After plenty of leaks, Samsung has introduced its new Galaxy Tab S2 tablets but what's readjusted in a year and how carry out they compare to last year's Tab S?


Nirave is a controlling Editor in ~ Android Authority through a background in technology that dates ago over ten years.

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After many leaks, Samsung has officially unveiled the Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 and 9.7 tablets yesterday, simply over a year after the initial Galaxy Tab S series was announced.

The Tab S2 is a new type of tablet from Samsung (despite the naming convention), through several major changes compared to the initial Tab S range, but how execute they compare? Is the Tab S2 better than the original, at the very least on paper? Let’s take a rapid look in ~ the best differences and what a distinction a year have the right to make.

Smaller, slimmer and also lighter

This is just one of the greatest hardware changes: Samsung’s brand-new tablets are slimmer and also lighter 보다 their predecessors and at 5.6mm, Samsung insurance claims they room the slimmest tablet computers on the market.

The Galaxy Tab S2 is easily accessible in 8.0-inch and 9.7-inch models when the original Galaxy Tab S come in 8.4-inch and 10.5-inch variants and also the smaller screen sizes mean a palliation in weight; the Tab S2 8-inch weighs in in ~ 265 grams (versus the Tab S 8.4 in ~ 294 grams), if the Tab S2 9.7-inch comes in at 389 grams (versus the Tab S 10.5 in ~ 465 grams).

Both that Samsung’s new tablets also come through a touch-based fingerprint sensor choose the Galaxy S6 matches a swipe-based sensor top top the initial Tab S. The boosted fingerprint sensor have to make unlocking making use of your fingerprint a lot more reliable and additionally rival the Touch id fingerprint sensor discovered on the apple iPad.

The Tab S2 will likewise be obtainable in much more standardised black and white colours while the Galaxy Tab S came in the an ext daring White and also Bronze colours. The back cover has also been smoothened the end (versus a textured rear on the Tab S). It’s worth noting but that the behind on the Tab S2 is plastic (versus aluminium ~ above the iPad) and also could be perceived as less premium than the original Tab S series.

A sharp display, that’s totally different

It’s rare to view a successor have a display that’s arguably much less premium 보다 the original yet somehow, Samsung determined this was a to the right decision. In fact, the display screen is the biggest adjust between the two generations that the Tab S and judging by Samsung’s changes, it may not be one that proves successful.

Both of the brand-new Galaxy Tab S2 tablet computers sport super AMOLED displays offering 2048 x 1536 pixels resolution but despite gift smaller, they market slightly much less pixels 보다 the original Tab S devices. The biggest adjust however is the Samsung has opted to usage the 4:3 aspect ratio that the iPad quite than the 16:10 traditional that’s widely-used together the standard aspect ratio that Android devices. As a result, the tablet computer may be far better for analysis e-books and the like but when offered in landscape to watch movies, it’ll have broader black bars and also arguably a poorer media experience.

On the density front, the initial Tab S seems to have the measure over its successor. The Tab S2 8-inch offers a pixel density of 320ppi (versus 359ppi on the Tab S 8.4) if the larger Tab S2 has a pixel thickness of 264ppi (versus 287ppi on the Galaxy Tab S 10.5). The decision to mitigate the resolution and also switch element ratio way the initial Tab S will have a much much better experience and given that the person eye can identify individual pixels when thickness is much less than 350 pixels every inch, girlfriend may notice the lower density on the brand-new tablets.


No much more camera speed (but carry out you also need it?)

I personally dislike making use of a tablet computer as a portable camera but without doubt, there’s a market for tablet computer cameras (although ns can’t think why) and also as such, every tablet needs a relatively good pair that cameras.

The Tab S2 market the very same 8MP rear and also 2.1MP former camera setup as the original Tab S but bizarrely, Samsung has dropped the flash calculation the cameras close to useless in low light conditions. Together such, there’s no doubt that the initial Tab S will be much better if you (for part reason) require a camera on your tablet.


A familiar Lollipop experience

The Galaxy Tab S2 come to run Android 5.0 Lollipop out of the box and also offer the same experience together the Tab S go on the latest update. Samsung cases the tablets space the “most immersive Samsung tablet to-date” and also while it may be this, we absolutely hope it’s a smooth experience that’s been toned down.

Last year Galaxy S5 smartphone had, in my opinion, among the poorest software program experiences – due to a absence of optimisation and also over-zealous amounts of bloat – top top a Samsung device, i beg your pardon then moved to the Galaxy Tab S and with huge improvements in the Galaxy S6, we’re hoping the Samsung has learnt from critical year and optimised the software and hardware ~ above the Tab S2.

Initial signs indicate that this may be the case as the Galaxy Tab S2 will certainly come preloaded through Microsoft Office and two years’ totally free OneDrive cloud storage, both of i beg your pardon were present on the Galaxy S6. Of course, it’ll be daunting to see precisely how boosted the software application is until we’ve obtained our hands on so stay tuned for our full review.

The other changes

The Galaxy Tab S2 additionally sees Samsung move from a Qualcomm processor to its own Exynos 5433 processor however surprisingly, the korean opted to pick the lesser Exynos 5433 chipset (versus the exceptional Exynos 7420 used in the Galaxy S6). Both Tab S2 models space powered by octa-core CPUs with four cores clocked at 1.9GHz and four cores in ~ 1.3GHz, i beg your pardon is the exact same big.LITTLE strength configuration together the initial tablets.

One large change that’s definitely disappointing is the integrated non-removable battery: the smaller display screen size and also thinner build has supposed that battery capacity has actually dropped native the original Galaxy Tab S. The Tab S2 8-inch comes through a 4000 mAh battery (versus 4900 mAh top top the Tab S 8.4) if the bigger Tab S2 has actually a 5870 mAh battery i m sorry is a lot smaller sized than the 7900 mAh battery ~ above the Galaxy Tab S 10.5-inch.

The reduction in battery size (especially as big as it is top top the Tab S2 9.7) way it will definitely need charging more frequently however hopefully Samsung’s software and also hardware optimisations will certainly still offer solid battery life.


What a distinction a year have the right to make

The Galaxy Tab S 8.4 is most likely my favourite Android tablet computer ever made, mostly for the really impressive specs and also despite the bad software experience. Together a user that the Tab S 8.4, i was eagerly awaiting the brand-new Tab S2 variety but Samsung’s tablets have left me feeling rather deflated.

The key reason because that this is the Samsung has tried to align the Tab S2 a tiny too close come the iPad for my liking. The initial Tab S had the ideal that Samsung might offer at the time however with the Tab S2, Samsung has readjusted from offering its ideal experience to the closest iPad-like experience it might offer.

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The move in facet ratio may yet pay turn off for Samsung together one potential reason for the adjust in direction is the appeal come iPad developers; one significant problem that all Android tablets have is the absence of tablet-specific applications and also this to be mainly because the variety of screen sizes the developers need to support. A move to 4:3 facet ratio might make the Tab S2 tablets more appealing come Apple developer looking to offer devoted apps for Android tablets.

Making comparisons in between the two generations that Galaxy Tab S is a lot harder 보다 if Samsung had actually merely updated critical year’s models v tweaked specs and as such, for this reason our last opinion ~ above the tablets will need to wait until our complete review is released in the coming weeks. In the meantime, permit us understand what you think the the new Tab S2 selection in the comments below!