Tablets are the swiss army knife of modern life. They let you do everything from surf the web, to watch HD videos, to play the newest games. But only the best gaming tablets combine exceptional components and craftsmanship for unrivaled performance.
Their versatility, style, and cost have made tablets one of the most popular new categories of electronics. Tablets are by no means all the same, and there are many specifications (particularly when it comes to gaming) and things to consider before buying one. So join us as we take a look at the top 10 best tablets for gaming.
- 1 Zoom Out: Top 10 Best Tablets for Gaming Comparison Table
- 2 Zoom In: Our Top 10 List of the Best Gaming Tablets
- 3 Gaming Tablet Guide Part I: Top 3 Most Common Mistakes When Picking Out a Tablet
- 4 Gaming Tablet Guide Part II: Pro Tips for Buying a Gaming Tablet
- 5 Gaming Tablet Guide Part III: Other Considerations
Zoom Out: Top 10 Best Tablets for Gaming Comparison Table
These tablets are sorted by price ascending. For a closer look at each model, head to our Zoom In section below.
|Amazon Fire 7||Tablet||7"||1024 x 600|
|Nintendo Switch Lite||Console||5.5"||1280 x 720|
|Samsung Galaxy Tab A||Tablet||10"||1920 x 1200|
|GPD XD Plus||Console||5"||1280 x 720|
|ASUS ZenPad 10.1||Tablet||10"||1280 x 800|
|Acer Chromebook R 11||2-in-1||11"||1366 x 768|
|Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro||Tablet||10"||2560 x 1200|
|Apple iPad Pro||Tablet||11"||2388 x 1668|
|Microsoft Surface Pro 6||2-in-1||12"||2736 x 1824|
|Google Pixelbook||2-in-1||12"||2400 x 1600|
Zoom In: Our Top 10 List of the Best Gaming Tablets
Without further ado, let’s dive into the 10 best gaming tablets of 2020.
Our pick for best budget tablet for gaming
- 1.3GHz CPU
- ARM Mali-450 MP4 GPU
- 1GB RAM
- 16GB Storage
The Amazon Fire 7 is indeed an excellent choice for gaming, at a price point defying all competition! That’s because the Fire is designed for entertainment such as reading, watching videos, and yes, playing games. To that end, it’s the perfect tablet for gamers age 1-100!
What can you expect from the Fire 7? This baby offers reliable entry-level performance, excellent ergonomics, and a compact 7-inch form factor that is easily transportable. In terms of video playback, Amazon’s Fire tablet holds its own by supporting SD and 720p formats. That said, you may run into a little trouble with full HD and MKV format (you can download an application that supports this format, though).
If you’re on a tight budget and enjoy Amazon’s ecosystem of services and apps, this is a great buy. And at under $100 price point, this is our pick for the best cheap gaming tablet.
- The best price for an entry-level tablet
- MicroSD slot makes it possible to add up to 128 GB of memory
- The grip of the tablet is comfortable & perfect for the whole family
- The Amazon operating system offers easy access to the entire ecosystem, including Kindle & Amazon Underground
- The camera is poor quality
- Speakers are subpar
- Fairly simplistic design
Our pick for best ‘tablet’ with controllers
- NVIDIA Custom Tegra CPU
- Custom NVIDIA GPU
- 4GB RAM
- 32GB storage
Okay, okay, you got us. This isn’t technically a tablet. But as gamers ourselves, we couldn’t help ourselves from sneaking it onto this list. The Nintendo Switch Lite is a neat piece of hardware. I mean- it’s a portable console with a touchscreen and built-in controllers! You can’t beat that.
If you’re looking to buy a gift for a video game enthusiast, we highly encourage this one. The fact that the Switch is in the same price ballpark as some of the more affordable tablets, it’s hard not to include this in your list of top options.
Keep in mind you’ll only be able to play games from Nintendo’s Game Store, not those from Apple’s App Store or the Google Play Store. That said, Nintendo does have a great game selection, including titles like Fornite, Super Smash Bros, Mario Kart, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Skyrim, and Minecraft. Most of those are 10x better than what is available in the app stores, just sayin’.
This versatile device ensures you always have something fun to do on hand — for the office, the lecture hall, the couch at home, or that annoyingly rigid seat on the train.
- Great game selection; best portable gaming experience
- Competitive price to other mid-range tablets
- Hulu, Fortnite, Breath of the Wild
- Most media apps (Netflix included) do not have support
- No movie player yet
Our pick for best Samsung Galaxy tablet
- 1.8GHz CPU
- Mali-G71 GPU
- 2GB RAM
- 32GB storage
You’ll be hard-pressed to find a better tablet than the Samsung Galaxy Tab A. It’s the thinnest, lightest, most reliable model yet. Furthermore, it’s guaranteed to meet your expectations for gaming, leisure, and work.
If you want to invest in a high-end 10-inch tablet and want the best, the Samsung Galaxy Tab A should be among your options. Visually, the Samsung Galaxy Tab A tablet is superb, and we must even admit that it is one of the most beautiful products of its generation. As always with Samsung, only materials of the highest quality have been chosen. Subject to proper treatment and good digital hygiene, your device should withstand years of intensive use without ever losing much performance. Keeping the operating system and apps up to date, you’ll get to experience the best Android has to offer.
In reality, this device is at the pinnacle of tablet technology and will offer you a multitude of possibilities. Its dimensions are ideal and they allow for a particularly ergonomic grip. With an impressive thickness of only 1 centimeter, you will not get tired of holding this tablet in your hands.
- Superb design
- Responsive and intuitive screen
- A whopping 3GB of exceptional RAM
- High price
- Screen relatively fragile
4. GPD XD Plus
Our pick for ultimate tablet for gamers
- 1.7GHz MT8176 CPU
- PowerVR GX6250 GPU
- 4GB RAM
- 32GB storage
If you’re looking for an innovative gaming tablet, the GPD XD Plus is the best choice for you. This exciting device combines the form factor of a Nintendo DS and the internals of an Android (or Windows) tablet.
Don’t let its small size and 5″ display fool you. This baby is loaded with some great hardware, including a 1.7GHz CPU and PowerVR GPU. It’s also got 4 gigs of RAM and 32 gigs of storage — perfect for any serious casual gamer.
And then there’s the software. Featuring built-in Vulkan Engine support atop an Android 7.0 OS, it can play pretty much any game on the Play Store. That means maxing out performance in your favorite titles for some heart-stopping experiences. Top that off with Android’s acclaimed mod-ability, and this device is the perfect toy for gamers and tech enthusiasts alike.
- Small enough to fit in your pocket
- Hexa-core CPU w/ integrated graphics
- Play games from the Google Play Store
- Tiny 5″ screen
Our pick for best budget 2-in-1 for gaming
- 1.6GHz CPU
- Intel HD GPU
- 2GB RAM
- 32GB storage
This gaming tablet runs on Chrome OS, an efficient and fast operating system ideal for a 2-in-1. And being a Google product, you can easily download games and apps from the Play Store.
Switching between laptop and tablet mode is extremely easy and perfect for apps like Google Office and/or writing emails. Furthermore, Google Chromebooks come with 100GB of Google Drive space so you can save all your files in the cloud. In tablet mode, it functions wonderfully, and you can easily play games and watch movies in high definition.
As far as hardware specs for the money go, this Acer Chromebook stretches your dollar farther. A stellar IPS display, 32GB SSD storage, 4GB RAM, integrated Intel HD graphics, and an Intel Celeron 1.6GHz processor keep this puppy running real quick. The premium aluminum top cover is a real beauty, and the minimal branding doesn’t interfere with aesthetics.
- Great 2-in-1 for the price
- Chrome OS is fast and efficient; access to Google Play Store
- Fully functioning keyboard and 100GB of Google Drive space
- Weight is higher than standalone tablets
- 1366 x 768 resolution
Our pick for best budget Android tablet for gaming
- 1.3 GHz CPU
- Mali-T720 GPU
- 2GB RAM
- 16GB storage
The ASUS ZenPad is a must-have gaming tablet. It’s not just incredibly thin, but also super-fast and capable of keeping up with models twice the price.
With a 16GB SSD, 2GB RAM, and quad-core 64-bit 1.3GHz processor, the ZenPad will help you zen out on your favorite Android games. It comes stocked with Android 7.0 Nougat, which is just as tasty as it sounds. The ASUS VisualMaster Suite is a combination of visual enhancement technologies that optimize the brightness, sharpness, contrast, and other display specs of this tablet. Yes, that means those games will look beautiful.
The ASUS ZenPad also comes with a lush 4,600 mAh battery that’s equipped with energy-saving mode for extended gaming sessions up to 8 hours (though probably a bit less). Moreover, its construction is of high quality, and this extends to its impeccable computing performance.
As for all those midst-of-gaming selfies? The Zen is loaded with 5m/2m dual cameras. What a deal!
- 16GB SSD is fast and loads apps & games quickly
- Excellent display technology; ASUS VisualMaster Suite is a winner
- Great performance for the price
- Battery life could be better, 4,600 mAh is somewhat low
Our pick for best Android tablet for gaming
- 1.6GHz CPU
- Intel HD HGPU
- 2GB RAM
- 32GB storage
The design of the Yoga Tablet 3 Pro by Lenovo is as powerful as it is eye-catching. The reason for this is the characteristic battery cylinder, which often makes the device look like a rolled-up magazine. But this – in addition to the unmistakable appearance – also provides for two of the biggest advantages of the flexible tablet: a huge battery and excellent ergonomics.
Not only does the cylinder house a rotating stand and mini projector, it also keeps the tablet comfortably in hand for extended periods, thanks to its balanced center of gravity. This is necessary because 18 hours of battery life means the Yoga Tablet 3 Pro is a true endurance runner. So much so that it even comes with a charging cable for your other devices!
The brilliant image quality of the screen and the long battery life are a real pleasure for movie and TV series fans – especially on the go. However, what puts the entertainment crown in the hands of the Yoga Tablet 3 Pro is the integrated mini-projector, which turns every room into a cinema. It is flexibly rotatable and with 50 lumens of brightness, provides enough power for a screen diagonal of 70 inches. The four integrated JBL speakers with Dolby Atmos technology make the small projector perfect. Its dynamics and sound quality leaves even some headphones far behind.
In addition to the rotatable projector, the battery cylinder also has a rotatable base, to which the Yoga Tablet 3 Pro owes its name. With it, the tablet provides unparalleled flexibility: The device can be set up stable at any angle – for typing, watching movies, web surfing, and gaming.
- Good battery life (up to 18 hours)
- Audio quality is excellent thanks to the 4 JBL speakers with Dolby Atmos
- Great resolution; bright and sharp display
- You pay extra for the projector if you don’t end up using it often
Our pick for best all-around tablet
- A12X Bionic CPU
- Custom A12 GPU
- 4GB RAM
- 64GB storage
This iPad Pro exemplifies the idea that you don’t have to reinvent the wheel to have a successful product. Especially if you’re Apple. Although it reminds us of the design of the first iPad Air, there is more to it than you would expect at first glance.
The biggest difference to the predecessor is the display. It is slightly lighter, and it is not entirely laminated. The advantage of this is that it can be repaired more easily. It performs decently in the outdoors under direct sunlight conditions, but sometimes you need to crank that brightness all the way up to really see what’s going on. On the whole, the display is crisp, shows great color, and is very bright.
Those who use tablets for gaming and work will be well-served by the iPad Pro. Editing 4K video, rendering 3D models, and more are possible with the Pro’s A12X Bionic chip with neural engine. And in terms of battery life, Apple’s iPad is still around 10 hours.
The best part to all of this? The Apple App Store still has the best selection of casual games, and gaining access to that may very well be worth buying into.
- Very powerful processor and long battery life
- iOS App Store still has the best app selection
- Apple’s polish; looks very pretty
- Still very expensive
- Can get better hardware specs for the money elsewhere
Our pick for best Windows tablet for gaming
- 1.3 GHz I5 CPU
- Intel UHD Graphics 620 GPU
- 8GB RAM
- 128GB storage
The Surface Pro 6 stands out due to its power, compactness (11.5 x 7.9 x 0.33 in), light weight (3.5 lbs w/ keyboard and accessories) and 12.3-inch IPS screen offering a huge resolution of 2736 x 1824 pixels. As for battery life, The Pro 6 easily reaches 13 hours.
There are several versions of the Surface Pro 6, as the configuration varies based on the processor, RAM, and storage. Microsoft’s midrange configuration, which is what we recommend, ships with an Intel Core i5 processor, 8 GB RAM and 128 GB of storage. It’s an excellent balance of components and cost. In fact, performance measured by the Antutu test showed a general score of 227159 points.
In use, the tablet is very responsive thanks to the Windows interface and flexible design. As such, the Surface Pro 6 can handle most casual and mid-range games with ease. Only the most resource-hungry, like the latest 3D triple-A titles, will be penalized. It’s a great pick all around.
- One of Microsoft’s best pieces of hardware; can replace a laptop
- Unlocking by facial recognition
- Full size USB 3 port
- Lots of ways to configure it
- The smart Surface Pen works like a charm; Surface Dial is cool
- 13.5 hours of battery life
- No discrete GPU
- Overheating and screen quality issues in some models
Our pick for best Google tablet for gaming
- 3.3 GHz CPU
- Intel HD615 GPU
- 8GB RAM
- 128GB storage
The Google Pixelbook comes with a sizable 12.3 inch display and is about the same size as other premium tablet options on the market. In our top 10 list comparison, however, it is one of the most powerful gaming tablets right next to the Surface Pro.
Regarding the screen, Google offers a 2400 x 1600 (235 ppi) resolution format with an IPS screen bolstered by Corning Gorilla Glass. The advantage of IPS technology over other displays is that it can be viewed from any angle without losing picture quality. This remains true even when the tablet screen is set to high brightness or when playing a high definition game.
The design is not overdone or gaudy. Google stuck with a classic and minimalist theme that features sleek aluminum. In addition, no big logos or branding can be seen on Pixelbook. The only clue that lets us know it’s a Google product is the little “G” on the back.
Google markets this is a 4-in-1 laptop and tablet solution. That’s because it comes with a smooth 360 degree hinge that let’s you switch between standard laptop mode, standard tablet mode, tent mode, and entertainment mode.
The latest model Pixelbook boasts quality hardware and exceptional performance. Moreover, the new features of the Chrome OS operating system have taken the user experience of the tablet to a new level. The improved notifications and split-window mode are definitely among the highlights, and they’re sure to provide you with a luxury gaming experience.
- Google Assistant is best in class
- Google didn’t skimp on specs
- Pixelbook Pen works well
- Getting harder to find; high prices
Gaming Tablet Guide Part I: Top 3 Most Common Mistakes When Picking Out a Tablet
The most common reason people buy gaming-ready tablets is that they are annoyed with their phone’s small screen size and want the extra display real estate a tablet offers. Other common reasons? They are performance junkies who want the very best, or they’ve found a game like Hearthstone or Fortnite and want to play it on the go.
No matter which category you fall into, there are a few pitfalls you’ll want to avoid when choosing a gaming tablet.
- Focusing on looks over specs. Some tablets look pretty but cost more than models that feature better hardware on the inside.
- Assuming a tablet can play any game. The iOS store and Android store have different app and game selections. However, most popular games will be available on both. Keep in mind: Apple and Android tablets will not be able to play Windows, PlayStation, or Xbox games. The exception is a 2-in-1 device that runs Windows.
- Not getting enough storage. We highly recommend at least 16GB of storage, and if your budget permits, 64-128GB or more. Game and app file sizes keep getting larger, so by spending that little extra for more storage, you are essentially future-proofing your device.
Gaming Tablet Guide Part II: Pro Tips for Buying a Gaming Tablet
Whether you’re looking for the best Android tablet of 2020 or simply want a budget model to run games on, here’s a few things to keep in mind before spending that dough.
Before you buy a 10-inch tablet, you should be aware of how big a device it is and whether it meets your needs. Larger tablets will need the use of both hands to be operated efficiently, whereas smaller tablets can be operated with one hand. For use on the road, a smaller tablet of 7-8 inches is ideal.
Anyone who often uses Microsoft Office, wants to open and edit PDF documents, or wants to work with a pen on the tablet, however, will be better off with a 10-inch or larger tablet. Fortunately, whether it’s a Samsung tablet, an iPad, or a cheaper tablet, there are many options available.
The central element of a tablet is the display, as it serves as the visual output and control alike. On the one hand, it has to provide good image quality, and on the other hand, it must be precise and responsive to touch and gesture commands. Fortunately, cheap displays can usually be recognized quickly, as they have a coarse-grained resolution, uneven brightness, and poor viewing angles.
As lovely as a 10-inch tablet screen is, if the resolution is not good, it’s better to grab a smaller device. Since multimedia use (such as watching movies or videos) is often the focus of 10-inch tablets, the maximum resolution needs to be high for an optimal viewing experience. That’s why we recommend a high-quality LCD or IPS display that boasts at least 1,920 × 1,080 pixels for true HD playback.
Internal Memory and Extension
Since most tablets ship with pre-installed apps (and their respective operating system, of course), it is essential to keep your eye on storage specifications. If you want to keep a bunch of eBooks, movies, music, apps, and games on your device, you should choose a tablet with a large internal memory of 64GB+.
Keep in mind that storage capacity can be often be extended via an SD card — in many cases up to 128GB or even more.
Gaming Tablet Guide Part III: Other Considerations
These factors aren’t as critical as the above, but they’re still worth thinking about.
Think about a 2-in-1
Does a 2-in-1 laptop and tablet hybrid make more sense for your situation? If you’re going to University, save yourself some bucks and buy one device instead of two. With a Surface Pro or Pixelbook, you’ll be able to write papers and do a little casual gaming on the side. A fully functional keyboard can be a nice option to have when you need to crank out an email or get any work done. If you’re simply looking for a gaming, web browsing, and movie/tv show watching device, then a standalone tablet should work fine.
Internet Connection and Connectivity
Some models only connect via Wi-Fi, while others are 4G or LTE compatible.
If the tablet is capable of 4G or LTE, a SIM card can be used for mobile surfing, and dependency on an available Wi-Fi network within reach is eliminated. Be careful though; those data plans can get spendy!
If you’re going to use the tablet mainly at home or in places with an available Wi-Fi network, a tablet with an internet connection via Wi-Fi might be enough. The Wi-Fi versions of tablets are usually much cheaper than the devices with LTE capability.
If you want to use extra peripherals like a gaming keyboard or gaming mouse, then you have to look for a gaming tablet that has this connectivity option enabled. Not every tablet comes with this option, so you’ll want to check carefully before you make a final decision.
Keep in mind that tablets and 2-in-1’s run a variety of operating systems including Windows, Android, Apple iOS, and Chrome OS. That means not all games will be accessible because each OS has access to different app stores.
Also, look out for which version of the OS the tablet is running. Newer tablets will run the latest OS, while older tablets may need to be upgraded to the latest OS (in the case of Android that’s 9.0 Pie).
If you plan to use your tablet on the move or use it as a replacement for a laptop, you should choose a model with a high maximum battery life (eg an Acer tablet).
If background apps are closed regularly and Bluetooth and GPS are turned on only when needed, the models from our tablet comparison 2020 hold out sufficiently long no matter how you choose to game.