For a better reading experience on the go, many users consider e-book readers such as the Amazon Kindle due to their lightweight design, affordability, and most importantly, eye-friendly display technology. However, there are plenty of users who want the best of both worlds i.e. a tablet that offers a good reading experience alongside other features on the go. When it comes to the best tablets for reading, there are a few standout options that offer decent reading experiences.
In this article, we will recommend the best tablets for reading e-books and articles on the web. These tablets should have a compact size, a good display, and be reasonably priced. Our recommendations include tablets running Android and iPadOS.
Best Tablets for Reading: An Overview
- Best 8-inch tablet for bookworms: Apple iPad Mini (at Amazon*). The iPad mini is great for reading outside in moderate sunlight because of its compact case, high screen brightness of 500 nits, and impressive display resolution of 2266 x 1488 pixels. The color and contrast values are also high, and the viewing angle stability is good. However, some users may find the “jelly effect” while scrolling a little annoying as it can make one half of the screen scroll faster than the other. Some viewers may observe this while others may not, but the iPad mini has a fast performance that allows you to use demanding apps and play games on high graphics settings.
- Ideal for e-books with integrated reading mode: Lenovo Tab M9 (at Amazon*). The tablet is equipped with a high-quality screen that has a solid display and a resolution of 1340 x 800 pixels. It can reach a maximum brightness of 400 nits and offers good color values and viewing angle stability. To make reading more comfortable, the tablet also provides a special reading mode that allows you to adjust the colors to either chromatic or grayscale. This feature is specifically designed to be easy on the eyes, especially during e-book reading.
- Best 8-inch tablet for reading (under $200): realme Pad mini (at Amazon*). The realme Pad mini is a great 8-inch tablet available on Amazon* for under $200. It features a high-resolution screen of 1340 x 800 pixels and a maximum brightness of 360 nits, which is suitable for indoor use. The tablet comes with a sleek metal casing and good computing power. Moreover, you can choose an upgraded version with more storage and LTE at a slightly higher price.
- Decent 8-inch tablet for reading (under $150): Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus (at Amazon*). The Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus is currently being sold at Amazon for 135 Euros. It features an 8-inch display with a resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels, 60 Hz and 400 nits, and it is capable of running games on low settings. Additionally, it comes equipped with Alexa and Echo Show mode, and boasts a long battery life.
- Affordable reading tablet (under $60): Amazon Fire 7 2022 (at Amazon*). Amazon Fire 7 2022 (at Amazon*): The Amazon Fire 7 can be purchased for just 65 euros. This 7-inch tablet has a display resolution of 1024 x 600 pixels and a brightness of up to 300 nits. Although it may not have enough computing power to support intense apps or games, it is suitable for activities such as streaming videos, browsing the internet, and reading e-books.
Best Tablets For Reading: All Details
Apple iPad mini: Best 8-inch tablet for bookworms overall
The Apple iPad mini is a powerful tablet that’s ideal for reading on the go and outdoors thanks to its high-resolution 2266 x 1488 pixel display and excellent 500 nits brightness. One drawback of the display is the so-called “jelly effect”: Sometimes when scrolling, the screen content may not move evenly and can cause an offset display, which can be annoying. Although this issue is not a significant problem in day-to-day reading, it becomes noticeable only when you pay close attention to it.
If you’re only planning on using the iPad mini for reading e-books and browsing the web, it might not be the best fit for you. Despite its strong performance, the tablet comes with the Apple A15 processor, which offers so much power that it even outmatches most premium Android tablets. This means that you can use demanding apps like Adobe Photoshop or play CPU-intensive games at high settings.
The high-quality metal casing and the moderate weight of 297g also make the iPad mini an ideal companion for everyday use. The tablet’s stereo speakers are of good quality, allowing you to listen to audiobooks. This feature can come in handy when you want to be read to.
We like the impressive cameras and reliable fingerprint scanner of the iPad mini. It comes in two storage options: 64GB and 256GB. If you’re an avid reader who prioritizes a vivid, high-quality display and requires a tablet that can handle demanding applications, the iPad mini would be an outstanding selection.
Also Read: iPad mini review
Lenovo Tab M9: Ideal for e-books with integrated reading mode
The tablet’s screen has a resolution of 1340 x 800 pixels and a brightness of 400 nits, which means you can see the screen well even outdoors in sunlight. Additionally, with Widevine Level L1, you can stream services like Netflix in HD.
The Lenovo Tab M9 has a special reading mode that offers the option to switch between chromatic or grayscale colors. The purpose of this mode is to make reading texts easier on the eyes and more enjoyable. We tested the mode and discovered that our eyes become less tired while using it. This is a useful feature for those who frequently read ebooks on their tablet.
The sound from the speakers is also good, so you can also enjoy audiobooks or listen to music. The tablet is equipped with a MediaTek Helio G80 octa-core processor and optional 3GB or 4GB of RAM. You also have the choice between 32GB, 64GB, or 128GB of internal storage. An LTE version is also available.
The performance of the Lenovo Tab M9 is better than that of the realme Pad mini, so you can even play most games smoothly with medium graphics settings. Reading e-books and smooth web browsing is no problem on the device anyway. The Lenovo Tab M9 also masters simple multitasking without problems.
Lenovo ships the tablet with Android 12, and they have plans to provide an update to Android 13. The tablet will receive security updates for three years. Besides some minor changes like the reading mode, the tablet uses pure Android software with familiar Google apps included.
The Lenovo Tab M9’s casing is primarily metal, with plastic at the top and bottom. It weighs just 344g, is 7.9mm thin, and is great for reading on the go. It has a USB C 2.0 port, a microSD card slot, and a 3.5mm jack. While facial recognition is available, it is not very secure due to the lack of sensors.
The tablet has an 8MP primary camera which is good for the price, but the 2MP front camera is not good enough for video calls due to the low resolution, even in good lighting. The tablet lasted for 9 hours in our battery test while playing an HD YouTube video on a continuous loop at maximum brightness. Considering the bright screen, this is a good performance. Overall, for around $150, this is one of the best tablets for reading and it has a great price-performance ratio, even for more demanding apps and games.
Also Read: Lenovo Tab M9 review
realme Pad mini: Best 8 inch tablet for reading for under $200
Based on our review, the realme Pad mini is the best option for an 8-inch tablet under $200. Its quality is unmatched in the 8-inch category of Android tablets. The tablet has a display resolution of 1340 x 800 pixels and a maximum brightness of 360 nits, which is bright enough for indoor use. Additionally, the tablet can be purchased with larger storage and LTE for an additional fee. Despite its low price, the realme Pad mini has a high-quality metal casing that feels good to hold. Because of its compact size, it is easy to handle while reading.
The realme Pad mini lacks high-end features such as a fingerprint scanner, but it does have a microSD card slot and the LTE version can accommodate two SIM cards. It also has a USB C 2.0 and a traditional headphone jack. The device’s performance is suitable for activities like web browsing and reading e-books, although for gaming, it runs games like PUBG Mobile and Asphalt 9 decently on low graphics settings. However, it’s important to manage expectations when it comes to computing power.
You can choose between different versions of the tablet with varying RAM and storage capacities, as well as an optional LTE feature. However, it’s important to note that the realme Pad mini does not come with an earpiece. To make calls and send text messages on the LTE version, you will need to use a headset. Overall, the realme Pad mini is one of the best tablets for reading at an affordable price.
Also Read: realme Pad mini review
Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus: Solid 8-inch tablet for reading for under $150
You can purchase the Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus for $120. It has an 8-inch display with a resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels and a 60Hz refresh rate. The screen is bright enough for indoor use, but not suitable for reading on the beach. Additionally, the display is not laminated. The tablet’s sound quality is decent enough for listening to audiobooks and music every now and then. While the device is made of durable plastic, it does not include advanced features such as a fingerprint reader or facial recognition.
Although the Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus has a 2-megapixel front camera and a 5-megapixel main camera on the back, they are only suitable for taking snapshots and are not suitable for hobby photographers who have higher demands. The device is powered by a MediaTek MT8169A hexa core processor and 3GB of RAM and comes with the option of 32GB or 64GB internal storage. You can expand the storage up to 1TB using a MicroSD card. The device includes a USB-C 2.0 port and is available only in the Wi-Fi version.
The Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus has good performance for its low price, although its processor is not as good as tablets like the realme Pad mini. However, its graphics performance is better and it can smoothly run games like Asphalt 9 and PUBG Mobile, even with moderate graphics settings. The tablet also handles simple multitasking without slowing down, allowing users to use apps like Google Chrome and YouTube at the same time.
The tablet uses Amazon’s Fire OS, a version of Android 11, and will receive ongoing software updates. It includes Alexa and Echo Show modes. However, it doesn’t come with the Google Play Store installed, which is typical for Amazon devices. But you can easily install it yourself to access all Google apps, just follow these instructions.
During our battery test, the Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus achieved a good runtime of 9.75 hours. To check the battery performance, we played an HD YouTube video in a continuous loop.
If you’re a bookworm hunting for an affordable tablet and prefer to spend saved money on new ebooks, the Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus is a decent option. However, for just 40-50 Euros more, the realme Pad mini offers a superior package with a premium metal shell, a laminated screen, and improved processing capability. Although the Amazon tablet has better long-term update support, the realme Pad mini is still a better overall choice.
Also Read: Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus review
Amazon Fire 7 2022: Bargain reading tablet for under $60
If you’re looking for an affordable way to read e-books on a tablet and also use it for light web browsing and email, the Amazon Fire 7 might be a good choice. It costs only $60 and allows you to read e-books, watch YouTube and Netflix, and do more.
It’s important to have realistic expectations regarding the tablet’s price point. The tablet does have thick black display bezels and it feels slightly cheap due to its plastic build and thickness of 9.67mm. However, it weighs only 282g and includes a USB-C 2.0 port, MicroSD slot and 3.5 mm jack. It also has two-megapixel front and back cameras. The cameras are suitable for taking useful snapshots and making video calls with decent quality, especially in good lighting conditions.
The Amazon Fire 7 2022 is equipped with a quad-core MediaTek MT8168A processor with a speed of 2GHz and 2GB of RAM. For storage, you can choose between 16GB and 32GB, but no version with LTE is available.
Although the performance of the Amazon Fire 7 is not impressive and is one of the weakest on the tablet market, the hardware is still sufficient to run simple apps and applications. For example, you can browse the Internet with Google Chrome or watch YouTube and Netflix videos without problems. The Alexa voice assistant works flawlessly on the tablet and you can of course read your favorite Kindle ebooks without problems. However, multitasking is not possible on the Amazon Fire 7.
The Amazon Fire 7 has a 7-inch screen with a resolution of 1024 x 600 pixels. This results in a fairly low pixel density, but it is okay for this price. The viewing angle stability and color reproduction are okay and the brightness is sufficient indoors. However, the display is not laminated, which is acceptable considering the price. However, the display of the Amazon Fire 7 is susceptible to fingerprints, which is possibly due to a lack of screen coating.
The Amazon Fire 7 has only one speaker which provides decent sound quality but can be quite low in volume. While it is suitable for watching movies on the couch, it may not be sufficient for interacting with Alexa while cooking or performing other tasks where louder sound is needed.
Also Read: Amazon Fire 7 Review
The Amazon Fire 7 tablet runs Fire OS, which is Android-based. Amazon confirmed that it will release security updates for the tablet for four years. The lock screen occasionally displays advertising banners, but they can be turned off for $10. Our test found that the ads did not cause any disruptions. The tablet lasted an impressive 10 hours in our battery test. We played an endless loop of an HD YouTube video with max brightness.
If you’re looking for the best tablet for reading that’s affordable and don’t mind making some compromises compared to pricier options, the Amazon Fire 7 is a good choice. It’s priced at $60 which makes it quite a bargain.
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