Samsung has taken aim at both Apple and Microsoft with its latest tablet offerings. Revealed at the company's Unpacked media event in Barcelona on 26 February, the three-pronged approach sees Samsung square up to the iPad Pro and Microsoft Surface Book.
Announced on the eve of the Mobile World Congress technology show, also in Barcelona, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 is a shot across the bow of the 9.7in version of the iPad Pro, while a pair of new tablets called the Galaxy Book 10 and Book 12 are the South Korean's company's high-end, business-focused answer to the Surface.
Both versions of the Galaxy Book run the Windows 10 operating system, while the Tab S3 uses Android 7.0 Nougat. The screens of the Book come in at 10.6in and 12in respectively, both with a resolution of 1920 x 1280; the smaller is a regular TFT panel, while the larger is treated to a Super AMOLED display with HDR (High Dynamic Range) for better colour reproduction.
Inside, the smaller Book is powered by an Intel Core i3 processor with a 2.6GHz clock speed and 4GB of RAM; storage options are 64GB and 128GB, plus a microSD card slot to increase this by up to 256GB.
The larger Book 12 gets a 3.1GHz Core i7 processor with up to 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage; a lesser model has half the RAM and storage.
Both Books offer two USB-C ports, fast charging and up to 10 hours of battery life. They also come with an S Pen stylus for drawing on the screen and jotting down notes, as well as a folding keyboard cover with trackpad.
Galaxy Tab S3 takes on the Apple iPad Pro 9.7
As for the Galaxy Tab S3, the 9.7in tablet has exactly the same screen size as the iPad Pro (which is also available in a larger 12.2in configuration), and a resolution of 2048 x 1536, also equalling the iPad. The Samsung's screen supports High Dynamic Range (HDR), which offers brighter and more vivd colours
Inside, the Galaxy Tab S3 is powered by a quad-core Snapdragon 820 processor with 4GB of RAM and 32GB of storage. A microSD card slot means this can be increased by up to 256GB.
Also reminiscent of the iPad Pro is how the Tab S3 comes with four internal speakers for improved sound quality. As with the iPad, the Samsung adjusts the output of each speaker when you turn the device, between portrait and landscape.
The Tab S3 comes with Samsung's S-Pen stylus included in the box, which is a big upgrade over the 2015 Tab S2, which did not feature any stylus support at all.
The new stylus has a 0.7mm wide tip and can detect over 4,000 levels pressure, double that of its predecessor. Sadly and unlike Samsung's Note range, there is nowhere to store the stylus when you aren't using it; we feel a slot would certainly have come in handy. An optional keyboard case and stand, which connects magnetically, is sold separately.
Samsung has not revealed any prices or release dates for its three new tablets, but we hope this situation will change soon.