Tablets:

Best Android tablets of 2014

Updated

Unlike Apple's closed system of hardware and software, the open-source nature of Google's Android OS makes it inviting for many hardware manufacturers to try their hand at making an Android-based device. That said, it's a system that has been slow to bear fruit when it comes to viable competitors to the Apple iPad, but that seems to be slowly changing. The following five tablets represent the highest-quality Android-based tablets currently available.

Google Nexus 9

The Google Nexus 9's premium build, speedy performance and consistent updates render it one of the best high-end Android tablets.

Price: $449.99 Check prices

4 stars Excellent

Nvidia Shield Tablet

Nvidia Shield Tablet

Even if you don't take advantage of its gaming prowess, the Nvidia Shield Tablet is one of the most versatile -- and affordable -- high-performance 8-inch Android slates you can buy.

Price: $299.99 - $315.99 Check prices

4 stars Excellent

Feature-rich, small, and powerful

Samsung Galaxy Tab S (8.4-inch)

With its slim design, fantastic screen, and oodles of power, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 is a superb smaller tablet, and a worthy competitor to the ever-popular iPad Mini.

Price: $347.99 - $399.99 Check prices

4 stars Excellent

LG G Pad 8.3 Google Play Edition

Android purists will find Google's mid-sized LG G Pad 8.3 more compelling, but it's pricier than the model that's overlaid with LG's skin.

4 stars Excellent
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