The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 5G is a new high-end tablet from South Korea. Launched in the first quarter of 2022, the device brings some differentials that make sense for those looking for a strong product with the Android operating system.
In addition to the immersive sound played by the Tab S8’s built-in stereo speakers, differences include an 11-inch high-resolution display and a 120 Hz refresh rate. And for being a high-end tablet, the big news in the specifications is the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 platform, which has the advantage of being compatible with 5G connections.
For lovers of accessories, the Galaxy Tab S8 already comes with an S Pen in the box, which already allows flexibility in different types of experiences, as the device helps to explore other features built into the product.
Want to know if it’s worth buying the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 5G? Then check out the full review.
Design and construction
The design of the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 is very similar to what we have seen in other tablets of the brand, such as the S7 series. However, it is also reminiscent of the 5th generation iPad Air, one of its main competitors on the market today.
That’s because the South Korean giant’s device has more square edges and rounded corners. On the left are the magnetic connectors that allow the device to connect to keyboards and compatible cases sold by the brand.
On the right are the physical buttons, and they are configured on the Tab S8 in a very similar way to what we can access on the brand’s smartphones. So it’s not difficult to adapt as the only change is the order of the keys.
The power button is located at the top and has the advantage of being configurable to allow unlocking via fingerprint reading, in addition to triggering the Bixby virtual assistant. The second is larger and is used to control the volume.
In addition to the buttons, this area has a drawer – a little further down – that has a slot for the access chip and another slot for a micro SD card to expand the space inside the product.
At the top, the speakers are paired with the two speakers at the bottom. The Tab S8 also has a USB-C port for charging the product and transferring data to other devices.
The Galaxy Tab S8 screen has an LCD panel with resolution and frequency as differences. The 11-inch screen is 1600 x 2560 pixels with an adaptive refresh rate of 120 Hz. In practice, this means that activating this option in the settings allows the browsing frequency to vary according to the needs of each app or game.
For example, there is no need to explore 120 Hz to reach a website, and some games already allow this setting to be maximized. One advantage of this feature in this usage format is that the battery life can be longer than a tablet that locks this feature at its maximum refresh rate.
One downside to the Tab S8’s display is that the lack of more advanced bezel options – like Super AMOLED on the Tab S8 Plus and Tab S8 Ultra – makes some colors less noticeable than expected. The most obvious example is that white becomes slightly yellowish, while black is closer to a dark brown.
However, the display is pleasantly bright and the 50% setting is enough for consistent visibility of content under different types of lighting, especially in sunlight.
S Pen in Tab S8 box
One of the many commendable features of the Tab S8 is that the device supports the S Pen stylus. Also, Samsung includes an accessory drive in the product box, so you don’t have to buy it separately.
With it, it is possible to take notes, draw and even write in e-books as an alternative to the keyboard, as algorithms can interpret the spelling and convert it into typed text.
However, this feature does not always work as expected. Being able to search for compound words is a challenge, as when you type the first word, the search begins. Many times my lyrics are not interpreted correctly and the word “PUBG” becomes “Puig” or “Rubg”.
I hope this feature will be fixed soon, as this tool is very useful for those who are “digitally literate” and have not yet mastered the use of virtual keyboards.
Settings and performance
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 has a powerful configuration that is equivalent to an S22 series smartphone. That’s because the tablet is powered by the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 platform, one of the most advanced chipsets on the market.
As a user experience advantage, Qualcomm hardware has released 5G connectivity support for Korean products. Of course, Brazil is still implementing the technology, so currently only 5G DSS is available on tablets.
Paired with this CPU, the Tab S8 features an Adreno 730 GPU that maximizes the multi-game graphics setup for a more realistic in-game look. This performance makes the existence of a 120 Hz monitor even more advantageous.
To complete the specifications section, the version sold in Brazil of the Galaxy Tab S8 has 8 GB of RAM and 256 GB of internal storage, expandable via micro SD card.
In benchmark tests, the tablet scored the following in the apps we use to measure performance:
- 3D mark: 8161 points and 48.90 fps (Wild Life) / 2340 points and 14 fps (Wild Life Extreme);
- GeekBench: CPU: 1198 (single-core); 3,216 (multi-core) / Compute: 5,913.
The main one has a 13 MP sensor capable of performing well in different scenes in good lighting conditions. Color balance, sharpness is acceptable for a tablet, this is not a photography focused product.
The secondary has a 6 MP sensor for ultra-wide capture. A huge drop in megapixel count compared to top megapixels, the biggest issue with this camera is the lack of sharpness.
The results didn’t get worse because post-processing filled in the information with AI. Soon, photos will look like paintings, just as we’ve seen with the more advanced zoom modes coming to phones.
What I really miss about the Galaxy Tab S8’s camera app is the HDR mode, which offers more image enhancement. If there is such a function, I believe I will be more satisfied with the pictures taken by the tablet.
The front camera of the Tab S8 has a 12 MP sensor and f/2.4 aperture, which provides photographic results very close to mid-range branded phones such as the Galaxy A52.
However, the colors are a little “washed out”, which can be a positive point for those who like to adjust the saturation of photos in editing programs. In general, however, it is a coherent camera, for example, for those who need to use it during video calls.
One of the welcome improvements of the Tab S8 5G has to do with the product’s sound system. Samsung has managed to fit four speakers into the tablet, two at the top and one at the bottom.
With a stereo playback format, the speaker brings the AKG quality already popular in Korean brand smartphones. The volume is very loud and enveloping, which gives the device a very appealing sound quality.
Even a little further away from the Tab S8, you can hear clear, high-quality sound. Bass, highs and mids are balanced without prominent frequencies, which provides a very interesting balance to the audio.
The fact that the device does not have a headphone jack makes users rely on accessories with USB-C or Bluetooth connectivity for differentiated sound quality.
battery and charging
The Galaxy Tab S8 battery has a total capacity of 8,000 mAh. While this may seem like a lot, autonomy depends on many pleasant factors such as screen size and resolution, chipset and system optimization.
Contrary to what we saw in the Galaxy Tab S7 FE, the Tab S8 is well below expectations for the new generation, but on par with the iPad Air (2022) in standard tests by the Canaltech team.
When streaming content on Netflix, the tablet consumed 25% in three hours. This means that for this type of use, the product can last up to 12 hours before the battery is completely drained.
Using it in a mixed way – accessing social networks, browsing the web and playing games for a few minutes, the Tab S8 took 16% in 1 hour. That means zeroing the battery in just 6 hours of use.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 is our long-awaited answer in the Android tablet market. Although the product is aimed at an audience interested in high-end devices, the configuration matches well with what it has to offer.
The performance of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, along with other built-in specs, gives users the versatility they need every day. In addition, the possibility of exploring complementary features in the system with the S Pen present in the device package is a great differential.
Immersive sound from the speakers combined with the 120 Hz display delivers the premium user experience that audiences seek and demand in a tablet.
Anticipating an Android tablet, the Tab S8 is the best option in the Brazilian market. However, the product becomes even more interesting when its price is adjusted downwards.
After all, with a value close to 5,000 reais, it would normally cost more to go through that fee and buy an iPad in cash, although Samsung has significantly shortened the time that updates are available for the device.