Best Tablets for Writers – Tab Pal Era? [2020 Update]

Tablets are known for their lightweight and slim features and the fact that you can take it anywhere you go and write when you get some inspiration.

Sadly, the market today is full of cheap and knockoff tablets with feeble keyboards, awful battery and poor durability.

Product Review

Product

Weight

Display Size

Resolution

OS

Processor

Battery (Stand By)

Storage

Memory

Microsoft Surface Pro 7

770g (1.7lbs)

12.3”

2736 x 1824

Microsoft Windows 10

10th Gen i3/i5/i7

10.5 hrs

128/256/512GB or 1TB

4/8/16 GB

iPad Pro 12.9” 2020

641g (1.41lbs)

12.9”

2048 x 2732

iPadOS 13.4

Apple A12Z Bionic

10 hrs

128/256/512GB or 1TB

6 GB

Samsung Galaxy Tab S6

420 g (0.9lbs)

10.5”

1600 x 2560

Android 9.0 (Pie)

Snapdragon 855

11 hrs

128/256GB

6/8 GB

CHUWI Hi10 X

600g (1.3lbs)

10.1”

1920 x 1200

Windows 10

Intel Gemini Lake N4100

8 hrs

128GB

6 GB

writers' tablet

This is hands down the best Windows 10 tablet on the market right now. It has received numerous awards globally since its launch.

The flagship device from Microsoft weighs around 1.7lbs (770g) which is a tad bit on the heavier side in the tablet market. This is due to the solid build which hasn’t changed much in the past few years. The device has physical dimensions of 11.5 x 7.9 x 0.33”(292 x 201 x 8.5mm).


In terms of screen size, the Pro 7 has a massive 12.3” PixelSense Display with an aspect ratio of 3:2. The PPI is set at 267 which means you can expect a clear and sharp text from this tablet.

Microsoft has three Intel 10th gen processor options for the Pro 7 starting from i3 to i7. RAM capacity is also available in 3 different options from 4GB to 16GB, while the SSD has 4 options starting from 128GB to 1TB which is enough for word documents of a lifetime.

The official website claims a battery life of around 10.5hrs but real-life tests fell short by a couple of hours.

The device can be connected to a dedicated keyboard that doubles as a cover but is sold separately.


Pros

  • Crisp display
  • Snappy performance

Cons

  • Poor battery life compared to Surface Pro 6
  • All accessories sold separately

Just like the Pro 7 is probably the best Windows 10 tablet in the market for a writer, the best iPad for writers is the latest iPad Pro 12.9”.

The latest iPad Pro weighs around 1.41lbs (641g) which is lighter than the Pro 7 but not the lightest tablet out there. Apple devices are just aesthetic and beautiful to look at with their curved edges and glossy finishes. The device has dimensions of 11.05 x 8.46 x 0.23” (280.6 x 214.9 x 5.9 mm) with an aspect ratio of 4:3.


The 12.9” screen, as usual, is out this world using Apple’s Liquid retina display along with other features such as ProMotion that automatically adjusts the refresh rate based on your activity. The resolution and PPI are set at 2048x2732p and 265 respectively.

Apple ships the iPad Pro with the latest A12Z Bionic processor coupled with a 6GB RAM that can be mixed and matched with 4 different storage options ranging from 128GB to 1TB.


In terms of battery performance, the iPad lasts for around 10hrs+.

The device makes an excellent convertible with the Apple Pencil and the iPad Pro-Magic Keyboard. All accessories are sold separately.


Pros

  • Excellent processor
  • Super display
  • Long-lasting battery

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Keyboard sold separately
New Apple iPad Pro (12.9-inch, Wi-Fi, 256GB) - Space Gray (4th Generation)
12.9-inch edge-to-edge Liquid Retina display with ProMotion, True Tone, and P3 wide color; A12Z Bionic chip with Neural Engine

Currently, the latest tablet from Samsung’s flash ship galaxy series weighs around 0.92lbs (420g). This is quite light for a tablet of this caliber and is probably easily amongst the best tablets for writing on the go. Nothing too fancy about the design and it doesn’t exactly call out like the Apple iPad Pro but it gets the job done for the price.

The device dimensions are set at 9.63 x 6.28 x 0.22” (244.5 x 159.5 x 5.7 mm). The 10.5” display uses Samsung’s Super AMOLED technology with a resolution of 1600x2560, an aspect ratio of 16:10, and PPI of 287. Samsung screens are pretty good but are no match for the Liquid retina display of the iPad PRO in my opinion.

The Tab S6 comes with Snapdragon 855 chipset and 6GB or 8GB RAM. The 6GB RAM is coupled with a 128GB internal storage while the 8GB RAM ships with a 256GB internal storage.

The tablet has a non-removable lithium-polymer battery with a capacity of 7040mAh that can last around 10-11hrs on light tasks.

What interesting about the Tab S6 is the Samsung Dex which is an interface that mimics a desktop PC. Just like Surface Pro 7, the S6 also has a cover type keyboard which is sold separately.


Pros

  • Samsung DeX
  • Affordable compared to the Pro 7 and iPad Pro
  • S Pen is included

Cons

  • Headphone Jack Missing

This is the only tablet on our list that qualifies as a cheap writing tablet.

The budget Windows 10 tablet weighs around 1.3lbs (600g). It comes with a full solid keyboard and looks like a laptop at first glance. The device has dimensions of 10.3 x 6.6 x 0.4”(261.8 x 167.3 x 8.8mm) with a 10.1” display which is the smallest screen featured on our round-up.


The screen has a resolution of 1920 x 1200, a PPI of 149.45 which is quite poor when compared to the other tablets on our list, but it is a given at this price range. The aspect ratio is set at 16:10 similar to that of the Tab S6.

The Hi10 X features Intel Gemini Lake N4100 processor coupled with a 6GB RAM and 128GB Internal Storage.

The battery can last up to 8hrs.


Pros

  • Cheap
  • Pen and keyboard included

Cons

  • Poor display

Buying Guide

There are a few things you need to consider before purchasing a tablet to write. We have extensively covered all the factors from screen size to word processing applications.

Screen Size

Something I despise is reading long articles on my phone due to the limited screen size. Squinting your eyes and reading small font isn’t recommended for your eyesight either.

If you want to write comfortably a bigger screen size is recommended. Generally, tablet display sizes range from 7 to 13”. You can even find enormous tablets like the Samsung View with an impractical screen size of 18.4-inches.

We recommend a screen of around 10 – 13 inches for writers.

Screen Resolution

Screen resolution is not exactly a problem when it comes to writing but is important when considering your eyesight.

Simply put,

Higher the pixel per inch (PPI), the higher the readability due to the increased sharpness of the text.

Samsung has its Super AMOLED display, while Apple tablets boast their Retina display which has more PPI than the retina can see.

Tablets with sharp display are the best tablets for seniors due to their weak eyesight.

Keyboards  

Tablets usually have on-screen touch keyboards which can be unresponsive or too sensitive depending on the model. These types of keyboards are best suited for quick email replies or text messages but are not suitable for writing long documents.

So, the best tablet with keyboard is of the convertible type which comes with a detachable keyboard.

Bluetooth tablets are also becoming a thing nowadays but sometimes malfunction due to disruptions in the connection or are not optimized for some models.

You can always connect a USB keyboard if your tablet has a USB-A port but most of the slim modern tablets come with USB-C ports.

iPad Pro 12.9

Storage Capacity

Storage isn’t usually an issue nowadays due to the availability of cloud storage which is more convenient than traditional storage. You always have the option of opting for expandable SD card tablets or an external hard disk if your tablet has USB-A ports.

On the other hand,

Word documents don’t usually take up much space unless you embed the document with pictures.

Battery Life

This is one of the main features to consider not only for writers but whenever you purchase a laptop, tablet, or mobile device. The higher your battery back up is, the longer you can move and write anywhere you want without being restricted by your power cord.

With the improvement of technology, even the slimmest tablet has an average battery life of around 9hrs. Battery life in most tablets is superior when compared to even laptops.

Nevertheless,

Word processing doesn’t drain the battery as much as streaming high-quality videos or gaming does. But surfing the internet to research while writing might drain the battery quite a bit.

Operating System

In case you might be asking yourself, why the OS matters when it comes to writing on a tablet.

Here’s why:

When it comes to word processing, having a good application with features that make writing easy is important. The applications differ depending on the OS.

Windows 10 is something we are all familiar with and has a great ecosystem for word processing. Word and Excel files can be opened easily without a problem

When it comes to Apple tablets, you will not find the same OS used on their laptops. The iPads have their own OS and are currently in the 13th iteration. This operating system is quite similar to the OS found on Apple iPhones.

But wait,

The iPad OS doesn’t exactly feel like a full OS. When compared with Windows 10, the operating system is quite limited. Some of the apps can only be used in their iOS versions and not having the desktop version can be disappointing. That being said, iPad OS does have it’s benefits such as the user-friendly interface and much more.

Android has the same issue.

The android OS running on tablets is the same one you’ll find on android mobile devices. They are currently on their 10th iteration.

A small part of the market also has tablets running on the Chrome OS which is a cloud-based OS by Google. This system has potential but still hasn’t delivered a tablet which is praiseworthy.

Applications for Word Processing

You could consider this as an extension of the previous point.

The word processing applications depend on the operating system.

Let’s look at a few popular applications being used by writers these days,

Microsoft word is the first thing that comes to mind when anyone wants you to write up something. It requires a subscription and is tailored for optimum performance with Windows OS.

Apple pages are used mostly by tablets running iPad OS. I think the latest version has done justice for years of inferiority to Microsoft word. When it comes to Apple, user-friendliness is their core and it is quite evident from their device designs to applications.

Google docs are gaining traction nowadays due to several reasons starting with the fact that it is a cloud-based application and is presented together with Google suite which includes popular cloud storage, Google Drive.

It is the first choice when it comes to teamwork due to its collaboration function with the ability to track edit history.

So I’m sure our informative read helped you make a decision. In my opinion, the best tablet for word processing would be a lightweight device with a screen size of around 11-inches running windows 10 and a battery back of at least 10 hours standby.


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