Samsung unveiled two new tablets in New York today, both with similarly slim and lightweight design, high-resolution screens and familiar price tags.
The Galaxy Tab S will come in two sizes; one with a 10.5-inch screen, the other with a display measuring 8.4-inches. Both feature Super AMOLED panels with 2,560 x 1,600 pixel resolution — offering more pixels per inch than Apple’s iPads with Retina Display, but at the same price.
Samsung has placed a US$499 price on the WiFi-only 10.5-inch Tab S and US$399 on the WiFi-only 8.4-inch model. These prices match Apple iPad range like-for-like in regards to size, storage and connectivity.
Far more impressive is how thin and lightweight Samsung’s engineers have been able to make these devices. Both tablets are only 6.6mm thick — just 0.2mm thicker than Sony’s Xperia Z2 Tablet. The larger 10.5-inch model weighs in at 453-grams, while the smaller 8.4-inch model is lighter still at a measly 283-grams, or 50-grams lighter than the latest iPad Mini.
Like Samsung Galaxy S5 phone, the new tablets feature a fingerprint scanner as Home button, but with extended application over the version we saw in the smartphone. Up to 8 fingerprints can be stored in the new Galaxy Tab S, and each can be used to unlock a different user profile on the tablet.
Keys to tablet success
Samsung will have a number of first-party accessories available for these tablets, including folding protective covers and stands. But more importantly, the 10.5-inch model will have a slim keyboard cover available too.
This positions the Tab S beside Microsoft’s Surface tablet with its keyboard cover, which some might say is a must-have accessory for enterprise productivity with a tablet device.
The Samsung Bluetooth Keyboard will add an extra 340-grams to the overall weight of the tablet, but it does come with its own 2000mAh battery built-in, which will add an extra 25% to battery capacity in the tablet alone. Pricing for the keyboard cover is yet to be announced.