In the present era, most of our tasks are completed by devices like tablets, smartphones, and laptops. So, leaving your studies to books and pen only won’t be fine. In case, you are a freshman and going to college, one way or another, you will need the best tablet for college. And probably that’s the reason you have come here in the first place. Great, you have reached the right spot to find an excellent college tablet for performing all your tasks efficiently and effectively.
With a good tablet, you can take notes in class instantly and complete your assignments outstandingly. For more demanding tasks, there are 2-in-1 tablets that give a full laptop-like experience. Whatever your needs and demands are, the best tablet for college students on our list will accomplish it in the best possible way. At the same time, you don’t have to spend a fortune to get hands-on it. On the other hand, if you are looking for even budget options, you may like our list of the best tablets under 300.
Best Tablet for College Students 2021
- Microsoft Surface Pro 7
- Apple iPad 10.2-inch
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S7
- Amazon Fire HD 10
- Apple iPad Air 10.9-inch
- Google Pixel Slate
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S6
- Lenovo Yoga Book
- Microsoft Surface Go 2
- Huawei MediaPad M5 Lite
What is the Best Tablet for College Students? Buyer’s Guide
At present, there are plenty of tablets available at the market and they come from various manufacturers. Hence, their performance is also different, so in order to find one of the right tablets for students, keep the following factors in mind.
Screen Size & Resolution
Tablets are available in various screen sizes, some are as small as 7 inches while others are as large as 12 inches. If you want ultimate portability, then a 7 or 8 inches screen size will be right for you. However, if you are into more intensive tasks, then look for a larger tablet. In this case, the screen size of your tablet should be at least 10 inches. Along with screen size, keep an eye on the display resolutions as well. As a matter of fact, most tablets these days come with gorgeous displays. Still, you should make sure that the resolutions are sufficient for detailed visual work.
As a student, you don’t have to do very intensive tasks and for basic use, most tablets are powerful enough to do your job. But, sometimes you will need to do multitasking, and photography students will need to do some basic photo or video editing. For this, you will need one of the best tablets for students that has powerful configurations.
The majority of the tablets these days have Quad-Core or Octa-Core processor. Alongside this, there’s a 2GB or 6GB memory and from 16GB to 64GB storage space. Now, if you are buying a tablet for basic college use, then a Quad-Core processor, 2GB memory, and 16GB storage space are more than enough. On the other hand, if you want something powerful, look for an Octa-Core processor, 4GB memory at least and 32GB storage space. To have more storage space, look for the SD card slot as well because most tablets don’t offer as generous internal storage as laptops.
Pen or Stylus
All tablets have a touch-sensitive screen so a stylus will be frosting on the cake. However, not all manufacturers include a stylus with their tablets. Thus, you have to buy it separately and a good stylus can easily cost you around $100. Some students won’t need it much, so they should spend their money on something more valuable. But keep in mind that a stylus is a must-have feature of the best note-taking tablet for college students.
Wi-Fi & LTE
A stable internet connection is a must for college students, especially for online classes. You may know that some tablets work only with Wi-Fi while others are LTE compatible as well. If you have a stable Wi-Fi connection, then don’t look for LTE models because that will cost you extra. However, if you don’t have excess to Wi-Fi connection, then you should buy an LTE model.
This feature is only for those students that receive online education. All the tablets are not compatible with remote learning apps like Zoom and Google Classroom. So, if you are a remote learner, make sure that your tablet easily connects with such apps for an undisturbed learning experience.
Students spent most of their time on tablets whether they are going to college or remote learner. So, to avoid any interruption, the best tablet for college students in 2021 should have extended battery life. Although most tablets have up to 8 hours of battery life, for students the ideal battery life is over 10 hours.
As a general rule, whenever you are buying a device, you have already set your budget. So, what you need to do is to compare different devices in your budget range and pick the one that offers maximum features. Remember that the priciest isn’t always the best and you will notice that after going through the brief reviews of our top tablets for college.
Best Tablet for College 2021 Reviews
1. Microsoft Surface Pro 7
Microsoft Surface Pro 7 is an excellent tablet for college students because of its fast performance, beautiful display, and pleasant keyboard. It has a metallic chassis while the rest of the design is similar to its predecessors without any sufficient change. Microsoft Surface Pro 7 comes with a kickstand that can extend 165 degrees and let you use the device in a laptop or studio mode. So, if you have this tablet, then you truly don’t need a laptop. Better than a laptop, it weighs just 1.7 pounds and the weight becomes 2.4 pounds when you attach the keyboard. In either case, it’s very portable, and carrying it to college would be satisfactorily easy.
The Surface Pro 7’s 12.3 inches PixelSense screen is quite detailed and superbly bright. It offers 2736 x 1824 resolutions and emits 395 nits of brightness. Plus, the touch response of the screen is admirable as you won’t notice any lag. The best tablet for college is armed with a 10th Gen Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM, and 128GB SSD to do all your demanding tasks. Despite the powerful configuration, Surface Pro 7’s battery backup is up to 10 hours which’s just great. Above all, it features a modern USB-C, a USB 3.1 Type-A, a headphone jack, and an SD card slot for secondary connectivity.
2. Apple iPad 10.2-inch
The iPad 10.2-inch is the latest arrival from Apple that offers wonderful performance and tremendous battery backup at a reasonable price. If you are looking for one of the best tablets for college students on a budget, this tablet would be a great choice. Though not included, it does support Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard if you want to use it as a mini notebook. The build quality is solid aluminum but a couple of things that we don’t like about its design are the thicker bezels and the Lightning port for charging. On the bright side, Apple has included a USB C to Lightning adapter for faster charging.
Just like the previous generation, this latest model features the same 10.2 inches retina display. With 2160 x 1620 resolutions and 500 nits, its display generates gorgeous pictures. Whether you use it for drawing or basic editing, the display won’t disappoint you. Moreover, the new Apple iPad sports an A12 Bionic processor for smoother performance. In contrast to Windows tablets with Celeron processor at this price point, the A12 Bionic chip is surely the winner. Even if you use it for intensive mobile games, it will deliver a smooth gaming experience. The internal storage space is 32GB but if you want more, you can opt for the 128GB model.
3. Samsung Galaxy Tab S7
The Galaxy Tab S7 is Samsung’s latest flagship that will surprise you with its next-level performance and lovely display. It includes S Pen which not only saves some bucks for you but also proves to be a nice tool for drawing and note-taking. You can also attach an optional keyboard if you want a PC experience, but that’s sold separately. The Galaxy Tab S7 looks great and feels awesome in the hands. Bezels around the screen are very thin and the fingerprint sensor on the screen gives you a quick sign in. Plus, the best tablet for college 2021 measures just 0.25 inches thick and weighs 1.1 pounds. The USB-C port provides faster charging and data transfer while with the SD card reader, you can boost storage space.
In terms of display, Samsung always comes up with the best whether it will be a tablet, TV, or a smartphone. Keeping up with that trend, the Tab S7 has an 11 inches display with 2560 x 1600 resolutions and covers 152 percent of the sRGB color gamut. Pictures look life-like on this display and with the 500 nits of brightness, viewing your content under bright sunny conditions won’t be a trouble. Moreover, the display has a faster 120Hz refresh rate which’s great if you want to play your favorite games on it. Whereas for smooth multitasking, the Tab S7 comes with a Snapdragon 865+ CPU, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB built-in storage capacity. It packs an 8000 mAh battery which’s enough for all-day use with its over 13 hours of power backup.
4. Amazon Fire HD 10
For students that are tight on budget and want a slate that’s very affordable and at the same time accomplish their tasks, Amazon Fire HD 10 is worth checking out. It’s the most reliable budget tablet for students that costs just around 150 dollars. While its display, performance, and battery life are top-notch compared to other tablets at this price point. Except for the slightly thicker bezels, the rest of the design is admirable. It comes in purple, white, black, and blue colors, plus at 1.1 pounds, the tablet is agreeably portable. For charging and headphone connection, a USB-C and a headphone jack are located at its top edge.
The 10.1 inches LCD screen of the Fire HD 10 comes with 1920 x 1200 resolutions which’s better than the usual 1080p display. You get 224ppi and the color accuracy is pretty solid. However, the screen lacks an anti-reflective coating which makes it difficult to view in very bright conditions. Nonetheless, the best tablet for school is equipped with an Octa-Core Mediatek 2GHz processor and 2GB of RAM to take care of your work effortlessly. For storage, you have the option to pick either a 32GB or 64GB model. But if your budget doesn’t allow you, stick to the 32GB because it supports up to 512GB SD card. With regards to battery life, the Fire HD 10 lasts up to 9 hours.
5. Apple iPad Air 10.9-inch
The latest iPad Air gives the same power as the iPad Pro but at a much less price which makes it the best iPad for college. If you compare it with the iPad 10.2-inch, though Air costs a bit more, you get a nice build, bigger screen, more power, solid audio, and greater Pencil support for the increased price. The frame is metallic and the overall design is quite high-end. The iPad Air weighs just about a pound and its dimensions are similar to the iPad 10.2-inch despite the larger screen. At its top, there’s a power button that functions as a fingerprint reader as well. Plus, the stereo speakers are located at its top and bottom for stereo audio quality.
Fitting a larger 10.9 inches screen into the size of the iPad 10.2″ is made possible by reducing the bezels significantly. The screen offers 2360 x 1640 resolutions, so you get the same 264ppi and the larger screen is an additional real estate for you. There’s an anti-reflective coating on the screen to minimize reflection and make the screen viewing more enjoyable. As for power, the 4th generation iPad Air utilizes an Apple A14 CPU, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of storage to give you faster and smoother performance than any Android tablet. However, the battery backup is on the shorter side as iPad Air lasts up to 5 hours only.
6. Google Pixel Slate
Many students prefer the best laptop tablet for college and if you are one of them, the Google Pixel Slate will do the job for you in the best possible way. It’s a 2-in-1 tablet that you can use either as a tablet or a laptop. The dark blue color gives it an elegant look and with the anodized aluminum chassis, it’s quite durable. The Google Pixel slate is portable than some Surface tablets at 1.6 pounds and 0.3 inches thickness. However, when you attach the keyboard, then the weight becomes 2.9 pounds. On the bright side, it comes with two USB Type-C ports in contrast to some of the iPads which still rely upon a Lightning port.
The 12.3 inches display of the Google Pixel slate delivers amazing colors and great details. Although the bezels are slightly thicker, the display is so good that one can ignore the bezels. The screen offers 3000 x 2000 resolutions and reproduces 120% of the sRGB color gamut. The optional backlit keyboard is a great joy to type on, but it’s sold separately, so you have to spend extra to get a full laptop experience. Going towards the performance, Google Pixel Slate is remarkable in this regard. It rocks on an Intel Core i5 CPU, 8GB memory, and 128GB storage which’s enough for productivity. And up to 10 hours of battery life is a sufficiently long amount of time for a college student.
7. Samsung Galaxy Tab S6
Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 is another 2-in-1 tablet for college students that includes an S Pen but costs much less compared to its siblings like the Tab S7 and S7+. This Android tablet is for power users and students doing intensive multitasking will find it to their liking if they can’t afford iPad Pro or Google Pixel Slate. The Tab S6’s design is high-end and its weight and dimensions make it very portable. The best tablet for college students 2021 weighs just about a pound and measures 9.63 x 6.28 x 0.22 inches, so you can carry it to college easily. More, it comes with a USB-C charging port and holds a microSD card slot if you want more storage space.
The Galaxy Tab S6’s Super AMOLED display offers deep blacks and plentiful colors. Color accuracy is amazing and the screen brightness level is satisfactory for any conditions. The 10.5 inches display has 2500 x 1660 resolutions so with the 287PPI, you get gorgeous and detailed pictures. Above that is the included S Pen which allows you to draw and take notes naturally. Furthermore, with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 chip, 6GB of RAM, and 128GB storage, the Tab S6 handles day to day operations, demanding tasks, and mobile games smoothly. Meanwhile, its 7040mAh battery can easily last over 8 hours.
8. Lenovo Yoga Book
The Yoga Book by Lenovo is the most innovative Android tablet and students will just love it for its outstanding note-taking and drawing abilities. As the name suggests, it’s designed just like a book and the device is available in gunmetal grey, black, and champagne gold. The watchband hinge gives it a top-class touch and also allows you to use this 2-in-1 slate as a tablet as well as a laptop. It weighs 1.5 pounds and measures 0.4 inches, the reason for a slightly heavier weight is the attached keyboard. With regards to ports, the Yoga Book houses a micro HDMI, a micro USB, a microSD card reader, and a headphone jack.
Lenovo Yoga Book’s 10.1 inches display with 1920 x 1080 resolutions provides true to life pictures. Its screen reproduces 100% of the sRGB color gamut and the panel is satisfactorily bright at 396 nits. Below the screen is the attached halo keyboard that works as a keyboard and touchpad but has no actual keys. It’s touch-sensitive and the keys buzz when you touch it instead of pressing down. Surely, with this innovative keyboard, Yoga Book is the best tablet for college. On top of that, a 2.4GHz Intel Atom x5-Z8550 processor, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of storage are well-considered for multitasking, and over 9 hours of battery life is remarkable.
9. Microsoft Surface Go 2
With good performance, longer battery life, and reasonable price tag, the latest Microsoft Surface Go 2 is certainly a better choice for students than its predecessors. Its design is similar to the original Surface Go except that its bezels are trimmed down a bit more which’s welcoming. At the back of the tablet, there’s a built-in kickstand that can rotate up to 165 degrees and makes Go 2 more functional and flexible. The weight and dimensions are agreeable for carrying since it weighs 1.2 pounds and measures 9.7 x 6.9 x 0.3 inches. More, Surface Go 2 holds a USB-C, a headphone jack, and a microSD card slot for secondary connectivity.
The 10.5 inches display of the Surface Go 2 isn’t only bigger than the Surface Go but also offers crisp details. With the 1920 x 1280 resolution and 107% of the sRGB gamut, the display is even commendable for basic editing if you are a photography student. And the 408 nits of brightness makes it supremely bright for any scenario. The performance of the Surface Go 2 is a mixed bag as the Intel Pentium Gold 4425Y chip, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of storage are great for day to day tasks. But if you put heavy loads on it, then you will notice some lagging. That being said, the battery life of the best college tablet is surprisingly up to 12 hours.
10. Huawei MediaPad M5 Lite
The MediaPad M5 Lite from Huawei isn’t flawless but it’s a good budget tablet for students. It costs less than 300 dollars and its performance is agreeable for college tasks. The tablet measures 9.58 x 6.39 x 0.35 inches and weighs just over a pound. It’s a bit heavier, however, the weight is finely distributed which makes the device feels good in your hands. The speaker grills are located on the top and bottom of the slates and the quad speakers are tuned by Harmon Kardon for rich audio quality. The USB-C, a microSD card slot, and a headphone jack are on the right side whereas a fingerprint reader sits at the bottom bezel.
Huawei MediaPad M5 Lite’s 10.1 inches display delivers solid pictures. The screen with 1920 x 1200 resolutions and 224PPI is no match for the iPad or Samsung tablets displays, but it’s satisfactory at this price range. On the other hand, this best tablet for college 2021 includes a stylus which’s a great addition for students. Besides, the MediaPad M5 Lite is powered by a Kirin 659 Octa-Core CPU, 3GB of RAM, and 32GB of storage for decent performance. For some students, the built-in storage space may not be enough, thanks to the microSD card slot, you can extend it up to 256GB. Even better, this budget college tablet comes with a 7500mAh battery that can run for about 9 hours.
Whether you are in school, college, or a remote learner, here you can find a flawless tablet for yourself. Our 10 best tablets for college will give you more than what you pay for. We hope that this guide will be helpful for you and now you know all the necessary things to consider when making a purchase. For further queries or suggestions, reach us through the comment box. Good Luck with Your Studies!