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The Apple iPad revolutionized personal technology, and with good reason. They’re undeniably awesome products that allow users to do everything from reading eBooks to sending emails to watching movies and utilizing 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 iPads are also undeniably expensive, and even the lower-end versions can mean a serious investment unless you’re lucky enough to be uber-rich. However, the good news is that we live in a capitalist society, and other companies were soon able to adopt similar technology to build their own versions of Apple’s famed tablet and sell them at much lower prices. Similar in style and function to the iPad but far more affordable, the relatively cheap tablets on this list may not pack all of the advanced features of an iPad, but they’re still 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 iPad to do 90% of our daily tasks like creating documents, browsing the internet, watching Netflix, or organizing our work and personal schedules through a series of increasingly powerful apps. So before you go and invest an excessive 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.
It’s not hard to see why many people think the Amazon Fire HD 10 Plus is a fantastic deal because you get a large tablet for about $180. Their budget variant has ads within the lock screen, but you can get a model without lock screen ads for an extra $15. The tablet comes with a 10.1-inch display with a 1080p Full HD resolution. You can pick between 32GB and 64GB storage options, but you can also purchase a microSD card to expand its storage up to 1TB. It features an octa-core processor and 4GB RAM. Its RAM might not be as attractive as its higher-end competitors, but it’s still enough for getting basic tasks done. Users can expect to get up to 12 hours of usage per charge, and it supports wireless charging, so getting your juice back will be a breeze. If you love binge-watching movies/shows and browsing the internet, the Amazon Fire HD 10 Plus easily gives you access to popular apps like Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Netflix, Hulu, etc. Unfortunately, the apps you can download are limited since you don’t get full access to the Google Play Store. You can also download Zoom for convenient video calls, but its 2 MP front camera won’t guarantee the best quality. The tablet also comes with a 5 MP rear camera that can shoot 720p videos. Since it’s a product by Amazon, it’s no surprise that it also comes with Alexa built-in for convenient voice control.
At first glance, you won’t get to tell that the Lenovo Tab M10 Plus is a budget tablet because of this premium aesthetic. It’s a reliable tablet that is perfect for work or play. It features a 10.3-inch FHD touchscreen display that’s equipped with TDDI technology. Users can expect a decent performance from the tablet since it’s powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon octa-core processor that promises a main frequency of up to 2.3 GHz. Sadly, you only get 4GB RAM and 64GB of internal storage, but you can expand its storage to 256GB with an SD card. The Lenovo Tab M10 Plus runs on Android 9 Pie, and you have a wide selection of downloadable apps from the Google Play Store. You can quickly access top services for streaming, editing, browsing, etc. The tablet comes with two side speakers with Dolby Atmos support, so you can expect an enhanced audio experience when watching something on Netflix or Youtube. Users can use the tablet to take photos and videos, but you shouldn’t expect spectacular quality because it only has a 5MP front camera and an 8MP rear camera. The tablet’s battery life isn’t too impressive because you only get 8 hours of web browsing or 7 hours of video playback per charge. If you plan to purchase the tablet for your child, you will like its built-in Kid’s Mode, which gives you eye protection, parental controls, and dedicated kid-friendly content.
If you’re on an extremely tight budget, you can go for the Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus. It might not be as advanced as the Fire HD 10 Plus, but it will still be enough for basic browsing and streaming. The tablet has an 8-inch display, and you can pick between a 32 GB or 64GB storage capacity. It has microSD support, so you can invest in one to get your storage up to 1TB. You will also have the option to pick a variant with or without lock screen advertisements. The tablet only comes with 3GB RAM, which might not be enough for those who need a tablet for heavy tasks. Its 12-hour battery life is impressive for its price, and you can charge it with either a USB-C cable or wireless charger. Amazon even offers a bundle with a charging dock and screen protector included with the tablet. They say that the tablet takes around 4 hours to get fully charged. Users are limited to the apps on Amazon’s Appstore, but you’ll get to find the most common social media and streaming apps. The tablet allows you to check emails, set reminders, take notes, and make video calls. Its rear and front cameras are only 2 MP, so don’t expect its quality to be spectacular. The Fire HD 8 Plus comes with Alexa built-in, so you can ask her to open an app, control smart home devices, play videos, etc.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A8 is a fantastic choice for loyal Android users because of the specs you get for its price. The tablet features a 10.5-inch LCD screen that’s excellent for watching Youtube videos, movies, or TV shows. You can pick between 32GB, 64GB, and 128GB storage options, but its storage capacity is also expandable up to 1TB using a microSD card. The 32GB model only has 2GB RAM, while the 64GB and 128GB variants come with 4GB RAM. The tablet has a 7,040 mAh battery that promises around 8 hours and 49 minutes of usage per charge. It supports 15W fast charging, but this still might be too slow for tech enthusiasts. The Galaxy Tab A8 has a decent camera system because both its 8MP primary camera and 5MP selfie camera can film 1080p video at 30 fps. The tablet gives users access to Samsung Kids, which offers a wide range of child-friendly books, videos, and games. People with other Samsung devices will benefit from the tablet’s functionality the most because of the Galaxy Ecosystem. The Galaxy Tab A8 comes in Pink Gold, Dark Gray, and Silver.
For those looking for an even more budget-friendly option from Samsung, you can purchase the Galaxy Tab A7 Lite. It features an 8.7-inch display with a slim build and sleek metal frame that doesn’t make it look cheap at all. The tablet uses a Mediatek MT8768T Helio P22T chipset, an octa-core CPU, and a PowerVR GE8320 GPU. It only has an internal storage capacity of 32GB, but you can get up to 1TB of storage with a microSD card. You get around 10 hours of browsing with every full charge, and it supports 15W fast charging. The Galaxy Tab A7 Lite has a 2MP front camera, which might be too outdated for those who need to hop on Zoom calls regularly. Its rear camera is 8MP and can film 1080p videos at 30 fps, but many might think this won’t be enough to capture high-quality clips for your social media accounts. With this tablet, you get what you pay for, so you should only choose this when you plan to use it for basic browsing or streaming.
Many creatives invest in tablets because modern technology allows you to draw on them as if they were a piece of paper. The Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite will be an outstanding choice if you’re willing to go a little over your budget. The 64GB model costs $299.99, while the 128GB model is priced at $339.43. Both models’ storage capacity is expandable up to 1TB by inserting a microSD card. The selling point of this tablet is its included S Pen that you can use for drawing, writing notes, editing photos and videos, and more. You don’t have to worry about losing the S Pen because you can conveniently attach it to the tablet magnetically. The tablet features a slim and lightweight design, so it will be easy for you to carry it around throughout the day. It features a 10.4-inch display, an octa-core processor, and 4GB RAM. The Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite has a 5MP selfie camera and an 8MP rear camera, which can capture 1080p videos at 30 fps. The tablet has built-in stereo speakers with Dolby Atmos surround sound support. Users can enjoy up to 13 hours of usage on a single charge thanks to its 7,040 mAh battery. The Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite is available in three colors: Gray, Rose, and Blue.
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