Best tablet 2014: Our top 10 ranking

Top tablets compared - which is best for you?

If the tablets on this list aren't enough for you then a) you're very hard to please but b) we think we can still help out a little.

The main thing to remember is that the tablet is still a new category, so devices can age really quickly and slow down if you start to use them too heavily.

That said, you can still pick up a bargain by going for one of these options, which come with a pretty high standard of spec without costing the most to buy:

7. Tesco Hudl 2

Tesco Hudl 2

The first Hudl was good - but this is a much better option.

The Intel Atom processor, the quad core speeds, the Full HD screen and the general interface is really something to behold.

The price tag is the best thing though: the Hudl 2 will cost no more than £129, and if you're a Tesco Clubcard holder it can be much, much cheaper.

OK, it's a bit slow to wake and the battery is suspect, but for the price you're getting something we'd be happy to recommend you buy for a loved one this Christmas.

Quick verdict

A great tablet even at a higher price. It brings more premium features like Dolby enhancement at a stunning price tag - if you're not after the best tablet, but the best value, this is one to certainly check out.

Microsoft Surface Pro 3

Surface Pro 3

Most tablets aren't true laptop replacements, but the Surface Pro 3 isn't most tablets. Microsoft has positioned its flagship slate as a true hybrid, that can fill the roles of both tablet and computer and for the most part it's up to the task.

With a whole lot of power, an impressive display and a useful Type Cover for when you need to get some serious work done it's got the muscle to compete with Ultrabooks and the portability and ease of use to be an iPad alternative.

It's not perfect. The battery life is seriously weak by tablet standards and it's a pricey bit of kit, but if you really want one device to fill both roles then this is the best option out there.

Quick verdict

The Microsoft Surface Pro 3 is an impressively powerful and versatile device. There's a sense that it's a jack of all trades, master of none, but it's the best hybrid around and that's reason enough to consider it if you don't want or can't afford both a tablet and an Ultrabook.

Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1

Tab Pro 10 1

Samsung is no stranger to tablets, in fact the South Korean giant has flooded the market with more slates than we know what to do with and the Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1 is arguably the best of them.

It's clad in slightly underwhelming plastic like most Samsung devices, which is a bit of a shame given what a high end machine the Tab Pro 10.1 is, but once you experience its tremendous power and amazing screen it's a disappointment which quickly slips away.

In fact there's very little else to dislike about it. This is a top tier slate through and through and it's versatile enough to comfortably be used for work or play.

Quick verdict

The Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1 might not have the premium build of the iPad Air or the waterproof credentials of the Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet but in most other ways it's just as high end and it slightly undercuts them too.

Tesco Hudl

Tesco Hudl

When stacked up spec-for-spec against the tablets like the Google Nexus 7, the Tesco Hudl loses out in almost every respect. But really, that's not a fair comparison.

With a £120 price tag Tesco is competing in a category that's typically populated by cheap and not-so-cheerful knock-offs and massively compromised also-rans. When viewed in that light, the Hudl is a bit of a revelation, with solid build quality and respectable performance across the board.

If you're looking to jump aboard the tablet bandwagon but have been put off by the prohibitive cost of trusted brands at one end and the questionable pedigree at the other, the Hudl is the perfect device for you.

Quick verdict

The Tesco Hudl is well specced given its low price point, with a solid construction and a decent 7-inch display.

Stock Android is still rare enough that it's worthy of mention here as a stand-out feature, with Tesco wisely keeping its tinkering to a minimum.

This is a well connected device too, with microSD and Micro-HDMI slots adding expansion and connectivity options that you don't always get in compact tablets.