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Best tablets of 2013 holiday season tested by Consumer Reports

This holiday season, tablets are bound to be a top gift item. Consumer Reports has released its ratings of nearly 100 tablets.
November 25, 2013 12:00:00 AM PST
This holiday season, tablets are bound to be a top gift item. Consumer Reports has released its ratings of nearly 100 tablets.

If you're shopping for a tablet, you'll find more choices than ever. Apple's newest, the iPad Air, has been getting plenty of attention. Consumer Reports just completed testing it and found plenty to like. Weighing in at just a pound, and with a super slender profile, the iPad Air is the lightest full-sized tablet tested. That makes it easy to hold for reading or watching movies.

"Even though Apple made the iPad Air thinner and lighter, they didn't sacrifice screen quality at all. This screen looks just as good as the screen on the iPad 4," said Donna Tapellini with Consumer Reports.

The iPad Air with 4G earned Consumer Reports' highest score for any tablet ever. It starts at $629 and at $500 for Wi-Fi only.

If you prefer an android tablet, Consumer Reports recommends the newest version of the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1. It starts at $550.

"What's unique about it is it comes with a stylus and a set of apps that works specifically with that stylus. The stylus is pretty advanced, and it allows you to do things like write notes within an app or draw graphics. Another interesting feature is it allows you to run two apps at the same time on the display," said Tapellini.

But if you want to save money, the 7-inch Kindle Fire HDX is a good option at $230. You don't get as many features, but you do get a unique tech-support button.

"You push a button and up pops a live tech-support person who can help you out with any question you have about the tablet, right then and there," said Tapellini.

Consumer Reports also just tested the newest small tablet from Apple, the iPad Mini. They report it's even better than the previous version and it includes a longer-lasting battery.


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