The importance of a tablet’s screen quality cannot be understated. The vast majority of your interactions with a given tablet take place on its display.
When it comes to qualifying the best, there’s more to the screen quality of a tablet than meets the eye — proverbially speaking. There’s a lot of focus on high resolutions and pixels per inch (ppi) and, although these are important, there are other components that contribute to the overall quality of a screen. Brightness and black levels, as well as color accuracy and range, are all equally important factors to consider.
We’ve rounded up the tablets with the best screens, taking into consideration the various traits that together make Netflix binges and Pokemon Go battles even more hypnotizing and visually immersive. This list is updated as new tablets come out.
Screen specs compared
|Tested spec||Apple iPad Mini 4||Asus ZenPad Z8||Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8.0||Sony Xperia Z4|
|Maximum brightness||367 cd/m2||420 cd/m2||331 cd/m2||430 cd/m2|
|Pixels per inch||326ppi||320ppi||320ppi||298ppi|
|Screen size||7.9 inches||8 inches||8 inches||10.1 inches|
Did you know Sony makes great tablets? Its Xperia Z4 model is a supremely thin 10.1-incher that’s waterproof. It’s among the fastest Android tablets and its crisp and bright large screen (the brightest on this list) displays lifelike and accurate colors. Read the full review.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 is one of the thinnest and lightest tablets around. Its screen has a 4:3 aspect ratio, meaning it’s a little more square in shape, and not as wide as the majority of tablets with a 16:9 aspect ratio. The size is better suited for reading and browsing the Web, however HD video still looks razor-sharp — the black bars on the top and bottom of the video (also known as letterboxing) are just a bit thicker. It also comes in a 9.7-inch model. Read the full review.
Apple’s smallest iPad is available in an older, budget-friendly model, the iPad Mini 2, but if you want the latest bells and whistles, including a more vibrant touchscreen, you’ll have to update to the iPad Mini 4. Aside from a superior screen and thinner design, it also has a Touch ID fingerprint scanner, which the iPad Mini 2 is missing. Read the full review.
A cheap tablet isn’t hard to find. A good, cheap tablet is, however. That’s why the Asus ZenPad Z8 is so special. It’s an affordable tablet that looks good, performs smoothly and it even has cellular service. Its sharp screen displays saturated colors that make movies and images come to life. You’ll be hard pressed to find a better tablet for the same price. Read the full review.
Want to see more? Check out our list of best tablets overall.