Tablets let you take work on the road, but they can't replace a desktop or laptop for every function. The next best thing to having a PC on hand, perhaps, is the capability to control your computer remotely from a tablet.

There are dozens of apps for the iPad and for Android tablets built to let you access your PC from a distance. And while there are similar apps for smartphones, the small screen size interferes with the experience. We put some of the leading tablet downloads through their paces. Which apps deliver the best blend of control, performance, and convenience? Here's what we found in tests on an iPad and on an Acer Iconia A500 tablet running the Android "Honeycomb" OS.