There used to be a time when computers used to cover up floors worth of real estate. But through innovation and invention, the same computer can now fit on a single silicon chip. We have come a long way from box-like computers to hi-tech mobile phones.
So no wonder the world of tablets is growing in influence and popularity. These pieces of technology combine the power of a desktop and the portability and accessibility of a mobile phone. What’s more, you can even use them to do things that are exclusive to both mobile phones and computers.
They can call, surf the web, play movies, edit documents, reply to emails, and stay connected with your circle. But the obvious question arises, what are the best tablets under $150? Do they have a set formula to success, or are there other factors that also play a role in giving them an edge?
Let us look at the various products and break the formula that leads these tablets to glories.
ZONMAI 10.1 inch Android tablet
The Zonmai is a company that aims to provide exceptional functioning tablets at low prices, and this offering is no less than its motto. The 10.1 screen tablet is one of the bigger tablets in the market and has specs matching its size.
This tablet contains the Alwinner A133 quad-core processor, which delivers a whopping 1.5 GHz of speed. The quad-core ensures that most multitasking is done relatively quickly without putting a significant load on the tablet.
This tablet comes with 4 GB of RAM installed in it. While not high, it is still enough to get work done at current rates, though you might need to look for a more robust alternative in the future.
The Zonmai tablet features 64 gigs of ROM, which can be extended using SD cards. While the low storage helps save money, it might be a turn-off for people looking to store many files without having to pay more.
The 8 megapixel back camera and the 5 MP front camera ensure that all your videos come out smooth and crisp. However, the quality does leave something to be desired. While it can stand its ground, it barely makes the list of the best tablets under $150.
It has a 10.1-inch screen, with a resolution of 1200 x 800, which is good enough for most practical purposes but becomes lacking when you start intensive creative work on it.
With 8000 mAh of battery power, the tablet will last you the whole day on video playback, provided you make some tweaks.
Feonal 10-inch tablet
This offering seeks to play into the under $150 niche by compromising on things that would typically not cause a huge issue.
It has an A55 MP8 octa-core processor, capable of reaching speeds above 1.6 GHz, allowing you to execute multiple tasks simultaneously.
This tablet contains 2 GB RAM, which is quite below the industry standards currently. As such, you should try going for the higher-end model, which has more suitable RAM offerings.
Once again, to sell a product below the $150 limit, the brand decided to offer the tablet in 32 GB variant, which, while being expandable, is relatively low considering the current offerings in the market.
13 MP back camera and 5 MP front camera are good enough for day-to-day activities and meetings, but anything further might not give suitable outputs.
It has a 10.1-inch screen, with a resolution of 1920 x 1200, which is quite good, considering its other features.
With 6000 mAh of battery power, the tablet will last you the whole day on video playback, provided you make some tweaks.
Samsung Galaxy Tab A – Best tablet under $150
Samsung is a well-known company in the mobile devices market, so it’s no wonder that the Samsung Galaxy Tab would be a massive hit with the customers. The Samsung Galaxy Tab A brings the brand power and the features at an affordable price. But alas, with time, the product has lost its sheen and now barely makes the cut.
It has a Samsung Quad-core processor, capable of reaching speeds of 1.2 GHz. Though this is on the lower end of the spectrum, the performance to price ratio is quite large and cannot be neglected.
The RAM figures of this tab are pretty abysmal, with an offering of 1.5 gigs. This is one of the lowest offerings amongst all the competitors on the list.
Once again, the offerings are pretty poor. With 16 GB of flash memory, you can, at most, run day-to-day tasks and surf the web. Anything more would require investments into external storage devices, which would cost more than the Samsung Galaxy Tab itself.
The 8 megapixel back camera and the 5 MP front camera ensure that all your videos come out smooth and crisp. However, the quality does leave something to be desired. While it can stand its ground, it barely makes it to the “Best tablets under $150” list.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A has a 10-inch screen with a resolution of 1024 x 768. It is still good, considering some of the other tablets and their respective price points.
The 5000 mAh battery might be a little low, but it fits right into the puzzle considering the low-powered system.
Dragon Touch Notepad K10
The Dragon Touch Notepad is another one of the newer brands looking to capitalize on the tablet under $150 niche. The Notepad K10 is one of the most affordable offerings of the brand.
It contains a 64-bit, 1.3 GHz quad-core processor.
This tablet has 2 GB RAM and offers a good performance per price ratio, but it is still not up to the mark considering the current offerings in the market.
It contains 32 gigs of ROM, and while it can be expanded, it is still not enough in the current times.
It has an 8 MP back camera and a 2 MP front camera. It is average, but the price point makes it a worthy consideration indeed.
It has a 10-inch screen with a 1280 x 800 pixels IPS panel, which brings out vibrant colors.
The 5000 mAh battery is sufficient for the low-powered devices on board, which gives it a better life of around 18 hours.
VASTKING KingPad K10
It is one of the newer brands in the “tablets under $150” niche, and hence, contains more advanced features and capabilities.
The octa-core T610 CPU of the tablet ensures that all your tasks are done in an instant, without much hassle.
Though it only contains 3 GB of RAM, the RAM utilization is quite adequate, allowing it to push far beyond its onboard capabilities.
Again, while the tablet offers 32 GB of storage, the expansion capability of 0.5 TB is one of the best amongst its competitors, making it quite useful even with the low onboard storage.
The rear camera is 13 MP, and the front one is 5 MP. It is pretty low, and the video quality (both recordings and meetings) leaves something to be desired.
It has a 10.1-inch screen with a 1080p full HD display resolution, which is one of the best on the market. The colors are incredibly vibrant and sufficiently bright.
The 6000 mAh battery is quite suitable for a tablet of this size and works in tandem with the hardware and software to maximize the battery life up to 12 hours.
The Zonko tablets are well known for their low price-performance ratio. However, while the specs might be on the lower end of the spectrum, they get the job done.
The 1.3 GHz quad-core CPU is good enough to handle day-to-day tasks but falls short when put to actual work.
2 GB of RAM is well sufficient for average tasks, but heavier load tasks may cause problems with the tablet.
32 GB of ROM is okay to start, but you will definitely need expansion devices to continue working and storing data.
2 MP front camera and 5 MP rear camera, while “okay,” don’t really stand up to the current industry standards.
It has a 10.1-inch screen with a 1280 x 800 pixels resolution IPS display, which produces colorful images.
The 6000 mAh battery is massive storage for the tablet, giving it a battery life of 8 to 10 hours under mixed-use.
QunyIco 10.1 inch Android tablet
QunyIco is one of the lesser-known brands but still manages to surprise us with their low-powered but highly efficient tablets under $150, making them a good choice for young kids and teenagers.
The quad-core processor of this tablet can go up to 1.4 GHz in terms of speed, making it easy for people to multitask or focus on single jobs.
The tablet is powered by 2 gigs of RAM, which is sufficient for this little power machine. While it may stutter at higher-level tasks, it can work efficiently on everyday tasks like video surfing or document editing.
32 gigs of ROM, while helpful, are lacking. It needs to be extended to an optimum amount if you want to store files and work without using the cloud from time to time.
The front and rear cameras are 2 MP and 8 MP, respectively, making videos and recordings good enough, but nothing to write home about.
The 10.1-inch display, with a resolution of 1280 x 800 on an IPS panel, makes it an excellent choice for visual content consumers due to its high vibrancy and contrast.
5000 mAh of the battery ensures that all your work is turned in on time while being power preserved for some fun time as well, extending the battery life well beyond the 6 hour average of its competitors.
Lenovo TAB M10 PLUS
The Lenovo tab brings a similar power and spec combination as the other competitors. Still, the brand name increases its life and deliverability, thanks to the higher quality of parts used. So although the tablet might be a little underpowered, it can show some tremendous power when required.
The quad-core processor, running at speeds over 2.4 GHz, is one of the faster in this list and ensures that all tasks are executed in a timely fashion, with minimum downtime.
Thanks to the high-powered processor, this machine tool is powered by 2 GB of RAM but is sufficient to work with.
Thirty-two gigs of ROM need to be increased for optimum use, but it is not bad to have. You have to remember that it could always have been worse, with 16 gigs of ROM, which would leave you with practically zero space.
The 8 MP rear camera and 5 MP front camera work in tandem to deliver the best video calling and recording quality possible.
The 10.3-inch display featuring an FHD display makes it one of the list’s more colorful and tacky displays.
5000 mAh of the battery ensures that all your work is turned in on time. It is also enough to watch videos, edit documents and simply surf the web.
Moderness 10-inch tablet
Moderness has tried to delve into the sub $150 niche to provide low-powered devices at low cost while striving to deliver quality performance and experience.
It has a 64-bit quad-core processor, which can run at 1.6 GHz, which is quite a lot, considering that the demand for power from various devices is relatively low.
It is powered by 2 GB of RAM, sufficient for daily tasks, but fails under heavy or repeated use.
32 GB of ROM is pretty useful, as are the expandable slots can feature up to 256 GB or extra storage.
The front and rear cameras are 2 MP and 5 MP, respectively, which ensures that your video calling and recording experience is always good, if not great.
The 10-inch display, with a resolution of 1280 x 800 on an IPS panel, makes it suitable for people looking for good display tablets at lower than standard costs.
6000 mAh of the battery ensures your tablet’s battery life goes beyond the double digits and then some more if used correctly.
Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.0
This device is a bit of a game-changer. It is a little over the budget of this list but is well worth the investment and pays for itself over in time.
The Snapdragon 429 chipset is a quad-core chipset capable of running at 2.0 GHz, making it the first runner-up in terms of processing power and speed.
It, too, contains 2 GB of RAM, but thanks to the excellent quality of hardware on board, it manages to work flawlessly and in tandem with the quad-core processor.
Thirty-two gigs of ROM are nicely segregated and used by the various system compartments. Additionally, expandable storage makes it easier to buy a tablet now and expand its capabilities later.
The front and rear cameras are 2 MP and 8 MP, respectively. This allows you to answer video calls without worrying about your camera quality and helps you capture video at the best of specs possible.
The 8-inch displays a deviation from the norm but is valuable and handy for people looking for a small-form factor.
5100 mAh of battery power ensures that the machine stays powered up for as long as you need it and does not give up on you at the direst of times.
Things to keep in mind
A tablet is a long-term investment for most people. And hence it should be treated with care. Sure, you can pay less and get a tablet right now, but spending a little more will help you future-proof your devices (and protect you from a potential FOMO).
A tablet is much more than the sum of its parts. There is no use of a tablet with serious power under the hood but no hardware to utilize all that potential. So always choose your tablet after weighing in all relevant factors.
Let us take a look at the elements that make the greats stand out from the mediocre.
The processor is the central hub of the tablet (or any other machine, for that matter). The better the processor, the better your tablet will perform. But what makes a processor better?
Whenever you buy a tablet, look at the brand of the processor powering it and the speed mentioned. This speed tells you the speed of data transfer rates within the processor—the higher the speed, the better the responsiveness of the tablet.
Now, another factor weighs in with the pace. A term called “cores” basically refers to the amount of multitasking action that your tablet can handle. A dual-core tablet has two cores. A quad-core processor features 4, and an octa-core processor has eight cores that can simultaneously run errands.
The best bet is to go with a high-speed and an octa-core processor. They will together give you the maximum amount of performance from your tablet. Also, processors have double the amount of threads (simultaneous pipelines of information) running. So an octa-core processor will have around 16 threads, which is quite a lot, even by the standards of an octa-core processor.
Also, keep in mind the brand of the processor. A quad-core processor from a well-known brand might be able to outstrip an octa-core processor from a not-so-well-known one, especially in the “best tablets under $150” niche.
Random Access Memory and Read-Only Memory
The RAM of the tablet is another critical factor that can make or break the machine. The RAM of any device temporarily stores the programs that are being run on the machine. So, if the user ever requires, they can quickly access the programs, and the device will retrieve it from the RAM.
But if your device does not have enough RAM, the programs will have to be pulled from the disk itself, which is a very long and arduous process, even by the standards of a tablet. Hence, you need to look for a tablet with enough RAM for all your current and future needs.
So, as a general rule of thumb, the more “GB RAM” your tablet has, the better its performance would be. There used to be a time when all work could be done with a 2 GB RAM device. But 2 GB RAM no longer holds that place. Any device with 2 GB RAM or less is instantly discarded, as it’ll have lower performance and cannot keep up with the high workload demanded.
The optimum range lies between 4 GB RAM and 8 GB RAM. Any more than that is purely a marketing gimmick. And it won’t be helpful unless you do some cumbersome content creation. So stick to a number that will be productive for you but not overkill. Be sure to include efficacy when looking for the best tablets under $150.
The ROM is next on the list of features that a good tablet must have. It refers to the permanent storage that your tablet will have. The more ROM a tablet has, the more amount of data it can store. So having more is better. But unlike the “Inflexible GB RAM” of a tablet, the ROM can be extended using SD cards and cloud storage.
This gives you the freedom to err on the side of caution without worrying about the after-effects. So, it is okay if your device, by default, has a memory of 64 GB or 128 GB. It can be easily increased by the use of SD cards and the cloud. This also has the advantage of allowing you to go for the smaller version by compromising on the ROM and paying less, and increasing it up to your needs.
But try and keep the potential SD cards or cloud services on hand before you initiate the purchase of the best tablets under $150. There is nothing worse (or frustrating) than an incompatible aftermarket upgrade.
The camera of tablets is often overlooked. Even in some of the best tablets under $150, you will find this department lacking. This is because manufacturers try to divert resources to the processing capability of the tale, which can allow them to get more work done. But a tablet is part mobile phone as well. So try to get the best camera combination possible.
If the tablet’s camera is perfect (like some of the top-end models), you will be able to capture and edit videos on the device itself directly. A good camera is often overlooked, so any tablet that offers a good camera option in a tablet under $150 is bound to overtake its competitors.
Businesses are starting to realize this and have begun investing in cameras to create a machine capable of capturing and rendering videos and photos, all on the same device.
What good is a tablet that cannot display the breathtaking colors that the drivers and tech of the tablet are capable of rendering? This just amounts to having an RTX card but using a CRT display. To feel the true benefits of the high-powered tech under the hood, you need a display capable of rending the high-powered output.
So, a HD display, while cheaper than an IPS display, would also have less vibrant and subdued colors. On the other hand, an IPS display is one of the best displays that any machine can have (other than AMOLED, but since it is the “Best Tablets under $150” niche, we will stick to the IPS display). It has good viewing angles, excellent brightness, and vibrancy. So, whenever you get the choice to choose between a full HD Display and an IPS Display, always go for the IPS display.
Battery and Charging
The battery life of a standard laptop is around 4 to 8 hours. The battery life of a mobile phone, on average, is about 10 hours. But, the battery life of a tablet exceeds both the battery life of the mobiles and the battery life of the laptops.
This is because the average tablet has a bigger size than a mobile phone, and hence, can fit a bigger battery, thereby increasing its battery life. In the same line of thought, it is less power-hungry than a laptop, increasing its battery life further. Both these factors together allow the battery life of a tablet to exceed the battery life of any other portable device by a long shot.
Still, you should always check the amount of charge it can hold. The good idea is to look at the charge (mAh) capacity of the tablet. The more significant the number, the higher the battery life of the device. To stay on the safe and economic side, try looking for tablets with 8000 mAh to 15000 mAh of battery power.
A high-powered battery will no doubt increase the battery life of the device. Still, in the end, the device needs to be charged again. In such times, the lower the charging time of any device, the better its ranking would be. After all, no one wants to pay 100+ bucks for a tablet that stays connected to the charger, making it no better than a landline.
The best tablets under $150 nowadays have started to shift to a type-c mode of charging, which is the widely accepted and comparatively faster form of charging. The type-c port allows you to utilize the quick charge technology, powering your device with a full days’ worth of battery life in under an hour.
So look for tablets that have or support fast charging in some way or form. This will allow you to charge your tablet in a jiffy and also allow you to enjoy the extended battery life.
The body of the tablet is just as important as the other parts. A glass cannon is of no use to anyone, but neither is a brick. So, try looking for a tablet whose body is sturdy enough to withstand the daily punishment of use and yet is light enough that it does not burden you any way.
A tablet is meant to be portable, and hence, tablets nowadays use aluminum or glass back to reinforce the tablet’s body. But, to be on the safer side, always go for a tablet with an aluminum (or any other sort of metal) body. They are not only durable but are also capable of absorbing shocks up to a certain extent.
A tablet that does not have the earphone jack is no tablet at all. Look for tablets with some allowance for the various peripherals that usually come with a tablet. A pen or a stylus is an excellent device to have, as is a shock-absorbing cover.
Look for tablets that have in-box peripherals or cheap aftermarket alternatives and the capability of using them seamlessly.
Believe it or not, the type of operating system your work environment is hosted on plays a huge role in your productivity. Most of the applications nowadays are optimized for Android and IOS environments. This leaves a device with an indigenous operating system far behind.
So, try to look for a device that runs the latest version of the operating system installed on it (Android operating system or Apple operating system, both). This will ensure that all the applications get updates in the foreseeable future and are compatible with your version of the operating system for a long time.
The operating system also influences how you work, allowing you to either multitask or work on a single project. Many of the indigenous features of the operating system of different brands (all based on the android operating system) allow you to increase your productivity by using widgets, apps, or actually helpful and just plain gimmicks. So never underestimate the power of the operating system installed on your future machine.
The race for the title of “best tablets under $150” has concluded so far. But there are no immediate winners or losers. In the end, the best tablets are the ones that suit you best. A $1500 iPad might be extremely powerful and helpful, but it would be worth less than an Android counterpart for a person working in the Android environment.
That is why you do your research. Research the various types of deliverables that you are looking for and match them to your budget. Expensive does not always mean good, and the sooner you learn that the better your investment will be.
And lastly, try to buy a tablet that will last you for the foreseeable future. A tablet is a sizeable investment, and if you decide to go all-in, it is better to do so while future-proofing yourself instead of buying a tablet that becomes worthless in 2 or 3 years.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What cheap tablet should I buy?
The answer to this question is tricky. Many tablets are cheap and affordable, but they are not good. They compromise on processing power, body camera, and so many other niches that it almost becomes worthless investing in them.
That is why it is necessary to look for tablets that provide you with a high return on investment. Spending $20 – $30 extra for better specs should not be an instant dealbreaker.
Which company tablet is the best and cheap?
Recently, newer companies like Zonami and Xiaomi are trying to enter the tablet market with reliable and economical offerings. But to get into the best tablets under the $150 club, many things need to be checked. The body, build, OS, and processor, being the top few.
Additionally, other companies like Samsung have started to get in on the trends, and hence, have also begun aggressive pricing to counter the newer players. This has led to some of the offerings of this company to fall under the $150 and sub $200 range, effectively making them cheaper and better than many of their counterparts.