The best-performing Android tablets today

Led by slates carrying Nvidia's Tegra 3 processor, Android tablets are highly competitive against Apple's iPad.

Unlike laptops and PCs, tablets are not heavily defined by their performance benchmarks. The benchmark tests available for tablets are not all cross-platform, and such tests don't always offer especially meaningful results beyond an index number that you can compare across assorted tablets. Still, benchmarks remain one of the best objective measures of a tablet's performance. We put the latest tablets through the benchmarking ringer--as well as through PCWorld's own tests of battery life and recharge--to see how they compare to Apple's third-generation iPad and iPad 2.

Overall, as you'll see from the charts below, we discovered that Nvidia Tegra 3-based Android tablets are among some of the best performers out there. (Of the tablets we assessed in this group, only Apple's iPads and Samsung's Galaxy Tab 2 lack some version of the Tegra 3.) But we also saw some notable variations in performance--variations whose root causes could lie in different processor speeds, different types of system memory, and different versions of the Android operating system.

Interestingly, among this selection of tablets, Google's budget-priced Nexus 7 was highly competitive. The Nexus 7 is the first tablet to use Nvidia's cost-cutting Kai reference platform, and it's the first tablet to ship using Google's Android 4.1 Jelly Bean operating system. It posted largely impressive results despite carrying a price-performance-optimized version of the Tegra 3, a 1.2GHz quad-core processor dubbed the T30L (the CPU runs at 1.3GHz in single-core operation). Those are the same frequencies as on the new Acer Iconia Tab A700, but Nvidia can't comment on whether everything about the Tegra 3 inside the Nexus 7 is the same as on the A700. The benchmark results below might reflect subtle system-on-chip fine-tuning differences, since the Acer slightly outperformed the Nexus 7 on several tests.

Apple's third-generation iPad continued to lead the tablet field significantly on our GLBenchmark 2.1.4 graphics tests. In that evaluation, it was nearly twice as fast as its rivals on the Egypt Offscreen test, and nearly three times as fast on the Pro Offscreen test.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Melissa J. Perenson

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?