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The Pixel Tablet is the best Android tablet. Here’s why.
Android tablets are seeing a resurgence of sorts. After years of Samsung holding down the fort with its flagship Galaxy Tab S tablets, we now have worthy contenders from OnePlus, along with Google finally returning to the tablet game after a long absence. They all have their fair share of advantages and disadvantages, of course. But with the Pixel Tablet offering much more than a standard tablet experience, there are plenty of reasons why it’s the best Android tablet you can get right now. Let’s take a look!
The charging speaker dock is a game-changer
In a world where smartphone and tablet makers aren’t including chargers in the box anymore, Google goes in the opposite direction and adds not just a standard charger but a charging speaker dock that takes the Pixel Tablet’s capabilities to the next level.
The dock places the tablet at the perfect angle to follow recipes, scroll through the news, watch videos, or place video calls. The dock’s speaker isn’t just a gimmick and offers rich sound that’s excellent for listening to music or watching your favorite movies and TV shows.
Is it a tablet? Is it a smart display? Why not both?
Not only does the Pixel Tablet mimic the look of the Nest Hub Max when placed on the dock, but it also offers similar functionality. With Hub Mode, which activates when you dock the tablet, you can use the device like any other smart display, from a digital photo frame to a smart home controller. Google Assistant provides the hands-free ability to play music, watch videos, set reminders, check the weather, ask questions, and more.
With the charging speaker dock, Google ensures that time spent charging the Pixel Tablet isn’t wasted. The tab is always charged when needed, and casual tablet users get an excellent secondary use out of the device instead of leaving it in a drawer.
Chromecast built-in. On a tablet.
Tablets are the go-to for many users who want to catch up on their favorite TV shows and movies at home or on the go. The Pixel Tablet makes everything much simpler and more convenient with Chromecast, letting you cast music and videos from your phone and play them on the docked tablet.
The pre-loaded Google TV widget brings a smart TV experience to your tablet, making it easy to watch your shows and movies across various apps, browse recommendations, and find new content in one place. The Pixel Tablet’s four-speaker setup is impressive, but using the speaker dock will provide more immersive audio.
The best of Google’s software
Nothing showcases Google’s software smarts better than a Pixel device, whether a smartphone or a tablet. Aiding the Pixel Tablet’s role as a smart hub is a re-designed Google Home app that now provides a personalized and more organized view of all your connected smart home products, from thermostats and smart bulbs to locks and cameras.
A nest camera widget provides home screen access to a live video feed, while the Home panel offers one-tap control of your smart home products in one place. And, of course, you can manage everything with your voice and simple voice commands with Google Assistant.
The Pixel Tablet also comes with exclusive Pixel camera features like Face Unblur, Magic Eraser, and more. People don’t use their tablets for photography as much as their smartphones. But the advantage here is that you can use these camera features to edit any photos stored in your linked Google Photos account, regardless of which device you take the picture with. Making quick edits on a larger screen is better than continuously pinching and zooming on your phone screen.
You also get everything you’d expect from a large-screen tablet, from multi-window multitasking in both portrait and landscape, app user interfaces that are tablet-friendly, and support for a USI 2.0 stylus.
Let’s talk accessories
The Pixel Tablet comes with a charging speaker dock, but the Pixel Tablet case is another first-party accessory worth considering. It’s sold separately and quite expensive. But if you were planning to buy a case, the official case is a good one to get.
It offers solid protection, with a raised lip around the display and ports and precise cutouts to avoid interference when plugging in chargers or while placing the tablet on the charging dock. However, the metallic ring stand on the back makes this case stand out. It’s simple at first glance but provides a surprising number of use cases.
The ring can be set to any angle from zero to 180 degrees. There are no preset angles, the need to lock it into place, or fiddle with joints. Simply pull the ring away from the case and place the tablet at any angle. It remains firmly in place at every angle, so you can set it to make it easy to type, scroll, watch videos, and even carry around. You can prop the tablet up in portrait mode too, and you don’t have to remove it when placing it on the charging dock. It’s definitely a feature you wouldn’t know you were missing until you’ve used it, and then you couldn’t imagine not having it after.
The Pixel Tablet balances price and features
There aren’t a lot of tablets in the Android world, and in general, the available options range from ultra-affordable to expensive premium. The Pixel Tablet falls right in the middle, offering a perfect balance of specifications, features, and price.
Starting at $499, the Pixel Tablet falls in the price range of the OnePlus Pad and the 10th-Gen iPad. Of course, the competition has its positives. And while options like the Galaxy Tab S9 series and iPad Pros offer better, more premium hardware, they are expensive and gunning for the “laptop replacement” position.
But the Pixel Tablet’s unique secondary use case and fantastic software features make it the ideal choice for Google fans. A tablet isn’t often someone’s primary device, so the fact that it won’t simply be lying around when not in use is just one of the many reasons why the Pixel Tablet is one of the best Android tablets to get right now.