We review the best Android tablets to buy in 2016, including the best tablets for movies, games, Skype sessions and more, from Sony, Samsung, Google and other manufacturers.
Best Android tablets: Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet
This supremely slim 10-inch tablet won our Best Tablet Award in 2015 as it boasts one of Sony’s most refined user experiences to date, as well as a fantastic display for enjoying movies and apps. On top of that you get loads of great standout features like PlayStation Remote Play, which is great news if you have a PS4 in the homestead.
We also love the add-on physical keyboard, which means the Z4 Tablet can fully replace your laptop (and in fact did in our case, when we foolishly left our notebook on a plane just before a massive expo last year).
The Xperia Z4 Tablet’s £500 asking price may seem steep, but considering the cost of an iPad – especially the iPad Pro – it’s really not that bad. And if you’re after something a bit more compact and cheaper, check out last year’s Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact.
Read our full Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet review
Best Android tablets: Nvidia Shield Tablet K1
Nvidia’s Shield Tablet K1 offers impressively strong value for just £149, packing a Full HD display, decent stereo speakers and enough power to keep your apps and games ticking over for a good, long while.
Add in superior gaming support and this is an essential tablet for anyone who loves blasting through hordes of aliens, zombies and nazis in their spare time. Hook up Nvidia’s controller and Android games are ten times more playable, while the ability to connect to a TV quickly and easily makes it a sociable portable console. And the option to stream PC games using GeForce Now and Steam means you can play on the sofa or in bed, instead of hunched over your desk.
Here’s our in-depth Nvidia Shield Tablet K1 review
Best Android tablets: Asus ZenPad S 8.0
The ZenPad S 8.0 is very much an iPad Mini rival. That super-slender 6.6mm frame weighs just a shade under 300g, yet packs a decent Intel Atom processor for a silky smooth everyday experience. You can blast through the latest games or kick back with a movie on the sharp 8-inch screen, packing a 1536×2048 resolution for pleasingly detailed visuals.
Best of all is the price. The ZenPad S 8.0 costs just £170, making this a great-value compact Android tablet.
Read our full Asus ZenPad S 8.0 review
Best Android tablets: Samsung Galaxy Tab S2
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 (which comes in two flavours) serves as a timely upgrade to Sammy’s best and most powerful tablet to date, the Galaxy Tab S. Whether you want to stay entertained on the move or need a business tablet for churning out work on the commute, it’s a seriously well-specced machine. And the 2.1-megapixel front-facing camera is a great way to Skype your mates of colleagues.
Pricing ranges from roughly £299 for the 8-inch WiFi-only model, up to around £450 for the LTE-capable 9.7-inch version, which is certainly on the competitive side considering the hardware on offer.
Check out our hands-on Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 review
Best Android tablets: Google Pixel C
The Pixel C was designed to be the purest Android tablet around, offering up the latest Android Marshmallow features severd on some premium hardware, and none of that bloatware. The crisp 10.1-inch display is simply stunning and we love the all-day battery life.
However, the Pixel C is far from cheap, rocking a £399 starting price that’s comparable to the Apple iPad Air 2.
Read our full Google Pixel C review
Are these tabets too expensive for you? Check out our round-up of the very best cheap Android tablets, which cost from just £50 up to £150.
Check out O2’s selection of Android tablets, available to buy right now on contract.