Samsung has unveiled its next iPad rival.
At a tiny press gathering in NYC, just one week before the company unveils the Samsung Galaxy Note 9, Samsung announced the new Galaxy Tab S4 tablet. The Tab S4 is supposed to offer "tablet mobility and PC power". But how does it compare to the Galaxy Tab S3?
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 vs Galaxy Tab S3: Design
- Galaxy Tab S4 is slightly larger and thicker
- Both come with quad-stereo speakers
The Galaxy Tab S4 has bezels that are much slimmer than Samsung's prior Android tablets, which means there's no longer a home button. (Iris and face scanning and passcodes are available as authentication options.) It also has four speakers tuned by AKG and Dolby Atmos. In terms of size, it's 249.3 x 164.3 x 7.1mm and weighs 482g (Wi-Fi) or 483g (LTE).
The Galaxy Tab S3 also offers a lovely solid metal build and rounded corners, but it has a fingerprint sensor within the home button on the front of the device. The Galaxy Tab S3 has quad-stereo speakers tuned by AKG by Harman, too. And it has a 237.3 x 169 x 6.0mm build, so it's slightly thinner than its successor. The LTE model weighs 434g, while the Wi-Fi model weighs 429g.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 vs Galaxy Tab S3: Display
- Galaxy Tab S4 has a large 10.5-inch display
- Galaxy Tab S3 has 9.7-inch display, like the Tab S2
The Galaxy Tab S4 has a large 10.5-inch display with Super AMOLED technology, as well as a 16:10 screen ratio with 2560 x 1600, 287 pixels per inch (PPI) resolution for vivid picture detail. But it's similar in size to the Galaxy Tab S3, though the Galaxy Tab S4 sports narrower bezels.
As for the Galaxy Tab S3, it comes in just one screen size at 9.7-inches, rather than two like the Tab S2. The former model came in 9.7-inch and 8-inch options. Super AMOLED technology is on board the Tab S3, like its predecessor, along with a 2048 x 1536 pixel resolution. The Tab S3 also introduced HDR and 4K video playback to the party, though, and a partnership with Amazon offered users easy access to it.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 vs Galaxy Tab S3: Hardware
- Tab S4 has faster processor
- Tab S4 has more internal storage
The Galaxy Tab S3 features the Snapdragon 835 Octa Core (2.35GHz + 1.9GHz), supported by 4GB of RAM, and a 7300mAh battery. It is available with 64GB or 256GB of internal storage, microSD support for storage expansion, and comes in Wi-Fi and LTE variants. It also comes with a 13-megapixel rear camera and a 8-megapixel rear camera. There's a USB-C port, headphone jack, microSD slot, and a pin-connector.
Lastly, Samsung debuted S-Pen support on tablets with the Tab S3, and it's again here for the S4. The pen has been redesigned and supports 4096 pressure levels, and it can be stored away in a specially designed keyboard case when it’s not being used. That Book Cover Keyboard (sold separately) case is a standout feature, as is support for Samsung DeX, which lets you switch to a desktop experience.
The Galaxy Tab S3 features the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 chipset, supported by 4GB of RAM and a 6000mAh battery. It is available with 32GB of internal storage, microSD support for storage expansion and it comes in Wi-Fi and LTE variants. The new slab also comes with a 13-megapixel rear camera and a 5-megapixel front camera. USB Type-C is also on board, along with a 3.5mm jack.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 vs Galaxy Tab S3: Software
- Android Oreo on both
- Tab S4 works with a dock
The Galaxy Tab S4 launches with Android Oreo from the box (alongside the usual Samsung skin), with the Galaxy Tab S3 launched with Android Nougat but now runs Oreo. There are several new features on board the new Tab S4, though. Bixby is now available, and the S-Pen can be used for jotting down notes with the screen off, and there’s a new feature called Daily Board.
Daily Board turns your tablet into something like the Amazon Echo Show, so it shows useful info like weather when attached to a dock.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 vs Galaxy Tab S3: Price
- Tab S4 starts from £599
- Tab S3 starts from £599
The Galaxy Tab S4 pricing will be £599 for the Wi-Fi-only model and £649 for the LTE model.
Samsung includes the S-Pen in the package, but you’ll have to pay out £119 ($149) for the keyboard and $50 for the DeX. The Galaxy Tab S3 starts from £599.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 vs Galaxy Tab S3: Conclusion
The Galaxy Tab S4 has a bigger screen, upgraded S-Pen, and support for Bixby, a new keyboard case and DeX. It also has a faster processor and more internal storage. For all those reasons, the Tab S4 looks better on paper. Plus, it's the same list price as the Galaxy Tab S3!