We have three tablets for the two of us. One in the kitchen for recipes, and a personal one for us to use around the house.
I often hang out on the couch and listen to music while I read e-comics, browse Reddit or Imgur, or use the tablet to look up IMDB entries. A laptop is just cumbersome and hot in those circumstances. An 8" tablet like my Samsung (1600p, beautiful display) is perfect, easy to read -- easier to read than a 4" phone screen. Laptop too big, phone too small.
Also works fine in the bathroom. Easier to read than a phone.
I have a crappy Nook HD for recipes and music selection in the kitchen -- it's a lot more portable than a laptop, fits everywhere, lasts a week or more on a charge just sitting there, and I don't have to worry about getting anything in a keyboard or using a mouse or crappy touch pad. Laptop too big, phone too small.
I was skeptical about getting a tablet, but for us they've worked out great in these scenarios.
Everyone has different needs.