ve doubtlessly heard of the Samsung Galaxy tablet, which acts as one of Apple’s most formidable rivals when it comes to outpacing and undercutting the iPad in terms of performance and price.
This particular model comes in a variety of configurations (with the option to include a microSD card), along with 32GB or built-in storage that’s expandable to up to 256GB.
This is more than enough processing power to power through everything from presentations to movies when you’re on the go, and a super long-lasting battery delivers up to 14 hours of use on a single charge (even if that 14 hours is spent watching movies, believe it or not).
This tablet is also somewhat appropriately known as the “family tablet”, due to the fact that you get three free months of YouTube Red through the Google Play music app that comes with a wide variety of kid-friendly apps, games, and videos.
Of course if you happen to already have a Samsung smartphone, the pairing possibilities are virtually endless, and you’ll be able to respond to notifications and messages from third party and native apps.
You also get a super HD 8MP camera with flash that features HDR mode for stunning snaps both indoors and outdoors in any lighting environment.
Don’t let its relatively unconventional design and appearance fool you. This tablet packs a serious punch and can pull its weight with some of the more popular and well-known tablets on the market.
Loaded with a Android 8.1 Go operation system, a 1.3GHz quad-core CPU, 1GB RAM, and 16GB of ROM, this tablet has more than enough power to get you through both everyday tasks like emailing and more power-intensive tasks like streaming HD movies.
You get a brilliant 10.1-inch display along with dual speakers (which sound surprisingly good for a tablet), along with a 5MP rear and 2MP front camera that’s perfect for doing everything from snapping photos and making Skype calls.
Your memory can also be expanded to up to 128GB if you choose to purchase a microSD card, and a 6000mAh rechargeable lithium battery gives most other tablet batteries a run for their money when it comes to longevity and sustainability.
There’s also built-in GPS, WiFi and Bluetooth for all the connectivity needs you may have ranging from external navigation systems to gaming and online shopping.
Where would a great personal tech list be without at least one Lenovo gadget on the docket? This Android-powered tablet features a super-fast quad-core processor that runs at no less than 1.4Ghz, along with 2GB of RAM and a whopping 32GB of internal storage.
Available in several different configurations, the display on this tablet is truly impressive, and it lends itself quite well to kids thanks to a shock-resistant bumper along with a customizable screen and parental controls.
You also get multi-account functionality and an insanely high 20-hour battery life—meaning this tablet makes for a great choice if you happen to leave your charger behind on a regular basis.
Your order also comes with a USB Type-C cable.
Featuring the latest Android 8.1 Oreo OS, this sleek tablet features fast processing along with a slew of features that include an internal GPS and a truly fantastic display.
You’ll enjoy a normal USB port for charing and data transmission, and 16GB of internal storage is more than enough to keep everything from smaller media files to eBooks and downloads on board without having to rely on the cloud.
The battery on this tablet is also impressive, and you’ll be able to do everything from browse the web to watch movies for up to seven hours on a single charge.