Video: Christmas tablet roundup

Computing discusses the leading tablet contenders, including the iPad and iPad Mini, Nexus 7, Surface and Kindle Fire
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Tablets are here to stay, with only the most backwards-looking IT chiefs refusing to accommodate them in their plans. So which tablets are best suited to the enterprise environment?

For this roundup, we put some of the most promising devices through their paces to find how well they balanced enterprise productivity with more leisure-oriented use.

We pitched the Apple iPad against the Microsoft Surface, the Google Nexus 7, the Kindle Fire HD, Apple's iPad Mini and a 9.7" budget option from Prestigio. (To compare specs, see our Vital Statistics box at the end of this article.)

Is it worth splashing the cash on an iPad or a Surface, or do the subsidised models from Google and Amazon represent better value for money? And how do some of the budget products compare with the big names that are happy to sell their devices at an aggressive break-even price to win market share?

The heavy-hitters

The Apple iPad is arguably the slickest and most desirable tablet on the market - and one of the most expensive. However, while the new-new iPad will set you back £399 for the base model, the iPad 2 is now an enticing £329.

Apple's ecosystem has been around so long now, it's really hard to argue with it. On a consumer level, it's a slick, accessible and dependable solution filled with newspaper and magazine readers, streaming TV and all the best games.

But a recent Computing survey discovered that Apple devices are also the most used in a BYOD context. There are several mobile device management tools available for the iPad, and the number of business apps on offer via Apple's App Store is growing all the time. In short, the iPad is a more developed enterprise possibility than many give it credit for.

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