Time for a tablet upgrade? You don’t have to spend a lot

Consumer Reports recommends two that cost less than $100

If it's time for a tablet upgrade, Consumer Reports offers recommendations for low and high budgets.

SAN ANTONIO – If you’re looking for a tablet to surf the web or for your kids to watch videos, the good news is you don’t have to spend a lot. Consumer Reports offers recommendations to fit just about every budget, including a couple that cost less than $100.

If you’re on a tight budget, CR recommends the Amazon Fire HD 8 (32 gigabytes) for about $90. It has an 8-inch screen, expandable storage, and an impressive battery life of more than 15 hours.

The older Amazon Fire 7 (16GB) is an even less expensive option for about $50. With a 6.9-inch screen, it’s lightweight and is a decent choice for checking email or reading the news.

“Both of these Amazon tablets allow restricted profiles for kids, which makes them a great option for families,” said Thomas Germain, Consumer Reports’ tech editor.

That’s also true for Samsung’s 2019 Galaxy Tab A 8.0 WiFi (32GB) for about $130. It’s one of the best tablets under $300 in CR’s exclusive ratings. It has a good 8-inch display and received an excellent score for predicted reliability.

If you want something a little larger, consider last year’s Apple iPad (64GB) for about $330. It has a high-quality 10.2-inch display and has excellent speed for everyday tasks.

“These are great little tablets that earn excellent scores in almost every category, including owner satisfaction and performance,” Germain said.

If you need more of a workhorse tablet -- one that might even replace a laptop for tasks like video editing -- and you have some money to burn, CR says to consider the top-of-the-line model, Apple’s iPad Pro (128GB) with a 12.9-inch screen for about $1,100. It’s faster than most other tablets in CR’s ratings. It takes excellent photos and video, has a top-quality display and is very easy to use.

When choosing a tablet, one thing to keep in mind is that not all app stores are created equal. Both Google and Apple’s app stores have much more to offer than what’s available for Fire OS.

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About the Author:

As a consumer reporter, Marilyn is all about helping people stay safe and save a buck. Since coming to KSAT in 1985, she’s covered everything from crime to politics, winning awards for her coverage of the Mexican Mafia, Oklahoma tornadoes, children’s transplants, an investigation into voting irregularities and even a hit-and-run Santa Claus.