Tablets are fairly simple devices that help us with our work, at school, and the lets as enjoy various kinds of entertainment as well. Besides all these qualities, a prime reason people opt for tablets over a full-blown desktop or a laptop is because they come at a cheaper price.
But when we say cheap, the scale varies for different people. What might seem affordable to a professional, can actually be expensive to a student.
This is why we have decided to talk about the best tablets under 500$ And the prime qualities do you need to watch out for.
The main differences between affordable tablets and an expensive one line in the size, the storage, processor, and CPU and a few other factors.
Your job is to find the right combination of factors, and not necessarily the highest counts. This will let you find the tablet that is most suited for your work at an affordable price.
|PRODUCT||SCREEN SIZE (INCH)||RAM||INTERNAL STORAGE||PRICE|
|MicrosoftSurface Pro 3||12RAM: 8GB||8GB||256GB SSD|
|SamsungGalaxy Tab S4||10.5RAM: 4GB||4GB||64 GB|
|LenovoYoga BookFHD||10.1||4GB||64GB SSD|
|SamsungGalaxy Tab S3||9.7||4GB||32 GB|
|Apple iPad Pro||4GB||4GB||256GB|
This is a 12-inch tablet that can also work as a laptopwhen you attach it to the keyboard.
Optimal for people who want a heavy-duty tablet to replace their laptops for their day-to-day work, yet to be able to have the convenience of a keyboard when needed.
It comes with an 8GB RAM which is pretty high when you compare it to other tablets. This item is useful for holding lots of different applications and working on sophisticated software since it allows all of them to run smoothly simultaneously. You do not have to worry about the tabs slowing down or facing any kind of lag.
Moreover, the Intel Core i5-4300U Processor ensures that the device stays fast regardless of the number of applications you decide to use at once. So if you are a multi-tasker, which most workers are, this is a fine choice for you.
Battery life is also very impressive since you get 9 hours of use on this without having to connect the charger in between. For a work tablet, you really do not need any more than this, since it can get you through a good part of the day, and maybe even have some juice left for listening to music on the way back.
If you want an affordable tablet that comes with a lot of storage space and makes navigation easier with a stylus, check out the Galaxy Tab S4 from Samsung.
This tablet comes with a 64GB internal storage which lets you use multiple applications and provides enough space for all sorts of music and movies. If you find that you need more space than use a microSD card to expand the storage up to 400 GB.
With a high battery life of 16 hours, this tablet has been made to last you an entire day. This is why students are a primary customer for this model, since they can use it in class as well as afterward for entertainment, from just a single charge.
The S Pen is great for artists, as well as for taking notes in class. Moreover, you also get a rear camera of 13 megapixels and a front camera of 8 megapixels. Samsung is pretty well known for their brilliant cameras, and this one is no exception to that.
The Yoga Book from Lenovo is a 10.1-inch Android tablet that can also be shifted into a laptop by simply attaching a keyboard with it. Termed as the "Ultimate On-The-Go Creativity Tablet", it comes with a lot of features and functions that make it flexible enough for all to use.
It boasts a slim design and weighs less than 2 pounds, and yet gives you 12 hours of use from the one charge. Not only that, but you also get different modes on which match different needs thanks to the 360° hinge that it comes with.
This hinge lets you turn the tablet into a Watch Mode for entertainment, into Type Mode for when you have work, into a Browse Mode which is when you get the tablet and the Creative Mode that allows you to take notes or draw.
The tablet includes a stylus that comes with 2048 levels of pressure. It is a battery-less Pen so you never need to charge it. It also comes with a design that can be used by both hands for accessibility to all.
The Galaxy Tab S3 is a 9.7-inch tablet that comes with its own revolutionary S Pen. This makes it suitable for people who like to take notes, draw, or are into digital art. The pressure-sensitive pen allows you to create natural pen strokes so you can get the finest lines, even if they are on screen.
The small tablet comes with a 32GB storage and a 4GB RAM, both of which allow this tablet to be fast and responsive and supports heavy multi-tasking.
You also get a Super AMOLED display which lets you experience a dynamic range of colors on the screen. Vivid details and high contrast is what you get, which makes this perfect for watching movies and streaming videos
The powerful Quad Speakers add to this experience by providing you with loud and clear sounds to go with the movies. Even if you are sharing, you don't need to connect this to an external speaker to get audible sounds.
The Apple iPad Air is a sophisticated tablet that comes with 64GB of internal storage. High storage lets you store all necessary files in one place without having to run out of space to soon. Even though this does not have an expandable storage, you can always use iCloud to back up files and create more space.
It comes with an 8-megapixel rear camera and a 7-megapixel front camera, both of which are brilliant and can compete with professional cameras any day.
The screen size is 10.5 inches and you get the Retina Display with True Tone color as you do with most Apple devices. It provides one of the clearest and most detailed of displays out there. Whether you want to work on editing photos and videos or creating 3D artwork this display is going to give you one of the finest performancesyou can ask for.
Two things that need to be checked out in terms of storage includes the internal storage and expandable storage.
The internal storage not only determines how many files you can store, but it can also affect the performance of the tablet.
This is why it is recommended to go for a minimum of 32GB of internal storage which is spacious enough to keep lots of files, sophisticated applications, and keeps the tablet running at a smooth speed.
Expandable storageis required as a backup when you run out of internal storage. This is good to have just in case the internal storage is not enough, and you can insert a microSD card to take care of it.
But not all devices have an expandable storage. In these cases, you must ensure that you get a sufficient amount for internal storage since there is no other backup option.
Display size is crucial when buying a tablet, because as the size increases the price of the tablet also goes up. So when you are looking for the best under 500$ tablets, you need to keep in mind that you will have a limitation on the display size that you can get.
That being said you can still get really good displays that can range up to 12 inches within this price.
These tablets, that range between 10 to 12 inches in size are most suited for people who have to work with heavy graphics, 3D artwork, or digital art, all of which require a large display.
You also have small to medium-sized tablets, and these are the mostly chosen for their versatility.
They can be found between 8 to 10 inches and are used for a wide variety of functions. From reading to entertainment to creating PowerPoint, they let you take care of all sorts of tasks.
High battery life is one of the main reasons why we choose to go for a tablet in the first place. While looking at the battery life in an affordable tablet you might think that you have a constraint on the number of hours you can get.
But if you check out the models here, you will find that that the battery lives can range from a mere five hours up to a whopping 16 hours.
The key to understanding which battery life to settle for is to look at the work to be done using the tablet. Streaming videos and watching movies usually take up more battery life than it does when working on Microsoft Word or reading a book in PDF format. Likewise, match the work hours to the tablets to find the ideal fit.
Choosing the RAM is pretty easy. Light use revolving around reading and writing does not require more than a 2GBRAM tablet.
This on top of entertainment would require somewhere around 4GBRAM. If you plan on doing all of this as well as taking on work that requires sophisticated software like Photoshop you should look at 8GB RAM tablets.
Microsoft Surface Go (Intel Pentium Gold, 4GB RAM, 128GB) - Walmart Link
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 10.5 inches (S Pen Included) 64GB, Wi-Fi Tablet - Black (Renewed) - Walmart Link
2019 Apple iPad Mini (Wi-Fi, 64GB) - Space Gray - Walmart Link
2020 Apple iPad Air (10.9-inch, Wi-Fi, 64GB) - Space Gray (4th Generation) - Walmart Link
Microsoft Surface Pro 4 (256 GB, 8 GB RAM, Intel Core i5) - Walmart Link
Samsung Galaxy Book 10.6" Windows 2-in-1 PC (Wi-Fi) Silver, 4GB RAM/64GB storage, - Walmart Link
2019 Apple iPad Mini (Wi-Fi, 64GB) - Silver - Walmart Link
1.Microsoft Surface Pro 3 QL2-00015 - Walmart Link
2.Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 - Walmart Link
3.Lenovo Yoga Book - FHD - Walmart Link
4.Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 - Walmart Link
10.Samsung Galaxy Note Pro - Walmart Link
Microsoft Surface Go (Intel Pentium Gold, 4GB RAM, 128GB) - eBay Link
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 10.5 inches (S Pen Included) 64GB, Wi-Fi Tablet - Black (Renewed) - eBay Link
2019 Apple iPad Mini (Wi-Fi, 64GB) - Space Gray - eBay Link
2020 Apple iPad Air (10.9-inch, Wi-Fi, 64GB) - Space Gray (4th Generation) - eBay Link
Microsoft Surface Pro 4 (256 GB, 8 GB RAM, Intel Core i5) - eBay Link
Samsung Galaxy Book 10.6" Windows 2-in-1 PC (Wi-Fi) Silver, 4GB RAM/64GB storage, - eBay Link
2019 Apple iPad Mini (Wi-Fi, 64GB) - Silver - eBay Link
1.Microsoft Surface Pro 3 QL2-00015 - eBay Link
2.Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 - eBay Link
3.Lenovo Yoga Book - FHD - eBay Link
4.Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 - eBay Link
10.Samsung Galaxy Note Pro - eBay Link
To conclude, we would like to say that the easiest way to find the best tablet under 500$, is to note down your work and preferences.
If you are an artist, your main priority should lie on a stylus, the screen size and the resolution. Other factors such as battery life or storage can be overlooked by little.
Likewise, for student, priorities lie on storage, the display size, and a high battery life. Sophisticated factors are not as important.
It is combinations like these that help bring the prices down someone can actually get a fine tablet within their budget.
About Dror Wettenstein
Dror Wettenstein is a software engineer and entrepreneur with more than 15 years of experience in the industry. He is the founder of TechTreeRepeat, a company that enables technical writers to publish their work faster and share it with readers across the globe. Dror has a master’s degree in computer science from San Diego State University and a bachelor’s degree in physics from UC Irvine.
When he’s not working on software projects, Dror enjoys writing articles and essays on various topics. He also likes playing guitar and spending time with his wife and two young children.