10 good Windows 8 tablets

10 good Windows 8 tablets

Summary: The Windows tablet segment is heating up with good offerings from the major OEMs. These 10 are a good place to start for those looking for a tablet.

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  • Samsung Ativ Smart PC

    Overview

    This tablet is a full PC with a laptop dock and pen support. Both the dock and the pen are included with the tablet.

    Size: 11.6-inch

    Price: $580

    Specs

    Processor  Intel® Atom™ Processor Z2760, 1.8GHz (non-Haswell)
    Memory  2GB
    Display  11.6-inch, 1,366x768
    OS version  Windows 8
    Camera  Front: 2MP
    Storage  64GB
    Ports  USB 2.0; microSD; microHDMI
    Connectivity  Wi-fi 802.11 a/b/g/n; Bluetooth 4.0
    Battery  9.7 hours
    Dimensions  11.6" x 0.38" x 7.2"
    Weight  1.65lbs

    Samsung product page

  • Lenovo Miix 2 8

    Overview

    This economical small tablet is built well and fits nicely in the hand. It does not have pen support nor is there a keyboard accessory available.

    Size: 8-inch

    Price: $299

    Specs

    Processor  1.3 GHz Intel Atom Quad-core (Bay Trail)
    Memory  2GB
    Display  8-inch, 1,280x800
    OS version  Windows 8.1
    Camera  Front: 2MP; Rear: 5MP
    Storage  32GB
    Ports  audio, microSD, microUSB
    Connectivity  Wi-fi b/g/n; Bluetooth 4.0
    Battery  7+ hours
    Dimensions  5.2" x 8.5" x 0.3"
    Weight  0.77lbs

    See the review by James Kendrick of ZDNet.

  • Vizio Windows 8 Tablet

    Overview

    This tablet is included in this collection for AMD fans. It is the only tablet that uses an AMD processor. It is heavier than most tablets and has relatively short battery life.

    Size: 11.6-inch

    Price: $600

    Specs

    Processor  AMD Z-60 APU, AMD Radeon™ HD 6250
    Memory  2GB
    Display  11.6-inch, 1,920 x 1,080
    OS version  Windows 8
    Camera  Front: 2MP
    Storage  64GB
    Ports  Audio, microUSB, microHDMI
    Connectivity  Wi-fi 802.11n
    Battery  Up to 5 hours
    Dimensions  11.66” x 7.53” x 0.39”
    Weight  1.8lbs

    Vizio product page

Topics: Mobility, Tablets, Windows 8

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  • HP Omni?

    How does HP Omni stack up against the above machines?
    mm71
  • Windows 8 Tablets

    I heard that Microsoft is going to launch windows i tablets with android apps. is it true?
    MidBorn
    • Blue Stacks

      You can do that now with Blue Stacks.
      calfee20
    • Rumor...

      That's the rumor but at this time it's anyone's guess as to what that means. Some assume Windows will download Google Play apps and run them. Others postulate that it's a tool or cloud service that converts or at least packages an Android app as a Windows modern app that can be distributed from the Microsoft store.
      robradina@...
  • I think the next gen tablets will rock the house

    Not that there's anything wrong with these... however the Broadwell and Cherry Trail processors will be even smaller and more power efficient 14nm technology. It should be possible to substantially shrink the size of full I5/I7 class tablets.

    Along with better screens, better pens, better keyboards, better batteries, better software, better docks the technology is aligning nicely.
    greywolf7
  • Good Tablets?

    I would NOT touch any tablet that doesn't use Haswell or the Atom 3xxx series. Folks want good performance and long battery life. Only the 3xxx Atoms and Haswell can achieve that without heavy batteries or cooling challenges. Earlier Atom processors are too weak to perform well.

    Regarding the Dell VP8, I have one. Great little tablet but make sure you can live within the constraints of the 32GB storage, otherwise get the 64GB model. Although a 64GB microSD card can be added, don't pay for a super fast SD card. Dell has limited access speeds via BIOS settings and use of USB 2.0.

    I wish it had USB 3.0 and an external HDMI adapater. Miracast support works OK but suspect when using it with Netflix.
    robradina@...
  • No such thing......

    as a good Windows tablet.
    linuxisforme
    • Thanks...

      ...for letting us know that.
      Rann Xeroxx
    • So True

      Most Windows tablets are either bad or GREAT. Not many are simply good.

      Android tablets on the other hand...most are awful, a few are ok. No good ones, and not a single great one.
      gomigomijunk
      • Hey

        We also noticel that Bad is not used much anymore and Good and Wow is soon to come.
        rbwfla
  • Nokia 2520

    Just got the keyboard after using without for 6 weeks. Great, great device. I can see an RT tablet replacing my iPad over the next year. Still need the apps to mature (although kudos to Microsoft for their apps).

    The more I use Windows 8.1 (even RT), the more I think it is vastly superior to IOS. The fact that things begin to converge over the next year (RT for Phone and Tablets, Pro for notebooks), bodes very well for an Office Device, that hopefully will begin to catch up on the App Store front.
    mortondest
    • Maturing is the right word

      W8 was OK when released but not great. Surface was buggy, slow, quickly discharged battery, no Outlook, etc. and was way overpriced for its hardware specs. MS's supply chain issues and marketing were painful to watch in action.

      With 8.1 and firmware updates, Surface RT is now a great product. The Surface 2 improved (fixed really) what was lacking in hardware but showed no other major innovations.

      We will soon get Update 1 and W9 beta is coming out in the summer with a release candidate in the fall/winter. Hardware wise I hope to see a thinner, lighter Surface with Haswell or better Atom processors in the non-Pro version (ditching RT).
      Rann Xeroxx
  • I originally purchased the Samsung smart pc.

    It's ok as a tablet, but absolutely terrible as a hybrid. The keyboard constantly disconnects at the slightest movement, to even thing about using it as a laptop you have to set it on a table. I even got it replaced twice because I thought I had gotten unlucky and received faulty units. Also getting any x86 tablet that isn't at least and atom 3000 series would be a bit silly.

    I actually replaced the smart PC with the 2520, I got the deal from AT&T and the free keyboard cover. After using a well design tablet like the 2520 I'll never purchase any of those cheap plastic Samsung products again.
    Sam Wagner
    • Seen reports

      of the disconnecting keyboard, but mine hasn't suffered from that.

      The other advantage of the Samsung ATIV is that there is a version with 3G, so that it can be used on the move. It isn't carrier locked, so (over here at least - Germany), I can use it with any carrier.
      wright_is
      • That's the main reason I bought the 2520.

        It's pretty much the only windows tablet I could find that has 4g.

        I read it was only some of the original smart PCs that had problems, but after two replacement unit with similar behavior, I have a bit of a sour taste in my mouth when it comes to buying Samsung products. However, when ignoring the dock it was still a pretty good first generation windows tablet though.
        Sam Wagner
  • Your slideshow widget has gotten fixed!

    Holy crap! Somebody fixed the ZDNet slide show widget! I will actually page through slide shows on the site now!
    FDanconia
  • It never ceases to amaze me just how ucking stupi* some people can be

    DO NOT BUY AN ATOM tablet!! If all you plan to do on your tablet is surf web and check email - then get a Nexus 7!!
    People have to stop thinking a $300 thingy will perform equally to an ix laptop!! Buy a Surface Pro; I use it as a desktop, laptop, and tablet. Until recently it was $500!! I am sure it will be on sale again.
    If you cannot afford $500 - I have been there too - then save until you can afford one. But buying a POS is not the answer!! It will only frustrate you and you will end up buying something else anyways - which is in the end even more expensive.
    Cain69
    • Atom

      Sorry, but for many an Atom is fast enough. I have the ATIV with the previous generation ATOM. It covers about 90% of what I need, I have the desktop dock and that works well, with an external monitor in dual screen mode, it makes a great office PC. Only when I need to do heavy lifting (photo and video editing) do I need to reach for my i7 notebook.

      I keep thinking about a newer Bay Trail or Haswell tablet, but the Samsung is only a year old and "fast enough".
      wright_is
    • Ummm...

      You obviously haven't used a bay trail atom processor lately. It freakin kicks butt. I have the 64GB Dell Venue 8 Pro with the bay trail atom processor and it seriously is the most powerful true tablet (not a laptop class) machine I have ever seen. Better than a simple Nexus or even an iPad mini. Yup, the DV8P is simply astounding.
      gomigomijunk
    • This has not been my experience

      The Nexus is a great tablet, but the Haswell chips are just as fast as the processor in the Nexus and that admittedly gorgeous screen makes battery life no better. Gaming is great on the Haswell too. I also tend to prefer W8.1 to Google. Although I will admit the stock Nexus OS is better than any other. Did not like the random reboots on the Nexus either. I did really like the wireless charging on the Nexus.

      I have the Surface 2 as well and it is also excellent, but the Dell Venue 8 Pro is faster and I like smaller tablets.
      Monte Constable