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Samsung tablets compared: Stylus, keyboard and more!


At the beginning of 2022, Samsung introduced the Galaxy Tab A8, which is an affordable entry-level tablet that runs on Android. Thus, the manufacturer further expanded its portfolio and strengthened its position as top dog in the Android tablet market. Whether be it in the education sector, for mobile productivity use, or simply for leisure activities such as casual surfing or gaming, Samsung has a suitable model.

In this article, we will introduce you to the most exciting Samsung tablets in the market at the moment and also take a look at whether you can take advantage of the stylus – Samsung’s vaunted S Pen or with a keyboard. As always, we begin with an overview of the most important hardware specifications:

  Editor’s recommendation Most powerful Galaxy tablet Mid-range tablet Affordable tablet with S Pen Entry-level tablet
Product name
Image Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 FE 5G Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite Samsung Galaxy Tab A8
Display 11 inch, LTPS display, 2560 x 1600 pixels, 120 Hz 12.4 inch, Super AMOLED
2800 x 1752 pixels, 120 Hz
12.4-inch, LCD display, 2560 x 1600 pixels, 60 Hz 10.4 inch, LCD display, 2000 x 1200 pixels 10.5 inch, LCD display, 1920 x 1080 pixels, 60 Hz
SoC Snapdragon 865+ Snapdragon 865+ Snapdragon 750G Exynos 9611 Unisoc T618
Memory 6/8 GB RAM
128/256 GB
Expandable via microSD
6/8 GB RAM
128/256 GB
Expandable via microSD
4 GB RAM
64 GB
Expandable via microSD
4 GB RAM
64/128 GB
Expandable via microSD
3 GB RAM
32 GB memory
Expandable via microSD
Battery 8000 mAh, 45 W Quick-Charging 10090 mAh, 45 W Quick-Charging 10090 mAh, with 45 W Quick-Charging 7040 mAh 7040 mAh
Software Android 11 with One UI Android 11 with One UI Android 11 with One UI 3.1 Android 11 with One UI Android 11 with One UI
Camera Rear: 13 + 5 MP
Front: 8 MP
Rear: 13 + 5 MP
Front: 8 MP
Rear: 8 MP
Front: 5 MP
Rear: 8 MP
Front: 5 MP
Rear: 8 MP
Front: 5 MP
Compatible with S Pen Yes, S Pen included Yes, S Pen included Yes, S Pen included Yes, S Pen included No
Compatible with keyboard Yes, Book Cover Keyboard sold separately Yes, Book Cover Keyboard sold separately Yes, Book Cover Keyboard sold separately Third-party keyboards sold separately Third-party keyboards sold separately
Models Wi-Fi / LTE Wi-Fi / 5G Wi-Fi / 5G Wi-Fi / LTE Wi-Fi / LTE
Pros
  • High-quality workmanship
  • Appealing design
  • 5G connecvity
  • S Pen included
  • 12.4-inch display
  • Good battery life
  • Decent sound
Cons
  • No AMOLED display
  • Only 60 hertz refresh rate
  • Only 4 GB RAM and 64 GB of storage
  • No flagship SoC (Snapdragon 750G)
  • No fingerprint sensor
  • Too expensive for a lite version
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As you can see, the stylus is already included in most cases. What you have to look out for when buying a tablet, or which tablet is the right one for you? We will narrow down the search criteria below.

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Buying advice: What should you look out for when buying a tablet?

First, let’s take a brief look at how you should choose your tablet if you are currently thinking about buying one. It is worth your time to ponder carefully about whether you only need a cheap device that you can use as a secondary display for Twitter and other apps apart from watching TV, or whether you want to be productive wherever you go. 

Editor’s recommendation: Samsung Galaxy Tab S7

Galaxy Tab S7
The Galaxy Tabs of the S7 series already appeared in 2020 / © Samsung

In September 2020, Samsung introduced its S7 tablets with the Galaxy Tab 7 as well as the 7+. Our editorial recommendation would be the smaller version, even though it falls behind the Plus model in several aspects such as the display. With a screen that measures 11 inches across diagonally, it is the more compact of the two and also relies on an LTPS TFT panel.

Apart from that, it is equipped with the former flagship SoC, the Snapdragon 865+, and just like the Galaxy Tab S7+, it offers a choice of 6 or 8 GB of RAM as well as 128 or 256 GB of storage. Apart from that, you can choose between the Wi-Fi model and the LTE version. Thus, you will not find 5G connectivity in this model.

The battery has a capacity of 8,000 mAh and you can quickly charge it at up to 45 watts, which requires a faster charger that is sold separately. There’s also a dual rear camera configuration of 13 MP and 5 MP, respectively, and an 8 MP selfie camera. You do not need me to tell you that photography isn’t a tablet’s core competency.

As with all models in the S7 range, the excellent S Pen is included in this package. You would be pleased to know that the tablet has been updated to Android 11, and the S Pen has also been received new features courtesy of software updates. Thanks to the availability of 4,096 pressure levels, low latency of the pen and the display’s 120 Hertz refresh rate, it is really very pleasant to type with the stylus, which also offers a litany of control gestures.

The Galaxy Tab S7 can also be used with a keyboard, but it has to be purchased separately and costs a hefty $199 in Samsung’s store. It is much cheaper on Amazon, where it is already available for $109. Alternatively, you can of course look for cheap third-party alternatives that begin from $40 thereabouts.

When the Galaxy Tab S7 was introduced, the starting price was $699 for the variant with WLAN and 128 GB storage. That is also the reason why we picked this tablet as our editor’s choice: You will pay $300 more for the Plus variant, a surcharge that is not justified by the better display and 5G alone in our opinion.

Best premium tablet: Samsung Galaxy S7+

Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus
The 12.4-inch display of the Galaxy S7+ assures you can work productively / © Samsung

Let’s move on to the most powerful Samsung tablet available currently based on the hardware specifications. Its technical specifications are mostly identical to those of the smaller Galaxy Tab S7: The Snapdragon 865+ chipset does its job here as well, and you can choose between 128 GB and 256 GB of storage. However, the 120 Hz display grows to 12.4 inches, and more importantly, it is a Super AMOLED panel that offers crisper, more vibrant colors.

The larger display naturally consumes more power, so Samsung has also given the Galaxy Tab S7+ a boost in its battery capacity at 10,090 mAh. Apart from that, the main difference would be its compatibility with 5G networks. If you want both computing power, an AMOLED display, and 5G network connectivity, you cannot avoid this tablet from Samsung.

However, there is a price to pay, and a hefty one, too: The top model with 5G and 256 GB storage was introduced with an MSRP of $1,049. You should be able to find better deals elsewhere online. 

Needless to say, the S Pen is of course included here as well, and there is also a keyboard that you can purchase separately. Due to the larger display, this model is predestined for productive work! We do not want to withhold a link to the keyboard cover here either. It is also worth taking a look at Amazon, where the Book Cover Keyboard is cheaper by $90 compared to Samsung’s store, going for approximately :

Best mid-range tablet: Samsung Galaxy S7 FE

NextPit Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 FE display
The Fan Edition of the Galaxy Tab S7 – also comes with a 12.4-inch screen size / © NextPit

The youngest member of the S7 series is the Galaxy Tab S7 FE. It is significantly cheaper than the other two models, but has unfortunately slimmed down significantly as well. The Snapdragon 750G chipset, 4 GB RAM, and 64 GB of storage will have to suffice here.

Why do we still recommend it? Because it also has a 5G option, includes the S Pen, and the large 12.4-inch display (but no AMOLED and only 60 Hz refresh rate!). The Fan Edition tablet did not fully convince me in the review, but it is nevertheless a useful all-rounder if you do not have particularly high demands. If you just like to read on the Internet while commuting or on the couch at home, play a few casual games that are not too CPU-intensive, or want to take down notes with the S Pen, the Galaxy Tab S7 FE will suffice.

By the way, the keyboard cover of the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ that we mentioned above is also compatible with this tablet. You have to bear in mind that the Snapdragon 750G chipset is weaker, but you should be able to work comfortably with a keyboard here as well.

The price could be the deciding factor in this case. The Wi-Fi version is currently available for $500 thereabouts on Amazon. By the way, the tablet is a bit more expensive in the Samsung store at $529.99, but it has apparently received a price cut at the moment, being a relative bargain at $379.99! (price correct at publishing time)

Best affordable tablet with S Pen: Samsung Galaxy S6 Lite

Galaxy Tab S6 Lite
The Galaxy Tab S6 Lite is also a lightweight in price / © Samsung

If the above tablets are too expensive and too clunky for you, you should take a look at the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite. With a screen that measures 10.4 inches, it is the smallest of the tablets listed here, but it is also more affordable in terms of price compared to Samsung’s flagship range. The model released at the end of April 2020 cost only $349.99 at the time and is currently available at a cheaper rate.

A somewhat weak Exynos 9611 does its job well, and it is accompanied by 4 GB of RAM. You can choose between 64 GB and 128 GB storage capacities. Of course, you will have to lower your demands for working and gaming with this model, but at least the S Pen is included here as well, which makes it the cheapest tablet with a stylus in our list.

The battery has a capacity of 7,040 mAh, and the cameras (8 MP rear, 5 MP front) are negligible as usual for tablets. There is no official keyboard cover for the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite, but you can of course use third-party products that offer rather affordable keyboards.

If you simply want to play your casual games on a bigger screen than the smartphone, check news, social media and mails on the couch and scribble down notes every now and then, you might be quite happy with the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite.

Best entry-level tablet: Samsung Galaxy A8

Samsung Galaxy Tab A8 Main KV H 1000 796x563
Samsung’s new entry-level tablet / © Samsung

Actually, this list could have ended with the S6 Lite, but Samsung recently launched another very affordable alternative in the form of the Galaxy Tab A8. The device only costs $229 for the WLAN version, although the price seems to have dropped temporarily to $129.99.

Samsung targets schoolchildren and students with this tablet, which is basically a customer base on a tight budget. Of course, you have to lower your expectations here as well, and this device is the only one in this list that lacks S Pen compatibility. If you cannot do without a stylus at all, you can help yourself with third-party manufacturers that offer such pens for all touchscreens quite cheaply. Of course, you should not expect “S Pen” features in terms of functionality, but it should be enough for scribbling on the screen.

Otherwise, the hardware is of course slim pickings: 3 GB of RAM, 32 GB of internal storage and a Full HD display (LCD) that measures 10.5 inches across diagonally, as well as the usual barely usable camera pair (5 MP front, 8 MP rear) and a battery with a capacity of 7,040 mAh. By the way, there is also a version with 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of storage while another has up to 128 GB of storage space, depending on your needs. Either way, you can expand the storage via a microSD card.

In terms of quality, this is clearly below what a tablet should be able to deliver today (not to mention the fact that Samsung will launch the Galaxy Tab S8 soon), but it is also better than nothing. Those who order now from Samsung can also get a free Book Cover. However, only the Wi-Fi version of the tablet can be pre-ordered there so far.

If you are looking for a Samsung tablet, now is the right time to do so. As always, we look forward to your comments and opinions concerning these South Korean tablets.


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