7 Reasons Your Tablet is an Awesome Gaming Device

Written by B Johnson March 01, 2012
7 Reasons Your Tablet is an Awesome Gaming Device
7 Things That Make Your Tablet an Awesome Gaming DeviceWhen smartphones and tablets hadn’t been introduced yet to the world a few years ago and people were still using some old-school cell phones, mobile games back then were not really impressive, especially in terms of graphics and gameplay.

However, that is not surprising given that cell phone hardware in the past was not powerful enough to run graphics-intense 3D games that you see today on smartphones and tablets.

But thanks to Original Equipment Manufacturers (known as OEMs) for their rapid developments of smartphone and tablet hardware for the past few years, now mobile game has come to the level where it becomes a huge industry that’s even capable to compete with other major console and PC game markets, in terms of sales and popularity.

Unfortunately, despite the great developments of hardware in mobile devices every year, there will always be the tablets that are not powerful enough to run the latest 3D games perfectly and smoothly.

There is a lot of reasons why this thing always happens. But mostly, the GPUs and CPUs of tablets become the culprit why some old-gen devices really suffer a lot in performance when handling the latest high-performing games on the market. Take the second-gen Google Nexus 7 tablet for example.

When it first came out to the tablet market, this Google Nexus 7 seemed really powerful especially when it comes to gaming performance, with some heavy games like Asphalt 8: Airborne, GTA Vice City or Dead Trigger 2 running seamlessly without any problem, even in full highest graphics.

Unfortunately, a few months later, this Google's tablet showed its weak performance when handling a heavy game like GTA San Andreas in full graphics. This also happened to many other high-end tablets like Samsung GALAXY Note 3 and even iPad mini 2, which also suffered in performance when deploying GTA San Andreas in full graphics.

So that’s why today I would like to share to you some of the most important elements of a great gaming tablet. I really hope some of the things I share to you in the following list below can help you find the right gaming tablet so you'll be able to play even the latest and most graphically-demanding tablet games perfectly with no lag whatsoever.

1. Adequate GPU

I think the common reason why some latest games on Google Play Store or App Store don’t run perfectly and smoothly on a tablet is mostly because it comes with an old-gen GPU. This is probably why the newer tablets on the market always come with the latest and more powerful GPUs, especially the flagship ones.

So if you want to get the best gaming tablet that’s capable to play almost all the games on the market perfectly and smoothly, be sure to buy the one that comes with the latest-gen GPU, especially if you are a die hard gamer - like Adreno 420 or Mali-T760MP2.

The great news is, there are many mid and even low-end tablets that are equipped with some of the best GPUs on the market. So you don't have to squeeze a lot of cash in your bank account if you want to get a great gaming tablet.

HP Slate 7 Extreme is one of the great examples. It has an insanely powerful Tegra 4 processor inside but it only costs around $199, which is pretty cheap for a powerful gaming tablet. Not to mention, it also features many other great goodies like a great stylus, great cameras, smooth stock Android OS, a great sound quality thanks to its front-firing loudspeaker and many more. So you'll get a lot of things by paying only $199.

2. Powerful CPU or processor

A few years ago, most tech enthusiast didn’t really believe that CPU core had anything to do with the gaming performance of tablets. That might be true especially if we looked at iPad with its 'only' dual-core CPU but still managed to top the gaming performances of many high-end Android tablets with quad or even octa-core CPUs.

However, if we look at the tablet games today, having a lot of cores on CPU actually can be really good for the overall gaming experience of the tablet, not only for its gaming performance. Take Samsung’s octa-core Exynos 5 Octa processor for instance.

Despite using the bigLITTLE architecture on this processor (with the first 4-cores of CPU handling the light-weight tasks, while the other 4 executing the more demanding heavy-weight tasks), this octa-core CPU actually offers a much better battery life and overall performance to the tablet.

And we all know that long lasting battery life is one of the most important things that makes any tablet a great gaming device.

So if you're looking for a great gaming tablet that offers a solid gaming experience to users, buying an octa-core tablet is actually still a great decision to make. It's gonna be better in terms of performance, power management and of course, it could last longer for playing games. 

3. Bigger RAM or memory

There’s no single doubt that a bigger RAM brings a much faster and smoother gaming performance to any tablets. That’s because most of the tablets today on the market usually come with some fully-customized heavy software from the manufacturers, like Samsung, Sony or Xiaomi.

And that really decreases the entire gaming performance of the tablets because heavy software usually tends to consume a lot of memory in the background, even at the first boot.

So if you’re looking for a great gaming tablet on the market, make sure that your chosen tablet has at least 2 GB of RAM, especially if you’re a die-hard tablet gamer who always wants to play the latest and high-performing 3D games on your tablet.

4. Suitable screen resolution

Not many people know that the screen resolution can actually have a huge impact to the overall gaming performance of tablets. I’m not saying that a great gaming tablet has to be the one with the highest-resolution screen on the market. But what I meant to say was, a great gaming tablet should have the suitable screen resolution for the CPU and GPU that it comes with.

This is probably why there are many high-end tablets out there are not that impressive when it comes to gaming performance, despite using the highest screen resolution around the market. They’re either laggy, their battery life is really weak or they tend to overheat easily, especially when playing heavy games or doing some heavy tasks intensively.

So having a medium 720p HD display on your tablet is actually not too shabby at all for a gaming tablet. It ensures a long battery life, smooth gaming experience and it doesn't overheat quickly even if you use it to play games in long hours.

But even so, it's still a great decision to buy a tablet that comes with the screen resolution higher than 720p, like NVIDIA Shield Tablet (1920x1200 pixels), Google Nexus 9 (2048x1536 pixels) or Samsung GALAXY Tab S (2560x1600 pixels), as long as the tablets are powered by some adequate CPUs that ensure a long lasting battery life especially for intensive gaming.

5. Great battery life

As mentioned above, one of the most important things for a great gaming tablet is definitely its strong battery life. And it’s clearly because by having a rock solid battery life, it will ensure the longevity for gamers to play their favorite games even in long long hours without recharging the device during the day.

This is really vital because vast majority of mobile games on the market today are not just some simple games like Temple Run 2 or Angry Birds and mostly really require users to play them intensively in order to finish the games, like GTA San Andreas or Modern Combat 4.

So if your tablet is not that strong enough to accommodate your hobby of playing games in long hours, then it’s definitely not a great gaming tablet, even if it comes with the most powerful GPU or CPU on the market to date.

6. The game catalog for the platform

Until today, App Store and Google Play Store still hold 2 of the most popular application and mobile game stores in the world. And this is not so surprising given that these 2 application stores are both loaded with a huge catalog of mobile games from many developers, either big and small players, ranging from variety different genres.

So it’s not gonna be that hard to find the tablet games according to your preference. You can play first person shooter games on your tablet, third person adventure games, sport games or you can even find a railroad game like Railnation that you’ve already come to love on your web browser.

Anyway, if you haven't heard about a game called Railnation, it is a strategy game and it's available on web browser as well as mobile devices.

This game is actually pretty attractive especially with its unique gameplay. So in this game, you will compete against other players to build the best railway company in the world. What makes it more interesting to play is because the profits earned during the game can further be used by players to upgrade the building of the station area or invest to the new engine.

railroad game like Railnation

railroad game like Railnation

7. The compatibility with the software

Usually, the latest tablet games that are being released on the market are mostly not compatible with the old version OS of your tablet and will require you to upgrade to the new version of the software if you want to play these games. So if your tablet or iPad happens to run on 'outdated' OS like Android Honeycomb or iOS 5, chances are the newer games cannot be installed, let alone played on your device.

Therefore, if you want your tablet to be the best gaming tablet in town, you have to make sure that your tablet has the adequate hardware in order to be able to run the latest installment of the software. I think the easiest way to identify your tablet's eligibility for the new software upgrade is by looking at its hardware specs like RAM, CPU and GPU.

Usually, tablets with adequate hardware will most likely receive the new software updates straightly from the manufacturers. However, worst comes to worst, you can still count on tech geeks at XDA-developers forum to get the custom ROM based on the latest version of Android OS specifically for your device.


Okay then, that’s it for now about 7 elements that make any tablet a great gaming device. I know that there are still many other variables that make a tablet great for playing games, like great touch screen response, the design and even the materials used on the tablet.

However, I really hope all the things I shared to you above can help you get the best gaming tablet on the market.
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