The Best 10 Inch Android Tablets
Android devices, once seen as Apple’s inferior little cousins, have ramped up their image and quality in recent years and are now well and truly seen as a legitimate rival (some even say usurper) to the Apple throne. The Android Market has over 700,000 apps on it now, with a myriad of excellent devices. We examine five of the best 10 inch Android tablets on the market today.
Google Nexus 10
This bad boy, the Google Nexus 10, is the crème de la crème of Android tablets at the moment, with its powerful dual-core A15 processor, 2GB of RAM, 5MP back webcam and 1.9MP front webcam. The main reason, though, that you’re going to want one of these things is the absolutely incredible screen. At a brain-melting 2560 x 1600 resolution, it is the world’s highest resolution tablet as of 2013, exceeding even the Apple Retina display’s maximum resolution (a mere 2,048 x 1536 pixels).
It goes without saying that applications, movies, games and Web browsing all look absolutely stunning on the Nexus 10, the ultra-high definition screen providing images as sharp as a cold winter’s morning. Text also looks utterly sensual on the Nexus 10, sharp and crisp, and a joy to read. If you use your tablet for reading at all, whether it’s Web documents, PDF files or e-books, there’s nothing quite as enjoyable as reading on the Nexus 10 – and that includes all the current iPad devices.
The Nexus 10 has an impressive screen size, at 10.55 inches, but it’s been designed in a streamlined manner to ensure it’s easy to hold and grip – the back cover material is somewhat rubber-like, making holding and manipulating the device a bit easier than a typical tablet.
It’s also the first and only tablet (at this stage) to run Android’s latest operating system, Android 4.2.2, bringing with it the capability to run several applications exclusive to the Nexus 10, such as Photo Sphere, an amazing photo application that allows you to capture a three-dimensional model of a real-world space.
Price for Wi-Fi 16GB – $364.00
Price for Wi-Fi 32GB – $551.98
Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1
The heir to the throne for the title of Most Amazing 10 Inch Android Tablet ™ is without doubt the Galaxy Note 10.1, a tablet just made for the creatives and designers out there, largely due to the included ‘S-Pen’, a stylus that is used to draw or write onto the screen like a pencil. The accuracy of the S-Pen is utterly amazing – the Note 10.1 comes with several drawing apps (including a fully featured version of Adobe Photoshop) and we’ve played around with the S-Pen – the accuracy is stunning. Barely perceptible hand movements are registered by the device flawlessly, allowing for extremely accurate graphic design work.
As for the technical specs, it’s got a 1280×800 screen with a pixel density of 149 pixels per inch, and sitting behind it is a quad-core Exynos 1.4Ghz processor, a whopping 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage. The one we’ve gone hands-on with is the 16GB Wi-Fi model, but Samsung have assured us that larger storage variants and 3G models are on their way down under.
Overall, the Note 10.1 looks great, feels even better, and performs like a beast. It’s one of the best tablets on the market, and worthy of your time for sure.
Price for Wi-Fi 16GB – $429.99
Price for Wi-Fi 32GB – $479.99
ASUS Eee Pad Transformer Prime
The unusually named ASUS ‘Eee Pad’ is one of the better 10 inch Android tablets we’ve seen, sporting some truly high-tech hardware and an attractive, sleek design. The Prime is the world’s first tablet to house NVIDIA’s new Tegra 3 1.7 GHz quad-core super processor, which offers up to 5 times the performance of its predecessor, the Tegra 2, and has been shown in benchmarking to be one of the fastest tablets on the market today (as of 2013).
Just as importantly, the Prime is extremely sexy to look at and hold, coming in at just 8.3mm (0.33 inches) thick, which adds a surprising amount of extra usability and fun factor to the device. The Transformer Prime also has an 8MP rear camera and a display utilizing Asus’s new ‘Super IPS+ Gorilla Glass’ display.
Price for Wi-Fi 32GB – $399.99
Price for Wi-Fi 64GB – $459.99
Sony Xperia Z Tablet
Sony’s foray into the 10 inch tablet market has been a successful one, with the recent release of the Xperia Tablet Z, the tablet equivalent of Sony’s Xperia range of phones. The tablet is the lightest and thinnest 10.1-inch tablet in the world with a weight of 1.09 pounds (495 grams) and is just 0.27 inches (6.9 mm) thick, and sports a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 chipset with a Krait CPU at 1.5 GHz, including 2 GB of onboard RAM and up to 16, 32 or 64 GB of internal storage.
The touchscreen on the Xperia Z tablet is 10.1 inches, like the others we’ve looked at so far, but the display resolution is not quite up to the standard of the others mentioned above, at only 1920 x 1200 and 224 ppi density. Don’t get the wrong idea, though; the Xperia Z still looks fantastic, it’s just that the slightly lower screen resolution means it’s not quite as enjoyable for fine-detail activities like reading PDF documents or fine graphic design work.
The rear camera of the tablet has 8megapixels with Exmor R sensor and with full HD video recording capabilities while the front camera has 2 megapixels and is capable of 720p video recording. At $599.99 for the 32GB Wi-Fi version and $499.99 for the 16GB Wi-Fi version, the Xperia Z is, however, like most Sony products, a little on the expensive side given the mid-range hardware actually provided.
Price for Wi-Fi 16GB – $499.99
Price for Wi-Fi 32GB – $599.99
Asus Transformer Pad Infinity TF700
Another offering from ASUS, this time the excellent Transformer Pad Infinity TF700, a fine 10 inch tablet released in late 2012 as a companion to the Transformer Prime, with some slight differences in the feature list and onboard hardware. The Infinity TF700 also features the powerful Tegra 3 CPU, as does the Transformer Prime, which clocks in at 1.6 GHz on the TF700. It also houses 1GB of DDR3 RAM and comes with standard memory capacities of 32GB or 64GB (no 16GB option for the TF700).
The big drawcard of the Transformer Pad Infinity is its ability to connect to the ASUS keyboard via the bundled keyboard dock, which allows you to forgo the frustrating scenario of trying to type lengthy emails or documents via the touch screen and get some real work done, laptop style. The keyboard feels solid, and is a pleasure to type on, and is very easy to detach and carry around, making the Infinity TF700 an ideal choice for mobile types who need to get a lot of work done on the go. The Infinity TF700 comes in at number 5 on our best 10 inch Android tablets list, due to its powerful processor, attractive design and incredibly useful ability to connect to a range of peripherals, enhancing usability and functionality.
Price for Wi-Fi 16GB – $575.99
Price for Wi-Fi 32GB – $499.99