Apple just launched the iPad Air 5, and Samsung launched the Galaxy Tab S8 last month to compete with the iPad Air. So an iPad Air 5 vs Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 comparison was inbound. While the Samsung tablet gave last gen’s iPad a run for its money, can we say the same after comparing the iPad Air 5 and Galaxy Tab S8?
Both tablets have identical specs, are similarly priced, and come out with the latest OS in their respective domains. So which one is the better mid-range tablet? You’ll find out at the end of our iPad Air 5 vs Samsung Galaxy Tab 8 comparison.
iPad Air 5 Vs Galaxy Tab S8
|Specifications||Apple iPad Air 5||Samsung Galaxy Tab S8|
|Build||100% Recycled Aluminum||Armor Aluminum|
|Display||10.9-inch Liquid Retina display with 500 nits max brightness.||11-inch 2560×1600 276ppi LTPS TFT with up to 120Hz refresh rate|
|Cameras||Rear: 12MP Ultra-wide camera|
Front: 12 MP Ultra-wide camera with Center Stage
|Rear: 13MP wide + 6MP Ultrawide rear cameras|
Front: 12 MP Ultrawide
|Ram + Storage||64GB, 256GB||8/12GB + 128/256GB|
microSD up to 1 TB
|OS||iPadOS 15||Android 12|
|Processor||Apple M1 Silicon|
8-core CPU, 8-core GPU, 16-core Neural engine
|Snapdragon 8 Gen 1|
4nm 64-bit Octa-core processor
|Connectivity||5G, WiFi 6, USB Type-C||5G, LTE, WiFi 6E, Bluetooth, USB Type-C (3.2)|
|Security||Touch ID in the lock button||Side key mounted fingerprint scanner|
Samsung Knox with Samsung Vault
45-watt fast charging
|In-the-box||iPad Air, Type-C cable||Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 with S Pen and Type-C cable.|
|Colors||Space grey, Starlight, Pink, Purple, Blue||Graphite, Silver, Pink Gold|
Well, our last comparison between Apple and Samsung tablets went to Samsung and it looks like Apple is putting up a fight for the throne. However, the iPad still lacks a high refresh rate display, a respectable base variant storage, and even an OLED screen.
Moving from display to the cameras, Samsung has one additional rear camera compared to the iPad Air. The front camera placement is also done better on the Samsung device. The iPad still comes with an awkwardly-placed front camera, but it is now a 12MP shooter with Center Stage, which is good.
Chip Over Storage
Samsung nails Apple in the storage department. The Tab S8 packs 128GB base storage with up to 1TB expandable storage. And Samsung does this while undercutting the iPad by over $100.
But Apple punches back with the processor. The much-appreciated M1 chip has trickled down to the iPad Air. It is an older chip now, but it punches way above its weight. However, the iPadOS 15 is not optimized to use the full potential of this chip.
With respect to battery, connectivity, and security options, the iPad Air 5 vs Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 are at par on paper. But when it comes to the in-the-box contents, the Samsung tablet comes with the S pen at no additional cost. On the other hand, you’ll have to shell out an additional $90 for the Apple Pencil.
Which Tablet Should You Buy?
Both the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 and iPad Air 5 Pro are excellent value for money. The choice comes down to personal preferences and how you plan to use your tablet. Samsung comes with the flexibility of Android, which syncs well with Windows devices and can also give you a desktop experience with Samsung Dex.
And the iPad Air is now packing the M1 chip, which is literally laptop performance crammed into a laptop. But Apple still hasn’t enabled the iPadOS enough to make use of the SoC it is packing. You could wait till the next WWDC and find out if Apple bridges this gap with a revamped iPadOS 16.
Currently, the iPad works amazingly well within the Apple ecosystem and if you have an iPhone and a Mac, the iPad is a no-brainer. However, if you wish to keep using Apple devices without Apple apps, check out the linked article.
Which ecosystem are you a part of? Will you buy the iPad Air 5 or Samsung Galaxy Tab S8? Do let us know in the comments.