Cheap laptop tablet: Microsoft Surface Pro 8 (2021) Review

10 Best Budget 2 In 1 Laptops Of 2023

Portable devices featuring touchscreens are undeniably the future of computing, but some users still want a full keyboard as well.

Thankfully, you no longer have to choose between a tablet and a laptop! With hybrid machines hitting the market, now you can get the best of both worlds.

If you’re just starting to compare and contrast what’s available, we’re here to help with a roundup of the 10 absolute best 2-in-1s in 2023!

Unfortunately, Apple hasn’t jumped into the convertible arena yet, so there won’t be any iPad style devices listed below. There’s no shortage of options from other manufacturers however, from Dell to Samsung to Acer and beyond.

Recommendations for June 2023 

Best 2-In-1 Laptops Under $600 In 2023

Lenovo Chromebook C330 – Cheap 2-In-1 Laptop

Lenovo Chromebook C330

Just getting started trying out hybrid 2-in-1s, or looking for a very cheap model to give to the kids? This should be your pick if sticking to a budget is your main concern over any other feature and need the best 2-in-1 under $200.

Here’s the thing — you get what you pay for. Convertible laptops with Windows 10 at this price range won’t have nearly the speed or power of a regular laptop.

With only  4 GB of onboard memory and an integrated graphics card, this isn’t a powerhouse machine by any stretch of the imagination.

If you don’t need a high end machine though, this is the perfect low budget option. You simply won’t find a fully functional Windows 10 computer with a touch screen anywhere else at this price.

Managing expectations will be key to getting the most out of this Lenovo Chromebook C330 unit. With these specs, you’ll primarily be web browsing, sending emails, and typing documents.

Anything past that will strain the device beyond its capabilities. Keep in mind you will also need to buy a microSD card for extra storage.

The standard Windows 10 updates will eat a 32GB storage capacity for breakfast. If you intend to save any documents or images on this laptop, you will absolutely need extra storage space. Thankfully this 2-in-1 laptop runs on Chrome OS.

There’s one big advantage to this model over others though — you get a decent HD screen with a 1366 x 768 resolution, which isn’t often found in budget laptops.

Keep in mind that there’s an alternative to this unit if you find running Windows 10 with 4 GB of RAM is too slow for your needs.

If you don’t mind using all Android apps, you should strongly consider a tablet or chromebook instead if you need to stay under the 0 price range.

Recommended configuration for Lenovo Chromebook C330

CPU: MediaTek MT8173C Quad-Core | Graphics: Integrated PowerVR GX6250 Graphics  | RAM: 4GB | Screen: 11. 6″ HD (1366×768) 10-point Multi-touch IPS 300nits Anti-glare Display| Storage: 32GB eMMC| Operating System: Chrome OS  | Battery Life: 10 hours | Weight:  2.6 pounds

Lenovo Flex 14 – Ryzen Processor and Vega Graphics

Lenovo Flex 14

Want the same level of specs you’d expect from a full business laptop but in a budget form with a 2-in-1 design? Lenovo’s Flex 14 has you covered as our top pick for the best budget 2-in-1 laptop on the market right now.

Laptop aficionados will endlessly debate the perfect size for a hybrid machine. Your personal preference may vary, with some users preferring the tiny 10 inch and others needing the 13 – 14 inch designs.

The Flex 14, as its name implies, is on the larger end of the scale packing a 14-inch screen.  Its larger size does come with added weight, however, the portability of this machine is still very good.

At this price range, you can finally get out of the lower end and find some machines that will offer fast performance no matter what kind of programs you use.

With 12 GB of RAM and aa AMD Ryzen 5-3500u 4 core CPU, Lenovo’s Flex 14 can easily serve as your main work, home, or school machine.  The integrated Vega graphics are far superior to Intel’s offerings, making this a more formidable option than the Intel based laptops in this price range.

The screen on the Flex 14 is really good.  With a Full HD 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution, everything looks crisp and sharp.

When your done with work and are ready to switch to tablet mode, simply fold it over and enjoy your favorite TV shows and movies comfortably.

The great performance, compact form factor (for the screen size), and lightweight construction of the Lenovo Flex 14 are what make it the perfect choice for a 2-in-1 laptop under $600.

Recommended configuration for Lenovo Flex 14

CPU: Ryzen 5 3500U processor| Graphics:AMD Radeon Vega 8| RAM: 12 GB RAM | Screen: 14-Inch 1920x1080p display| Storage: 256GB| Operating System: Windows 10| Battery Life: up to 10 hours | Weight: 3.52 lbs

ASUS Vivobook Flip 14 – Thin And Light


ASUS Vivobook Flip 14

Looking for a high end 2-in-1 experience with a focus on portability at a low price point? This should easily be your pick if you only have a few hundred to spend and want a lightweight device.

Although it is about the same size as the Lenovo model listed above, you get significant hardware specs by picking the Asus VivoBook instead.

The big selling point here is packing those specs into an incredibly portable 14 inch device. If you’ve found that other hybrid models are too bulky or unwieldy in tablet mode, this is an excellent pick.

With a decent RAM and storage space, you also get reliable performance and significantly more room for saving files or installing programs.

That being said, 128 GB is still pretty small for a Windows 10 machine, so make sure to pick up a USB storage drive or an SD card for extra storage.

Note that his version of Windows starts in S Mode, which only lets you download certified apps from the Microsoft app store. If you prefer the full Windows 10 experience, it’s simple (and free) to upgrade from S to Home.

To get these specs at this price in a 2-in-1 model you’ve got to go refurbished, which means the device has been previously used but repaired and restored to factory settings.

If you’re willing to bump up slightly above $300, note that there are several brand new 2-in-1 VivoBook options readily available at Amazon.

Recommended configuration for ASUS Vivobook Flip 14

CPU: Intel Quad-Core Pentium N5000 Processor | Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 605 | RAM: 4 GB RAM | Screen: 14 ” HD 1366 x 768 pixels display| Storage: 128 GB | Operating System: Windows 10 | Battery Life: 7.5 hours | Weight: 3.3 lbs

Acer Spin R13 – 360 Degree Display

Acer Spin R13

Willing to ditch Windows 10 and go with the more secure Chrome OS instead? This should easily be your pick for a killer 2-in-1 touch laptop!

Most of the 2-in-1 devices in our list of contenders will feature the full Windows 10 operating system. That’s not the case with this Acer model, which utilizes the Chrome OS.

There are both pros and cons to this approach. Most notably, it means you can’t install Windows programs and have to use apps instead.

There’s a major silver lining there, however. The Chrome OS has significantly enhanced security over the many vulnerabilities in the Windows platform.

For users who bought this model, the main selling points are the extremely high battery life, fast boot time, and excellent screen.

There are several design issues frequently criticized by buyers who write reviews after using the device for a few months. They all deal with the way Acer chose to deal with the issues inherent to a laptop that can spin around 360 degrees.

First up, the power button is an awkward position that makes it easy to accidentally press down. Whether picking it up or placing it in your backpack, you can expect to turn it on and off while getting used to the design.

That same issue is brought up with the SD card slot. An inserted SD card pops out fairly easily as well, so be careful where you hold the R 13 in tablet mode for the first few days.

Finally, the stock power cable is a little wiggly and can fall out easily when moving the device. If you leave your tablet on your lap when charging, it may be worth investing in an aftermarket charger.

Recommended Configuration For Acer Spin R13

CPU: Quad-Core MediaTek MT8173C| Graphics: Intel HD Graphics| RAM: 4GB RAM | Screen: 13.3-inch 1920×1080 FHD IPS display| Storage: 32GB SSD| Operating System: Chrome OS| Battery Life: up to 12 hours | Weight: 3.28 lbs

ASUS Chromebook Flip C434 – Small Bezels


ASUS Chromebook Flip C434

The most complete chromebook on the market, which is also a 2-in-1 laptop, is by far the ASUS Chromebook Flip 14.  It does everything you want in a chromebook, and it does it extremely well.

ASUS has created a top notch Chromebook in the Flip 14.   Super portable and powerful enough to do everything that is needed on Chrome OS.

While not all chromebooks are 2-in-1’s, having the ability to fold this laptop into tablet mode puts it well above most of the competition.  And the almost bezel less display makes the tablet mode one of the most enjoyable experiences we have ever used in a 2-in-1.

Chromebooks are underpowered when compared to their Windows based counterparts, but the ASUS still packs enough punch to give one of the best chromebook performances on the market.  The Core M3 processor combined with 4GB of RAM are more than enough for your apps and daily use cases.

The 14-inch 1080p display is stunning.  Great colors and good brightness make it a joy to not only work with, but to watch movies and videos.

The keyboard is fully backlit and has a 1.4mm travel distance, making it a true joy to type on.  The trackpad feels great and is extremely responsive, making this chromebook a breeze to use.

There is nothing about this laptop that is lacking.   When compared to all other chromebooks on the market, especially 2-in-1 solutions, the ASUS Chromebook Flip 14 blows them out of the water.

Recommended configuration for ASUS Chromebook Flip C434

CPU: Intel Core M3-8100Y| Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 615| RAM: 4 GB RAM| Screen: 14-inch Touchscreen, 1920 x 1080 pixels | Storage: 64 GB | Operating System: Chrome OS | Battery Life: 10 hours |Weight: 3 lbs 

Microsoft Surface Go 2 – Extremely Light


Microsoft Surface Go 2

Want an absolutely killer hybrid laptop that’s extremely lightweight but doesn’t have a huge price tag? This should be your pick for the best detachable laptop!

You may need to read that weight column a few more times to let it sink in. Yes, this laptop weighs 1.2 pounds.

You’ve probably bought heavier produce at the supermarket! Microsoft manages that weight by using a detachable keyboard instead of the 360 degree rotating hinge of the other contenders.

That’s both a pro and a con, because you have to buy the keyboard separately. Even with that added cost you can stay at just under $600, however.

The Surface Go is easily one of the sleekest and most well designed 2-in-1 devices while still maintaining the specs you want from a laptop.

Two potential issues should be considered before picking the Surface Go that are regularly cited by reviewers.

Due to its size and tablet nature, the Surface Go is clearly meant to be used with a pen, but strangely it doesn’t include one out of the box. If you want to use a stylus for Microsoft Ink, you’ll have to buy that peripheral separately.

This model also ships with Windows 10 S, which is the stripped down version of Windows that can only install apps. That’s significantly more secure than full Windows, but reduces your options considerably.

You aren’t stuck with the S version permanently, however. Its completely free to upgrade to Windows 10 Home — it just means you add a good deal of time to the initial setup process.

Recommended Configuration For Microsoft Surface Go 2

CPU: Intel Pentium| Graphics: Integrated Graphics| RAM: 4GB RAM | Screen: 10.51-inch 1920×1280 Full HD Touchscreen display| Storage: 64GB eMMC| Operating System: Windows 10 S| Battery Life: up to 10 hours | Weight: 1.2 lbs

HP Chromebook x360 – Long Battery Life

HP Chromebook x360

If you are in the market for a 2-in-1 laptop with reliable specs and is able to last for a very long time, then you should check out the HP Chromebook x360. It isn’t very powerful but it sure lasts for a very long time!

Some people want a tiny 2-in-1 chromebook which they can use like  a normal laptop.  If that is you, then the  HP Chromebook x360  is an amazing choice blending the lines of a full laptop and a portable 2-in-1.

The HP Chromebook x360  with it’s 11.6” screen and hefty 2.76 lbs of weight, is definitely not the most portable 2-in-1 on the market but it’s still very portable .  However, you get a decent screen and relatively powerful specs, and still the ability to flip it into tablet mode to enjoy your entertainment.

The  Intel Celeron CPU N3350 processor is a powerful chip that can run most everyday tasks.  Combine that with 4GB of RAM, a Intel HD Graphics 500 GPU, and decent storage  and you have a laptop that is capable of being your daily driver without the worry of any slow-downs.

The  HD  resolution of the HP Chromebook x360 is bright and sharp.  It will be a nice display even in outside or brightly lit use cases.

The keyboard and touchpad are both good, with the keyboard being backlit with decent key travel.  The trackpad is nice and responsive, giving it an all around great feel when using the laptop.

With desktop rivaling performance, the sturdy x360 hinges, and a fantastic price point, the HP Chromebook x360 is a fantastic 2-in-1 ready for any day to day tasks that you need doing.

Recommended configuration for HP Chromebook x360

CPU: Intel Celeron CPU N3350 | Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 500| RAM: 4 GB | Screen: 11.6-InchHD WLED-backlit touch screen 1366 x 768 | Storage: 32 GB| Operating System: Chrome OS | Battery Life: 13 hours and 45 minutes | Weight: 2.76 lbs

Dell Inspiron 14 – Sensitive Touchscreen


Dell Inspiron 14

Looking for the absolute best convertible laptop when it comes to a sensitive touchscreen? With a decently sized screen for streaming videos and high specs? The Dell Inspiron 14 should be your pick!

Looking for an amazing convertible laptop with a decent screen for streaming videos and good specs? This should be your pick!

I bet you didn’t expect to see this  computer with a 14 inch display in a list of hybrid 2-in-1s! Yes, even the screen may not be the biggest but it treads a fine line between portability and power.

Obviously the bigger screen means a heavier overall computer which is why the Dell Inspiron 14 chose to go lights. While this is nearly half the weight of most other contenders on our list, it remains under an inch thick for power.

It’s not just the size that’s big either, as the specs on this Dell inspiron are quite decent  as well. 4 GB of RAM and an 8th gen processor mean you’ll have a screaming fast experience with any kind of usage.

There’s also an Intel UHD Graphics 620, so if you like some gaming on the side that option is available although don’t expect much since its still an integrated graphics card.

Dell made an interesting trade off on the storage capacity front, which could be a positive or negative depending on your needs.

This model has a pretty reliable  storage capacity with a full 128 GB SSD hard drive. Going that route means that you’ll have faster loading times thanks to your compact hard drive.

For reviewers, there are two potential problems to consider with this model. First off, if you were expecting to get an optical drive along with the bigger size, you’ll be disappointed.

The larger viewing area also makes this model less useful in some configurations. While it’s easy to prop up into entertainment viewing mode, you probably won’t use it for resource intensive programs considering its i3 processor.

Recommended configuration for Dell Inspiron 14

CPU: 8th Generation Intel Core i3-8145u Processor | Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620 | RAM: 4 GB RAM | Screen: 14.0-Inch HD (1366 x 768) LED-backlit Touch Display | Storage: 128 GB SSD | Operating System: Windows 10 Home | Battery Life: 8.5 houes | Weight: 2.9 pounds

Samsung Chromebook 3 – Good For Students

Samsung Chromebook 3

If you’re a college student on a budget, the Samsung Chromebook 3 is a fantastic option for all of your schoolwork needs.   You have all the apps available on Chrome OS to go with the lightweight and portable design to carry to all of your classes.

While there are plenty of “bargain” laptops available on the market, generally they are extremely slow and lacking in many areas.  This is generally due to them running Windows operating system, so going with a Chromebook is a great option for students.

The Samsung Chromebook 3 is not only affordable, but has the specs to make it a laptop that can handle any school work you can throw at it.  The ability to put it in tablet mode and take notes with the included pen is just another nice addition for college students.

The Chromebook 3 is using an Intel Atom x5-E8000 processor, giving it decent processing power but without draining the battery too fast.  Combine that with 2GB of RAM and storage that is expandable, and you have a chromebook that is a worthy Windows laptop replacement.

The real star of the Samsung Chromebook 3 is the high resolution 11. 1-inch display.  Packing 1366 x 768 pixels into such a small display makes for an extremely crisp and beautiful picture.

The keyboard has a nice size for such a small device, making it easy to type on.  The trackpad is responsive and smooth.

While a lot of college students opt to go for a Macbook or Windows laptop, this Chromebook should not be overlooked.  It has great performance, making it a good choice if you’re looking for something very affordable but good for school.

CPU:Intel Atom x5-E8000 processor  | Graphics:Intel HD graphics card | RAM: 2GB LPDDR3 RAM | Screen: 11.6 inch diagonal HD SVA BrightView WLED-backlit (1366 x 768) Display | Storage: |16GB eMMC |Operating System: Chrome OS| Battery 

Lenovo IdeaPad 3 – For Basic Editing

Lenovo IdeaPad 3

If you are looking for a great work or business 2-in-1 that can give you reliability and a solid build, this laptop is unrivaled.   TheLenovo IdeaPad 3 high performance, great screen, and sleek styling are bound to impress your business partners. It also has the specs for some basic video editing which is a huge plus for work.

When trying to find a business laptop, you want a sleek design and a rock-solid, stable performance.  The Lenovo IdeaPad 3 offers both of those, as well as class leading security solutions.

The inclusion of Windows 10 makes sure that you get all the added enterprise features your business ventures will need.  

Rocking an AMD Ryzen 5 3500U processor, with a fantastic 8 GB of RAM, this computer will be able to handle any business or productivity task easily.  The 256 GB of SSD storage is extremely fast, and offers plenty of space to save all of your files.

With these specs doing some basic video editing would be easy especially because of its AMD Radeon Vega 8 GPU which is one of the best integrated graphics cards out there to handle video editing on a basic level.

The 14-inch display is 1080p in resolution, and looks good in color and clarity.   However, we wish that the display was a bit brighter for better use in direct light.

The keyboard on theLenovo IdeaPad 3 is great.  The key travel and overall feel of the keyboard make this laptop a joy to type on, even on long work days.

Overall the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 does everything you would want from a business laptop,  and it does them well.  If you value your security, but want a high end 2-in-1 laptop to do your work, you will definitely enjoy this machine.

Recommended configuration for Lenovo IdeaPad 3

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3500U |Processor: AMD Ryzen 5 3500U Processor | Graphics: AMD Radeon Vega 8 Graphics | RAM: 8GB DDR4 RAM | Screen: 14.0″ FHD (1920 x 1080) | Display: | Storage: 256GB SSD| Operating System: Windows 10  | Battery Life: 4 hours and 30 minutes | Weight: 3.3 pounds

Picking The Best Budget 2-in-1 Laptop Under $600 In 2023

When picking a 2-in-1 machine you want maximum flexibility, and I don’t just mean that it should rotate 360 degrees in any direction.

Hybrid computers are significantly more versatile than either a standard clamshell laptop or a touchscreen tablet.

Because you will be using the device in a variety of different modes, be sure to take into account what features you aren’t willing to lose.

For instance, do you absolutely need an HDMI out port? What about an optical DVD-RW drive or extra USB ports for external peripherals?

From there, it’s time to consider what size will work best for your needs. Are you more excited for an extremely portable unit that’s only 10 inches wide, or do you want a desktop replacement at 15 or 17 inches?

Why Should I Pick A 2-In-1 Over A Normal Laptop?

This entire answer can be summed up in one word: versatility. Nothing else comes close to the wide range of features and options you get with a hybrid notebook computer.

Want to be in tablet mode for reading an ebook or browsing social media? No problem. Need to sit your device up like a tent for streaming videos? Done and done.

When it’s time for some serious typing or you want to use the touchpad for gaming, just flip the machine back over into standard laptop configuration.

Except for at the very lowest price points, hybrid machines typically have great overall specs and high battery life. That means you don’t lose out on anything you’d get with a standard laptop.

If you frequently use a stylus or pen for drawing designs or marking up documents, a 2-in-1 should be your starting pick.

For users who don’t ever utilize the touchscreen features, then going with a standard clamshell laptop would be a better idea, however.

Will I Be Able To Upgrade My 2-In-1 Laptop With More RAM?

This is on the one and only area where 2-in-1 hybrid laptops are currently outclassed by their standard counterparts.

There are a few exceptions here and there, but for the most part 2-in-1 devices aren’t currently designed with upgrading in mind. That may change in the future as they become more prevalent, however.

Comparing all your options before making a final purchase decision is critical with a hybrid machine. The specs you get out of the box are the same specs you’ll have for the life of the unit.

In general, the only upgrade possibility will exist by connecting an external USB hard drive or using an SD card for additional storage space.

For now, a standard laptop is the way you want to go if you intend to upgrade the RAM or want to install a second SSD.

For now, a standard laptop is the way you want to go if you intend to upgrade the RAM or want to install a second SSD.

What Are The Best Sizes And Styles For 2-In-1 Laptops?

Now that hybrid devices are penetrating the market and dominating in sales, we’re seeing an explosion in the number of options available.

Your first decision should be whether to go with a detachable keyboard model or a unit with a 360 degree rotating hinge.

If you want the lightest laptop possible and only use the keyboard sparingly, a detachable unit is the way to go. For users who frequently switch back and forth between tablet mode and laptop mode, make absolutely certain you get the 360 degree flip version.

The best overall size for a hybrid device is a much more subjective choice, and you don’t have any lack of options. From 10 – 17 inches, convertible laptops are available in a huge range of sizes.

For most users, sticking somewhere in the middle will be the best way to try out a hybrid notebook. 10 inch models frequently have overly small keyboard designs, while 15 to 17 inch screens may be too big to use the device effectively in tablet mode.

Because of their slim designs and smaller screen sizes, there will be a lot of overlap between 2-in-1 devices and ultrabooks. You may want to take a look at what lightweight laptops are up for grabs as well.

Finally, don’t forget you can often choose between Windows 10 or the Chrome OS with hybrid machines. While you may be more familiar with Windows as an operating system, Chrome is worth checking out if you use web-based applications more than executable files.

Finding An Amazing Hybrid Machine For Any User

What did you think of our picks, and are you planning on buying any of these models soon? Let us know when you find your perfect hybrid laptop in the comments below!

Be sure to check back often as well, as new hybrid devices are constantly arriving. For the videophiles in particular, keep in mind that Dell will launch a brand new line of Inspiron 2-in-1 machines with 4k displays in October

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need a pen or stylus with my 2-in-1 laptop?

No. You will definitely be able to properly use a 2-in-1 laptop with just your finger (like you would a tablet).  However, if they come with one, it will often help in note taking and drawing/art applications.

Are 2-in-1 laptops as powerful as regular laptops?

Yes!  The only real difference between most 2-in-1 laptops and normal laptops is the ability to fold them back into tablet mode.  So they are effectively full powered laptops with the added bonus of being used as a tablet.

Is a 2 in 1 Laptop worth it?

What’s better than having a reliable laptop? The answer is a reliable laptop that you can use as a tablet as well!

The average 2 in 1 laptop is very close in specs when compared to other laptops. This makes them extremely valuable because you can use them as tablets as well with relatively close specs with other laptops so you get to enjoy the best of both worlds.

Best 2-in-1 laptop 2023: The finest detachable and convertible hybrid notebooks

The best 2-in-1 laptops take everything that’s great about laptops and tablets and combine them into one neat package.

Advancements to low-powered mobile processors have helped lightweight, über-portable 2-in-1 designs flourish into a fantastic sub-category of laptops, with plenty of excellent offerings to choose from.

Indeed, there are so many great systems to sift through that you might find it daunting to try and pick one. Fear not: we’ve reviewed a wide range of 2-in-1 laptops and compiled a list documenting the very best of them.

Every 2-in-1 laptop on the list has undergone rigorous testing by one of our reviewers. These tests cover everything from battery life to CPU performance and the colour accuracy of a display. If you’re interested in a specific device’s test results, they can be found in our full review of the product, links to which are provided in each of the entries below.

Before jumping into the entries, you’ll find a handy buying guide that will arm you with all the information you require to decide whether a 2-in-1 laptop is right for you and help you select the best 2-in-1 laptop for your needs.

READ NEXT: Best laptops for students

Best 2-in-1 laptop: At a glance

  • Best 2-in-1 detachable laptop: Microsoft Surface Pro 8
  • Best-value 2-in-1 Chromebook: Acer Chromebook Spin 713
  • Best mid-range 2-in-1 laptop: Dell Inspiron 15 7000
  • Best cheap 2-in-1 laptop: Lenovo IdeaPad Duet

How to choose the best 2-in-1 laptop for you

What is a 2-in-1 laptop?

A 2-in-1 laptop is a device that can split or fold into tablet format at a moment’s notice. It’s a versatile and cost-effective way of getting the best of both worlds.

There are two main types of 2-in-1 laptop. Detachable or hybrid 2-in-1 laptops such as the Microsoft Surface Book 3 look like typical clamshell laptops, hinge and all, but can be detached from the keyboard to be used as a tablet. Tablets themselves can serve a similar purpose once connected to a detachable keyboard, which is why you’ll find some of the best tablets around on this list.

Convertibles such as the Dell Inspiron 15 7000 don’t allow you to detach the keyboard from the display but instead feature a hinge design capable of being rotated through 360 degrees. They’re sometimes referred to as reversible laptops due to their design, which enables them to be positioned in a few different ways. You can rotate the keyboard and place it face down to view the screen vertically, prop up the device on its edges to use it in what is often referred to as “tent” mode or simply use it as you would a standard laptop.

The style you choose will depend on what you intend on using the 2-in-1 laptop for. If you know you’re going to always need a keyboard with you, then a convertible 2-in-1 laptop is likely the better choice.

What can I do with a 2-in-1 laptop?

All sorts of things! If you’re not sure whether to spend your hard-earned money on a tablet or a conventional laptop, a 2-in-1 laptop is a perfect choice. You can doodle with a stylus, work or watch movies on the go and curl up in bed with it to watch the latest episode of your favourite Netflix show. They do have their limitations, however, which we’ll discuss in the disadvantages section below.

What are the advantages of 2-in-1 laptops?

Buying a 2-in-1 laptop rather than a laptop and tablet separately is generally going to save you a bit of cash, which is always nice.

Aside from that obvious economic benefit, the big selling point of 2-in-1 laptops is their flexibility. Being able to switch from laptop mode to tablet mode in seconds is useful in all manner of situations. Once you’ve finished working on an important document in laptop mode you can quickly detach or flip the keyboard and enjoy your favourite Disney Plus show in tablet mode. That’s just one example of how handy their transformative properties can be.

What are the disadvantages of 2-in-1 laptops?

2-in-1 laptops typically can’t match the processing power of standard laptops due to compromises made to ensure they remain slim and portable and don’t overheat. They also tend to have integrated graphics rather than discrete graphics chips. These factors mean a 2-in-1 laptop isn’t the best choice if you’re planning on running lots of demanding applications, such as video-editing software, or harbour hopes of playing the latest AAA gaming titles on your portable device.

What features do I need to look for when buying a 2-in-1 laptop?

There are a few key things to consider when making your 2-in-1 laptop purchase, both in terms of the device’s internal components and external appearance.

Processor: Some 2-in-1 laptops are so slim that they require fanless, low-powered mobile processors, which means they aren’t quite so performance-heavy as their regular laptop counterparts. That said, you’ll still find plenty of 2-in-1 laptops housing shiny new processors. Intel processors are the most widely used CPUs in the industry and you’ll find newer 2-in-1 laptops housing Intel’s latest 11th-gen Tiger Lake silicon. AMD is Intel’s main rival in the CPU space and 2-in-1s incorporating its Ryzen processors typically cost less than their Intel counterparts.

RAM: Like any laptop, the amount of RAM (random access memory) a 2-in-1 laptop has will affect its performance. Having more RAM is always of benefit, but will raise the price of your device. 8GB is a sweet spot in terms of cost and performance for most people.

Storage: When it comes to storage, it’s important to note both the type and amount on offer. A 2-in-1 laptop with SSD (solid state drive) storage is preferable to one with a mechanical hard disk or eMMC storage, as these are generally slower than SSDs.

With people relying more and more on cloud storage, the need for lots of storage space built into your 2-in-1 laptop isn’t quite as important as it used to be. However, if you plan on downloading lots of large applications and saving large files to your device you’ll want at least 256GB of SSD storage to avoid having to regularly delete stuff.

Display: Display quality is crucial – after all, you’ll be gawking at the screen the entire time you’re using it. A Full HD display with a decent contrast ratio and solid brightness is a must. Some 2-in-1 laptops now incorporate 4K UHD displays, which provide the best picture quality going but raise the price of a device significantly.

Size and weight: 2-in-1 laptops are generally designed to be carried around all day, so it’s best to get something light but sturdy. The size of the display obviously goes a long way to deciding how portable your 2-in-1 laptop is – if you want a big screen, be prepared to carry around a heavier device.

Keyboard and touchpad: A good keyboard and touchpad will separate a middling device from an excellent one. It’s also important to check whether the price includes a keyboard or stylus. Microsoft’s Surface devices, for instance, are typically sold without the Type Cover or pen accessories.

How we test 2-in-1 laptops

Testing 2-in-1 laptops isn’t much different from testing a regular laptop. The main consideration here is whether the stylus and keyboard is supplied as standard with the machine, and how well those accessories work. We always request a stylus and official keyboard with 2-in-1 laptops so we can use these machines as intended.

Aside from this, the testing procedure for 2-in-1 laptops is the same as it is with all the laptops we review.

We assess speed using a variety of software applications and games. We monitor thermal performance, test storage speed (recording sequential transfer speeds in MB/sec), and we use an X-Rite colorimeter to measure a laptop’s display for peak brightness, contrast ratio, backlight uniformity and colour capabilities.

Because battery life is crucial, we also test this for every machine that crosses our work bench, setting the screen brightness to a predetermined level and putting the laptop in flight mode to ensure a level playing field.

And, finally, we make sure we use every laptop for at least a part of our day-to-day work, where possible, so we can assess ergonomics and usability in real-world use.

READ NEXT: Save yourself some cash with our guide to buying a refurbished laptop online

1. Microsoft Surface Pro 9: The king of Windows 2-in-1 laptops

Price: From £1,099 | Buy now from Microsoft

It may not be a giant technological leap forward from the Surface Pro 8, but an upgrade to the CPU – either to a 12th Gen U-series Intel Core i5, Core i7 a Microsoft SQ3 chip – ensures even faster performance and helps make the Surface Pro 9 the most impressive Microsoft 2-in-1 to date.

It’s also a beautifully designed piece of kit. At just 9.3mm and 879g, it’s impressively thin and lightweight, with a clean, matte aluminium rear panel and slim black borders contributing to its supremely attractive appearance.

The Surface Pro Signature Keyboard – purchased separately – is pleasant to use thanks in part to smartly designed keys and a responsive touchpad. The 13in screen is also excellent, with a 120Hz refresh rate and a 2,880 x 1,920 resolution. Plus, users who expect to rely on their device for regular video conferencing will be delighted with the top-notch webcam and microphones, which produce high-quality images and audio.

If you’re after the best Surface Pro 2-in-1, look no further than the Surface Pro 9.

Read our Microsoft Surface Pro 9 review for more details

Key specs – Processor: Intel Core i5-1235U, Intel core i7-1255U or Microsoft SQ3; RAM: 8GB, 16GB or 32GB; Storage: 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, or 1TB SSD; Screen resolution: 2,880 x 1,920; Weight: 879g (tablet), 1. 14kg (with Signature Keyboard)

Buy now from Microsoft

2. Acer Chromebook Spin 713: The best-value 2-in-1 Chromebook

Price: £699 | Buy now from Currys

Good-looking, versatile and with a brilliant display, the Acer Spin 713 is a 2-in-1 Chromebook that fully justifies its reasonable asking price. The metal chassis is sturdy and well put together, while the 13in display works superbly well across clamshell, tablet and tent modes thanks to its 3:2 aspect ratio.

The touchpad is near impossible to fault, picking up fast movements and gestures brilliantly well, and although the keyboard isn’t the best we’ve seen on a Chromebook at this kind of price, it isn’t far off. Image quality on the QHD+ display is superb, with the only downside being how reflective it is. With bright lights behind you, you’ll probably struggle to see what’s on the screen.

Performance-wise, the 11th Gen Intel Core i3 CPU backed by 8GB of RAM in the model we tested held up well, although a price-drop on the Core i5 model now makes it even better value. It will happily tackle the most demanding Web and Android applications or handle a dozen open Chrome tabs. It’s not just the best convertible Chromebook but one of the best Chromebooks, full stop.

Read our full Acer Chromebook Spin 713 review for more details

Key specs – Processor: Intel Core i3; RAM: 8GB; Storage: 256GB eMMC; Screen resolution: 2,256 x 1,504; Weight: 1.45kg

Buy now from Currys

3. Samsung Galaxy Book2 Pro 360: The best 2-in-1 laptop with a big screen

Price: £1,399 | Buy now from Samsung

if you’re after a bright, vibrant and large touchscreen for annotations, along with a flexible 360-degree hinge, the Samsung Galaxy Book2 Pro 360 is the 2-in-1 laptop for you.

Its 15.6in AMOLED display performed well in our tests, particularly when it came to colour accuracy and a high peak brightness. The only negative is a resolution of 1,920 x 1,080, which lags behind the competition and can give smaller icons a grainy appearance. Still, Samsung makes up for this with full-bodied speakers, a reliable touchpad, a robust hinge and a keyboard with just the right amount of travel.

Inside, there’s more than enough processing power for productivity tasks and even the occasional spot of gaming, although note that it gets warm to the touch when pushed. Meanwhile, the Galaxy Book2 Pro 360 has an impressive battery life for a laptop so slim and light: 13hrs 15mins in our test. That’s only an hour behind the class-leading Apple MacBook Air M1.

The Samsung Galaxy Book2 Pro 360 is rucksack-friendly, packs a punch, is cost-effective and has a lot of screen real estate for notes or doodles – which makes it easy to overlook the small quibbles.

Read our full Samsung Galaxy Book2 Pro 360 review for more details

Key specs – Processor: 12-core Intel Core i7-1260P; RAM: 16GB; Storage: 512GB; Screen resolution: 1,920 x 1,080; Weight: 1. 41kg

Buy now from Samsung

4. Lenovo Yoga 9i (14in): The best 2-in-1 laptop for audio quality

Price: From £1,500 | Buy now from Lenovo

This 2-in-1 from Lenovo is a multi-talented laptop packing some serious power under the hood. The base model houses an 11th-generation Intel Core i5 processor with 8GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD and Full HD display, while the “Shadow Black” model we tested packs a 1TB SSD and comes with a leather lid cover. It may not be quite as attractive as the HP Spectre below, but the Yoga 9i feels very solid and isn’t too unwieldy at 1.34kg.

Performance-wise, the Yoga 9i achieved impressive scores in both our in-house 4K media benchmark test and the Geekbench 5 single- and multi-core tests. That’s to be expected given it’s packing 11th-gen silicon, but the Yoga 9i also remained cool when operating at full capacity and returned a very solid battery run-down test result of 11hrs 35mins.

The main issues preventing the Yoga 9i from being best in class relate to its touchpad and fingerprint scanner. Because the entire palm rest is made from one piece of tempered glass, it’s tricky to make out the boundaries of the trackpad, and locating the scanner can be a pain. The haptic action trackpad on the Shadow Black variant won’t be for everyone either, but other models offer more conventional touchpads.

Read our Lenovo Yoga 9i review for more details

Key specs – Processor: Quad-core Intel Core i7-1185G7; RAM: 8GB; Storage: 512GB SSD; Screen resolution: 1,920 x 1,080; Weight: 1.34kg

Buy now from Lenovo

5. Asus Vivobook 13 Slate OLED: The best-value 2-in-1 laptop with an OLED display

Price: £550 | Buy now from Currys

Laptops with OLED displays used to make bank cards quiver with fear, but that’s no longer the case: Asus’ Vivobook 13 Slate proves that affordable 2-in-1 laptops can now benefit from the screen technology too. If you’re after a convertible for watching Netflix but don’t want to spend the earth, it should be your first port of call.

The OLED screen measures 13.3in and our in-depth tests showed it to be vibrant and with near-perfect contrast. We used it to watch a sci-fi epic and it conveyed the inky blackness of space brilliantly, while highlighting the neon of the spaceship’s interior. The only slight issue is the screen’s glossiness, but that’s easy to overlook if you’ll mainly be using it indoors. It’s a staggering display for the price.

Inside, the Vivobook 13 Slate OLED contains a budged-focused Intel Pentium Silver N6000, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of sluggish eMMC storage. As you’d expect from such a weak specification, its benchmark results didn’t set the world on fire. However, it’s still enough to handle everyday browsing and streaming. The battery life is similarly underwhelming at 7hrs 8mins, though.

All of that said, the Asus Vivobook 13 Slate OLED is a good-looking machine that’s tailor-made for whiling long commutes or binging a series on Disney+.

Read our Asus Vivobook 13 Slated OLED review for more details

Key specs – Processor: Intel Pentium Silver N6000; RAM: 4GB; Storage: 128GB eMMC; Screen resolution: 1,920 x 1,080; Weight: 780g

Buy now from Currys

6. Apple M1 iPad Pro (2021): A superb laptop alternative with a stunning display

Price: From £699 (without keyboard) | Buy now from Currys

With every new iteration, Apple’s iPad Pro becomes more of a laptop alternative than a tablet, and the 2021 upgrade sees its biggest step forward yet thanks to the incorporation of the M1 chip. Apple’s new silicon helps the iPad Pro blow the 2020 model out of the water in terms of processing and graphical performance, and it outstripped the M1 MacBook Air in a number of our benchmark tests.

The 12.9in version also gets a new Liquid Retina XDR display that uses mini-LED technology, and the results are astounding. It’s the brightest display of any portable computer we’ve tested and its colour accuracy across both the Standard Dynamic Range and HDR10 is highly impressive. The 11in model doesn’t get the mini-LED treatment, so if you want the best tablet screen around, be prepared to raid the bank.

That brings us on to one of the iPad Pro’s few drawbacks: its price. Once you’ve factored in a keyboard – we recommend going for one of Apple’s official offerings – you’re looking at a spend of around £1,000 for the base 11in model and significantly more for the lowest-spec 12.9in version. That’s a lot to pay, but the iPad Pro is undoubtedly worth it – it’s the best tablet money can buy and an excellent 2-in-1 laptop when paired with a keyboard.

Read our Apple M1 iPad Pro review for more details

Key specs – Processor: Apple M1; RAM: 8GB on 128/256/512GB models, 16GB on 1TB and 2TB models; Storage: 128GB-2TB SSD; Screen resolution: 11in, 2,388 x 1,688; 12. 9in, 2,732 x 2048; Weight: 11in, 466g; 12.9in, 682g

Buy now from Currys

7. Lenovo IdeaPad Duet: The best budget 2-in-1 Chromebook

Price: £236 | Buy now from Amazon

The IdeaPad Duet is first and foremost a tablet, but it comes bundled with a rear cover that can function as a stand along with a magnetic clip-on keyboard that enables it to be used as a miniature laptop. Its housing is plastic yet reasonably robust, and the removable keyboard is surprisingly good, despite lying completely flat on the surface you place it on. The keyboard is understandably on the small side but is great to type on, with inputs feeling tight yet springy.

The display is highly impressive too, particularly by budget Chromebook standards, covering 99.6% of the sRGB colour gamut with decent accuracy. Its diminutive size makes it a little tricky to work with multiple windows open on the desktop, but for basic tasks it works brilliantly.

The main compromise you’ll be making with the Duet is in the performance department. The MediaTek processor works perfectly well when browsing the net, watching videos and writing documents, but struggles somewhat when running single-core heavy web-based apps.

Read our full Lenovo IdeaPad Duet review for more details

Key specs – Processor: MediaTek Helio P60T; RAM: 4GB; Storage: 64GB eMPC; Screen resolution: 1,920 x 1,080; Weight: 0.92kg

Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook 10.1 Inch FHD 2-in-1 Laptop – (MediaTek P60T, 4 GB RAM, 64 GB eMCP, Chrome OS)

£250.92 Buy now

8. Asus Chromebook Flip CX5 (CX5500): The best big-screen Chromebook convertible

Price: £554 | Buy now from Amazon

With a large screen and a full-sized keyboard, this 15.6in convertible Chromebook makes a great everyday workhorse. It’s built around an 11th-gen Intel CPU and even the 8GB of RAM Core i3 version has enough power to run the most intensive web-based apps or keep a dozen or more Chrome browser tabs open without a pause. The Full HD screen doesn’t have the best brightness or richest colours but it’s fine for work, study and some light entertainment, and Asus’s audio system does a passable impression of surround sound.

What makes this 2-in-1 so great is that it’s so versatile. It’s just about small and light enough to be portable but the excellent full-sized keyboard and trackpad make it usable at your desk all day long. It works brilliantly sitting on your lap, or you can turn it into a tablet and make notes and sketches with the bundled stylus. Sure, it’s a bit heavy for handheld use, but put it in tent mode and it’s great for streaming video or games. Throw in surprisingly good battery life, and you’ve got the best big-screen Chromebook 2-in-1 around.

Read our full Asus Chromebook Flip CX5 (CX5500) review for more details

Key specs – Processor: Intel Core i3-1115G4; RAM: 8GB; Storage: 128GB SSD; Screen resolution: 1,920 x 1,080; Weight: 1. 95kg

ASUS Touchscreen Full HD 15.6 inch ChromeBook CX5500FEA Laptop (Intel Core i3-1115G4, 8 GB RAM, 128 GB SSD, Chrome OS, Touchscreen, Backlit Keyboard) Includes Stylus Pen

£393.75 Buy now

9. Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus: The best 2-in-1 laptop running Android OS

Price: £799 | Buy now from Amazon

Samsung’s latest flagship tablet has more than enough muscle to double up as a laptop. The Qualcomm processor driving it provides the power to handle pretty much anything you throw at it, and its multi-core processing proved twice as fast as a 2016 MacBook Pro.

You’ll need to purchase the Book Cover keyboard separately to use it as a laptop, but with that connected, the S7 Plus offers a truly impressive desktop-like experience. This is in part down to DeX mode: an interface designed to work with both a mouse and keyboard that gives you the ability to open multiple windows at once, drag and drop, and right-click for context-sensitive options.

The Galaxy Tab S7 Plus’ display is top-notch, too, with the 12.4in AMOLED panel boasting a 120Hz refresh rate and a resolution of 2,800 x 1,753. Throw in 5G connectivity on the more expensive model and you’ve got a very capable 2-in-1 that’s great for everything from work tasks to streaming your favourite films on Netflix.

Read our Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus review for more details

Key specs – Processor: Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 Plus; RAM: 6GB; Storage: 128GB; Screen resolution: 2,800 x 1,753; Weight: 575g

Buy now from Samsung

10. HP Chromebook X2 11: The best Chromebook detachable

Price: £479 | Buy now from Currys

The Chromebook X2 feels like the Chrome OS answer to Microsoft’s Surface Go 3. It’s a tablet that ships with a clip-on keyboard cover and a magnetic back cover that doubles as a kickstand, making it easy to use as a laptop or as a stand-alone slate. It’s a little larger and heavier than Microsoft’s pint-sized Surface Go 3, but that means a bigger 11in screen and keyboard. And while it’s also more expensive, the premium version gets you 8GB of RAM, 128GB of storage and the keyboard cover in the box.

In terms of speed, it uses Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 7c chipset to deliver decent everyday performance, and it’s a big step up from the smaller Lenovo IdeaPad Duet. This, and an impressive QHD screen and eleven-hour battery life, make it a great choice for working on the move. In tablet mode, it’s also brilliant for Netflix binges or a session streaming games from Stadia or Xbox Games Pass Ultimate. We’d like a bit more body to the keyboard and more warmth and weight to the sound but, otherwise, the Chromebook X2 11 is a fantastically functional 2-in-1 device.

Key specs – Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c; RAM: 8GB; Storage: 128GB SSD; Screen resolution: 2,160 x 1,440; Weight: 1. 03kg

Buy now from Currys

Best Budget Tablets of 2023: Best Budget Tablets | DGL.RU

The best budget tablets are surprisingly high-quality devices that keep the price low while still offering big screens, decent performance, and even sometimes ancillary accessories like keyboards and styluses.

Of course, these tablets won’t have the maximum power or smooth 120Hz refresh rate of the best tablets, but they’re also much more affordable.

So if you’re not a power user, you don’t have to invest in one of the leading iPads or the best Android tablets – you can opt for a cheaper model.

They are usually well suited for streaming, social networking, light work and creative tasks, and often gaming, although they all have their downsides, so it’s worth making sure the tablet you’re considering fits your needs.

To help with that, we’ve listed all the best budget tablets below and posted an overview of them, a list of specs, and the pros and cons of each so you can quickly get a feel for what they have to offer.

And if none of them interest you, be sure to check back here later, as we’ll update this article when another noteworthy low-cost tablet comes out.


Weight: 487 g

Dimensions: 250.6 x 174.1 x 7.5 mm

9 0002 OS: iPadOS 15

Screen Size: 10 .2-inch

Resolution: 1620 x 2160

Processor: A13 Bionic

Storage: 64/256 GB

Battery: up to 10 hours

Rear camera: 8 MP (Wide)

Front camera: 12 MP

Today’s best deal


  • Great screen
  • iOS 15 works well on it


  • Battery life is still only 10 hours
  • No Face ID support

Our score: + + + +

The new champion of the best affordable tablets, the Apple iPad 10. 2 (2021) offers all the same as its older model and more. This includes a stunning 10.2-inch screen that now features True Tone technology that automatically adjusts colors and brightness to light. This feature is especially useful for outdoor work where you may encounter strong sunlight.

There’s also a handy new Center Stage feature for video calls that keeps the camera in the frame at all times. We have found this to be very helpful. Everything works well in iOS 15 with better multitasking features and the ability to place widgets anywhere on the screen.

The rest of the battery life remains the same – 10 hours. There is no Face ID, but for an inexpensive tablet, this is forgivable.


Weight: 465 g

Dimensions: 247 x 166 x 9.2 mm

OS: Fire OS

9001 7 Screen size: 10.1 inch

Resolution: 1920 x 1200

Processor: octa-core

Storage: 32GB/64GB

Battery: up to 12 hours

9001 7 Rear camera: 5 MP (Wide)

Front camera: 2 MP


  • Reasonable price
  • Excellent picture and sound


  • Outdated design
  • Restrictive software

Our rating: + + + +

The best of the Amazon Fire tablet lineup, the Amazon Fire HD 10 Plus may not be the cheapest, but it offers quite a lot for its price. This includes a 10.1-inch display with a resolution of 1920 x 1200, which we found allows you to watch movies and videos on the move, and thanks to decent stereo speakers, it also sounds good.

The battery life is about 12 hours, so you don’t have to worry about looking for a power source often. Otherwise, you have the choice between 32GB or 64GB of storage depending on your budget, plus you can opt for wireless charging for more convenience, and the lightweight design means it’s perfect for extended use. We found the processor and cameras to be a little short of the baseline, but overall, for the price, it’s capable of a lot.


Weight: 355 g

Dimensions: 202 x 137 x 9.7 mm

OS: Fire OS

Screen size: 8-inch

Resolution: 880 x 1280

Processor: quad-core

Storage: 32GB/64GB

Battery: up to 1 2 hours

Rear camera: 2 MP (Wide)

Front camera: 2MP


  • Wireless charger
  • Can be used as Echo Show


  • Poor screen quality
  • Slow even with additional RAM

Our score: + + +

The Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus is basically the Amazon Fire HD 8 (2020) but just made a little better, so it’s no wonder it’s one of the best cheap tablets. It has more RAM at 3GB, supports wireless charging (so you can use it with an optional dock that brings it closer to the Echo Show) and comes with a faster charger than the standard Fire HD 8.

Otherwise, it is almost identical to its cheaper counterpart. But that alone makes it faster than the previous generation Amazon Fire HD 8 and also gives you a lot more storage for gaming.

The Amazon Fire HD 8 Plus is still not the fastest tablet in our tests, but it is well worth the price, and if you want a tablet and a smart display in one, then this is the best choice – although for the tablet part you, you might want to consider the standard Fire HD 8 (2020).


Weight: 465 g

Dimensions: 247 x 166 x 9.2 mm

OS: Fire OS

Screen size: 10.1 inch

Resolution: 1920 x 1200

Processor: octa-core

Storage: 32GB/64GB

90 017 Battery: up to 12 hours

Rear camera: 5 MP (wide angle)

Front camera: 2 MP


  • Big enough screen for the price
  • Good battery life


  • Sometimes slow
  • Bad camera

Our score: + + +

The Amazon Fire HD 10 (2021) has a decently sized 1920 x 1200 screen, perfect for watching movies while relaxing. However, this is its main selling point, as we found it occasionally stutters when launching almost any software, and its rear camera is still only 5 MP, albeit an improvement over the previous model. However, it is quite suitable for chatting with friends.

No wireless charging, but you wouldn’t expect it from such an inexpensive tablet. Considering how cheap this tablet is, it still offers a lot for the money, including good battery life, so you can have a movie marathon wherever you are without having to charge it halfway through. This is not a device for advanced users, but we did not expect otherwise.


Weight: 355 g

Dimensions: 202 x 137 x 9.7 mm

OS: Fire OS

Screen size: 8-inch 90 003

Resolution: 880 x 1280

Processor: quad-core

Storage: 32GB/64GB

Battery: up to 12 hours

Rear camera: 2MP wide 9 0003

Front camera: 2 MP

Today’s best deal


  • Super low price
  • Excellent location of the front camera


  • Poor screen quality
  • Attachment to the Amazon ecosystem

Our estimate: + + +

Amazon Fire HD 8 (2020) is 30% faster than its predecessor, has twice the storage, slightly better battery life, and has finally moved to USB. C (the previous model uses micro USB), but otherwise it is very similar.

So if you’re buying your first Amazon tablet or have an older one, this is a good upgrade – which is why it made it to our list of the best cheap tablets. However, you might want to think twice about switching from a previous model.

Other highlights of the Amazon Fire HD 8 (2020) include a 3.5mm headphone port and a cleverly placed front-facing camera that sits on top when you hold the tablet in landscape, which is more likely to happen during video calls. Plus, of course, it’s very, very cheap. However, it suffers from some of the typical problems of cheap tablets – we weren’t impressed with the screen quality and found it to feel as cheap as it is.


Weight: 529 g

Dimensions: 260 x 161.1 x 8 mm

OS: Android 8.1

Screen Size: 10.5 inch

Resolution: 1200 x 1920

Processor: Snapdragon 450

Storage: 32GB

Battery: 7300 mAh

Rear Camera: 8 MP (Wide Angle)

Front camera: 5 MP


  • Includes headphone jack
  • Long battery life


  • Design is a bit bulky
  • Can be slow

Our score: + + +

The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10. 5 is the South Korean company’s answer to Apple’s best budget tablet you’ve seen above. If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly Android iPad competitor, this tablet is the one to look at. With Google’s Android operating system for more flexibility, combined with a large HD display, the Tab A 10.5 is great for watching movies and surfing the web.

In our experience, it also has a long battery life, so you can indulge in a movie marathon. It’s not the most powerful tablet, and we found that its size makes it a little less portable than some of the others, and overall we’d favor Apple’s cheapest iPad, but for media and basic app use at home, it’s a great choice.


Weight: 286 g

Dimensions: 192 x 115 x 9.6 mm

OS: Fire OS

Screen size: 7-inch

Resolution: 1.024 x 600

Processor: 1. 3 GHz quad-core

Storage: 16GB/32GB

Battery: up to 7 hours

Rear camera: 2MP (wide angle)

Front camera: VGA

Today’s best offer


  • Cheapest tablet on this list
  • Rigid Assembly


  • Screen without HD resolution
  • Poor battery life

Our score: + + +

Notice the Amazon Fire 7’s lack of “HD” compared to other Amazon tablets on this list of the best cheap tablets? That’s because the tablet’s screen quality is, well, not HD.

This is a bit of a trade-off you’ll have to make if you’re looking to get Amazon’s latest super-cheap device, as it won’t please your eyes with a stunning display or high performance. However, we found that there is enough power under the chassis for basic tasks such as streaming content or shopping. We also noted in our review that it’s great as a Kindle device if you want your Kindle to also have Alexa, internet, and the best books of all – movies.

The only thing that disappointed us was the battery life, as even cheap tablets often last a long time, but this one doesn’t. However, it’s hard to be too dissatisfied when the device costs so little.

There are always trade-offs in cheap products, so when choosing one of the best low-cost tablets, it’s important to determine where the omissions have been made and whether they matter to you. Also, if something specific is very important to you, be it the battery, the screen or something else, make sure the tablet you are considering provides it.

There are also variables that apply regardless of how much you spend. For example, you may want something relatively small, light and portable, such as an 8-inch screen and less than 400 grams.

Or maybe you need a big, exciting 10-inch display. You should also pay attention to operating systems, which usually include iPadOS from Apple, Android and Fire OS from Amazon.

You won’t get a universal helper at a low price, but it’s possible to find the right balance.

All of the above tablets are inexpensive and good quality, but for one of the cheapest options consider the Amazon Fire 7 (2019) or Amazon Fire HD 8 (2020).

In this guide to the best low-cost tablets, we only include tablets that we have fully tested. This means that we actively used each of them and made a final verdict. This process includes testing every key feature and using them as your primary tablet, just like a typical consumer would.

This allows us to easily rank and compare different tablets based on their specifications, performance, price, cost, age, screen quality, battery life and any other factors worth considering.

With this information, we know exactly which tablets to include and which to exclude, and every time a new cheap tablet comes out, we compare it to others on this list before deciding whether to include it.

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The world’s cheapest tablet

At the end of last year, tablets appeared on the computer market, available to users in emerging economies.

In December 2011, Datawind partnered with the Indian Institute of Technology Rajasthan to launch the Aakash tablet computer at a record low price of around US$50. Less than a month later, another ultra-cheap (so far, however, theoretically) OLPC XO 3.0 tablet was introduced, intended for distribution in developing countries.

The idea to create a cheap computer that would be available to everyone (primarily those who, due to life circumstances, do not have access to computers) arose back in 2005. Under the auspices of the non-profit organization OLPC (One laptop per child – “on a laptop every child”), low-cost computers were developed that were supposed to be delivered free of charge or for little money to schools and other educational institutions in developing countries. But despite claims that the maximum cost of these laptops would not exceed $100, they were more expensive to manufacture. The project began to acquire very original features, for example, in 2007, the “Give one, get one” promotion was announced, according to which it was proposed to buy two OLPC laptops at once, while one remained with the buyer, and the other was sent as a gift to the needy. In other words, the burden of charity was placed on ordinary buyers, and the cost of a set of two “hundred-dollar” laptops was almost $400. Nevertheless, more than 80 thousand laptops were sold under the action, respectively, the same number was donated. A year later, the Amazon online store repeated this action, but this time it was possible to “attach” only 12.5 thousand computers. Overall, over the lifetime of the OLPC project, 1.84 million computers have been produced and distributed.

At first, the OLPC project was criticized both for the very idea, which many considered impossible at all, and for the technical imperfection of computers. Interestingly, it was thanks to this project that netbooks appeared – a new class of mobile computers that quickly gained popularity among users around the world.

But, despite the criticism and problems, the project continues to develop, following the current trends of the IT market. Recently, the release of the first tablet computer of the OLPC XO 3. 0 series was announced. Its basis is the GHz Armada 618 chipset with a processor core based on the ARMv7 architecture. The chipset supports WiFi, Bluetooth, 3G cellular protocol and has USB 2.0 and HDMI interfaces. The resolution of the 8-inch touch screen (TFT or LCD) is 1024×786 pixels. The tablet has 512 MB of RAM and 4 GB of flash memory. As with previous OLPC models, it is possible to charge the tablet’s battery by “alternative” methods – using a solar panel or a hand generator. To protect the display, a rubber cover is provided, and the tablet itself is made in the usual white-green color scheme for OLPC. The cost of the new tablet is traditionally announced as “less than $100”, but there is no exact information about it yet, it is only known that it will depend on the type of display. It is worth noting that modern tablets with similar characteristics and with the same processor, such as the 8-inch Vizio, cost more than $ 300. The release of the XO 3.0 tablet is scheduled for early spring of this year.

An alternative (or rather friendly competitor) to OLPC computers is Ubislate tablets, developed by the Indian company Datawind. The characteristics of the first generation Ubislate 7 tablet, called Aakash (“Sky”), are quite modest. It is built on the basis of the ARM11 processor core with a clock frequency of 366 MHz. The tablet is running Android 2.2 operating system, but due to the lack of a SIM module access to the Android Market is not possible, so the developers had to create their own server with applications for this computer. In addition, the capabilities of the tablet were limited by a small amount of memory – 256 megabytes, and a resistive 7-inch screen that does not support multi-touch technology. However, it costs only 2,500 rupees ($50), and Indian students could purchase it at a 50% discount. The second generation Ubislate 7+ tablets are more advanced: they have a Cortex A8 (ARMv7) processor with a frequency of 700 MHz, a more capacious battery, a full-fledged GSM module and are running Android 2. 3. It costs a little more – 3,000 rupees (about $ 60). Approximately the same cost is now for the simplest Chinese noname-made tablet computers with a smaller screen and without a GSM module, so we can safely say that Indian engineers have created really the cheapest functional tablet in the world.

The first round of sales of the Aakash tablet began on December 16, 2011. At the same time, pre-orders for Ubislate 7+ began to be accepted (production starts from the beginning of 2012). Within three days of launch, Aakash tablets were announced as sold out, and two weeks later, pre-orders topped the 1.4 million mark. The latest orders to date are expected to fill no earlier than March. Datawind experts said that such a success of their product was completely unexpected. In this regard, it is planned to open three new factories in India, which will supply about 70-75 thousand computers per day.

Of course, there can be no talk of competition between the two manufacturers of computers available for all.