Tablets have come a long way, baby, and the flood of portable devices isn't slowing down anytime soon. With new, speedy processors, razor-sharp HD screens, and ample apps for working or playing hard, tablets are the gadgets PDAs always wished they were.
Competition in the tablet market is becoming fiercely saturated; available devices run the gamut from big-league sluggers to bush-league slackers. The good news is that, along with the greater, varied selection of tablets, prices are becoming more competitive. Buying a tablet has never been more on the consumer's side.
Initial product announcements sometimes lack details, and we're left reading the tea leaves to guess if the device will actually perform well or not. We've outlined some of the available information on upcoming tablets and our impressions of their place in the current tablet landscape. We'll update this blog regularly as more tablets are announced.
What's special? A new iPad from Apple is inevitable, but rumors are swirling of a brand new model. The iPad Pro is expected to be the largest tablet from the Cupertino, Calif.-company yet. Word on the street is it'll have a 12.9-inch touchscreen. Everything at this point is speculation, so keep an eye out for future updates and new information.
When's it coming? If it comes out, it's expected to drop in the fall of 2015.
What's special? It's a phone! It's a tablet! It's both! The MediaPad X2 is the skinniest 7-inch phablet, and its list of powerful specs sounds promising.
When's it coming? Availability has yet to be announced.
What's special? Windows tablets are starting to become more affordable, and the IdeaPad Miix 300 is one of them. The 8-inch tablet runs Windows 8.1 and comes with a one-year subscription to Office 365.
When's it coming? It goes on sale in July.
What's special? The Lenovo Tab 2 A8 ships with the latest Android operating system, Lollipop 5.0, and it's one of the most inexpensive to do so.
When's it coming? The Tab 2 A8 is expected to go on sale in June.
What's special?If this upcoming LG tablet is anything like its previous 8.3-inch model, it's bound to be a good one. It's expected to come in a LTE capable model on Verizon's network and run LG's latest UX 4.0 interface.
When's it coming? Availability is unknown.
What's special? Samsung's lightweight pair of Tab S devices are two of the best tablets, thanks to their super-sharp and vibrantly saturated screens. The Tab S2 is expected to replace them, with two 8- and 9.7-inch models that may also come in LTE variants. The pair should run the latest version of Android Lollipop 5.0.2.
When's it coming? There is no word on availability.
What's special? Sony follows up last year's skinny waterproof tablet with another similar, beefed-up version. The Z4 sports a 2K screen and houses an octa-core CPU.
When's it coming? The Xperia Z4 is expected to go on sale in June.
What's special? This security-focused tablet encrypts your messages. It's still in the development stages, but Silent Circle also sells a similar phone so we expect it to eventually become consumer ready.
When's it coming? Silent Circle hopes to release the Blackphone+ in autumn.
Can't wait? Check out our list of the best tablets you can buy right now.
Editors' note: This post was originally published on September 6, 2013, and is frequently updated.