Samsung's fat roster of tablets-- but not by much. The super-slim and lightweight will go on sale in July, but with the panoply of Samsung tablets already available, what's the big deal?
In addition to the premium pair of Tab S slates, Samsung offers the high-endand lines, as well as the simpler Galaxy Tabs -- now in their . Each series of tablets comes in a variety of sizes, usually a 7- and a 10-inch, with recent dabbling in the mid-size 8-inch range.
Though the Galaxy tablets share a few things in common, like Samsung's TouchWiz overlay, IR blasters, and button-filled bottom bezels, each line is subtly different in its approach. Here's a breakdown of each of Samsung's premium tablet lineups.
The tablet-sized Samsung Galaxy Notes mirror the successful features of their, with productivity-geared software anchored by stylus capabilities. Every improves on , and better S Pen integration matched with sleeker designs helps you stomach their expensive prices.
The 10-inch model received a welcomed, but the 8-incher hasn't seen a recent refresh, so when compared to the newer Galaxy Pro and Tab S slates, the mid-size Note has meeker, outdated specs. Despite this, you'll be hard pressed to find a tablet with similarly useful stylus integration.
Creative types will love the S Pen -- there's even a super-sized, if you need a larger canvas -- but multi-window capabilities and handwriting recognition technology make the Notes a better companion for a student or writer. Prospective buyers might want to hold off for the eventual re-boot of , either to get an upgrade in specs, or a better deal on the older model.
The Galaxy Pro tablets are Samsung's best response to; they're some of the most high-end Android-based slates around. There's no fancy gimmick to them, but the name may just be a nod to how good Samsung is getting at making tablets.
With slim, solid construction, and pixel-packed screens, the zippy Galaxy Pro line lends itself more to play than work, but is highly capable of both. Theis a more attractive buy, taking residence as one of the few premium mid-size slates available, while the model is eclipsed by better performing -- and more affordable -- large tablets.
If you want a feature-filled slate with smooth performance, multitasking capabilities, and a super-sharp screen, the Galaxy Pro 8.4 offers a premium experience for a premium price, but skip the 10-incher if you're in the market for a high-end large slate.
Galaxy Tab S
Last, but not least, is Samsung's latest and greatest flagship tablets. On paper, the Galaxy Tab S lineup looks similar to the Pro models, but their ultra-thin design topped off with a cutting-edge screen sets them apart.
The Tab S slates are the skinniest and lightest in Samsung's entire Galaxy and, though the screen resolution matches the Pro line, the Super AMOLED screens on the Tab S series struts higher contrast ratios, wider range of colors, and deeper black levels that result in more vivid and detailed images. The display isn't all beauty and no brains; it can automatically adjust the screen's settings to optimize your viewing experience in different environments -- but it only does this for a handful of native apps.
Movie and TV buffs will love the super-sharp and colorful screen for binge-watching the latest Netflix original programming and, though artists might sway towards the stylus-toting Note tablets, the purportedly accurate colors (90 per cent of Adobe RGB) on the Tab S will appeal more to professional creative types. Also, any gadget-hounds that must have the latest and greatest will appreciate the super-compact designs and colorfully mesmerizing screens on the premium pair.
Which one to choose?
Depending on your needs and wants, you can probably find a Samsung tablet that'll suit you. Pricing starts at the higher end, but with new models released every few months, you can probably find a good deal online.
The lineup of Note tablets should see a refresh this year and, unless you're looking at the 10-inch 2014 model, you might want to hold off on that big-ticket purchase. The release of the Galaxy Tab S line will probably bring down the price of the Galaxy Pro tablets, making them a tempting option, but if your budget allows, the remarkable screen and sleekest-design-ever of the Galaxy Tab S is as cutting-edge as it gets in the tablet scene.
If you need help parsing through the minutiae of differences between Samsung's premium tablets, below you'll find a breakdown of specs for the latest line-ups, categorized by size.
(Note: Australian prices for the Tab S 8.4 and 10.5 have not yet been announced, so Australian prices for those products are conversions of the US price.)
Mid-size (8 to 9 inches)
|Tablet||Samsung Galaxy Note 8||Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4||Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4|
|Dimensions (inches)||8.3" x 5.35" x 0.31"||8.6" x 5.05" x 0.28"||8.4" x 4.9" x 0.26"|
|Processor||Exynos 1.6GHz quad-core||2.3GHz quad-core||Exynos S Octa Processor (1.9GHz quad-core + 1.3GHz quad-core)|
|MicroSD card capacity||64GB||64GB||microXD up to 128GB|
|Screen size (inches)||8||8.4||8.4|
|Display type||TFT||scLCD||Super AMOLED|
|Starting price||$330, £215, AU$375||$400, £270, AU$349||$400, £319, AU$425|
Large (10 inches and up)
|Tablet||Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 (2014 Edition)||Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1||Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5|
|Dimensions (inches)||9.6" x 6.8" x 0.3"||9.6" x 6.7" x 0.29"||9.7" x 7" x 0.26"|
|System-on-chip||Exynos 5 Octa (1.9GHz quad-core + 1.3GHz quad-core)||Exynos 5 Octa (1.9GHz quad-core + 1.3GHz quad-core)||Exynos 5 Octa (1.9GHz quad-core ＋ 1.3GHz quad-core)|
|Storage||16GB or 32GB||16GB||16GB|
|Expandable storage||microSD up to 64GB||microSD up to 64GB||microXD up to 128GB|
|Screen size (inches)||10.1||10.1||10.5|
|Pixels per inch||299ppi||299ppi||287ppi|
|Display type||TFT||scLCD||Super AMOLED|
|Starting price||$550, £400, AU$600||$500, £380, AU$550||$500, £399, AU$530|