The iPad Air goes on sale today – here are 5 Android alternatives to consider

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As of this morning, the iPad Air is available for sale in South Africa. It’s a gorgeous redesign of an already near-perfect piece of tech, and if it doesn’t inspire gadget-envy in you, you’re probably just not a fan of the brand. And that’s okay – because there’s a lot of choice in the tablet market.

So, assuming the iPad Air isn’t your bag, we have a list of the top locally-available Android tablets that we can heartily recommend as alternatives.

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Sony Xperia Tablet ZSony Xperia Tablet Z

R8 999.95
Sony’s Xperia Tablet Z is not only one of the nicest-looking Android tablets around, it’s also water-resistant. Once you’ve stopped the visible ports with the attached rubber plugs, you can submerge the Tablet Z in up to 1.5m of water, making it possible to use it in the bath and to simply wash it under the tap if it ever gets dirty enough to warrant a clean. The Full HD screen is gorgeous as it uses Sony’s Mobile Bravia Engine tech to make colours pop, and everything you do with it is super-fast to boot. Definitely one of the best Android tabs to come along.

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Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 10.1

R6 999.95

The Galaxy Tab 3 10.1 is pretty much a giant Samsung smartphone. It enjoys the same finishes, features and slim build of Samsung’s super-popular S4, except it has a gigantic 10.1-inch screen that gives you far more real estate on which to play games and watch movies. It also has stereo speakers that sound a lot better than the single mono speakers of other tablets. Expect nippy responsiveness to your touches, and really fast internet performance thanks to 3G connectivity.

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Nexus 7

R3 999.95

This is arguably the very best tablet Google has come up with. Sure, it’s built by Asus, but it’s Google’s fingerprints you’ll see all over its design. It’s the thinnest and fastest Nexus yet, with what Google calls the “World’s sharpest seven-inch tablet screen” with a ppi rating of 323. It feels really good to hold, and has a sturdier build than many competing tablets. Surprisingly, it’s also quite affordable, and lasts for around ten hours of intense usage.

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Lenovo Yoga Tab 8-inch

R3 699.95

Lenovo’s latest Yoga is an eight-inch tablet that can be folded into various positions thanks to a handy kickstand. Its rounded edge hides a rather large battery that delivers up to 18 hours of up-time, and gives Lenovo’s engineers the opportunity to build in a nice big power button on the corner of the tablet. It is loaded with Android 4.2, which runs quite nicely on the 1.2GHz Mediatek processor although it does sometimes stutter over the occasional task. This is a very nice effort from Lenovo, combining a unique design with affordability, a long battery life and all of Android’s goodness.

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Asus MeMo Pad HD7

R2074

The MeMo Pad HD7 is an astoundingly-good seven-inch tablet from Asus considering its low price. You can pick one up for just two grand, and for the money you get a tablet with a gorgeous IPS screen at a resolution of 1280 x 800, a 1.2GHz quad-core processor and 16GB of storage. That’s pretty good for the price, and on top of that you get Android 4.2. The only thing you don’t get that you might want is 3G connectivity, but considering the price, N-class Wi-Fi will do.

 

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock

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Deon du Plessis

Deon du Plessis

Deon got his first taste of PC gaming at the tender age of 11 when his father bought an 8088 XT, ostensibly to "help him with his homework". Instead, it introduced him to Leisure Suit Larry, King Graham, Sonny Bonds and many more, and Deon has been a PC gamer and hardware enthusiast ever since. He landed his first professional writing gig in 2006 at a prestigious local PC magazine, a very happy happenstance as he got to write for a living about things he loves - tech, PCs, gaming, and everything in between. He's been writing about it all ever since, and loves every minute of it.

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