Best cheap tablets: top budget optionsfrom
The iPad Air 2 is still ruling the roost as the best tablet in the world, but with prices starting at £399 and rising to £659, it's clearly priced in a bracket way above many people's budget.
Apple's sky-high prices mean those wanting a more affordable tablet experience will have to look elsewhere, although the iPad mini 2 has seen a price cut since the iPad mini 4 and iPad mini 3 arrived on the scene. It's still not super cheap, but it can just about be considered a budget tablet now.
Google's operating system now adorns a multitude of tablets, from those priced at the same lofty heights as Apple's offerings (many of which will be packing Android Marshmallow soon) to suspiciously cheap tablets that can be picked up for less than £100 at your local supermarket – although we'd advise against purchasing most of these.
Before you get onto the full list of the best cheap tablets, we've put together our top five choices into a short but handy video. Here are our favourite choices for the best cheap tablet you can buy right now.
6. Amazon Fire
Considering the price, it has some good spec and has a sturdy design that isn't going to break right away. If money is your biggest factor, the Amazon Fire may be the one for you.
Read the full review: Amazon Fire
They won't bless you with a stunning display, sultry design or slick performance - but they will give you enough grunt under the hood to play even the most demanding of games.
The heavily modified Android interface (known as FireOS) may not be to everyone's liking, but for less tech savvy users it's arguably less cluttered and easier to use.
Read the full review: Amazon Fire HD 10 and HD 8
It's no tablet king, but it does what it sets out to well. Its crazy low price tag means it's perfect to hand off to the kids without the fear that they're wielding an expensive bit of kit around.
It may be too small for some, and the cameras aren't up to much, but the Fire HD 6 gives you the core tablet experience for not very much outlay, making it a budget tablet worth buying.
Read the full review: Amazon Fire HD 6
If the idea of a 4G tablet appeals, this is one of the best budget options. It is much better than the Vodafone alternative, the Smart Tab prime 6, thanks to its higher-quality screen.
However, if mobile internet is something you can live without, the Tesco Hudl 2 is an even better buy at a jaw-dropping £99, though that budget slate has sadly been discontinued, so it will be hard to find.
Read the full review: EE Harrier Tab
2. iPad mini 2
Better yet, as the iPad mini 3 is basically the same tablet with added Touch ID you hardly miss out on anything by buying this older model, though you do miss out on the power-boost found in the iPad mini 4.
Still, with a brilliant screen, a stunning design and quite a lot of power the iPad mini 2 is difficult to beat at this price point. It looks, feels and performs like something far more expensive.
Buy it direct from Google and you're faced with a steep £319 charge, but shop around and you can get it for just a touch over £200 now, which makes it an incredibly attractive offering. Issues with screen quality are easier to handle at this price - it's still great, just not up to iPad Air 2 standards.
There's a decent slug of power, Android Marshmallow inbound and HTC's BoomSound speakers for excellent sound quality - and it's now super cheap price tag means it's the best budget tablet around.
Read the full review: Google Nexus 9
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