Choosing the best gaming tablet for you depends on a few things. For most people, the first thing to consider is a budget. A top-of-the-line tablet can be pretty expensive. Thankfully many affordable tablets can still do a great job, depending on what games you play.
This article will compare several good gaming tablets to figure out which one is best for you and your budget.
The Apple iPad Pro is a beautiful tablet. It has the graphical and processing power to run complex games, but this high performance comes at a hefty price.
|Screen||12.9-inch Liquid Retina (2732 x 2048)|
|Storage||128GB / 256GB / 512GB / 1TB|
|Rear camera||12MP Wide, 10MP Ultra Wide, LiDAR Scanner|
|Front camera||7MP TrueDepth|
|Sound||Four embedded speakers|
● Incredibly powerful
● Beautiful display
● Great battery
● 13’’ version feels hefty in the hands
The Apple iPad Pro (2020) is the best gaming tablet. It’s also the most expensive. This improved version of the 2018 model has some good upgrades for gamers.
Trackpad and mouse support have been added to support better connectivity, but performance and display are what set this tablet apart from its competitors.
The A12 Bionic processor is powerful and capable of running graphically complex games. In fact, it’s so fast it beats out the Surface Pro 7, which is widely regarded as one the fastest tablets on the market.
The 12.9-inch Liquid Retina display looks sharp and allows a hefty 120hz refresh rate. This extra screen space makes it perfect for titles like Civilization IV or Call of Duty Mobile.
Gamers will love the USB-C connection. This feature allows them to plug in an XBOX or Playstation controller. The sound is excellent also, with four speakers embedded within the device. On top of everything, this device can also run Steam games.
Excellent battery life and support for the Apple Pencil are other pluses.
This tablet is another excellent entry by Apple. Lighter and more portable than previous iPad Pros, it’s the best gaming tablet on the market.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus is the first Android tablet to rival the Apple iPad. A fantastic display and speedy processor make it an excellent choice for gamers. Additionally, the build quality is very solid.
|Operating system||Android 10|
|Screen||11-inch, 12.4-inch Super AMOLED|
|Memory||6GB – 8 GB|
|Storage||128GB - 512 GB|
|Rear camera||13 MP|
|Front camera||5 MP|
|Sound||Four speakers, Dolby Atmos|
● Premium design
● High performance
● Beautiful display
● High price
● Only one input
There is a lot to love about the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus, especially for gaming. The battery life is excellent, and gamers can connect their Xbox and Playstation controllers.
The Super AMOLED screen looks beautiful and is very smooth. The 120hz refresh rate will make any game look clear and sharp. In fact, it’s the best screen we’ve ever seen on an Android. The processing power is just as impressive. The Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 Plus chipset is super powerful. It can easily run games like Fortnite.
The S7 plus can also connect to Steam, but even better is its compatibility with CloudX. CloudX works by connecting your phone or internet device to a cloud that runs Xbox games. This tablet can also be bought as 5G compatible.
This tablet has a premium design. The brushed metal finish, solid build quality, and smooth sides give this machine a very sturdy feel.
However, one problem is that there is only one input. The upside is that it’s a USB 3.2 Type-C port that allows faster transfer speeds and quicker charging. Unfortunately, no headphone jack means you’ll need to use USB headphones. Of course, various docks or dongles are available to extend the ports — at an extra cost.
Despite this, the display and the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 Plus make this an excellent choice for even the most resource-intensive games. Yes, it comes with a high price tag, but it’s worth it. It’s mobile, it looks great, and it’s excellent for gaming.
The Dell Latitude 7220 Rugged Extreme Tablet is notable for several reasons. It’s powerful and has a gorgeous, bright display. It’s also highly durable and suitable for extreme outdoor environments.
|Operating system||Windows 10 Pro|
|Screen||11.6″ FHD Touchscreen Display|
|CPU||Intel Core i7-8665U|
|Sound||2 x 2.5w speakers|
● Great display
● Hot-swap battery
● Strong and sturdy
The Dell Latitude 7220 Rugged Extreme Tablet is more than a gaming tablet. It’s a tank of a machine. The specs are so impressive that they could be used for gaming with no problems.
The 11.6-inch (1,920 x 1,080) screen is bright and suitable for gaming outdoors. The device was designed with outdoor work in extreme conditions in mind. The screen is so bright that games are visible on even the sunniest of days.
The tablet is highly customizable. The Latitude comes with a Core i3 processor and 128GB as standard, but users can upgrade to an i7 or a 1TB drive.
Like most tablets, it will probably struggle with hardcore gaming, but it is powerful enough to handle most titles or mobile games.
Overall, while this tablet is more than capable of running games, it’s quite an expensive option. In truth, this machine is designed for performing computation work outdoors, but there are some scenarios where this might be a gamers choice. For example, if you do work and use a tablet outdoors during the day but like to play some games at night.
The Amazon Fire 7 isn’t the most powerful tablet on the market. With limited processing and visual specs, it’s best used for light or mobile games. It’s an unbelievably cheap entry-level tablet that is good value for money.
|Screen||7-inch IPS (1024 x 600)|
|Storage||16GB / 32GB|
|Sound||Side stereo speakers|
● Amazingly cheap
● Poor screen
● Poor battery
The Amazon Fire 7 is an excellent budget tablet. It costs a fraction of the price of its competitors, but it performs well considering.
A quad-core processor means this tablet is suitable for light gaming. It’s well-built and comes with a small 7-inch screen. The smaller screen size makes it ideal for traveling, and the screen resolution of 1,024 x 600 is good. However, the display lacks the sharpness of modern tablets.
Of course, this tablet lacks the punch of other devices on this list, but for the price, that’s no surprise. The key here is not to expect too much. Yes, compared to premium tablets, it is slow and has an inferior screen, but it certainly has its uses.
Most mobile games don’t demand too much processing power. With this in mind, the Fire 7 will handle these titles easily.
So, if your budget is tight but you need something to run mobile games on the go, look no further. The Amazon Fire 7 does less than more advanced tablets, but it costs less than a video game.
The iPad Air 2020 has a large display and an impressive processor. Apple is renowned for its high build quality, and the iPad Air is no different. It’s a beautiful and light tablet that can handle medium-intensity gaming.
|Screen||10.9-inch Liquid Retina (2360 x 1640)|
|Storage||64GB / 256GB|
|Sound||Two powerful speakers|
● Big screen
● Limited storage space of only 256GB max
Apple’s iPad Air is a beautiful device. Sleek, well-designed, and full of power, it’s a great gaming device. But, unlike some of the more powerful tablets on this list, it has a mid-range price.
The 10.9-inch Liquid Retina display is perfect for video and games. It’s large but never feels too big in your hands. The resolution of 2360 x 1640 looks sharp, and the screen is bright and vibrant. Additionally, a refresh rate of 60hz will be suitable for most titles.
The A14 Bionic chip is actually newer than the iPad Pro’s A13 processor, but as demonstrated across several tests, it lacks the multitasking power of the Pro. That said, the Air will be capable of all but the most demanding tasks. Light to medium intensity gaming will be fine for this tablet.
As you’d expect from an Apple device, the design is high-end and classy. The usual add-ons are available, too, with the Magic Keyboard or Smart Keyboard Folio supported.
For the price, this is a powerful and great-looking machine. It can be used for light to medium gaming easily. If the iPad Pro is out of your price range, this machine could be the next best thing.
The Microsoft Surface Pro 7 is a beautiful tablet. The high-end design and magnesium-alloy finish make it a premium product. A large 12” screen and the option to upgrade to a quad-core i7 means this can handle more demanding games.
|Operating system||Windows 10|
|Screen||12.3-inch PixelSense (2736 x 1824)|
|CPU||Dual-core i3 Quad-core i5 Quad-core i7|
|Storage||128GB / 256GB / 512GB / 1TB|
|Sound||Two 1.6W speakers|
● Intel “Ice Lake” processor
● Great display
● Long battery life
● USB-C isn’t Thunderbolt 3, meaning slower charging and data transfer.
The Microsoft Surface Pro 7 is more like a laptop than a tablet. A quick read through the specs reveals just how powerful it is. Gamers can choose a CPU as advanced as a quad-core i7. Throw 8GB of RAM on top, and you have a device that can run even PC games.
The Surface Pro 7 is a 2-in-1 detachable. However, the keyboard is still being sold separately. On the plus side, this tablet now has a Type-C USB which means you can connect different controllers. The downside is that it isn’t Thunderbolt 3, lets you transfer data and charge your tablet at high speeds.
The display is 12.3 inches and super sharp, making it ideal for gaming. The pixel density of 267ppi makes for a great display that will be visible even when it’s sunny outdoors.
This is a solid machine that will be perfect for most games. Intel suggests that you can get a smooth 1080p gaming with its modern CPUs. This means that you could use this tablet to play some reasonably graphically intensive games.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 is impressive for an entry-level gaming tablet. The 10” screen and octa-core processor means this tablet is perfect for games. It’s light and well designed, and great value for money.
|Screen||10.4-inch (2000 x 1200)|
|Refresh rate||60 Hz LCD|
|Sound||Dolby Atmos & quad-speaker|
● Very light
● Powerful processor
● Lightweight and mobile
● Screen resolution could be better
● Lack of connectivity
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 is hard to beat as a budget option. There are faster and better tablets out there, but not for this price. While this device will struggle with the newest games, it can handle most titles.
The A7 is a pared-down version of the powerful S7. One key difference is that the A7 has an LCD panel instead of an AMOLED one. This reduces the display’s smoothness and refresh rate.
Another issue is the lack of connectivity. The A7 has no connections except for the charging cable and headphone jack. This means no external controllers for gaming.
The Qualcomm SM6115 processor is good for the price range. It’s far better than most other budget tablets can offer, but it will struggle with too many demands. As a general rule, it will run most games.
The design is sleek and modern. The display quality is good for a budget device, but it could be sharper.
Overall, this is a good machine for watching movies and playing Android games. Considering the price, that’s great.
The Microsoft Surface Go 2 has the type of premium design that you’d find in a mid-to-high budget tablet. A decent processor and 10.5” screen make this a good option for light gaming. The base model isn’t the most powerful, but add-ons can make it more capable.
|Operating system||Windows 10 (S Mode)|
|Screen||10.5-inch PixelSense (1920 x 1280)|
|CPU||Intel Pentium Gold / 8th-gen Intel Core m3|
|Memory||4- 8 GB|
|Refresh rate||60 Hz|
|Storage||64GB / 128GB / 256GB|
|Sound||2-watt stereo speakers|
● Excellent design
● Windows 10
● Good battery life
● Base models are low spec
The Microsoft Surface Go 2 is an impressive tablet. Many Windows 10 laptops are very pricey, but the Go 2 is pretty affordable.
The entry-level tablet’s base specs aren’t great. 4GB RAM and 64GB storage are disappointing. Additionally, the Intel Pentium Gold 4425Y dual-core processor isn’t the most powerful.
Users can upgrade the machine to make it far more powerful, but this begins to add to the price tag. Upgrading it to 8GB of RAM and 128GB storage gets expensive. Adding too much will take this out of the budget tablet category.
The design of the Surface Go 2 is excellent. It’s thin, light, and easy to carry around. The display is 10.5 with a resolution of 1920 x 1280. It’s sharp with a high pixel density.
The performance of this tablet isn’t exactly dazzling, but it’s more than capable of light gaming. Mobile games, in particular, will look very pleasant on the screen.
Additionally, it has a USB-C port that allows users to connect controllers.
Overall, this machine is great for something that ships with Windows 10. However, anyone expecting to play complex graphical games will be disappointed.
The Apple iPad 10.2 has decent processing power and a 10.2” screen. The display looks great, and the build quality is up to Apple’s high standards. It’s light and portable and a great option for light to mid-range gaming.
|Screen||10.2-inch Liquid Retina (2160 x 1620)|
|Refresh rate||60 Hz|
|Storage||32GB / 128GB|
|Sound||Two stereo speakers|
● Beautiful design
● High-quality display
● Limited storage
The iPad 10.2in is a great all-arounder. While not as expensive (or fast) as the iPad Pro, it’s a fine machine for the price. Of course, even Apple’s “budget” offerings aren’t exactly cheap, and the iPad 10.2 is no different, with a price that is closer to other brands’ mid-range options.
However, the price is justified by impressive specs. The A12 Bionic chip is powerful enough to handle most games. When paired with a 10.2-inch Retina display, this is very good for a mid-range tablet.
Like with many of the company’s products, storage is an issue with this Apple device. A paltry 32GB will be burned through by many users, but Apple says that cloud storage should be used for photos and video. Users can upgrade to 128GB, but some will find that too limited.
Another plus point is the 20W charger included. This means that users can charge their devices far quicker than previous models. Support for Apple’s Smart Keyboard and Apple Pencil is another perk. Both extras are sold separately.
The iPad 10.2 is fast and affordable. As an entry-level Apple machine, you can’t go wrong. The refresh rate might not match other Apple tablets, but it will handle most games.
The Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids Edition is a reasonably indestructible tablet for kids. An 8-inch screen and quad-core processor can handle lighter mobile games. The price is slightly higher than other kids’ tablets, but the sharp display and two-year guarantee make this an excellent choice for younger gamers.
|Screen||8-inch HD (1280 x 800)|
● Parental lock features
● Tough and durable
● Sharp HD display
● Expensive compared to other kids’ tablet
The Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids Edition is a good option for young gamers. The tablet is robust, safe, and easy to carry around. While not the most powerful device on the market, it’s good for light gaming.
For parents, giving children a piece of technology is a concern. Children have a habit of dropping and breaking their toys. However, this tablet is designed to be child-proof. The hard-wearing purple casing could survive a lot of damage.
Safety is another good feature when you are buying a tablet for your kids. Again, Amazon has got this right. Parents can block the internet and social media. In addition, you can also limit screen time.
But is it good for games?
Yes, the 8-inch HD (1280 x 800) is sharp. Alongside the Quad-Core processor, it can be used for light gaming. Most kids’ titles aren’t resource-intensive, so this tablet will do the job.
Throw in Amazon’s two-year guarantee, and this is a good option even at the price.
The best gaming tablet for you depends on what games you want to run and your budget.
If you play light mobile games, a budget or mid-range tablet will do the job. But if you want to run heavier, more graphically complex games, you’ll definitely need the extra processing power.
● Amazon Fire 7
● Microsoft Surface Go 2
● Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids Edition
● iPad Air (2020)
● Samsung Galaxy Tab A7
● iPad 10.2 (2020)
● Apple iPad Pro (2020)
● Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 plus
● Dell Latitude 7220 Rugged Extreme Tablet
● Microsoft Surface Pro 7
Marcus has a graduate degree in computer engineering and has many years of experience in cutting-edge technology research and development in both startups and Fortune 500 corporations. In his free time, he enjoys RTS gaming.
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