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Top 5 Best Small & Mini Tablets

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Looking for a mini tablet? We round up our favorite small tablets with displays between seven and nine inches. Looking for an agile, small-scale tablet? These tiny tabs pack a big punch.


1. iPad Mini

Check out a review of the iPad Mini in the video above.

The iPad is the gold standard of tablets, and the iPad Mini is a great option for lovers of small screens. The best option at this time is the iPad Mini 2, aka the iPad Mini with retina display. The retina display allows you to keep the small form factor, but without sacrificing visual clarity. This 7.9-inch tab benefits from a fingerprint-resistant oleophobic coating, reducing smudges and keeping your iPad Mini looking factory fresh.

Buy it here.


Pros:

  • Designed by Apple
  • Reliable, less prone to crashing than some other tablets
  • Smudge resistant
  • Lightweight
  • Great battery life

  • Cons:

  • More expensive than tabs of a comparable size
  • Small screen can make it hard to tap certain items on the screen
  • Not compatible with some popular, Android-only apps
  • FaceTime camera is only 720p
  • Video zoom limited to 3x

  • 2. Google Nexus 7 (2013)

    Check out a review of this tablet in the video above. The review compares the Nexus 7 against the iPad Mini.

    Even with rumors of a Nexus 8 swirling about, the ASUS-Google Nexus 7 remains a much-loved Android tab. Despite not getting a refresh in 2014 (at least, not yet), this little tab still has a loyal fan base. This tab gets particularly high marks for comfort and display quality.

    Buy it here.


    Pros:

  • Relatively inexpensive
  • Refined body (compared to original Nexus 7 model
  • Rubberized back in easy to grip
  • More customizable than an iPad
  • Huge marketplace of apps

  • Cons:

  • Some newer smartphones have screens that surpass the Nexus 7 (at least in terms of brightness)
  • Line has yet to get a refresh in the first half of 2014
  • Upcoming Nexus 8 may give you buyer’s remorse when you have just a Nexus 7
  • Some users have reported issues with charging or powering on
  • Creaking” noise drives some users nuts

  • 3. Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 8.9

    Check out Engadget’s review of this tab in the video above.

    The Kindle Fire might not be on everyone’s wish list, but Amazon’s powerful tablet offering is more than just a souped-up e-reader. It’s lightweight, pleasant to hold, and has some pretty nice specs. With nearly eight hours of battery life, this is a tablet that’s perfect for long-haul trips when you need a movie to distract the kids. The tablet is on the bigger end of the “small” tablet scale, making it ideal for people who want a smallish tab with a nice-looking display. However, if you want to scale down from the 8.9-inch version, there is a 7-inch tab as well.

    Buy it here.

    Pros:
    • 100 grams lighter than an iPad Air
    • 8MP rear camera
    • Quad-core processor
    • “Mayday” button for tech support
    • Over 100,000 apps and games available

    Cons:
    • Annoying button placement
    • Interface is too Amazon-centric
    • FreeTime parental control system lacks web access
    • Amazon sometime slow to add new app and game titles
    • Fire OS feels limiting to some


    4. BlackBerry Playbook 7-Inch

    Check out the video above to learn some hidden tricks to using the BlackBerry Playbook.

    For those people who just refuse to let go of their BlackBerry phone, a complementary BlackBerry tab is an obvious choice. And let’s be honest, the price is right: even the most die-hard BlackBerry fan doesn’t want to spend more than $100 on a tablet that’s related to an endangered tech ecosystem.

    Lucky for those people, you can find a Playbook 7-inch for under $100, which is hundreds of bucks under list. Heck, for that price, a lot of people will be tempted to pick one up, even if they’ve never owned a BlackBerry product before.

    Buy it here.


    Pros:

  • Available in 16, 32, and 64GB models
  • Up to 10 hours of battery life
  • Nice multitasking abilities
  • Ideal for business use
  • Lightweight

  • Cons:

  • Somewhat limited in the RAM department
  • BlackBerry OS may not appeal to all users
  • Many tech analysts think that BlackBerry is on its last legs
  • Forward-facing camera a mere 3MP, but does shoot 1080p video
  • Limited number of apps

  • 5. Dell Venue 8 Pro

    Check out an unboxing video for this tablet above.

    For Windows users who are tired of waiting for the Surface Mini, the Dell Venue 8 Pro is a solid Windows tab. Dell may not be the first name that comes to mind when you think of tablets, but the company has quietly been selling a number of these low-priced Windows tablets. If you need a sturdy little tab that won’t break the bank, this Dell offering will appeal to Windows enthusiasts.

    Buy it here.


    Pros:

  • Runs Windows 8.1
  • 10 hours of battery life
  • Stream HD media from your Dell Venue 8 Pro tablet to your compatible TV through Miracast wireless technology
  • Great for people on a budget
  • Good screen resolution

  • Cons:

  • Only comes in 32 GB and 64 GB options
  • Limited color options
  • Front-facing camera is a mere 1.2 MP
  • Easily expand your storage capacity with card-reader support
  • Some popular apps and games not available for Windows mobile devices

  • Top 5 Best Tablets With Great Battery Life

    We round up the longest-lasting batteries on the market to help you find the best tablet.

    Click here to read more

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