Console gaming will always hold a dear place in the hearts of the gaming community; it was around at the very beginning of video games and continues to wow the world year after year with new ideas and better gameplay experiences. Even as more and more pieces of the experience – controllers, headphones, and the internet, for example – become wireless, the console is still highly esteemed by the bulk of gamers.
That position may not last long, though; mobile gaming is rapidly catching up with both console and PC technology, and many of the best titles now include a mobile version to include gamers who, for whatever reason, have elected not to play in front of a full-size screen.
Some mobile games, such as Minecraft or the wildly popular Call of Duty series, attempt to close emulation of console play as possible; others, such as Battlefield or Watchdogs, employ a supplementary play mode, often intended to be used in tandem with friends on a console.
Whichever approach your particular favorite game adopts, mobile gamers face the same cost-benefit dilemma that has plagued console gamers since time immemorial – how much do I need to spend to have the best equipment, and is it worth it? After all, not all games are enjoyable enough to warrant any investment beyond buying them, and some justify any amount to be played better. Is there a compromise?
When it comes to computer equipment – including gaming devices in all their many forms – there tends to be something for nearly any budget or objective, and this is no exception. You don’t need to break the bank for a good gaming tablet; lots of budget tablets will still let you play at your best.
Buying electronics can get overwhelming in the modern world, especially something as specific as this. We’ve cut through the many models available and put together a shortlist of high-performance gaming tablets, each one under $200USD.
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Our Best Gaming Tablet Reviews and Comparisons
1. Fire 7
This tablet is made by Amazon and displays a good balance of features like price, performance, and the Alexa digital assistant that comes preinstalled with the tablet.
- Seven-inch display
- 32 GB memory
- Comes with Amazon Alexa
- Weighs 286 g
What We Like About Fire 7:
This tablet comes with multiple free subscriptions and content, at least for a trial period.
What We Don’t Like About Fire 7
This device has one of the smallest screens you can use that you may think you are holding a mobile phone and not a tablet.
- Trusted manufacturer
- Highly affordable
- Plenty of free content
- Easily portable
- Large 2 MP front-facing camera
- Cramped screen
- Most of the free content is on a trial basis only
2. HAOQIN HaoTab H10
This tablet has plenty of real estate for anything you want to play on it and is made to run even the latest Android operating system smoothly.
- 10” screen
- The device weighs 1.1lb
- Two and five-megapixel camera set
- Two gigabytes of RAM
See Also: Lenovo IdeaPad 3 Review
What We Like About HAOQIN HaoTab H10
This tablet’s size and speed are both strong bonuses for anyone looking for a serious gaming experience.
What We Don’t Like About HAOQIN HaoTab H10
This device is something of a battery hog; this becomes especially noticeable during long gaming sessions, which can be shortened by as much as three hours if you are on high settings.
- Large, clear screen
- Latest software preinstalled
- Lighter than usual for its size
- Powerful processor
- 3326 Rockchip quad-core processor runs complicated games easily
- Somewhat awkward to lug around
- Battery drains quickly while gaming
3. Dragon Touch K10
This tablet includes a spacious internal hard drive so you can store content as well as playing it.
- 10” screen
- 16 GB quad-core processor
- Android 8.1 OS preinstalled
- Up to 128 GB storage in total
What We Like About Dragon Touch K10
One of the most surprisingly enjoyable things about this tablet is the brightness and clarity of the display, both of which are fully functional in broad daylight.
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What We Don’t Like About Dragon Touch K10
Between the hard drive and the all-metal body, this tablet weighs more than most people want to see on a mobile device.
- Plenty of storage space
- Metal casing protects against wear and tear
- Impressive detail and brightness
- 10” display gives plenty of room for content or apps on the screen
- 5G WiFi enabled
- Heavier than most mobile devices
- Bright screen burns battery quickly
4. Haehne 9
Use this tablet if you find yourself on the go or with limited space – it’s light, cheap, and compact enough to fit into a purse or pocket.
- Nine-inch screen
- Android 6.0
- One gigabyte RAM
- Dual .3 MP cameras
What We Like About Haehne 9
This tablet keeps things simple, cutting out most of the extra features that others strive to include to provide an affordable and enjoyable gaming experience.
What We Don’t Like About Haehne 9
The cameras and internal storage on this device are both lackluster, and the operating system is a relatively dated version of Android.
- Relatively affordable
- Quick charging
- Quad-core processing
- 3D gaming possible
- Slimmer and more compact than others
- Flimsy casing
- Poor camera quality
5. Lenovo Tab M10 Plus
Although more expensive than less-known brands, Lenovo is a trusted producer with a long history of exceptional computer products.
- All-metal casing
- Eight-megapixel rear camera and five-megapixel front camera
- Dual-band WiFi
- 10.3” display
What We Like About Lenovo Tab M10 Plus
Among the features added by the manufacturer is a parental control system that makes this tablet an ideal choice as a gaming tablet for your children.
What We Don’t Like About Lenovo Tab M10 Plus
Quality comes with a cost – this tablet’s price is nearly three times that of other models.
- Trusted manufacturer
- Large, clear cameras
- Parental controls included
- Powerful Dolby speakers
- Durable metal casing
- More expensive than most alternatives
- Too bulky to be transported comfortably
6. VANKYO MatrixPad S30
This tablet has an octa-core processor that lets it run even the most challenging programs at a blistering 1.6×8 GHz.
- 16h battery life
- Expandable storage up to 128GB
- 16GB ROM
- 13 MP rear camera, 8 MP front camera
What We Like About Product Name
There’s honestly a lot to like about this tablet, but the generous camera sizes and the innovative processor seem like a good place to start.
What We Don’t Like About Product Name
This tablet has fairly low availability, which can cause retail prices to be over $200USD and long delivery times if buying online.
- Good cameras
- Rapid multitasking and high performance
- Large storage capacity, both internal and removable
- Suitable for specialty work like artwork or remote control devices
- Longer battery than most tablets
- On the expensive side
- Limited availability in most countries
7. ZONKO Tablet (10 Inch)
This tablet includes a SIM port, allowing it to send and receive phone calls and SMS services in addition to its gaming capabilities.
- Android 9 OS
- 10” screen
- Five-megapixel camera
- 32GB internal storage
What We Like About ZONKO Tablet
Having a SIM port eliminates the need for a separate device from which to manage your phone calls, putting all your online mobile needs on a single device with bigger and better screens and cameras than any phone.
What We Don’t Like About ZONKO Tablet
This tablet connects both your phone and the internet in 3G instead of 4G, making online conferencing or download speed uncertain at best.
- Many popular messaging apps preinstalled
- Phone service supported
- Latest Android OS
- Long-lasting battery
- Multiple helpful accessories included
- Slow connections
- Charges slower than most comparable tablets
8. Simbans TangoTab
Getting this tablet means more than just the screen – it comes bundled with a pre-applied screen protector, power adapter set, and high-quality case for the complete experience.
- 10” screen
- 64GB internal dis
- Mini-HDMI port
- Device weight 1.1 lbs
What We Like About Simbans TangoTab
Adding a Mini-HDMI port allows the user several casting options for either television or web that are not otherwise available.
What We Don’t Like About Simbans TangoTab
This tablet’s casing is made of relatively flimsy plastic and the bezels are too large to be really justified by the camera.
- Accessory kit included
- Large internal memory
- HDMI streaming and casting are available
- Recent Android OS
- The actual display size is smaller than it seems
- The backing is fragile and prone to fingerprints and smudging
9. HongTao Disk
This is another tablet built around its phone service functionality, this one boasting two SIM slots to let you keep your personal and work lines separate while still using only one device.
- Dual SIM ports
- Eight-megapixel rear camera, two-megapixel front camera with 3D imaging
- Android 8.1 operating system
- 64 GB internal storage
What We Like About HongTao Disk
Apart from the SIM functions, this tablet features an extremely powerful octa-core processor and 4GB of RAM for unmatched speed under heavy loads.
What We Don’t Like About HongTao Disk
This tablet doesn’t come with the most recent version of Android, and the cameras are smaller than average for tablets of this size.
- 3D imaging on the rear-facing camera
- Exceptional processing speeds
- Relatively affordable for a tablet of this size and power
- Two distinct SIM ports with full phone service
- Touch stylus included
- Smaller cameras than usual
- Slow 3G wireless internet and phone connections
10. WeCool Phablet
This tablet features an innovative multi-card slot that can hold a combination of SIM and microSD cards for increased storage or phone reception, depending on which one better suits your needs at the time.
- Android Go 8.1
- A two-megapixel front camera, five-megapixel rear camera
- 10” screen
- Device weight 1.81 lbs
What We Like About WeCool Phablet
Android Go OS helps adapt web pages and content for the mobile platform, making content of every kind easier to access.
What We Don’t Like About WeCool Phablet
This tablet has relatively small internal storage, and the processor is far from the fastest on the market.
- Versatile expansion slots
- An optimized operating system makes content easier to access
- Many helpful apps preinstalled
- Fast-charging battery
- WiFi, Bluetooth, and SIM browsing options
- Small internal memory
- Weak processor with only 1GB RAM
11. Veidoo Ideal
This tablet comes ‘unlocked’, allowing users access to a much wider range of apps, games, and other content than they would normally be able to reach.
- Android 6.0 Marshmallow
- 10.1” screen
- Five-hour battery life
- 1.3 GHz processor
What We Like About Veidoo Ideal
This tablet manages to balance a lot of features, offering acceptable performance in nearly all areas for a reasonable price
What We Don’t Like About Veidoo Ideal
The operating system is from several generations ago and will likely need to be updated right out of the box
- Dual SIM slots
- Balanced performance and price
- Good customer support
- Comes unlocked
- 12-month warranty
- Older processor and operating system
- Does not excel in any one field
12. Fusion5 104Bv2 PRO
This tablet has been selected as a Google partner device, so it will always come with the latest operating system and includes access to content and features not available on other third-party hardware.
- 10.1” screen
- Quad-core processor
- The five-megapixel rear camera, two-megapixel front camera
- Android 9.0 Pie operating system
What We Like About Fusion5 104Bv2 PRO
This tablet is exceptionally responsive and has incredibly sharp audio and video output.
What We Don’t Like Fusion5 104Bv2 PRO
Although there is plenty to access on this tablet, it comes with a relatively sparse library preloaded, including things like extra wallpapers and samples of audio and video.
- Google certified partner device
- 12-month warranty
- Good stereo speakers
- More responsive than most
- Dual-Band WiFi for smooth browsing and multitasking
- Low availability
- Almost no preloaded content of any kind
Final Verdict – Fusion5 104Bv2 PRO
There may have been a lot of runner-ups, but this tablet is the only one that really ticks off all the boxes for a gaming tablet; the operating system is recent enough for the newest titles, and the graphics and processor are both up to fast games at high settings. The screen is on the larger side, always a plus when gaming, and it can support art apps and video editing too, giving it an important measure of versatility over the other tablets.
Buyer’s Guide – General
It’s easy to get confused when you go shopping for electronics – most of the devices look and sound the same, and sitting down to try out each one is hardly a realistic proposition. Still, there are some things that you can look for to help keep yourself from settling for the wrong device.
On the software front, you’ll want the most recent version of your preferred operating system you can find. Getting the latest edition will mean more content is already optimized for your device and less work to do out of the box to get it ready to use.
Always check to see if there are any file formats that your chosen tablet cannot run. Some tablets will need to be ‘unlocked’ to access certain games or videos, or simply be incapable of running certain files; don’t get yourself stuck with a gaming tablet that can’t handle your favorite games.
As with all computers, take the time to check online if there are any known security flaws with your tablet of choice. Even a brief search of your tablet’s model number should be enough to turn up any major leaks for that device, so you know if you’re safe before you buy it.
Many tablets have a feature called a bezel; this is the unused ring of space between the edge of the device and the beginning of the useable screen. A device may claim a certain screen size, but actually have a lot less useable space on account of its bezels; try to find the smallest bezels you can to increase the functional screen size at your disposal.
Two things that often escape people’s notice when looking for a mobile device are weight and heat. A mobile device will heat up under load like any computer, so make sure you look for a heat rating on the packaging to know which one can run the hottest without losing function.
Weight should be most noticeable in mobile devices, but is frequently overlooked; people simply assume that their device will be light enough for them not to notice. Check that you will be comfortable holding the device for long gaming sessions, or carrying it in your backpack or briefcase when you need to hit the road.
By the same token, of course, check the other dimensions of the device as well; too large and too small are both going to be a hassle if you intend to make this your main gaming device. This applies when choosing accessories too; so-called universal accessories aren’t nearly as versatile if you try to apply them to the wrong size tablet.
Buyer’s Guide – Accessories
Even if you will not be fully replacing your desktop devices with tablets, you will still want to take care of these devices. If your tablet did not come with one, a screen protector is a small but highly advisable added expense; this sheet of tempered glass will break instead of your tablet’s screen if you drop it, allowing you to easily peel it off and install a new one with no loss of function to the device beneath.
If you cannot or will not get a screen protector for your device, consider a tablet case instead. They come in many different designs, from simple ‘device skin’ varieties to larger and more complex folio cases; any of them can be the thing your tablet needs to cushion an otherwise damaging impact.
If you are leaning towards using a tablet instead of your desktop or laptop, you may want to consider some of the various Bluetooth office accessories that are available for tablets. Some tablets have proprietary accessory kits; others simply rely on the universal nature of Bluetooth connections to link up with third-party hardware.
When trying to replace a laptop with a tablet, the first thing you’ll want is a Bluetooth mouse and keyboard. There are plenty of both out there, but make sure that the ones you get are compatible with your device’s operating system version and Bluetooth transponder; also, keep in mind that it may be necessary to install some extra software, such as device drivers, to get Bluetooth accessories working properly with your tablet.
Another common Bluetooth addition to a tablet setup is some kind of audio device; most tablets have relatively small and weak speakers, positioned in such a way that the audio is often muffled by the user’s hand. A good Bluetooth speaker will help you get the great audio experience you want to go with your mobile gaming, and most are small and light enough to be scooped up and carried alongside your tablet.