In 2015, the tablet market faced what could be called an identity crisis as vendors began to experiment with new form factors and accessories to address slowing customer demand.
The global tablet market is expected to slow down, declining eight percent in 2015, according to market research firm IDC.
However, there are also a slew of new opportunities in the tablet space, as detachable devices, or 2-in-1s, have a significant opportunity for growth in the commercial segment in 2015. At the same time, Microsoft's Windows 10 operating system and Intel's new Skylake microarchitecture created new performance and device-streamlining opportunities.
Following are the 10 coolest tablets that vendors such as Apple, Samsung, Lenovo and others released in 2015.
Apple iPad Pro
Apple's iPad Pro had critics split after its 11 November release, with some calling Apple's newest tablet a big and powerful tool, and others criticising the device for its failure to replace a PC and a costly price.
The iPad Pro stands out in its massive, 12.9-inch screen, works with new accessories, such as a keyboard and the company's Apple Pencil stylus, and sports an improved A9X processor. The device also contains up to 10 hours of battery life and a secure Touch ID feature.
The iPad Pro is a pricier tablet, starting at $1279 for the 32GB version and running up to $1699 for the 128GB version. The tablet comes in three metallic finishes - silver, gold and space gray - and is available through Apple Authorized Resellers in addition to the company's retail stores.
Nvidia Shield Tablet K1
Nvidia's Shield Tablet K1 specializes in its $199 price tag and features targeted at gamers.
The 8-inch 16-GB tablet comes equipped with motion sensors and 4K ultra-HD-ready video features, as well as front-facing stereo speakers and front- and back-facing cameras. Nvidia packs its Tegra K1 processor, featuring a 192-core Nvidia Kepler GPU and 2.2GHz quad-core CPU, into its tablet for enhanced gaming performance and graphics. Nvidia's new tablet also has 2 GB of RAM and a 1,920 x 1,200 IPS display.
Nvidia lowered the price of its Shield Tablet from $299 to $199 for the 16-GB current Shield Tablet K1 version, which is a Wi-Fi model.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S2
Samsung in July announced the Galaxy Tab S2, departing from its other tablets with a lighter, boxier 4:3 aspect ratio design and improved, faster Exynos 5433 SoC.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 comes either in an 8-inch or 9.7-inch versions, and contains a 2,048 x 1,536 Super AMOLED display. The device comes with 3 GB of RAM and either 16 GB or 32 GB of storage, as well as a microSD card with up to 128 GB of storage.
Samsung's new tablet runs on the Android 5.0 OS and comes preloaded with Microsoft Office Solutions. The 8-inch version costs $499, while the 9.7-inch model costs $599.
Next: Surface Pro 4 and iPad mini