TabletPCReview.com
Holiday Guide: Best Android Tablets
by Jamison Cush -  11/5/2012

Holiday Guide 2012There is no question the Google Nexus program has reinvigorated the Android tablet market, and the numbers back it up. Apple's tablet market share now sits at 50.4% according to IDC, down from 65.5% a year ago, before the Nexus 7 shipped.

But it is not just the Nexus 7... Samsung has found modest success with its Galaxy Tabs and Note 10.1, and it is now the leading Android tablet maker, owning 18.4% of the market, while Amazon sits comfortably with 9% thanks to its unofficial Android tablets, the Kindle Fire and new Kindle Fire HD (all Kindle Fire tablets run a heavily modified version of Android and do not support Google apps or Google Play).

In 2011, every mobile maker tried and failed to create a single iPad killer. In 2012, a number of devices now compete with Apple on various fronts, including price, performance, features, and more. Here are the top 5 Android tablets.


#1 Google Nexus 7 (ASUS)


Google Nexus 7The Google Nexus 7 is the best Android tablet for the 2012 holiday season because no other tablet matches its combination of top-line performance and bottom-line price - not even the iPad mini.

True, Google and ASUS had to cut corners to hit a $200 price point (16GB, Wi-Fi), and the Nexus 7 does not feature a back-facing camera or high-resolution display. But its quad-core NVIDIA processor combined with Google Play and stock Jelly Bean 4.2 make its shortcomings easy to overlook.

Read the Google Nexus 7 Review

#2 Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1


Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1This 10.1-inch quad-core Android tablet has something few other Android tablets offer -- a Wacom-powered pen appropriately dubbed S Pen. While other tablets, like the HTC Flyer and Lenovo ThinkPad, have incorporated active pen in the past, few have done so as seamlessly as Samsung. Attention designers and budding artists, forget the iPad, S Pen makes this is the tablet to have.

Read the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 Review

#3 Google Nexus 10 (Samsung)


Google Nexus 10The newest Nexus is the only Android tablet that can match the third- and fourth-generation Apple iPad pixel for pixel. In fact, the Nexus 10 has approximately 299 pixels per inch, while the Retina iPads have 264. The Nexus 10 is also $100 less expensive than the new iPad, starting at $400.

#4 Amazon Kindle Fire HD


Amazon Kindle Fire HDThe Amazon Kindle Fire HD has excellent speakers and great Wi-Fi performance, and Amazon has a ton of great content, particularly for Prime members. The dearth of apps and occasionally sluggish performance keep it behind the Nexus 7, however.

#5 Lenovo IdeaTab S2110


Lenovo IdeaTab S2110Some of the first Android tablets paired with keyboard cases, so what makes the IdeaTab S2110 any different? Not much, admittedly; but the S2110 beats the competition with a bright display and fast performance.