Tablets are most often bought in order to watch movies, read e-books, sit in social networks, play games – in short, enjoy all forms of consumption of your favorite content on a convenient big screen. A separate category consists of professional gadgets, for example, special graphics tablets for artists and designers, but we will not discuss them in this article. It will be about how to choose a tablet “for home use” – that is, for those activities, which were mentioned at the beginning.
To purchase a high-quality modern gadget, it is always important to pay close attention to the parameters indicated in its description. So, the tablet should be selected by the characteristics of the following plan.
How to choose a tablet?
There are two parameters that, one way or another, are related to this characteristic:
- Diagonal. It, as in the case of a diagonal of a laptop or TV, is measured in inches.
- Aspect ratio. This may be the most popular format in our time, 16:10 (classic rectangular display), which is great for watching movies. Or you can choose a tablet with a 3: 4 aspect ratio – this option is less common, but it is more convenient for some to work in it, especially with specific office programs.
The diagonal of most modern tablets varies from 7 to 12 inches:
- Small tablets, the screen diagonal of which is about 7-8 inches, are good for its compactness and low weight. They are still more than many smartphones, and therefore they are more comfortable to watch movies, read books, chat with friends, view documents. But at the same time, in terms of the degree of comfort, they are somewhat inferior to larger models.
- Tablets are medium in size, with a diagonal of about 9-10 inches. This is a good option, which is compact and allows you to fully enjoy any content, as well as play games. In addition, manufacturers of such gadgets, as a rule, equip them with more powerful cores.
- Large tablets, the diagonal of which is 11-12 inches. For the home, they are most likely not so necessary: these are productive devices on which you can work with almost the same comfort as on a laptop (for this, they can be equipped with additional devices). At the same time, they are the least compact and have a rather high price.
If you want to choose a tablet for solving ordinary user tasks, then a gadget with a diagonal of 7-10 inches will be enough for you. And the choice between small and medium models depends on what you have in priority: maximum compactness or, nevertheless, greater convenience and functionality.
Resolution is the number of pixels that are placed on the tablet’s matrix. By analogy with any other digital devices, the more pixels – the clearer, more detailed and beautiful the image is able to show the gadget. To view a video in Full HD format, a resolution of at least 1920×1080 is needed (there are even tablets with even higher performance, for example, 2048 × 1536), but they are usually expensive. On average, for a good compact gadget with a diagonal of 7 inches, it is enough to choose a tablet resolution of 1024×600 pixels, for a larger tablet with a diagonal of 9.7 inches – 1024×768 pixels.
There are many types of technologies that make the matrix for tablets. The most common ones are the following:
- TN TFT. This option can be called obsolete to some extent: it does not give a very good picture, although it is affordable in price. In principle, even some reputable companies still offer such matrices to customers, and if the financial issue is important for you, first of all, it is quite possible to limit this option. The viewing angle of such matrices does not exceed 150 degrees.
- MVA.This is an intermediate version with slightly better color reproduction, picture contrast, the viewing angle of which can be up to 160 degrees. It is a bit more expensive than TN but cheaper than IPS – a compromise format in both price and quality.
- TFT IPS. Such matrices are placed in better tablets, they are distinguished by better color reproduction, excellent contrast and wide viewing angles (the wider the viewing angles – the more comfortable the angle with the tablet will remain comfortable). These options are already expensive.
- IPS +, SuperIPS +. These are even more expensive matrixes (and, accordingly, tablets with them), which provide an even higher image quality. There is no special need to spend money on such technologies, if you need a device for ordinary home use, in fact, no.
As in the case of a smartphone, laptop, and any other modern gadget, two parameters are important here: the number of cores and their power. The higher both of these parameters – the more productive is the tablet, and the more “heavy” applications it is able to “pull” without lags. For the average user, you can choose two to four cores with a frequency of about 1.2-1.4 GHz. Most often, good tablet computers use Intel, Qualcomm, or RockChip processors.
This indicator is most responsible for the rapid operation of applications and the absence of freezes. It is desirable that it should be at least 2-4 GB (in more productive tablets, RAM is often offered at 8 GB). In the most simple and budget models, you can often find only 1 GB of RAM – this option should be chosen if you intend to use the device primarily for watching movies, photos, communication, and simple games. Otherwise (for work with specific applications or more “serious” toys) you should still choose a tablet with a large amount of RAM.
Built-in memory and SD card slot
Built-in memory is an analog of a hard disk on a computer, that is, the space that you can use to store your files. If you intend to use the tablet mainly for surfing the Internet (including watching movies and TV shows online), then this characteristic is not so important for you. If you intend to throw bulk files onto it, it is better to choose a tablet model with a more impressive amount of internal memory (usually it is 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128, 256 or 512 GB). Another solution to the problem can be to use your SD card of any size, but for this to happen, the device must have a corresponding connector (which is not available, for example, from Apple tablet computers).
This parameter determines how often you have to recharge your tablet in order to continue working on it. For normal home use, a good battery with a capacity of about 4000-6000 mAh will be enough. Manufacturers do not always indicate how much their devices can work without additional power (if only because the different uses “sit down” the battery differently), so it would be useful to read reviews about the models you liked on the forums. As a rule, if a tablet often has problems with discharging the battery too quickly, they write about it in reviews and comments.
There are two main options:
- It is lighter, cheaper, usually more comfortable in the hands, but it is very hot and somewhat less durable than the metal case. However, the latter problem can be solved with a protective cover.
- It is more reliable from the point of view of the security of the gadget (it is unlikely to crack, even if you drop it) and less heated when working with “heavy” applications. It also looks stylish, but usually weighs a little more, costs a little more, and is also somewhat less secure in the hands. However, here the last problem can be solved with a soft cover.
Good modern tablets usually have both front and rear cameras. The most expensive models are equipped with cameras with a large number of megapixels, more budget options – cameras with 5-8 megapixels that you can choose for home use. Since tablet computers are often used for video chatting, the presence of front cameras in them is especially important. But to consider them as analogs of cameras, perhaps, is not very correct. If only because it is inconvenient to use them in similar quality because of their size. So this parameter is of secondary importance.
We will not consider obvious parameters: for example, support for Bluetooth, 3G, 4G, and Wi-Fi – because all modern tablets are equipped with such features. Instead, finally, let’s talk about operating systems and, indirectly, manufacturers of tablet computers:
- Android This is one of the most popular mobile operating systems on which many reputable manufacturers produce their models, so choose a tablet on Android can be any price category, body type, style, etc. You can work with this OS in the same way as with a similar one on a smartphone.
- iOS.On such an operating system, only Apple iPad devices work. They are very productive, look spectacular, but they are notable for their high cost and the lack of a slot for an SD card.
- Windows or Windows 10 + Android. This mobile OS is not “monopolized” by one brand and is also represented in the range of different manufacturers and price segments. Its use is in many ways similar to the use of Windows on a laptop, so usually does not cause any problems for new users. There are also options with two operating systems and the ability to switch between them.
In conclusion, we note that before choosing a good tablet, it will not be superfluous to see the latest rating of models on the Internet. Perhaps he will give you a clue about what kind of gadget you would like to have in your arsenal. And then consider the parameters we have listed, and you will certainly be able to choose a tablet that suits you in terms of price and quality!