Tablets Under $500

Discover the 6 best budget tablets under 500 USD that you can buy. From different brands like Samsung, Apple, OnePlus, etc. Different operating systems, different sizes, and different features and capabilities! Find the one that fits your needs!

  • 🥇 Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 FE – Best Overall
  • 🥈 Apple iPad 10 – Best Value For Money
  • 🥉 Apple iPad Mini 6 – Smallest
  • 🎖️ Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 – Best Performance
  • 🎖️ OnePlus Pad High Refresh Rate Display
  • 🎖️ Google Pixel Tablet Best Google Tablet
1
Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 FE
Best Overall

Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 FE

  • OS: Android 13, up to Android 14
  • Release Date: October 2023 
  • Screen Size: Medium (10.9”)
  • Processor: Exynos 1380
Read More

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 Fan Edition tablet was released in October 2023. It's a mid-range tablet running Android 13 and upgradeable to Android 14. This Samsung tablet model lets you access the Internet from anywhere with its eSIM and nano-SIM support. Even better, it’s built from solid aluminum and has a glass front. The unit is dust—and water-resistant for better durability. 

This device has two cameras: a 12MP ultrawide selfie one and an 8MP wide main one. The tablet has stylus support and a USB Type-C 2.0 port. Furthermore, the 8000 mAh battery can last up to 10 hours even more if you use it on low brightness setting and without WiFi and LTE. You can get the tablet with 128GB with 6GB RAM or 256GB with 8GB RAM. Moreover, you can use a microSDXC dedicated slot. Also, the tablet runs on an Exynos 1380 processor, which can handle medium-demanding apps, but will struggle with heavy, demanding tasks like Photoshop and data processing.

The Samsung tablet has an IPS LCD that measures 10.9 inches. It has a refresh rate of 90 Hz and an 81.7% screen-to-body ratio. Also, it has a 1440 x 2304-pixel resolution, a 16:10 ratio, and a ppi density of ~249. The maximum brightness is 600 nits. Which makes it an excellent choice for movies and videos.

Pros

  • Great price for value
  • It uses eSIM and nano-SIM
  • There is a dedicated slot for a microSDXC

Cons
  • The main camera is not that great
  • Gets slow with heavy-demanding games and apps
2
Apple iPad 10
Best Value For Money

Apple iPad 10

  • OS: iPadOS 16.1, up to iPadOS 17.4
  • Release Date: October 2022 
  • Screen Size: Medium (10.9”)
  • Processor: Apple A14 Bionic

Read More

The Apple iPad 10th Gen is a good budget tablet for people who like Apple products. It's starting price is $449 and you can buy it in pink, silver, yellow, and blue. You can choose between 64GB or 256GB internal storage with 4GB RAM, no memory card slot, a 12MP wide main and a 12MP ultrawide selfie camera. The device was released in 2022 and runs on iPadOS 16.1, but it’s upgradeable to iPad OS 17.4. 

Built from aluminum and having a glass front, this unit has an excellent display. It measures only 10.9 inches but has a 1640 x 2360-pixel resolution and can reach 500 nits. The screen is a liquid retina IPS LCD with a ~264 ppi density and a 60Hz refresh rate. Makes it a great choice for Netflix and YouTube watching. The glass is scratch-resistant and has an oleophobic coating. It has a non-laminated display, meaning there's a small gap between the screen and the display. It's compatible with Apple Pencil gen 1 and Apple Pencil USB-C if you want to draw and take-notes.

This gadget runs on an Apple A14 Bionic chipset and comes with stylus support. You can also insert an eSIM or nano-SIM into it for cellular connectivity. The USB ports include a USB Type-C 2.0, a Display Port, and a magnetic connector. It also has a 7606 mAh battery lasting up to 10 hours. 

This iPad can be useful for casual Internet use or even for work. Great for families that share the tablet. 

Pros

  • It's affordable
  • Apps open quickly and smoothly
  • It’s available in many fun colors

Cons

  • The processor is not the best
  • It has non-laminated screen
  • You can't charge Apple Pencil magnetically

3
Apple iPad Mini 6
Best Small Tablet

Apple iPad Mini 6

  • OS: iPadOS 15, up to iPadOS 17.4
  • Release Date: September 2021 
  • Screen Size: Small (8.3”)
  • Processor: Apple A15 Bionic
Read More

Out of all 8-inch tablets, the Apple iPad Mini 6 is the best option. This device was released in 2021 and runs on iPadOS 15 but can be upgraded to iPadOS 17. On average iPad are supported for 7-years. It also runs on an Apple A15 Bionic chipset and has eSIM and nano-SIM support. The unit has 4GB RAM and comes with 64GB or 256GB internal storage. Still, it has no memory card slot, but you can get cloud storage if you run out of storage space.

The screen is a Liquid Retina IPS LCD with 500 nits, a ~77.4% screen-to-body ratio, and a 60Hz refresh rate. Also, the resolution is 1488 x 2266 pixels, with a ~327 ppi density and a 3:2 ratio. What’s great is that the tablet is built from aluminum and has a glass front. The display uses scratch-resistant glass and has an oleophobic coating too. Making it great for Netflix, YouTube, Disney+, etc. It's also compatible with Apple Pencil Gen 2 and USB-C and you can create art, draw, take-notes or just navigate your device with Stylus pen. 

There are two cameras, a 12MP wide main and a 12MP ultrawide selfie. Making it a great choice for Zoom and Skype calls. It has a USB-C port. Which is mainly for charging, but you can add other accessories using that port, like keyboards, external cameras, printers, hard drives, etc.

This tablet can be bought in Pink, Starlight, Purple, and Space Gray, and it’s only $595 on average. The 6000 mAh battery can run up to 10 hours. Due to its light design, it’s great for people on the go due to it's lightweight and small size. 

Pros
  • It has great speakers for it's size
  • It's compact and portable
  • It works with Apple Pencil 2
Cons
  • The refresh rate is only 60Hz
  • It has no headphone jack
  • There’s no memory card slot
4
Samsung Galaxy Tab S8
Best Performance

Samsung Galaxy Tab S8

  • OS: Android 12, up to Android 14
  • Release Date: February 2022
  • Screen Size: Medium (11”)
  • Processor: Qualcomm SM8450 Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 (4 nm)
Read More

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 tablet was released in February 2022. It's a premium tablet running Android 12 and upgradeable to Android 14. This Samsung tablet model lets you access the Internet from anywhere with a nano-SIM support. Even better, it’s built from solid aluminum and has a glass front. 

The tablet is a high-performer backed with a power processor that can handle any app and game, but it's already considered old and now it's discounted below $500. The down side of buying Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 is that it will not be supported as long as the newer generation tablets and in 3-4-years you will no longer be able to update it to the newest Android version.

This device has two cameras: a 12MP ultrawide selfie one, and on the back, it has a dual setup: 13MP wide and 6MP ultrawide cameras. The tablet has stylus support and a USB Type-C 2.0 port. Furthermore, the 8000 mAh battery can last up to 10 hours. Which is convenient if you move around a lot.

You can get the tablet with 128GB or 256GB storage. The 256GB store option comes with 8GB RAM or 12GB RAM. with 6GB RAM or 256GB with 8GB RAM. 

The Samsung tablet has an TFT LCD that measures 11 inches. It has a refresh rate of 120 Hz and an 83.6% screen-to-body ratio. Also, it has a 1600 x 2560-pixel resolution, a 16:10 ratio, and a ppi density of ~274. 

The tablet is medium-sized, with a great screen and excellent colors, making it a great choice for entertainment like movies, videos, games, and productivity: reading, writing, taking notes, etc. 

Pros

  • Great price
  • 120Hz screen
  • There is a dedicated slot for a microSDXC

Cons
  • It has LCD, not OLED
  • It considered already old
5
OnePlus Pad
Highest Refresh Rate

OnePlus Pad

  • OS: Android 13, OxygenOS 13.1
  • Release Date: April 2023 
  • Screen Size: Medium (11.61”)
  • Processor: Mediatek Dimensity 9000 (4 nm)

Read More

The OnePlus Pad was released in 2023, April. This device has a strong aluminum frame and a glass front. It also runs on Android 13 and OxygenOS13.1. It has a Mediatek Dimensity 9000 chipset and 4 good stereo speakers. 

First things first, let’s talk about the display. The unit has an IPS LCD screen with a 144Hz refresh rate and 500 nits. Also, it measures 11.61 inches, has a 2000 x 2800 pixels resolution, and a ~296 ppi density. The screen-to-body ratio is ~84.2%. It is a great choice for everyone that's into movies, videos and games with visual details.

This tablet has a 13MP wide main camera and an 8MP wide selfie camera. It also comes in 2 versions: 128GB with 8GB RAM or 256GB with 12GB RAM. Sadly, it doesn’t have the option to insert a memory card. The USB ports include a USB Type-C 2.0, OTG, and accessory connector. There’s stylus support as well. However, it has no cellular connectivity. 

The only color option is Halo Green, and this tablet costs around $545. This tablet is great for kids thanks to its strong build, smaller screen, and decent chipset. It will last longer and can even run games and videos smoothly enough. Also, the 9510 mAh battery can last up to 13 hours. 

Pros

  • Long battery life
  • It has a 144Hz refresh rate
  • It has a strong and durable construction
  • It can open and run apps quickly and smoothly

Cons

  • There’s no memory card slot
  • It lacks cellular connectivity
  • There’s only one color option

6
Google Pixel Tablet
Best Google Tablet

Google Pixel Tablet

  • OS: Android 13, up to Android 14
  • Release Date: June 2023 
  • Screen Size: Medium (10.95”)
  • Processor: Google Tensor G2

Read More

With a strong aluminum back and frame and a glass front, the 2023 Google Pixel Tablet is ideal for anyone who enjoys tablets for basic tasks like movies, web browsing, social media, video calls, etc. 

This gadget has an IPS LCD screen that measures 10.95 inches. It features a 1600 x 2560-pixel resolution with a 16:10 ratio and ~276 ppi density. The screen can reach up to 500 nits for brightness and has a 60Hz refresh rate. Making it a good choice for YouTube, Netflix, Spotify, etc.

This model has 4 stereo speakers, a USB Type-C 3.2 Gen 1, and a magnetic connector. Also, it has 8GB RAM and can be purchased in 128GB or 256GB. The speakers are very solid and you can enjoy music on it. Unfortunately, it doesn’t have a memory card slot. The device runs on a Google Tensor G2 as well. When it comes to the cameras, both selfie and main cameras are 8MP wide ones. The battery is a 7020 mAh one that runs up to 12 hours.

People often buy accessories such as the Pixel Tablet Case, Charging Speaker Dock, or Penoval USI 2.0 stylus pen for this Google tablet. Due to its size, space, and stylus option, this unit works not only for those who want to use social media but also for students and professionals who need to take notes, draw, or complete other tasks. 

Pros

  • Good battery life
  • The dock
  • It has a strong build

Cons

  • There’s no SIM compatibility
  • The screen is not the largest
  • The screen only has a 60Hz refresh rate

Tablets under $500 are the midway between performance and affordability. They offer premium quality for a good price, lacking a bit in performance compared to the premium-priced tablets.

All the tablets in this list are in the price range of $400 to $499.

How Are Mid-range Tablets Different From Premium Tablets?

Tablets in 500 USD range are considered mid-range tablets. Here are the 4 differences from mid-range tablets and premium tablets:

  1. Build Quality & Materials: Premium tablets typically boast superior build quality with materials like aluminum or magnesium alloy, offering a more durable feel compared to mid-range counterparts that often rely on plastic components.
  2. Display Quality: Premium tablets usually feature higher-resolution displays with better color accuracy, brightness, and contrast ratios. This results in a more immersive viewing experience for activities like watching videos, movies, Netflix or playing games.
  3. Performance: Premium tablets typically come equipped with more powerful processors, more RAM, and higher storage options. This translates to smoother performance, faster app loading times, and better multitasking capabilities compared to mid-range tablets. Typically, mid-range tablets slow down significantly when you try to use heavy-demanding apps on it.
  4. Additional Features: Premium tablets often include extra features such as higher quality cameras, better speakers, stylus support, and advanced security features like facial recognition or fingerprint sensors. These features may be lacking or less robust in mid-range tablets, but also some mid-range tablets have these features.

If you are looking for higher performers, check out the best tablets of 2024. If you are looking for something even cheaper, we recommend that you take a look at the best tablets for under $200.

Cheaper Alternatives

If you are looking for more affordable tablets, we suggest you consider:

Things You Can Do With A Budget Tablet

movies

Watch Movies

games

Play Games

note taking

Take Notes

drawing on tablet

Draw

social media

Social media

podcasts

podcasts

surf web

Web Surfing

read & study

Read & Study

write

write

to do lists

to-do lists

FAQ

Can You Buy an iPad Under $500?

Yes, there are iPad models available for purchase under $500. Apple offers two models under $500 mark – classic iPad and iPad Mini.

ernests embutnieks wolfoftablet
Founder & Chief Editor | ernests@wolfoftablet.com

I'm a writer and editor in iPads & Android Tablets, Windows Tablet section. I'm passionate about technology, especially about tablets. I'm on a mission to assist people in discovering their ideal tablets. In addition, I'm dedicated to producing helpful how-to guides and sharing top-notch tips and tricks. In my early carrier I founded and became and editor at worldoftablet and have been a guest author at many other tech blogs. In wolfoftablet I'm focusing on iPads, Tablets, Apple Pencil, Apps, Reviews, Buyers Guides and Tablet Accessories. In free time I like to play games on my PS5 or iOS.