The Only 7 Tablets Worth Buying Right Now

ipad vs nexus 7

Photo: Kevin Smith, Business Insider

Whether you’re a business professional looking for a scaled-down computing device or a student who’d rather not lug textbooks around, tablet computers can be indispensable for a number of people.With all the tablets floating around for sale out there, we’ve assembled this list of what we think are the best tablets worth buying.

The iPad is still the best you can buy

You saw this one coming. It's the face of the consumer tablet industry and it's not going anywhere anytime soon.

Buy it for the crisp Retina display, the zippy A5x processor, and access to the expansive iTunes App Store.

Price: starting at $500

You can also get last year's model, the iPad 2, for $399.

Amazon Kindle Fire HD is a big improvement over last year's model

Amazon's revamped 7.9-inch Kindle Fire tablet offers increased storage capabilities, a drastically improved screen, better wifi sensitivity, and a front-facing camera for Skype video chats.

Of course it still comes with access to Amazon's Instant Video selection and Amazon's proprietary app store. An 8.9-inch version with optional LTE data connection will arrive in November.

Check out our full review here >

Price: starting at $199

Google's Nexus 7 is one of the best-reviewed devices of 2012

Google's flagship tablet seems to set the standard for Android devices. It integrates seamlessly with any Google services you already use--Gmail, Calendars, Reader, and the like--and offers you access to Google Play, Google's own content store for apps, music, and movies. It's also one of the few devices out there that run the latest and greatest version of Android called Jelly Bean.

Check out our full review here >

Price: Starts at $199

It looks like Barnes & Noble has a winner with the new Nook HD+

The Nook tablets have previously been snoozers. But newly announced today, the 9-inch Nook HD+ might give the Kindle Fire HD a run for its money. Barnes & Noble completely reworked Android into its own clean operating system to make it easy to buy ebooks and run apps.

It comes in 16 GB and 32 GB models, both offering expandable microSD card storage. It'll be available at the end of October.

Price: Starting at $269

Nook HD, is Barnes & Noble's new 7-inch tablet

If you'd prefer a scaled-down Nook tablet, the Nook HD was also announced today.

Its 7-inch display is sharper than any other tablet in the same form factor, and it comes in 8 and 16 GB models.

Price: Starting at $199

Galaxy Note 10.1

Samsung's 10-inch device is the company's flagship tablet. It runs a slightly outdated version of Android called Ice Cream Sandwich, but it's still loaded with features, such as a cool multitasking split-screen interface.

Our major beef with it, however, is that it comes with a stylus.

Click here to check out our review >

Price: starts at $500

Galaxy Tab 2, is a good option if you're on a budget

The 7-inch Galaxy Tab 2 is a good entry-level tablet with above-average specs all around. If you're looking for a reliable Android device that won't break the bank, you'll do well here.

Check out our review here >

Price: $250

BONUS: Microsoft's Surface is right around the corner

Microsoft aims to shake up the tablet world with its Surface, a Windows 8-powered device we expect to see coming out on October 26.

We're still waiting for the final details from Microsoft, but the Surface is expected to cost about as much as the iPad. Although some reports say it could be as cheap as $200.

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