Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 vs. iPad (2021): Battle of Tablets


The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 already proving to be quite a hit. So much so, actually Samsung had to suspend pre-orders for the tablet. As the successor to the 2020s Galaxy Tab S7it has a number of advanced features, including a faster processor, more RAM, an improved selfie camera and the use of Corning Gorilla Glass for the 11-inch display.

Such upgrades make it overall better than its predecessor. However, it is better than that iPad (2021)? The latest version of its famous Apple tablet also features enhancements, including expanded internal memory, an A13 Bionic chip (as opposed to the A12) and a new 12-megapixel ultra-wide selfie camera that can support the useful Center Stage feature. All in all, this is a great kit, and when it comes to Apple tablets, its better only iPad Air and iPad Pro models.

This article compares two devices in the collision of the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 with the iPad (2021). It goes through the specifications of each device and also weighs their performance, design, displays, cameras, batteries and software. This should help everyone sitting on the fence decide which side to choose.


Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 iPad (2021)
Size 253.8 x 165.3 x 6.3 mm (9.99 x 6.51 x 0.25 inches) 250.6 x 174.1 x 7.5 mm (9.8 x 6.8 x 0.30 inches)
Weight Wi-Fi: 503 grams (17.74 ounces)

LTE: 507 grams (17.88 ounces)

Wi-Fi: 487 grams (17.18 ounces)

LTE: 498 grams (17.56 ounces)

Screen size 11 inches 10.2 inches
Screen split 2560 x 1600 pixels (274 pixels per inch) 2160 x 1620 pixels (264 pixels per inch)
Operating system Android 12, OneUI 4.1 iPadOS 15
Storage space 128 GB, 256 GB 64 GB, 256 GB
MicroSD card slot Yes no
Tailor-made services no no
Processor Qualcomm SM8450 Snapdragon 8 Generation 1 Apple A13 Bionic
RAM 8 GB, 12 GB 3 GB
Camera Dual 13-megapixel width and 6-megapixel ultra-wide rear, 12-megapixel front Rear 8MP, front 12MP extra wide
Video 4K at 60 frames per second, 1080p at 30 frames per second 1080p at 30 frames per second, 720p at 120 frames per second
Bluetooth version Bluetooth 5.2 Bluetooth 4.2
Ports USB-C Lightning
Fingerprint sensor Yes, side mounting Yes, in front
Water resistance no no
Battery 8000 mAh 8 526 mAh
Application Market Google Play Store Apple App Store
Network support All major carriers (cellular version only) All major carriers (cellular version only)
Colors Graphite, silver, rose gold Silver, space gray
Price $ 699 $ 329
Buy in Samsung Apple
Review score News News

Design, display and durability

Ajay Kumar

No device invents the design of a tablet. The iPad (2021) looks identical to the iPad (2020), saturated with prominent top and bottom bezels, and a home button compatible with Touch ID. As for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8, it also looks almost indistinguishable from the Tab S7, having a very sharp edge-to-edge display with narrow bezels that might make it more appealing than the iPad.

In terms of display quality, the iPad has a 10.2-inch Retina IPS LCD touch screen with a resolution of 2160 x 1620 pixels. It delivers 264 pixels per inch, as opposed to 274 pixels on the S8’s 11-inch TFT screen. In terms of saturation, clarity and detail, both screens are generally comparable, although the Samsung tablet has the advantage of supporting a smooth refresh rate of 120 Hz. This really makes a noticeable difference when using certain apps and viewing some media, so that’s enough to give the Tab S8 an advantage in this department as well.

Finally, it should be noted that none of the devices have an IP rating. However, because the Tab S8 looks a little more attractive and offers a slightly more attractive display, it wins this round.

Winner: Samsung Galaxy Tab S8

Performance, battery life and charging

IPad battery charging port (2020).

Unlike the two-year-old Apple A13 Bionic chip found in the iPad (2021), as well iPhone 11 The Galaxy Tab S8 runs on the new Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor. It is one of the first serial chips with 4nm transistors, which really makes a difference in performance. The Tab S8 also comes standard with 8GB of RAM, while the iPad costs 3GB. Together, these two discrepancies mean that there is a significant difference in performance between the two tablets, with the S8 handling the latest apps and games more easily.

Another key difference is that the iPad (2021) comes standard with only 64GB of internal storage, while the Galaxy Tab S8 gives you 128GB. In an era when photography is second nature to many people, this doubling of storage capacity makes a big difference. If that wasn’t enough, the Samsung tablet also has a microSD card slot so you can shoot and download apps without worrying about running out of space. The same cannot be said of the iPad.

With battery life all the same. The Tab S8 comes with a battery capacity of 8000 mAh, while the iPad takes power from a battery capacity of 8557 mAh. In practice, this does not lead to a significant difference in daily longevity, although the lack of 120Hz refresh rate support should mean that the iPad is almost superior to the Tab. Only only, but not with a margin to counter Samsung’s top performance tablet.

Winner: Samsung Galaxy Tab S8


The back of the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8.
Ajay Kumar

The iPad (2021) has an 8-megapixel wide lens with the same f / 2.4 aperture as its predecessor, as well as the same autofocus, panorama and HDR features. With the Galaxy Tab S8 you get a rear setting with dual lenses including a 13 MP wide camera and a 6 MP ultra wide camera.

None of the devices actually have great qualities when it comes to photography, which we are accustomed to expect from tablets. It can be argued that the inclusion of an ultra-wide lens in the Tab S8 makes it more versatile as a camera, but most users don’t even notice that it has, given that it shoots mostly surface shots. The same goes for the wide lenses of both devices, which take good, if not amazing photos, but tend to do a little work in low light.

However, it is thanks to the front-facing selfie camera that the iPad is slightly ahead of Samsung. It comes with a 12-megapixel ultra-wide selfie camera, which you can also find on the iPad Pro, which not only provides much greater clarity and detail, but is also compatible with the highly acclaimed Apple Center Stage feature. The latter ensures that you stay in the middle of any selfie shot, and although it’s a modest touch, it’s useful enough to give your Apple device a win in this round.

Winner: Apple iPad (2021)

Software and updates

Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Plus on the carpet.
Ajay Kumar / Digital Trends

iPad works iPadOS 15, while the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 uses Android 12 with OneUI 4 on top. The latest operating system gives the standard Android the desired conversion, with colorful big icons and intuitive menus. It’s also very customizable, which isn’t always the case with the iPadOS 15. Of course, the Apple OS has its strengths, including ease of use and security, so it’s usually not easy to compare the two.

In the past, more or less any iPad would have won a round of “Software and Updates,” at least because Apple has tended to support its devices for a long time. However, Samsung has made a commitment to provide the Tab S8 with four major OS updates (and an extra year other than security updates) so you can stay up to date for a long time after switching to the new tablet.

Winner: tie


Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra with Keyboard.
Ajay Kumar

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 comes with an S Pen handlebar, which is the first for the standard Tab model. It opens up a number of performance features that allow you to take notes, draw and more. The Tab also supports Samsung’s DeX mode, which turns the tablet into a Windows-like laptop with the usual desktop layout and customizable windows.

Similarly, the iPad supports the first-generation Apple Pencil, which also opens up a number of performance and multitasking functionality. But you’ll need to shell out $ 89 for this special feature, whereas the S Pen comes with the S8 as standard. It may only be a small amount, but that’s enough to give the S8 another win.

Winner: Samsung Galaxy Tab S8


Ninth generation iPad (2021) starts at $ 329 for a model with 64GB of Wi-Fi and goes up to $ 609 if you want 256GB of internal storage and cellular support. It can be purchased directly from Apple, at the same time it is sold by almost all major sellers under the sun.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 starts at $ 699 for the 128GB model and goes up to $ 779 for the 256GB version. It can be pre-ordered from Samsung and will be supported by AT&T and T-Mobile in the near future. It will almost certainly be offered to most major electronics vendors.

Overall winner: Samsung Galaxy Tab S8

Vertical scrolling is possible on the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8.
Ajay Kumar / Digital Trends

A combination of several narrow victories means that Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 beats iPad (2021) in general. It has a nicer design, slightly better screen, better performance, more memory and more useful special features. On the contrary, the iPad offers a slightly better camera system overall and likely longer support for updates. This means that anyone neutral when it comes to Android vs. iOS should almost certainly choose the Tab S8 over its rival iPad.

However, keep in mind the big difference in price between the two devices. While the iPad loses only slightly, Apple’s iPad is certainly not a bad option if you want to save a few bucks. But if money is not the subject, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 is what you need.

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Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 vs. iPad (2021): Battle of Tablets

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