Home / Tablet Reviews / Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 review: Still brilliant, but soon to be replaced

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 review: Still brilliant, but soon to be replaced

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 evaluation: Nonetheless good, however quickly to get replaced

Once we first reviewed the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3, we have been greater than impressed. Not solely was it the very best Android pill that had ever come out, however it even stood as much as Apple’s iPad Professional – the one actual competitor.

At launch, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3’s solely fault was its absurdly excessive price ticket, which appeared to punish Android lovers who did not need to succumb to the beckon of iOS on the iPad. Within the yr since its unique launch, this has dropped down slightly, from £599 to £469, making for a extra palatable buy.

That is all nicely and good, however it might be time to neglect concerning the Tab S3 fully. In August, Samsung is predicted to disclose its model new iPad-rivalling pill, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S4. The grand unveiling will happen on the Samsung Unpacked occasion on August ninth, though the South Korean conglomerate has already misplaced the ingredient of shock; a number of pictures of the machine have already been leaked.

Can the Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 revolutionise the Android pill expertise another time, as did the Tab S3? To search out out, you may have to remain tuned for our full evaluation when the Tab S4 comes out. Our unique evaluation for the Tab S3 will be discovered beneath.

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Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 evaluation

It’s some time since an Android pill actually gripped my consideration. We’re residing in an period dominated by iPads in any case, with Apple successfully proudly owning the big-screen cell expertise. However Samsung’s shock announcement of the Galaxy Tab S3 at this yr’s MWC has piqued my curiosity as soon as extra.

It appears to be the most important leap ahead within the pill sport for the reason that 9.7in iPad Professional landed again in 2015. It’s a significantly sturdy contender for the Google Pixel C’s crown, which in any other case stays the one Android pill I’d ever actually advocate.

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The Galaxy Tab S3 doesn’t look a lot completely different to Samsung’s final premium pill providing, the Galaxy Tab S2. It’s nonetheless obtained that beautiful 9.7in AMOLED show on the entrance (extra on that later) and it’s nonetheless significantly skinny and light-weight. The massive distinction this yr? Samsung lobs its enhanced S Pen within the field at no cost. And that’s nearly well worth the worth of admission alone.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 evaluation: Value and competitors

The Tab S3’s apparent competitors is Apple’s new iPad. It’s Apple’s most cost-effective pill providing, with costs beginning at £339 – but there’s no sacrifice in efficiency, and its battery life is stellar. Mainly, it’s an inexpensive iPad, and other people will flock to purchase it.

For the Galaxy Tab S3, then again, you’ll should fork out £599. That’s £260 greater than Apple’s latest iPad, and £200 greater than the 9.7in Galaxy Tab S2, which retailed for simply £399 two years in the past. I wouldn’t go placing all of the blame on Brexit, although: there’s a good set of enhancements inside to justify that worth bump.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 evaluation: Specs

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 Samsung Galaxy Tab S2
Processor Quad-core 2.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 Octa-core 1.9GHz Exynos Octa 5433
Show 9.7in 2,048 x 1,536 AMOLED 9.7in 2,048 x 1,536 AMOLED
Storage 32GB 32GB
Battery 6,000mAh 5,870mAh
Android model Android 7.zero Nougat Android 5.zero Lollipop

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 evaluation: Show and sound

Now, let’s get to the factor you first see while you crack open the field – that beautiful show. The 9.7in display fully dominates the entrance of the Tab S3, regardless of these fairly chunky facet bezels. Surprisingly, there’s no change in decision, which stays at 2,048 x 1,536, however the display does now help HDR content material. It’s significantly brilliant too, at a most 301cd/m2 – and because it’s an AMOLED show, its distinction and color protection are each wonderful.`

What does that imply in apply? The Tab S3 is nicely suited to out of doors use, even in close to direct daylight, and something you watch on it – from Netflix to YouTube – will look positively beautiful. Colors are remarkably crisp, and pictures are crammed with punchy element. If you happen to’re after one thing for on-the-go media consumption and Fb feed scrolling, that is it.

Sound, in the meantime, is offered by a four-speaker association. All the quad-speaker tablets we’ve seen thus far – the iPad Professional 12.9in, the iPad Professional 9.7in and the Huawei M2 10 – have sounded nice, and Samsung hits this one out of the park. Audio high quality is superb, and due to an AKG-branded “quad-stereo” array, which robotically detects the orientation you’re holding the pill in, you get a correct stereo picture in each panorama and portrait modes.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 evaluation: S-pen and keyboard

The attraction of this pill lies partly in its elective keyboard and bundled S-Pen stylus. The keyboard (which we haven’t but tried for ourselves) attaches through a magnetic pogo-pin connection on the left fringe of the pill, folding over and propping up the pill similar to the iPad Professional 9.7in’s Good Keyboard. It additionally doubles as a case when it isn’t in use; it’s a neat accent, however an costly one at £119. Anticipate a evaluation in the end.

As for the stylus, it’s Samsung’s most superior S-Pen but, with a smaller tip than ever, measuring simply zero.7mm throughout. Whereas I’m actually no artist, I discovered it beautiful to put in writing with on the Galaxy Tab S3’s display. My favorite factor about it’s a new characteristic referred to as Display Off Memo, which lets you scribble fast notes on the display with out having to unlock the pill and even flip it on.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 evaluation: Efficiency and battery life

How about these internals? The Galaxy Tab S3 will get a bump up from its predecessor, to a spec that’s first rate by immediately’s requirements, if not innovative. A quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor runs the present – slightly behind the instances in smartphone phrases, maybe, however the general expertise is lightning fast.

Purchase Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 from Currys PC World

That’s mirrored in a Geekbench four multi-core results of four,208 and a single-core rating of 1,751. Clearly, the Tab S3 blazes previous Google’s Pixel C and the older Tab S2, however is marginally bested by Apple’s new iPad, with its four,204 and a pair of,490 scores.

There’s additionally 4GB of RAM, 32GB of built-in storage and a microSD slot for enlargement, which is able to take playing cards as much as 256GB in dimension. A 4G/LTE mannequin is obtainable too, promising obtain speeds of as much as 300Mbits/sec for highway warriors.

Whereas the battery is barely bigger than the Tab S2’s, the bump to six,000mAh doesn’t appear to have paid off. The S3 lasted 11hrs 43minutes in our steady video playback check with the display set to 170cd/m2 – that’s practically three hours wanting the Tab S2’s 14hrs 33minutes, and additional behind the brand new iPad’s 14hrs 47minutes. That Snapdragon 830 should be fairly power-hungry; on the upside, it recharges speedily through the USB-C port on the underside.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 evaluation: Verdict

The Galaxy Tab S2 was already nice, however the S3 actually kicks issues up a notch. With its speedy efficiency, bundled S-Pen and pixel-perfect show, it’s a really good pill certainly.

Sadly, that absurdly excessive worth must be considered. Previous to the announcement, I’d have guessed a worth of beneath £500, to undercut Apple’s 9.7in iPad Professional. Asking punters to pay £260 greater than the price of a brand new iPad looks like a grasping gamble that may not repay.

Even so, Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S3 is undeniably a powerful machine. If you happen to’ve obtained the money at hand (fortunate you) and like to stay with Android, reasonably than following the iPad crowd, the Tab S3 is unquestionably the pill for you.

Processor Quad-core 2.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 820
Display dimension 9.7in
Display decision 1,536 x 2,048
Display kind sAMOLED
Entrance digital camera 5-megapixel
Rear digital camera 13-megapixel
Flash Sure
GPS Sure
Compass Sure
Storage (free) 32GB
Reminiscence card slot (equipped) microSD
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
Bluetooth four.2
Wi-fi information N/A
Dimensions 237.three x 169 x 6 mm
Weight 429g
Working system Android 7.zero
Battery dimension 6,000mAh


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