The 10 Best Tablets For Gaming
This wiki has been updated 14 times since it was first published in October of 2018. One of the most fun parts about the rapid advancement of computing technology is the ability to play games on the go. But if your phone is a little too small, and a gaming laptop too large or pricey, you're in luck; there's a wide variety of tablets available today that can keep you, your kids, or the rest of the adults entertained on car trips, in the park, or even in line at the grocery store. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
August 07, 2020:
Tablet gaming is more popular and more possible now than ever, and there's one especially interesting wrinkle that's quite unlike the rest of the gaming experience. When it comes to mobile games, Apple products are basically on a tier above everything else when it comes to performance and compatibility. Of course, they still have the slick and easy-to-use interface you know and love, but because of their somewhat consistent hardware, closed ecosystem, and parent company's dedication to the user experience, the most popular high-end games run the best on iPads, and Apple games are, on average, more thoroughly vetted, more complete, and less shady than the average Google Play Store title.
That's a broad statement, of course, but if you want things to work without major hassle or a huge downpayment, it's hard to beat the Apple iPad Air. It's not quite as powerful as its more recent Pro-level brethren, but it's significantly more affordable. That said, the Apple iPad Pro 4th Generation and Apple iPad Pro 11-Inch are unrivaled in the tablet world for their performance - at the time of this writing, it's actually not really close, thanks to Apple's advanced A12Z system-on-a-chip. The Apple iPad 7, meanwhile, isn't particularly advanced in iPad terms, but it still outperforms most Android models.
That's not to say android doesn't have some worthwhile choices, though. If you insist on top visual quality, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 is the one for you, while the Samsung Galaxy Tab S5e is a good choice for those who want to spend less and do things besides just play games on their tablet.
The Amazon Fire HD 8 and Amazon Fire HD 10 are both great options for people who play more 2D games than intense 3D titles. They're locked down to Amazon's ecosystem, but for their power and versatility, they're hard to beat at the price. The 8-inch model is a good choice if you know your kids will be using it a lot, but both sizes are pretty durable.
The Nintendo Switch Original and Nintendo Switch Lite need little introduction, though. The main issue with these two excellent consoles is that they don't really do much outside of play games, although they do offer native access to Hulu and YouTube streaming.
November 13, 2018:
Apologies to the Switch for not giving it the top spot, but it basically doesn't do ANYTHING besides play Nintendo games. You can scarcely even invite online friends to play with you. But it's an AMAZING system for gaming alone. While I'm often hesitant to recommend Apple products, they really have the tablet market's number. But most agree that Samsung's Galaxy line boasts superior Android performance to others. The Surface Pro is by far the fastest, if you can afford it, though the Surface Go is probably the top blend of portability and available titles; it weighs barely more than a pound and can run the entire Windows Legacy catalog. Keep in mind that Android tablets run Google Play apps, iPads use the Apple Store, and Windows PCs are generally restricted to x86, Windows-based games.
GPD Win Max This upcoming clamshell is poised to be the next in a line of ultra-portable and highly capable devices from this innovative Hong Kong lab. It's closer to pocket size than some tablets, and slated to be able to play relatively modern titles such as GTA with frame rates right around 60 FPS. gpd.hk