Product overview

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Tablet computers

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Do you still need a laptop?

We’ve tested over 80 tablets. Is it worth buying one? Or do you still need a laptop?

From our test

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Get instant access to 83 tablet computer test results.

We’ve tested over 80 tablets. Is it worth buying one? Or do you still need a laptop? Join Consumer and use our expert test results and recommendations to find the model that's right for you.

State of the tablet

In the last year phones have got bigger, laptops thinner and lighter, and tablets … have stayed pretty much the same. So where does that leave the tablet market – and is it worth buying one?

Apple iPad Mini 3
Apple iPad Mini 3

Last year Apple released its iPad Mini 3, which was, for all intents and purposes, the same as the iPad Mini 2. So unless you really wanted to have a fingerprint scanner, there was no reason to upgrade (and a good reason to buy the cheaper Mini 2). The release of the large iPhone 6 (see our mobile phones test) also dented the appeal of the smaller tablets.

In the meantime some larger tablets got lighter, thinner and more powerful.

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Tablet or laptop?

A question I get asked a lot is “I want a new laptop, just to check emails and surf the internet, which one should I get?”

The answer is: buy a tablet. If all you’re doing is surfing and emailing, then a tablet is perfect. Tablets are lightweight and super easy to use on the couch or in bed – they don’t have the size or bulky battery-charging requirements of a laptop.

If you do a bit of typing (longer than emails) or you’re looking for a lightweight work option, then you might want to invest in a detachable or bluetooth keyboard or even go for the Surface Pro range. But in general tablets are great replacements for 90 percent of what you do on a laptop.

Compare the tablets we've tested.