Has anyone here made (or attempted) the switch from being a long term iPad user to the Samsung Galaxy Tab S series?
How did it go? Did you stick with the Galaxy Tab S or did you switch back?
My iPad (2018 entry level model) is due an upgrade and I’m considering switching to Galaxy Tab S instead of getting another iPad (which would be either the 2021 or 2022 entry level iPad).
When Samsung run promotions, the Galaxy Tab S8 is generally cheaper than the entry level iPad if you want one with more than 64 GB storage. Plus it comes with an S-Pen included.
Although I mainly use my iPad for consumption stuff, I occasionally connect a keyboard and do some light productivity tasks on it when traveling - email, working on text-based documents, etc. Being a Windows PC user I’m thinking I might get on better with Samsung Dex than with iPad’s multitasking features (which I’ve never really warmed to).
My main concern is the Galaxy Tab’s aspect ratio (16:10). I know it will be better for watching movies, but I’ve always liked iPad’s aspect ratio (4:3) for reading and web browsing, which is mostly what I use it for.
I don’t have experience with Galaxy Tabs or other non-iPad tablets. But I know that iPads last a long time both hardware wise and in terms of software support. Not uncommon to hear of people using 6-8 year old iPads by which time any android tablet is likely to be a tatty old paperweight.
There’s a reason iPad is synonymous with tablets these days. Often in movies/series I hear any tablet being referred to as “iPad” and I’ve seen people sell “iPads” on Marketplace
Still got an Air 2 from 2014. Works perfectly, only issue is that I wish I got more than 16gb as the latest iOS is like 6gb alone so can only have 10 apps on it maximum as I have 7gb on something called “other” that won’t vanish.
Poor duration of software support is one of the main reasons I wouldn’t previously consider Android devices. But there have been recent improvements, at least when it comes to Google, Samsung, and OnePlus devices. For example, Samsung now commit to 4 years of OS version updates and 5 years of security updates on high end and upper midrange devices. For me this is sufficient.
I tend to want to upgrade my tablet after about 4 years. With entry-level iOS devices (which is what I tend to buy), I tend to find they get sluggish after about 4 years (particularly when it comes to multi-tab web-browsing).
I have a Tab S8 and find it a brilliant tablet, got it with my S22 and now WhatsApp have finally introduced tablet linking I can finally avoid using my phone at home.
One thing you haven’t mentioned is Dex - seriously, once you try it you would be amazed how versatile it is. The link to windows is handy but more useful on a phone, however in a pinch you can display the tablet apps on your Windows PC and obviously reply to notifications/ answer “calls” from the tablet.
Web browsing works really well I would suggest trying one in a store and see how you get on.
As a media consumption device I am really happy with it should last me for years to come.
When it first came out it wasn’t together but I got 25% off the tablet, the free keyboard case and a years D+ (which I sold with the tablet). Free buds pro and D+ with the phone - sold both.
Yes plenty, I would still say they are the best device for a screen that size, however if you have no other Apple device I really don’t get the premium if all you do is go on the internet and open a media app. Any other device can do this for a substantially less cost. Also not a fan of the recent price rises they have done.
Thanks for the responses I got in this thread. In the end I went ahead and bought a Galaxy Tab S8 (11", 128GB model). Have now been using it for a while and wanted to jot down my thoughts somewhere. Here’s as good a place as any!
For some context: I bought my first iPad around 2010/2011 and have always owned an iPad of some kind since then. In parallel I also tried several Android and Windows slate form factor tablets between 2011 and 2017. On each occasion I knew within a few days that I preferred the iPad and quickly returned the Android/Windows tablet. I’m a Windows PC user (tried Mac for a few years from 2009-2012 but went back to Windows). For my phone, I’ve been back and forth between iPhone and Android several times, but currently on Android.
The Galaxy Tab S8 is the first Android tablet I’ve tried since 2017 and the experience this time is totally different. I’ve now been using for 3-4 months and am very happy with it. I’ve decided to sell my iPad, so it will soon be the first time since 2010/2011 that I don’t own an iPad.
What I particularly like
5 years security updates. OK probably not quite as long as an iPad will get, but this is enough for me. Didn’t get this last time I tried an Android tablet back in 2017.
Pricing/promos. Whilst the standard price for a 128GB Tab S8 is £749, Samsung have regular promotions. I got the tablet for less than £400 and this includes S-Pen. A 9th gen iPad with at least 128GB storage and an Apple Pencil would have cost £658.
I like that the S-Pen can be used for gesture-based navigation of the OS. When you are holding the pen it just feels natural to keep using it for navigation of the OS, but this isn’t possible to the same extent with Apple Pencil.
No browser crashes when multiple tabs are open. This has been a constant issue with several iPads I’ve owned (and doesn’t only come to light when the iPad is several years old). When I have multiple tabs open Safari crashes or fails to load pages. I haven’t experienced this with the Tab S8.
Multi-user and guest-user support. This has long been something I’ve wanted Apple to introduce but never happened.
Secure Folder feature. Can hide things like banking apps in a secure folder for extra layer of security/privacy. Again something I’ve wanted Apple to introduce but never happened.
Samsung Dex. I probably won’t use this much but if I’m ever without my laptop I think I will be able to be more productive with the Galaxy Tab than with an iPad, and that’s because of Samsung Dex. I think Windows PC users will feel more at home with Samsung Dex than with Stage Manager on iPad.
What I was concerned about, but turned out to be non-significant issues
Aspect ratio. I was worried about switching from a 4:3 aspect ratio to 16:10. I think I still prefer the 4:3 aspect ratio of the iPad, but 16:10 isn’t the dealbreaker I thought it might be. I find display of content in portrait mode to be a non-issue (including documents). The only reason I still prefer 4:3 is I find the 16:10 device slightly harder to hold in portrait possibly due to more weight being higher up. But that might also be because the screen is slightly larger overall (11") than I was previously used to (10"). Anyway, overall a non-significant issue.
Quality of Android tablet apps. I’ve only spontaneously noticed a couple of tablet apps (that I use) that are significantly different to their iPad counterparts. One is BBC iPlayer (the TV guide doesn’t have grid layout) and the other is Reddit (which doesn’t have a landscape mode on Android). It might be that if I compared everything side-by-side I’d notice more differences, but I took the view that if I don’t spontaneously notice differences what’s the point of going searching for them. So overall, my concern about Android tablet apps was a non-issue.
For a long time, this was also my attitude. I’ve now changed my opinion. Those embedded in the Apple ecosystem should probably still just get an iPad. But I now think Windows PC and/or or Android phone users should seriously consider getting an Android tablet, particularly if willing to spend enough for a Galaxy Tab S8.
However, for someone who doesn’t need 128GB storage, doesn’t need need a pen, but does want biometric security, the 64GB 9th gen iPad is still pretty compelling. Excluding periods of promo pricing there just isn’t an Android option at that price point with both biometrics and 5-year security updates. Hope that changes soon. I don’t think the upcoming Pixel tablet will be priced that low, but hopefully Google’s renewed push in the tablet space will stimulate others to fill that gap.