Trick5 – Best Android tablets of 2018 – Trick5
Samsung Galaxy Tab S3
- Quite expensive
- Multitasking isn’t all that great
- Samsung’s Android skin is prone to lag
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 is hands-down one of the best Android tablets you can get right now. Boasting an ultra crisp, 9.7” Super AMOLED display—which Samsung claims is the world’s first HDR-ready panel on a tablet—as well quad stereo speakers, the Galaxy Tab S3 is pretty excellently suited for multimedia consumption and entertainment.
Furthermore, the Tab S3 also comes with Samsung’s trademark S-Pen, which leverages the perks of the tablet’s outstanding display. It’s perfect for note-taking, that’s a given, but it’s also a powerful tool for artists. Coming from the now-ancient 12.2” Galaxy TabPRO, I found the Tab S3 to be a tad small for drawing with its 9.7” screen, but even if it’s not the first choice for artists, it’s such a well rounded device otherwise.
As far as looks are concerned, the tablet has a glass and metal design that channels that classic Samsung look, which we’re seeing less and less of these days, with the bezel-less craze in full swing, and I quite like it. Would it have looked better, had Samsung shaved a bit more on the sides, top and bottom, leaving the frame thinner? Perhaps it would’ve, but it’s not a bad-looking device as is.
The Galaxy Tab S3 is powered by a Snapdragon 820 processor, which is not quite up to par with the current top-of-the-line Snapdragon 835, but it’s still more than capable of delivering an adequately smooth experience. That being said, Samsung’s Android skin is as usual prone to lag at times, so keep that in mind.
Huawei MediaPad M3 8
- Throwaway cameras
- Processor feels poorly optimized for a gaming and more demanding tasks
On the hardware front, the MediaPad M3 is powered by a Huawei HiSilicon Kirin octa-core processor, backed by 4 GB of LPDDR4 RAM, which ensure smooth performance most of the time, although stutters in more demanding games are to be expected. The tablet comes in versions with 32 GB and 64 GB of on-board memory, which is expandable with microSD cards of up to 128GB. The battery inside the MediaPad M3 has a 5100 mAh capacity, which can’t deliver amazing screen-on time, given the tablet’s high-res screen, but is capable enough to squeeze out around 7 or so hours of HD video playback at full charge.
Asus ZenPad 3S 10
- Asus’ custom Android skin looks and feels outdated
- Slow to reacharge
- Terrible rear-facing camera
The ZenPad 3S 10 comes equipped with a healthy 4GB of RAM, but the hexa-core Mediatek 8176 at the heart of it is nothing to write home about. Heavier games will make the device stutter, but at least normal tasks, such as browsing social media, checking email, streaming HD video, and running multiple apps at once run fine on the Asus tablet. The ZenPad 3S 10 is powered by a 5,900 mAh battery and comes in two versions – with either 32 GB or 64 GB of expandable storage.
Our main gripes with this slate pertain to its cameras and software. It’s not like anyone would buy this device for the camera, but image and video quality is bad even for tablet standards. Asus’ custom interface, however, is something you should keep in mind. It is cluttered, gimmicky, and bloated, to say the least, and it can bog the user experience quite a bit. Fortunately, most all of these issues can be alleviated by using a custom launcher and can’t be dubbed a real deal-breaker, considering how well-rounded the device is.
Lenovo Yoga Book
- Display not as good as on other Lenovo tablets
- Subpar performance
- Slow to charge
Unfortunately, for its unique and ambitious design, the Yoga Book falls flat in one key area. That’s the 10.1” display, which has a resolution of 1920 x 1200, putting it well below the competition on this list. It’s not terrible by any means, but this particular device could have benefited from a more pixel dense display.
Other than that, the Yoga Book runs on Intel silicon: a quad-core 2.4GHz Atom x5-Z8550 processor, paired with 4GB of RAM and a healthy 64GB of expandable storage. Although that sounds sweet on paper, it’s not the best performer out there, but it’s not that bad either. The seemingly massive 8500 mAh battery also sounds like a better deal than it actually is, delivering just over a 7 hours of screen-on time in our custom endurance test.
Having said all that, the Lenovo Yoga Book is an interesting and adequately priced device, that, unlike the Galaxy Tab S3 and the iPad Pro, comes with both a pen and a keyboard out of the box. It may be a capacitive keyboard, but it also doubles as a digitizer. If you are an artistic type and are looking for the complete package at a decent price, then the Yoga Book might just be the Android tablet to buy.
Trick5 – Best Android tablets of 2018 – Trick5