Tablet Buyer’s Guide

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UPDATED FOR 2018!

Take advantage of Black Friday & Cyber Monday for the best deal on a new tablet for DartConnect.

Keep reading for advice on what to look for, what NOT to buy and links to our top recommendations and the hottest deals.

Our Top Low Budget Recommendation: Refurbished iPad 2
Reliable quality at an affordable price

In our experience, a refurbished Apple iPad 2 is the most reliable and ruggedly built tablet for the lowest price that is perfect for DartConnect. By purchasing an authorized refurbished unit from Amazon or eBay (which are often “Like New” but returned units), you can have the highest confidence in the best technology and industry-leading battery-life — at a price point similar to much more inferior tablets.

Although increasing in age with official support waning, the iPad 2 is a great bargain with DartConnect as its main purpose, but not if you want a tablet with other modern apps and features.

Deals can be found as low as $60-$80 USD.

2018 Update:  Refurbished iPad deals from Amazon may be ending, see this article: “The impact of the Apple-Amazon partnership: Goodbye refurbishers

What are the experts saying?
Buying Guides & Black Friday Articles 

What Android tablet specs should I look for?
Why an “IPS” Screen is Important

Screen display quality is the most important thing to consider when looking at low-priced Android devices for DartConnect. To make sure the tablet you choose has a quality display that can be seen clearly from side-angles, we highly recommend devices that specify an “IPS” screen type. Be sure to look for this in the listed hardware specifications before purchasing any low-priced tablet.

What size is best?

In general, a 10” tablet is the ideal size for all environments.

  • For casual and personal use, such as solo practice, a small size tablet such as 7” or even a smartphone can be acceptable.
  • For league and tournament use, we recommend the 10” screen as it is ideal for portability and seeing the screen from beyond the throw line.
  • For events and tournament stages, you might consider a large screen tablet such as the Nabi Big Tab (see our updated notes below about the Nabi’s biggest drawbacks).

 What about Kindle or Surface?

Amazon’s Kindle devices are currently among the most popular budget-priced tablets, but please note that we can only recommend the Kindle “Fire HD” models for use with DartConnect.

For Microsoft Surface tablets, to use DartConnect you must download and install Google Chrome or Firefox as DartConnect is not recommended for Microsoft browsers.

Please note that saving the app to the home screen will only work on mobile devices using Apple Safari or Google Chrome for Android and is not supported by Microsoft browsers or Silk on Kindle (see update below).

2018 Update:  For the Kindle Fire HD, we’ve heard from a number of users that installing the “Nova Launcher” from the Amazon app store will allow you to install Google Chrome and then permit saving DartConnect to the home screen.

 What’s that giant tablet I’ve seen on Facebook?
Nabi Big Tab – Buyer Beware…

The impressively sized 20″ and 24″ Nabi Big Tabs are great for tournament stages or a novelty, but the 13+ lb weight and 40-min battery life aren’t practical or high enough quality for regular use. You can still find deals on eBay and Amazon for around $200-$300 USD, but be aware that buyers report a high incidence of receiving units with faulty components such as the battery or power supply.

2018 Update:  Big Tabs were officially discontinued by Nabi last year, but you can still find units at the link above.  Be aware that various problems still exist with the faulty battery/power supply, plus the device is no longer supported at all putting long-term use at risk.

I got a great deal on a tablet, now what?
Check out the “How To” section of our website

DartConnect’s website includes helpful guides, videos, tutorials and answers to frequently asked questions. Once you’ve signed up for your Premium membership, learn more about: