It's getting harder and harder to stand out as a tablet in a saturated market. However, these slates manage to make their mark, thanks to some special and distinctive features.
Unless you're a tablet expert like me, most models look similar -- if not the same. Tablets tend to blend in together, with monotonous rectangular designs and redundant features. However, the slates in this slideshow offer a few unique characteristics to help them stand out in the pack.
Click though the slideshow for an introduction to a few slates that offer something unique, in addition to the usual offerings.
The Dell Venue 8 7000 houses an impressive depth-sensing camera and useful software for creatively editing your photos. Its slim 8.4-inch frame is also the thinnest in all the land.
We've seen 3D cameras on tablets before, but the quality and extensive abilities of the Dell Venue 8 7000 surpass any tablet before it. Early adopters and photography fans will enjoy getting to know their way around the stereoscopic camera.
The Sony Xperia Z4 gives new meaning to the term "skinny dipping." In addition to its status as one of the thinnest and lightest tablets available, it's also waterproof! Not to be outshined by its slick design features, the Xperia Z4 tablet is also a top slate thanks to its zippy performance and pixel-packed screen.
You can find fingerprint scanners on a few smartphones, but it's a rare sight on a tablet. The Samsung Galaxy Tab S is currently the only Android tablet with the feature.
The 8.4- and 10-inch tablets are two of the most high-end Android slates on the market and have much more to offer than elevated security settings -- they're speedy, with lightweight designs and rock a colorful, super-sharp display.
For a budget buy, the Asus Memo Pad 8 really packs in the features to give you the most bang for your buck. One of the most compelling options is Asus' preloaded Splendid app. The program allows you to calibrate the screen of your tablet to optimize your viewing experience. The app is also available on other Asus devices, but at its cheap price, the Memo Pad 8 is the most compelling tablet to offer the perk.
The Microsoft Surface Pro 3 toes the line between tablet and laptop, but it's definitely a tablet -- a tablet on steroids. Without putting its productivity prowess aside, we have to give it up to the Surface Pro 3's accessories. Its comfortable keyboard-cover-stand has yet to be matched in style and function by any other tablet accessory and the new model now comes with a digitizer pen that has its own holding place in the aforementioned cover.
Amazon Fire tablets are the most immediately usable slates out there, not just because of their simple, easy-to-navigate Android-based Mojito OS, but because of the innovative Mayday button. If you're having trouble with the tablet, the feature lets you connect to a help center -- almost instantaneously -- and you get tech help from one of its specialists. Sometimes things even get a little crazy.
The 2014 update to the 8.9-inch HDX includes one very cool feature: Firefly.
After aiming the rear camera at an artifact for a few seconds, the item recognition software can quickly recognize TV shows and movies -- and pull up a list of IMDB pages for the actors in the scene -- as well as a song, or item (that's conveniently found on Amazon.com, of course). It's far from perfect, but there's nothing else around quite like it. Best of all for a lucky few, Firefly can only be found on the Fire HDX 8.9 and Amazon's Fire phone.
Tablets are great for personal video watching, but this Lenovo slate can share movies, TV shows, and more with all of your family and friends.
The 13.3-inch Lenovo Yoga Tablet 2 Pro features a built-in pico projector for setting up a mobile movie theater wherever you go. Combined with its clever design, it's a unique tablet with a myriad of uses.
There are a few tablets out there that have stylus capabilities, but none compare to this Lenovo tablet.
The Yoga Tab 2 features AnyPen technology, which lets you use, well, any pen as a stylus. Technically it can use any metal object as one, so pencils, house keys, forks, or knives are all eligible, too.
Editors' note:This gallery was originally published in February 2012 and has been updated regularly since then to reflect new products on the market.