Not quite smartphone, not quite laptop – yes, it’s the humble tablet. Globally popularised by the iPad in 2010, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a household without one or two knocking about. But tablets can be expensive, even though their capabilities rarely match those of a fully-fledged Mac or PC.
Some are cheaper though, and tablets are an ideal media consumption device, especially on the go.
The good news is there are often cheap tablet deals about and retailers can give big discounts to big brands; from Apple to Google, Acer to Huawei. If it runs iOS or Android, as most do, you've got thousands of awesome apps at your disposal.
It's important to make sure the tablet you're buying isn't a dud - while you're safe with just about any recent iPad, not all Android tablets are created equal. Check out our rankings of the best tablets and best cheap tablets for inspiration and some detailed buying advice, so that you know what to look for.
Best tablet deals right now
Apple iPad Pro 9.7in (2016, 32GB, cellular, refurbished)
From: Apple Refurbished Store
Now: £409 (£230 off)
What tablet deals are available?
You occasionally see the odd bit of money off an iPad, so look at retailers like Currys PC World and Argos for those, as Apple itself doesn’t often discount its iPads. There are always iPads on its Refurbished Store all year round though. Official resellers like KRCS can sometimes offer more competitive prices too.
Android tablets are far more likely to be sold at more competitive prices, given their generally lower RRPs in the first place - though even high-ticket Samsung and Google tablets can also get a good price cut – so keep your eyes peeled on this page.
There are, of course, 2-in-1 tablet computer hybrids, such as the Microsoft Surface Pro and the Surface Go, which run Windows 10. Though slightly pricey, we have an entire article dedicated to Microsoft Surface deals, which goes through the new models, accessories, usual prices, and, of course, where to find the best deals – including how to spot deals on refurbished devices and student discounts. Go to the article here.
Amazon's Fire tablets all have low prices to start with and are criminally low when they go on sale - which is surprisingly frequently. They tend to drop from 'affordable' to 'essential' with offers across the Fire tablet range.
If you find that you’re missing out on Amazon’s Lightning deals, which run for just a few hours and offer limited stock, we'd recommend signing up for Amazon's 30-day free trial of Prime, which will get you access to deals 30 minutes before everyone else. Plus, you'll get free next-day delivery with the Prime trial, as well as access to Prime Instant Video and more.
Sign up for Prime now to take advantage.
See our guide on the best Amazon tablet, which includes comparisons, reviews and buying advice. Tech Advisor also has a range of articles on tablets, tablet cases and related gadgets and accessories which should also help you decide.
Tablet deals for students
Another great resource to help you snag deals is Tech Advisor's Student Beans page. The Tech and Mobile section can help you save up to 25% on big brands such as Apple (10% off for students), Asus, HP, Lenovo, Logitech and many more. See all tech student deals here.
Here are a few of the best places to check for tablet bargains:
Best Tablet Deals
1. Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.5in (2018, 32GB)
Now: £279 (£91 off)
Samsung's dependable Galaxy Tab A line continues to impress, with over £90 off this sizeable 10.5in model. Get immersed by its quad-speaker setup and enjoy up to 15 hours of video playback, courtesy of its 7300mAh battery.
2. Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 (128GB)
Now: £559 (£60 off)
Shave a healthy amount off Samsung's best and brightest tablet of 2019 - the Galaxy Tab S6. Discount varies by colour/SKU, double-check before purchase.
3. Apple iPad Air (2019, WiFi, 256GB)
Now: £629 (£60 off)
Out the gate, you can save £60 on the latest iPad Air but Very.co.uk is also offering discounts on related accessory bundles too.
4. Samsung Galaxy Tab S5e (64GB)
Now: £329 (£111 off)
Samsung's well-rounded Galaxy Tab S5e is probably the closest thing to an iPad running Android you'll find out there and right now it enjoys a tidy discount.
5. Huawei MediaPad T5 10.1in (32GB)
Now: £149.99 (£20 off)
Huawei's family-friends T5 tablet, boasts a large Full HD display, stereo speakers and content control settings so kids can play games and watch cartoons safely. Very is currently offering a tidy discount on the T5 too.
6. Apple iPad 10.2in (2019, 32GB)
Now: £339.97 (£9.03 off)
Amazon knocked a little off 2019's 10.2in iPad. If stocks run low you can get the same price at Very.co.uk.
7. Apple iPad Pro 9.7in (2016, 32GB, cellular, refurbished)
From: Apple Refurbished Store
Now: £409 (£230 off)
This is the cheapest you'll find an iPad Pro. Apple's Refurbished Store is a great way to get iPad deals, and this 2016 model is no exception.
8. Huawei MediaPad M5 Lite 8 (3GB RAM, 32GB)
Now: £159.99 (£40 off)
A crisp Full HD IPS display, Harmon Kardon-tuned audio, dual stereo speakers and a larger 5100mAh battery - despite the name, the Huawei MediaPad M5 Lite 8 isn't light on features and thanks to Very comes with a nice discount too.
9. Lenovo Tab E10 (32GB)
Now: £119 (£30.99 off)
Shave a corner off the already-affordable Lenovo Tab E10, which features a 10.1in IPS display, dual front-facing Dolby Atmos-certified speakers and boasts up to seven hours of video playback on a single charge.
When is Black Friday 2020 - should you wait for a better deal?
Black Friday will take place on Friday 27 November, immediately followed by Cyber Monday on 30 November. Traditionally the biggest sales event of the year, it may yet throw up some even greater tech deals - but with so much uncertainty around finance and retail, and no guarantees regarding what discounts we will see, we advise you not to wait: if you see a deal you like, on a product you need, and you can afford the outlay, buy it today.