Samsung just unveiled the much rumored Galaxy Tab S, in two sizes, at its Premiere 2014 event, and it seems that the manufacturer pulled out almost all the stops. Boasting not just of a Super AMOLED display, these two tablets carry in them not just premium hardware but also premium features that could very well, in Samsung’s own words, raise the bar for high-end tablets.
The whole hoopla around the Galaxy Tab S was focused on its screen, particularly on the Super AMOLED display tech which has been on vacation as far as Samsung’s tablets were concerned. Both versions of the tablet sport WQXGA resolutions of 2560×1600, just a tad higher than WQHD 2560×1440. On the 10.5-inch tablet, this gives users an effective pixel density of 288 ppi. But on the 8.4-inch one, you get a whopping 359 ppi. But Samsung wants you to know it’s not all about the AMOLED or the pixels. Well, it’s partially about the AMOLED because this type of display doesn’t require backlighting the way other screens do, thus reducing the battery consumption. But Samsung’s screens also promise Adaptive Display, that adjust the settings depending on the environment, manual controls that would make compulsive tweakers swoon, and advanced outdoor visibility.
Inside, the Galaxy Tab S is just as powerful. As always, the processor will vary depending on the market. On the one hand you get an Exynos 5 Octa running at a combination of 1.9 GHz and 1.3 GHz. On the other hand, however, you can also get a 2.3 GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800, not an 801 nor an 805, probably the only disappointing spec in the list. For memory, both tablets are gifted with 3 GB of RAM and 16 or 32 GB of storage, expandable up to 128 GB. The two are similarly identical in their cameras, with an 8 megapixel with LED flash at the back and 2.1 megapixels on the front. And yes, there’s a fingerprint sensor there. There will be WiFi-only and WiFi with LTE variants available, depending on the market. And, of course, the latest Android 4.4, though most likely 4.4.2 at launch. All of those packed into a body that remains thin at 6.6 mm for both sizes, and relatively light at a maximum of 298 g and 467 g, for the 8.4-inch and 10.5-inch models, respectively.
Continuing its tradition of throwing in some freebies, Samsung is giving away a lot of premium content. And by “a lot”, we do mean a lot! Samsung claims to have partnered with more than 30 content and service providers and it actually shows. Some of these, you’ve probably seen with previous premium device announcements, like Evernote, Bitcasa, and Dropbox limited premium memberships. Others are quite new to the list, like a free Marvel Unlimited subscription and the newly launched Kindle for Samsung. Still, others are simply offers you might opt to refuse, like free packs for games you may or may not ever play.
Samsung isn’t going to wait long to get these tablets into the hands of consumers in the US. Starting June 13, it will already open up pre-orders for those raring to buy either of these two premium tablets. And in July, the Galaxy Tab S will be available for purchase from Samsung’s online store as well as retailers like Amazon, Best Buy, Fry’s, Walmart and more. Unfortunately, those looking to buy them from their carriers will have to wait a bit longer, and the selection will be somewhat limited depending on the carrier. The Galaxy Tab S 8.4 will carry a price tag of $399.99 while the 10.5 model will sell for $499.99. No price difference between WiFi only and LTE versions have been revealed yet. Two color options available for these tablets are Dazzling White and Titanium Bronze.