View Count: 117 |  Publish Date: July 29, 2013
Best tablets under $200
Barnes & Noble Nook HD+
Cnet rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
The good: The Nook HD+ starts at only $149, and has a sharp screen, good performance and a microSD slot. Its also lightweight and comfortable, and displays magazines and catalogs better than any other tablet.
The bad: There are no cameras, the screen is susceptible to fingerprints, and the OS can feel sluggish at times.
The cost: $149 to $179
The bottom line: The Nook HD+ is a low-price, quality entry into the world of tablets, especially now that it has full Google Play support. Barnes & Noble doesnt plan to make more Nook HD+ tablets, so get them on the cheap.Google Nexus 7
Cnet rating: 4 stars out of 5
The good: The Nexus 7 features a sharp screen, a comfortable design and great battery life at a low starting price. Android 4.2 adds some welcome and useful features, and the Nexus 7 is likely to keep getting timely OS updates even after the new model comes out Tuesday.
The bad: Android still needs more tablet-optimized apps, newer games have frame rate issues, and HSPA+ speeds seem particularly location-dependent.
The cost: $149 to $199
The bottom line: With its excellent design, useful software features and low starting price, the Nexus 7 is the cheapest way to experience the best that the Android OS has to offer.Kindle Fire HD
Cnet rating: 4 stars out of 5
The good: The Kindle Fire HD has a most impressive-looking 7-inch tablet screen, its speakers deliver killer sound, and its refined interface is the best gateway to Amazon content for Prime members. New enhancements fill its $199 price to the brim with value.
The bad: Performance is sluggish at times, and the Fire HD is less comfortable to hold than the Nexus 7. The curated app store means many apps and games are not available. Theres a $15 opt-out for ads.
The cost: $199
The bottom line: With a beautiful screen, refined interface, and huge coffer of media consumption options, the Amazon Kindle Fire HD is the Kindle Fire as it should have been. A new model is expected in fall.Barnes & Noble Nook HD
Cnet rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
The good: The Nook HD has a light, comfortable design with a sharp screen and a well-implemented user-profiles feature. Books, videos and magazines look great, and the microSD slot takes some of the sting out of the lack of internal storage.
The bad: Its missing some typical tablet features, and 8 GB is still a low starting point for storage. Fingerprints easily sully the screen and performance can be sluggish at times.
The cost: $129 to $149
The bottom line: The Barnes & Noble Nook HDs sharp screen and comfortable body make it an ideal tablet choice, especially for reading books or magazines and watching movies. Google Play adds to the allure. Again, grab one before Nook HDs are no more.
The following Cnet staff members contributed to this report: associate editor Xiomara Blanco and senior editors Eric Franklin and Laura K. Cucullu. For more reviews of personal technology products, visit

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Time: 4:28  |  News Code: 320376  |  Site: San Francisco Chronicle
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