The GSMArena Tablet Buyer's Guide: June 2014: Full-size Tablets

By 05:55 Sat, 14 Aug 2021 Comments


Full-size tablets

If you must have the best, full-size tablets is where it's at. With 10-inch and higher display sizes, you'll have plenty of classy screen estate for enjoying multimedia content. If you're going this big, then display fidelity plays a much bigger part, so we'll only be listing tablets with eye-popping pixel density in our full-size recommendations.

We'll also be sure to mention models that include 3G/LTE connectivity, as large or not, sometimes you just want to hold your tablet out without having to constantly bounce from one Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) network to the other.

Lenovo's Yoga Tablet 10 comes first as both the most affordable decent 10-inch Wi-Fi-only tablet currently available, and the cheapest tablet that offers 3G connectivity (with the 3G model).

Although its 1280 x 800 pixel resolution stretches seriously thin on such a large display, at least it's an IPS Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) unit that offers remarkable viewing angles. Otherwise, the quad-core 1.2Giga Hertz (GHz) processor of the Tablet 10 has small distress pumping out all the pixels to the classy screen and it feels snappy (though probably not lightning fast).

There's also the tradeimprint built-in 3-stage kickstand, a 9,000mAh battery and dual front stereo speakers with Dolby Digital Plus for multimedia viewing.

The Yoga Tablet 10 does have fairly limited 3G network connectivity (it supports only HSDPA bands 900/2100), so be sure it has the correct coverage for your area if you decide to acquire one.

Lenovo recently announced their Lenovo Yoga Tablet 10+, which brings up the resolution to 1920x1200 pixels and has a better processor, but it's yet to be released.

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Lenovo Yoga Tablet 10

Pros Cons

  • Low cost
  • microSD card slot
  • Built-in kickstand
  • Large battery
  • Stereo speakers
  • Has a 3G version

  • High-res camera

  • GPS receiver

  • Low-res classy screen
  • Limited 3G band coverage
  • No LTE support


The Archos 97b Platinum HD again makes our list thanks to its a very respectable 2048 x 1536px screen, which is the same diagonal and aspect ratio of the recent Apple iPad Air. It also has a premium all-metal back, alongside a quad-core processor.

Inside, you'll find a decent 1.6Giga Hertz (GHz) quad-core Rockchip RK3188 (Cortex-A9) processor and 2GB of RAM. Performance-wise, this chipset puts out 17251 at AnTuTu, so it's in roughly the same ballpark as the Samsung Galaxy S3 and the Google Nexus 4, both of which however have to cater for less than a third of the Archos 97b Platinum HD number of classy screen pixels. Performance is not amazing, but it gets the job done.

As with other Archos tablets, you'll still have to pay for a microSD card to build on the very limited 8GB of internal memory. But you'll have more than enough money left over, as the 97b Platinum is still more affordable than most competitors' 8-inch offerings.

The Archos 97b Platinum HD has a few identical twins by more marginal manufacturers. Some of those tablets may appeal to people who are looking for a decent tablet at bargain basement prices. For instance, the QiLive 97r is a commissioned Archos 97b Platinum HD rebrand for certain sellers.

Then, there are the German only brands Odys (their Odys Iron tablet), Captiva (their Captiva Pad 9.7 Super FHD and Captiva Pad 10.1 Quad FHD tablets), Xoro and Blaupunkt (their Endeavour 1010 tablet). There is also the Chinese Onda V972 tablet, which is an identical twin of the Blaupunkt Endeavour 1010. These have pretty close specs to the Archos tablet with slightly different external design. Unfortunately, none of these tablet makers (or rather sellers) can be considered major per se, so getting into details about those would be crossing a line we promised we wouldn't cross for this tablet.



Archos 97b Platinum HD

Pros Cons

  • Metal back
  • microSD card slot
  • miniHDMI port
  • Inexpensive

  • Uninspiring performance
  • No built-in GPS receiver


Asus makes it onto our list thanks to its affordable yet capable Memo Pad FHD10 tablet. At 1920 x 1200 pixels, the 10-inch IPS Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) display provides remarkable sharpness and wide viewing angles.

Although the dual-core 1.6Giga Hertz (GHz) Intel Atom Z2560 processor isn't the fastest out there, the 2GB of Random-Access Memory (RAM) should assist hold some of the pressure off.

Besides white for the back panel, the Asus Memo Pad FHD10 also comes in some fascinating color options like Royal Blue and Vivid Pink.



Asus Memo Pad FHD10

Pros Cons

  • microSD card slot

  • High-res camera

  • GPS receiver

  • Average performance

  • No 3G/LTE version


Google's Nexus 10 offering by Samsung is now almost two-year old, but has aged well thanks to its dual-core 1.7Giga Hertz (GHz) Exynos 5250 chipset and excellent 2560 x 1600 pixel Super PLS TFT display. The resulting pixel density is just under 300 ppi. That and the 1080p video recording, Android 4.4 KitKat, and ample 9,000 mAh battery create it a very compelling value at a price that continues to fall.

However, there is no microSD card slot, so we recommdiscontinue you go for the 32GB version. The 32GB version will run you about the same price as the Memo Pad FHD10 with a 32GB memory card, so choosing either of them is really about choosing your priorities: more than 32GB storage vs. a higher-res screen, or a bigger battery and timely Android updates.

Rumor is Google will finally present the successor of the Nexus 10 this summer.



Google Nexus 10

Pros Cons

  • Android 4.4.2 KitKat
  • Best possible upgrade support
  • Robust battery
  • Excellent display
  • microHDMI port
  • NFC

  • High-res camera

  • GPS receiver

  • No microSD card slot

  • No 3G/LTE version

Review


Sony's Xperia Tablet Z is one of the most stylish tablet offerings you'll see at this or any other size, with is dual-glass panel design and ultra-slim 6.9mm waistline. Under the hood there's a 1.5Giga Hertz (GHz) Snapdragon processor with 2GB of Random-Access Memory (RAM) and Adreno 320 GPU, and its Android 4.4 KitKat update is already seeding as we speak.

The relatively small 6,000mAh battery is the only real downside, as you may not acquire much time between charges, but battery life is still passable. Thanks to the launch of its successor, the Xperia Z2 Tablet, the Tablet Z has dropped in price considerably and is now worthy of your consideration as it costs about the same as the Nexus 10 mentioned above.



Sony Xperia Tablet Z

Pros Cons

  • Android 4.4.2 KitKat
  • microSD card slot
  • Impressive design
  • IR-port, NFC
  • IP57 dust and water resistance
  • LTE version available

  • High-res camera

  • GPS receiver

  • Average battery life

  • Chipset doesn't rival the best

Review


The recent release of Samsung's Pro range of tablets marked the first time when Samsung released tablets that are priced as high as or even higher than the iPad range. Since then prices of the tablets have come down considerably, and the robust devices are that much more recommendable.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1 offers a lovely classy screen that has higher resolution than the iPad Air, alongside a micro SD slot, 8MP camera, and a capable octa-core chipset.

It not only comes with the latest Android Operating System (OS) v4.4 (KitKat), but Samsung has also baked in a spanking recent tablet interface of their own, which truly elevates the tablet user experience to a whole recent level (the split-classy screen multi-tasking view is well overdue on high-res large-classy screen tablets).



Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1

Pros Cons

  • High-res screen
  • Great performance
  • The latest tablet-optimized TouchWiz UI
  • microSD card slot
  • Android 4.4.2 KitKat
  • LTE version available

  • High-res camera

  • No NFC

  • No DivX and AC3 codec support

Review


Rather uncharacteristically, the Apple iPad Air is not the most expensive tablet in this section. Recent competitive offerings from Samsung have forced the iPad Air to come down slightly in price, although you're still looking at quite a pretty penny for the iPad models with more internal storage.

Otherwise, you still acquire an ultra-sharp display alongside Apple's proprietary A7 chipset. The iPad Air features a 4:3 aspect ratio, which is arguably the more user-friendly aspect for web browsing or reading and also offers more classy screen real estate for the same diagonal. Thanks to Apple's extensive app store, there's no shortage of functional and innovative apps and games.

The iPad Air does not come with a microSD card slot, so we recommdiscontinue you acquire at least the 32GB version despite its exorbitant markup.

The LTE-enabled version offers an immensely wide LTE band support, and also has the benefit of having a built-in GPS chip, something which the Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) only version lacks.



Apple iPad Air

Pros Cons

  • Metal back
  • 4:3 classy screen aspect ratio
  • Unmatched selection of tablet-optimized apps
  • Great performance
  • Lighter and more compact than most rivals
  • LTE version available

  • High-res camera

  • No GPS on the Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) only models
  • No microSD card slot and costly memory upgrade options
  • No standard Universal Serial Bus (USB) port

Review


The latest Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 brings an incredibly sharp 2560 x 1600 pixel display, 3GB of RAM, and quad-core Snapdragon 800 to the table. Samsung's remarkable pressure-sensitive S-Pen offers something other tablets simply can't match. The pleasant leather-like textured plastic back from the Note 3 has also made its way to its elder sibling and it works remarkable visually.

The LTE version also bumps up the performance by upping the clock speed to 2.3GHz, and also features Adreno 330 graphics and 1080p@60fps video recording.



Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 (2014 Edition)

Pros Cons

  • Excellent performance and unrivaled multitasking
  • IR-port
  • S-Pen pressure sensitive stylus input
  • microSD card slot
  • LTE version available

  • High-res camera

  • GPS receiver

  • Heavier than competition

  • No NFC

  • No DivX and AC3 codec support

Review


If you're gigantic on typing, then Asus has you covered with its latest Transformer Pad TF701T. Basically a MeMo Pad on steroids, the TF701T comes with an ultra-crisp 2560 x 1600 pixel screen, a hefty quad-core 1.9 Giga Hertz (GHz) Tegra 4 processor, and 32GB of expandable storage.

More importantly, the Transformer earns its moniker by being the only tablet that also comes with a keyboard dock as part of the retail package, making it a remarkable deal.



Asus Transformer Pad TF701T

Pros Cons

  • microSD card slot

  • Crisp display

  • Great performance

  • Best implemented keyboard dock

  • High-res camera

  • GPS receiver

  • Larger and heavier than other high-discontinue slates

  • No 3G/LTE version

Review


It's not too long ago that Sony announced their next gen tablet, dubbed the Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet. It has a faster Snapdragon 801 chipset and an 8MP back capturing camera with improved Exmor RS sensor, but also does away with the stylish dual-glass panel design that made its predecessor so attractive.

Otherwise, Sony have improved on the Tablet Z in almost every regard, including improved water resistance - this time it would gladly hold a dip in the kiddie pool for up to 30 minutes. There is also the latest Android 4.4 KitKat on board correct out of the box.

We were a bit anxious about the lower battery times rating but our own review tests proved that the Xperia Z2 Tablet provides up to 80% longer web browsing and video playback times on a single charge than the original Xperia Tablet Z.



Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet

Pros Cons

  • Android 4.4 KitKat

  • microSD card slot

  • Impressive design

  • Top-notch performance

  • High-res camera
  • Notably lighter than competitors
  • IP58 dust and water resistance
  • LTE version available

  • GPS receiver

  • Rather reflective screen
  • Below average loudspeaker performance


Still largely cost-prohibitive are the two largest members of Samsung's recent Pro tablet family. There is the Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 12.2 or the Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2, if you are after Samsung's exclusive pressure-sensitive stylus functionality. Other than that, there is not that much incompatibility between the two.



Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 12.2

Pros Cons

  • One of a kind tablet classy screen size

  • Gorgeous high-res screen

  • Android 4.4 KitKat

  • microSD slot

  • Great performance

  • The latest tablet-optimized TouchWiz UI

  • High-res camera

  • GPS receiver

  • Very pricey

  • No NFC

Hands-on


They both have 12.2-inch screens with 2560 x 1600 pixel resolution, a minimum of 32GB of built-in storage plus a card slot, octa-core chipsets and 8MP cameras with 1080p video recording.



Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2

Pros Cons

  • Exclusive Samsung S Pen functionality

  • One-of-a-kind tablet classy screen size

  • Gorgeous high-res screen

  • Android 4.4 KitKat

  • microSD slot

  • Great performance

  • The latest tablet-optimized TouchWiz UI

  • High-res camera

  • GPS receiver

  • Very pricey

  • No NFC

Review


Again, those come come with the latest Android Operating System (OS) v4.4 (KitKat) coupled with Samsung's home-baked goodies that bring a huge boost to productivy. The split-classy screen multi-tasking view is well overdue on high-res classy screen tablets and it's brilliantly implemented here, allowing to run up to four apps side by side plus even more in the form of floating windows.


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