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Tablet Buying Guide: 5 Things to Consider Before Investing in a Tablet


The number of tablet users in the U.S. is expected to surpass 177 million this year. This proves just how popular the mobile device has become since the iPad was introduced in 2010.

This also means there’s a lot to consider if you’re in the market for one. Today’s tablet models can do pretty much everything a laptop can and come with a variety of features and apps. If you’re confused about the right model for you, check out this tablet buying guide of five things to consider before buying one.


1. Decide on the Size

Since the tablet is a mobile device, chances are you’re buying one for its portability. It’s important, however, to settle upon a size that pleases your inner Goldilocks: not too big and not too small.

Most tablets currently on the market fall within the range of 7 to 10 inches wide. Which one is best for you is really a matter of preference.

Visit a store or check out models that friends, family members, and co-workers own. Pick them up and see what size you find the most comfortable.

On a related note, screen resolution is important as well. Entry-level tablets usually offer a resolution of 1280×800 pixels but 1920×1080 pixels or higher is ideal.

2. Decide on the Operating System

Ah, the old PC versus Mac debate. With tablets, however, you get three main operating systems (OS) options: Android, iOS, and Windows.

Each has their pros and cons. Android was developed by Google and thus, will give you a host of Google apps and services. Android-based tablets also tend to be highly customizable.

iOS is Apple’s OS, and the highly popular iPad runs on it. People tend to have strong opinions on Apple products and if you’re already a fan, you’ll probably love the iPad. One downside is the iPad is more expensive than Android tablets.

Then there’s Windows, created by Microsoft. Tablets running on Windows can usually run a full version of Microsoft Office.

Again, which option is best depends upon your preferences and needs and also the next tip to consider on our list, budget.

3. Determine Your Budget

How much are you willing to pay for a tablet, and how long were you hoping to keep it? These are important questions to answer for yourself before you begin searching.

Depending upon the make, model, and features, tablets run anywhere from under $200 (Samsung Galaxy Tab) to upwards of $500 (Apple iPad).

There are even models selling for around $100. Check out this best budget tablet for one affordable option.

4. Choose Features

A good way to determine the features you need is to decide upon where and how you’ll use your tablet.

If you’re mainly going to use it at home to check email and help with basic tasks, for example, a lower-end tablet with minimal features should do the trick.

For work, gaming, and studying, you’ll need a tablet with more powerful memory, storage space, and the ability to add a keyboard.

5. Consider the Battery Life

A good tablet should last you all day on a full battery charge. Most tablet batteries last about eight to nine hours. It may be a good idea to dismiss any models that can’t go seven hours without a charge.

Learn More Beyond our Tablet Buying Guide

These five tips of our tablet buying guide should help point you in the right direction to make the best tablet purchase.

To stay updated on the latest news about tablets and mobile apps, visit our blog.

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