16
Jun
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We're going to keep this weekend's poll simple: how big do you think your tablet should be? We've asked this question before, but that was quite a while ago. I'm curious to see if the dimensional preferences of the average AP reader have changed since, and what influence devices like the Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 have had on people who are in the market for a tablet.

The choices this time will be a bit different, as sub-7" tablets really never panned out in a big way, and we've got a few popular sizes out there now.

My answer, if you're curious (if not, just vote below), is the "tweener" range - somewhere in that 7-10" zone of intrigue. I find Microsoft's Surface RT to be too bulky for casual use (10.6"), and even feel most 10.1" Android tablets are unwieldy when used for an extended period. Sony's Xperia Tablet Z is probably the most manageable such device out there, but even it seems a bit... wide. On the opposite end of the spectrum, the Nexus 7 has always felt just a little too small for me. It's a great size for reading and most tablet-optimized apps, but for rich web content, games, and videos, I've always desired something a tad larger.

What about you - where's your slate sweet spot?

What's your ideal tablet size?

View Results

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David Ruddock
David's phone is an HTC One. He is an avid writer, and enjoys playing devil's advocate in editorials, imparting a legal perspective on tech news, and reviewing the latest phones and gadgets. He also doesn't usually write such boring sentences.

  • Ambroos

    Probably 8" or 9", preferably with a smallish bezel (just enough to hold it without touching the display). An iPad Mini-sized Android tablet would be brilliant. Or the Xperia Tablet Z, the size and weight of that one actually make it really nice to use too.

    • Mark

      I second this. I love my iPad Mini hardware and smart cover. I HATE my iOS interface. Put pure Android 4.2 on it and you have a winner.

    • Steve Freeman

      There are several 8" Android tablets out there...the only one that comes to mind right now is the Note 2 8.0, but I know there are others.

  • Danny Holyoake

    You only really need 4" to get the job done.

    • louched1

      That's not what she said.

  • noneabove

    Originally I loved my Nexus 7, when I had a 3.7 inch display on my Desire Z, but now that I have the Nexus 4 I find myself reaching for the 10 inch way more often, just because the Nexus 7's performance and screen are lesser the the Nexus 4 so where I'd normally grab that I grab the 4, and then the 10 is a big enough jump and a super high resolution that it can fit a different niche need of entertainment and videos

    • mikeym0p

      Yea, I feel bad I don't use my 7 now that I have a N4

      • Ivan Myring

        Same

  • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

    It's really strange to me that Android OEMs have fixated on the 7" and 10.1" sizes. I'll get crap for saying it, but I think the iPad is just about the perfect size for a tablet. The only thing is, you really wouldn't want an Android tablet like the iPad, because 4:3 is going to look awful in most apps. The iPad is only so physically manageable because of its odd aspect ratio, so if you wanted an Android tablet as holdable as the iPad, it would need a smaller display.

    So, my perfect Android tablet is probably somewhere in the 8-8.5" range.

    • AaronGingrich

      Like Cam and I said so long ago... Excite 7.7, man. Fuckin' perfect.

      • http://www.androidpolice.com/ David Ruddock

        Yeah, the Tab 7.7 was pretty great too. Too bad both of them were crazy expensive.

    • Sean Lumly

      I remember Samsung coming on stage during their unveiling of the original Galaxy Tab stating that their research suggested that 7" was the ideal size. They were, of course, shamed for having released the device for a number of reasons. However, despite the bad press, these devices have found a niche, and are still selling.

      However, if I personally had to choose only one device, I would choose a 7" device. Around my home, it's easy to temporarily put in a pocket to free up my hands, which means that I'm much more likely to have it with me than my 10" device which mostly stays in one place. It can also be held and used with one hand (to a limited degree).

    • Michael Panzer

      Let me tell you something from a developer perspective. Android has density independent pixel DIP in which you code to get the touch targets in the right physical size on all resolutions and devices. In Android there are two tablet sizes which are 7" and 10" with 100x600 dip and 1280x720dip. Maybe you recognize those values...
      If you start introducing even more sizes it would get really hard making great apps.
      It's also hard with 8 to 9 inch tablets because either the touch targets get too small or big because you have to choose one of those tablet sizes.n
      I could go on and on but there is a reason for those sizes and also why the nexus 7 doesn't display apps the same way the nexus 10 does.

      Apple kind of screwed up in this regard with the iPad mini because elemts just get to small for a good UX.

    • varun

      I think it seriously depends on how you plan to use the tablet. I tend to think of >8" tablets like hardcover books, and smaller ones as paperbacks. I've put a screen protector on the front and a simple TPU case on the back of my N7 and it really changes how I view this tablet. It's not an "event" taking out the tablet to use - it's literally like a large phone, always ready to go. And I don't think I could do that with anything beyond 7" really.

    • ike

      You are right, the iPad is spot on perfect. I am holding my 10.1" tablet typing this and it is stupidly uncomfortable. There are only two options:

      If I hold it by the sides I have to do all my typing with ninja thumbs assuming I am using split layout on swiftkey, otherwise I have to clash the middle with my left hand and type with my right. Even though my tablet is >100g lighter than the iPad it still feels a lot heaviere because of the way it has to be held. With an iPad I simply hold onto the side with my left hand and tap away on my right.

      I could also use it in portrait which is a lot better but I still have to use a two hands approach now, this time securing the tablet by the bottom with a clasp.

      Whichever way you look at it there is always a lot of strain on my hands and wrists because I'm having to always counteract a lever like effect of the tablet.

      Ergonomically the iPad also blows the competition out of the water, you can hold an iPad for a long time without it being uncomfortable because of the gentle curve at the back, like the HTC One.

      Basically, if Google want 10" tablets to succeed they need to puch hard for 4:3 or perhaps a 3:2 layout, 16:9 IS NOT going to cut it!

      I wish that HTC make a 9 - 10" tablet in 4:3, HTC seem to be the only real Android OEM who seriously considers ergonomics in their products. My 8X is a beauty to use!

      And please no one bash me for this, I love android and want it to succeed and the first thing to do is realise where it is failing and you have to be honest, the iPad layout, feel and ergonomics are miles above anything from Sony, Samsungf or Asus - at least in the 10" category.

      If I'm also being honest here, the 3 button layout is BAD on a tablet, it should either rotate to the side, like the phone layout, or stick to physical buttons ideally just 2 of them.

      P.s. I wrote this all on my tablet and am now extremely sore which may be why I'm sounding extra whiney but its only because I speak true from the heart.

    • Karlo

      iPad size yes but screen aspect ratio just sucks where i find Nexus 10 almost perfect.
      Thats one of the reasons im selling my iPad 3rd gen

  • Edward Germanotta

    Bigger the better... that's what she says...

  • Nick V

    I say reduce the bezel and give us a 12" screen. This way, the tablet stays the same, but the viewing area gets bigger.

    • bees

      Yeah but then your thumb always bumps the screen. A bezel is a MUST.

      • Ibrahim Jadoon

        No. Android could implement edge detection for fingers like the iPad does....

      • Nick V

        I didn't say to rid the tablet of a bezel, but reduce it. Right now, there is something like an inch of bezel around the entire device (ASUS Transformer Prime), and if they reduce it to 1/4 or an 1/8 of an inch, I would think that it could give us a great screen size, and not increase the size of the tablet.

    • Andy_in_Indy

      My ideal would be a 12.5 inch 4:3 screen with a 1/2 inch bezel and about 1/2 inch thick. That would make it the same size as a piece of typing paper in the US, and thin enough to keep in a notebook cover.

      • Steve Freeman

        1/2" think? So you want it about 25% thicker than the Nexus 7? I'll pass.

        • Andy_in_Indy

          If you are a troll, I must congratulate you - the comment is sufficiently off base to warrant a response without being so ludicrous as to be ignored!

          I did say "about 1/2 inch" so the 12.5 millimeter has considerable leeway. However, I doubt I someone would really pass on a good tablet over a 3 millimeter difference in thickness. Unless they really were just being a troll and had to find SOME reason to have fault with it.

          Of course, the extra millimeters might be put to a good use: dissipating heat, allowing for a higher capacity battery, or providing a better resonance chamber for those speakers that need to be in there somewhere. Thinner is not always better.

          Besides, a 12 inch tablet isn't really something to be held and used with only one hand. At that size it becomes more like a slate computer, and a full size replacement for paper documents.

          • Steve Freeman

            Of course I MUST be a troll, since I disagreed with you. *rolls eyes* Hell, most people would be asking if YOU were a troll, wanting a 4:3 aspect tablet.

            And yes, the tablet thickness does matter greatly to most people, since it's usually not JUST the tablet, but also the added thickness you get when you put it in a case. The case on my N7 I think doubles the thickness, minimum.

  • DanieleMnn

    Having used both my friend's Nexus 7 and my brother's iPad Mini, I think that the latter offers the best experience for me regard display size, thanks to the bigger screen and aspect ratio, i think 4:3 offers better web sites visualization.
    I really think 7" is too small, i saw the Note 8 and it has very good dimensions of both chassis and screen.

    • Mark

      The miserable resolution of the iPad Mini means you get more on your screen on Android.

      • DanieleMnn

        What can I do with more if it's too small to be read comfortably?

        • Jason Storey

          Adjust text size?

          • DanieleMnn

            Nope, adjust buying preferences is better, 7" is too small, 10" is too big, 8-8.5 is perfect.

          • Krzysztof Jozwik

            So 7.9 is not good?

        • Steve Freeman

          I read on my Nexus 7 all the time, WITH a lowered DPI (170 instead of the default 213), and I have it at the smallest font size. Maybe you just need glasses?

  • David Margolin

    my issue is not screen size but body size... if you can fit an 8 inch screen in the nexus 7 body... i would be satisfied... heck... if you could fit a 20 inch screen in a nexus 7 body.. i would be satisfied... as long as i can hold it in 1 hand...

    • Karlo

      Well you got 7,9 inch of iPad mini you cant fit that into pocket but N7 you can.

      • Hans Pedersen

        That's mostly because of the impractical aspect ratio. The 8 inch GT3 is more or less identical in size with the Nexus 7.

    • fzammetti

      I think you hit the nail on the head David. The N7 is, for me, pretty much the perfect *overall* physical size... I'm always amazed that I can pretty easily get the thing in the back pocket of my jeans... although I've always said I like the amount of bezel it gets, recently I've begun to think that I'd give some of that up for a little bit bigger screen. So yeah, give me a *slightly* bigger screen in the N7 body and it's perfect.

  • mike dunham

    I have to go with 7". I had a Galaxy Tab 8.9 before my Nexus 7 and the portability of the Nexus 7 is what really made me feel this way. 8.9" is a good size but it is so much easier to take the Nexus 7 places.

    • JayEvans

      Try an 8".

      I have a GT 10.1, my wife has a Nexus 7 and I just bought a Note 8. I didn't realize how heavy my 10.1 was and comparing usable screen area, the Nexus 7 is at least an inch shorter because of the software keys but not that much smaller over all.

      • Cass_m

        Yes, I love the Note 8. Much lighter than 10.1 and I enjoy having that extra screen real estate.

  • http://www.prosoftstudio.com/ Brandon Enriquez

    I previously had a Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and it was just too big to hold comfortably. I tried a Nexus 7 at a store and it was just so much better. I haven't tried anything between the two yet, but the 7" seemed right for me. I sold my 10.1" and haven't bought a new tablet yet.

  • missinginput

    I voted bigger but I use mine docked and not as a tablet so size isnt as important so use is a big factor for ideal size

  • Alec Smith

    9.7 inches

  • Justin W

    Mine really depends on the use case. For gaming/e-mails, I'd take a 7" tablet any day. Much more versatile and portable. For heavy research/web browsing, I'd take a 10" tablet.

  • Matt

    Since buying a nook HD+ (quite the killer sale this last week), 9 inches is just perfect for a personal tablet.

  • whitehawk66

    My galaxy tab 7.7 is perfect. Just a tad bigger than 7 inches. It's been great

  • GraveUypo

    i'd say between 7 and 10, but closer to 10, because smaller than that and i'll just use my cellphone instead, which i do. bigger than that and i'll just use my laptop, which i also do. i have no use for a tablet tbh.

  • herbivoor

    I had an iPad, but seeing that my laptop is 13.3" I barely used it. Now I have the Nexus 7 and, for me at least, it's the sweet spot in screen size. Between my laptop and my GS3.

  • jastonas

    Y U No have 8" as an option.
    Many would go for that.

    • Krzysztof Jozwik

      "Somewhere between 7 and 10"

  • Russell Walker

    I don't really see the use in most 10" tablets, with the exception of the transformers (I have a prime). I hardly ever undock it, because I just really like having a physical keyboard and not having to hold it up constantly.

    I really wish more tablets came with transformer-like docks, so I don't have to wait for Asus to get its shit together.

  • PauloFS

    I like 8.2", like the xoom 2 me

  • mikeym0p

    Can we see 9" 16:9 tablets?

  • Ira

    I say 7-10.1". I have a N7 and there are times I feel that's not large enough. Anything larger than 10.1 seems too big. Then again, I'd probably have the same complaint if I had a 10.1".

  • Karlo

    7 incher i like because its portable and its better for gaming then 10.1 incher or iPad size.
    N7 size was just perfect and comfortable for gaming but small for webbrowsing.
    When i bought 32GB WiFi after a month i realised how i really miss data connection.
    Because of that next N7 is gonna be as high storage goes whit data.

    Cant wait!!!

  • Ed

    I own a 7" BlackBerry PlayBook & a 5.5" Galaxy Note 2. Ever since getting my Note 2 I've hardly picked up my PlayBook. I'd love to have an 11" or 12" tablet.

  • Ray Sunghwa Woo

    Having Transformer Prime for over a year, I would like it to be ~8" but with less bezels. It would be a nice size to watch videos and browse webs but also within a travel size to carry with.

  • feres13

    The Android tablet app ecosystem isn't great enough to make 10" tablets a great choice while 7" feels abit small with 4.7" and 5" phones. 8 inches is great, something like an iPad mini or a Note 8

  • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/cody-toombs/ Cody Toombs

    I still stand behind the right-tool-for-the-job viewpoint. I use my Nexus 7 a fair bit (less now that it has slowed down so much), and it's great for certain tasks. It makes a great consumption device and serves very well for activities like gaming.

    On the other hand, the 10" category feels like it's on the small side of what would be a more productive tool. There are things that demand a larger screen, like drawing, writing, or electronic versions of text books (especially in areas like math and science). I've got a few friends going to college right now that love the Nexus 10, but say it would be even better if it had a larger screen and a precision stylus.

  • Mycopsycho

    I've had the Galaxy Tab 7+ and now the Note 8. I love the size of the Note 8 for reading and browsing. With a case it's a little too large to drop in most jacket pockets though it fits nicely in my Carhart jacket but I'll make the compromise for the larger screen size.

  • Alan Shearer

    7 inch for travel, gps, reading extended periods of time
    10 inch for gaming, home use, short reading bursts.

  • SetiroN

    Screens smaller than 11" should be 4:3, and 16:10 below 17", just like desktop monitors below 27"; yet manufacturers keep on pushing widescreens wherever they can.

    My sweet spot would be 9" 4:3, with 8" being an acceptable alternative: too bad only crappy tablets are made in that format, which is why I'm going to settle for an 11.6" 16:10 bay trail dockable hybrid, hoping to find one that isn't too heavy. Yes, that would be windows based android becomes pointless at that size.

  • JCB

    We don't all use tablets in the same way. For my usage, I prefer the 4:3 aspect ratio and 1024x768 is the minimum resolution I like. I have just replaced an older 8 inch 1024x768 Android with another of the same size (only faster). I would prefer less weight. That makes a difference for me. So I am not interested in 10 inch tablets. I still have a PC for large screen use. I thought about getting a 7 inch tablet to get lower weight, but they are all 16:9.

    I think the end manufacturers are dependent on what the screen makers make available to them. It's good to have a range of choice in screen size etc. We have different needs so there isn't a one-size-fits-all tablet.

  • Ryan

    Ever since I got the Nexus 7 tablet, I felt it was the most comfortable size for me in a tablet. The ASUS Transformer series are great, but are too big for me to use for long period. Thus, the reason why iI love 7" tablets as my perfect size.

    • kindrudekid

      This, the TF300t is an amazin coffee table tablet... a family tablet, just not a personal one to carry around...

      I have been craving to get a 7 inch tablet , almost thought of buying the note 8.0 but the fucking button annoyed me and then this new nexus 7 fcc thing happened, well i can wait a month more...

  • Oliver Watts

    I have an 8 inch ipad an love the size its big enough yet small enough, also a tablet without borders is amazing, it makes you feel like your getting more screen even though its still only 8 inches

  • dawn m. armfield

    It depends on what I'm doing with the tablet. I use the 10.1 TF201 for games, movies, and writing and the Nexus 7 for reading books, RSS feeds, and word games.

  • Oobiewan

    my brother has a galaxy tab 8.9, and it's light, thin, well built, and 8.9 is a really good size for the screen...

  • Kiamat

    While I certainly understand the appeal of the 7inch tablets, I still prefer 10.1. I do a lot of video consumption on my tablet, so the bigger the better.

  • kingkerby70

    Nexus 10 and Galaxy S4 seem like the perfect match for me.
    I have seen a definite increase in use of my phone since getting the gs4 after the Droid charge, without a decrease in use on the N10.

  • Zach B.

    My Nexus 10 is great for laying in bed or on the couch. When I'm on the go my HTC One does the job perfectly enough. The more portable tablets are useless to me.

  • Patrick Bateman

    My girlfriend says she prefers 8"-9"...

    Tablet sizes, I hope...

    • HellG

      damn...i'm half an inch short....well still inform her that my "Tablet" can touch these limits if she is interested :)

      -I'm kidding please dont kill me lol

    • Simon Belmont

      Wow. I guess if you don't measure up, then your last name is very apt, Master Bateman.

      Yeah, that was terrible. I'll see myself out.

  • Owen Finn

    9" tablets should have been the norm.

  • Ashish kumar chaubey

    b/w 7 & 10

  • Shawn B.

    My Nexus 7 is the perfect sized tablet at the moment. It's small enough that it follows me where ever I go at home, but large enough that I don't find it frustrating to read, even at a glance. I chose "Somewhere between 7 and 10 inches" because I'm not sure what my opinion will be once I make the inevitable jump to 1080p. I gave my 10" tablet to my mom so she doesn't have to haul her laptop around on trips. It was just to large for me.

    The only thing that keeps me away from my Nexus 7, at times, is it's lack of power. I find myself reaching for my Nexus 4 when it comes to games.

  • http://gplus.to/bdbplatano M. Puente

    ...and of course half the comments on this thread are refering to penis size

  • Matthew Gardner

    I like them 10 inches, black, soft to the touch. Like my Nexus 10

  • Carey M

    As long as my vision is good, I'm happy with 7" tablets.

  • http://android.bswireless.hr/ Dražen Klisurić

    I would like a tablet sized just as Nexus 7 but with bezels like iPad mini or thinner. If mobile phones can have thinner bezels I don't see why 7 inch tablets cant have them also.

    • mldi

      Because you hold phones with fingers on both sides. Tablets, even 7 inch, aren't comfortable when holding like a phone (unless you're a giant). You generally hold them by one side. A thinner bezel means there's less to hold onto. Why is a thin bezel so important, anyway?

  • SkullOne

    It really depends on what I'm doing but a 7 inch tablet is generally my preference.

  • Detonation

    I just picked up a Nook HD+ (already put CM10.1 on it) and I think the 9" screen size is perfect.

  • Ryan Stewart

    I like my 10" one but I use it specifically. I dont hand hold and do too much typing, its mostly an entertainment device or to consume documents created somewhere else. I also like the wide aspect ratio because it works better for HD TV and movies.

    Id love to see a minimalist bezel though.

  • rap

    The only tablet I've really used is my Nexus 7. I like the way it fits easily into most purses. I do think a larger tablet would be useful if you were doing a lot of note taking in meetings. Also some games like hidden object games are hard to see on even a 7" screen.

  • CeluGeek

    8" is the perfect screen size.

  • Nick Schiwy

    It really depends on the purpose. I have a 7 inch kindle and that form factor is perfect for reading... as is 8" i'm sure. However, when it comes to browsing or doing anything involving any kind of work or word processing it has to be my Nexus 10.

  • mldi

    For most things, 7in. It's a very portable size, yet large enough to avoid squinting on games or to avoid needing needle-tip fingers to tap hit targets. However, there are a few games that really benefit from the 10in real estate, as well as magazines. "Ticket to Ride" and "Solar 2" are two that immediately come to mind.

    So my answer is, "it depends", but if I was forced to choose, it'd be somewhere in the 7-8in range.

  • Tarik Dixon

    I Dont care what size it is, im a person with hulk hands so the Bigger the Better.......Thats what she said HUEHUEHUE!!!

  • Steve Freeman

    I voted somewhere between 7"-10". I have a Nexus 7 right now, and more and more often lately I've been wanting something a bit larger. But I also have an old 10" tablet at home (Viewsonic G Tablet) which is nice, but either because of the weight or size, it's just not as comfortable to hold for extended periods of time.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=708741524 Robb Nunya

    7". I can usually fit it in my pocket. I'd never carry a 10" everywhere like I do my Nexus 7.

  • Simon Belmont

    I put between 7 and 10 inches. Mostly because I enjoy using both my 7 and 10 inch tablets.

    I'd say 10 inches is ideal for screen real estate. While 7 inches is ideal for portability.

  • Screwhead

    I've got an HP Touchpad (4:3 9.7"), and my dad has a Galaxy Tab 2 (16:10, 10.1") and honestly I'm not entirely comfortable with either. Personally, I'd be most comfortable with either a 13" 16:10, or a 15" 4:3. Everything still feels too small on the Touchpad or the Tab 2, and I need to zoom in to read things comfortably. I'd rather have a screen that fits a whole page properly and doesn't require zooming to read.

  • lisaa7002

    I don't mind the feel of the 10.1- I would much rather have the screen size. I don't think the 7" are different enough from phone size to bother with. I don't converse a whole lot with my tablet, use my laptop for serious use. Tablet is mostly for reading, gaming & movies. Looking to get refurbished S. Note 10 here next weekend unless someone tells me a Really good reason why I shouldn't. Currently have the Archos 101,but the flash is not upgradeable anymore which makes it nigh onto worthless to me now.

  • Willie D

    Thats what she said, thats what she said!!

  • districtjack

    I just bought the nexus 7 after several months of research and visiting stores. I made the best decision for me. It is handy, portable, and light enough to hold in one hand without fatigue. Yes I know the new n7 is about to be released but I mobile hotspot my phone so I don't need the Sim card model. Big plus for me is its a nexus! Twelve hours after buying it the jelly bean updated to 4.2.2

    Bottom line: Nexus 7 is a highly portable convenient 7" tablet that is not too heavy and not too bulky. I have nothing bad to say about the Nexus 7 and I use it about 12hrs a day. I have not opened my laptop for days.

  • bevardimusg

    This is the dirtiest poll ever :D

  • thenextgenius

    2 inches

  • dytecture

    8 inch tablets are gaining popularity.