May 10, 2022

Samsung Galaxy Tab S8: Your complete buyer’s guide

By Michael L Hicks last updated 6 days ago

Choose between the portable-but-powerful Tab S8, the laptop-replacing Tab S8 Ultra, or the just-right middle child Tab S8+.

Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra Display

(Image credit: Andrew Myrick / Android Central)Jump to:

The Galaxy Tab S8 series took the stylish designs, gorgeous displays, and reliable battery life of the excellent Tab S7 series, added a top-class processor and more RAM, and made other improvements that maintained Samsung’s Android tablet supremacy in 2022.

Alongside the familiar 11-inch LCD Galaxy Tab S8 and 12.4-inch AMOLED Galaxy Tab S8+, the new Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra is a new 14.6-inch behemoth with the highest screen-to-body ratio we’ve seen in a tablet and a tiny notch that shouldn’t affect your browsing experience. The Ultra is the only model to offer upgraded RAM options in exchange for a hefty price increase.

If you’re in the market for one of the best Android tablets, we’ve labeled the three Galaxy Tab S8 models as the top three available across all brands. But which should you choose? We’ll compare the specs and designs to help you decide which to buy.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S8

Bigger and better displays
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 series sticks to the same specs that made the Galaxy Tab S7 fantastic, but adds in the new Snapdragon 8 Gen 1, 8GB of RAM instead of 6, faster Wi-Fi speeds, and better cameras for Zooming.View at AT&TCheck Amazon

SAMSUNG GALAXY TAB S8 RELEASE DATE, PRICE, AND DEALS

The Galaxy Tab S8
The Galaxy Tab S8 (Image credit: Nick Sutrich / Android Central)

Samsung announced the Galaxy Tab S8 series on February 9 at Galaxy Unpacked and released its new tablets on February 25.RECOMMENDED VIDEOS FOR YOU…Best Android Phones – Spring 2022Our picks for the best Android phones you can buy right now, whatever your priorities.https://imasdk.googleapis.com/js/core/bridge3.513.0_en.html#goog_12322582400 seconds of 9 minutes, 34 secondsVolume 0% PLAY SOUND

Despite some solid upgrades in performance over the Galaxy Tab S7 series, the Galaxy Tab S8 and S8+ only cost $50 more than their predecessors: $700 and $900, respectively. In fact, the upgraded Tab S7 tablets with 8GB of RAM — the base memory of the Tab S8 — cost more than the new tablets, so you can look at it as saving money on newer devices.

As for the new Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra, it clocks in at $1,100. These $200 increases match the price gaps of the Galaxy S22 series, proving Samsung will probably stick to this strategy moving forward.

Tab S8 Ultra Second Screen Close
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra With Keyboard (Image credit: Android Central / Andrew Myrick)

If you want more storage, upgrading the Galaxy Tab S8 or S8+ to 256GB costs an additional $80. With the Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra, jumping to 256GB or 512GB costs $100 each, but these upgrades also come with jumps to 12GB or 16GB of RAM, respectively.

Right now, only the Galaxy Tab S8+ has a 5G cellular option for $1,100 through Verizon, T-Mobile, AT&T, or USCellular. This model is restricted to 128GB of storage, but you can always augment it with the 1TB microSD card slot.

SAMSUNG GALAXY TAB S8 DESIGN

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra
(Image credit: Nick Sutrich / Android Central)

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Anyone who has used a Galaxy Tab S7 or Tab S7+ will find that their 2022 counterparts look and feel remarkably similar. Both the Galaxy Tab S8 and S8+ have the exact same dimensions, weight, display quality, magnetic S Pen strips, and stylistic etchings along the back edges as their predecessors. The only visual difference is in the colors: the S7 series offered Mystic Black, Silver, Bronze, and Blue, while the S8 comes in Graphite, Silver, and Pink Gold.

Samsung does tout one design upgrade: it claims the aluminum material used with the S8 is “30% more scratch-resistant and 40% less prone to bending” than the S7 material, so it’ll handle scuffs and rough handling better than before. Samsung also partially constructed the Tab S8 with “plastic components repurposed from discarded fishing nets” as part of a sustainability push.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8+ and S Pen
(Image credit: Michael Hicks / Android Central)

Of the three Tab S8s, the 11-inch, 1.1lb. base model is most likely to be comfortable to use for casual use away from a desk, while still offering plenty of screen real estate compared to most budget tablets. 

With the 12.4-inch, 1.27lb. Galaxy Tab S8+, it’s not quite as portable or comfortable to hold for long periods. Still, it’s actually thinner than the Tab S8 and isn’t nearly as ungainly as the Ultra. The massive AMOLED display gives you richer colors and more space for using multiple apps at once; it’s a perfect fit with a keyboard cover for DeX mode.

As for the Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra, it has extremely thin bezels that maximize the 14.6-inch display to nearly reach the edges of the tablet. That does mean the Ultra has a small notch for the selfie cameras, but in most cases, you won’t find it particularly noticeable. 

What’s more frustrating is that those minuscule bezels make it extremely precarious to hold without accidentally touching the screen or straining your hands. Add the 1.6-pound weight, and it’s obvious the Ultra is a tablet you’ll want to use on a desk with a keyboard cover and kickstand at all times.

SAMSUNG GALAXY TAB S8 SPECS

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As we mentioned before, the Galaxy Tab S8 shares many traits with the Galaxy Tab S7 series: display quality, battery life, audio quality, S Pen support, and other specs. But you will notice upgrades to the chipset, base RAM, cameras, and Wi-Fi speeds that make this more than an iterative upgrade. As for the new Ultra brand, it mostly matches what the S8+ offers, but with a 4K-quality front camera and optional RAM upgrades.

CategoryGalaxy Tab S8Galaxy Tab S8 PlusGalaxy Tab S8 Ultra
ChipsetSnapdragon 8 Gen 1Snapdragon 8 Gen 1Snapdragon 8 Gen 1
Display11-inch LCD (120Hz), 2560 x 160012.4-inch Super AMOLED (120Hz), 2800 x 175214.6-inch Super AMOLED (120Hz), 2960 x 1848
Memory8GB8GB8GB, 12GB, or 16GB
Storage128GB or 256GB128GB or 256GB128GB, 256GB, or 512GB
Rear Camera13MP AF + 6MP UW + Flash13MP AF + 6MP UW + Flash13MP AF + 6MP UW + Flash
Front Camera12MP UW12MP UW12MP FF + 12MP UW
Battery8,000mAh Li-Ion with 45W Fast Charging10,090mAh Li-Ion with 45W Fast Charging11,200mAh Li-Ion with 45W Fast Charging
AudioQuad Speakers + Dolby AtmosQuad Speakers + Dolby AtmosQuad Speakers + Dolby Atmos
AuthenticationFace Unlock, fingerprint on power buttonFace Unlock, on-display fingerprint sensorFace Unlock, on-display fingerprint sensor
ConnectivityWiFi 6E (6GHz), Bluetooth 5.2WiFi 6E (6GHz), Bluetooth 5.25G (optional)WiFi 6E (6GHz), Bluetooth 5.2
S Pen✔️ (6.2ms latency)✔️ (2.8ms latency)✔️ (2.8ms latency)
microSD card slot✔️ (up to 1TB)✔️ (up to 1TB)✔️ (up to 1TB)
3.5mm headphone jack🚫🚫🚫
Dimensions9.99″ x 6.51″ x 0.25″11.22″ x 7.28″ x 0.22″12.85″ x 8.21″ x 0.22″
Weight1.10 lb1.27 lb1.60 lb
ColorsGraphite, Silver, Pink GoldGraphite, Silver, Pink GoldGraphite

SAMSUNG GALAXY TAB S8: S PEN AND ACCESSORIES

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The Galaxy Tab S8+
(Image credit: Michael Hicks / Android Central)

All three Tab S8 models ship with an S Pen. You’ll find magnetic strips on the top and back of the tablet, and some of the keyboard cover accessories should have an S Pen slot. Still, it can be easy to lose track of if you’re not careful.

If you choose the Tab S8+ or S8 Ultra, you’ll get a “new and improved S Pen that uses a prediction algorithm for ultra-low latency.” Specifically, you’ll get a latency speed of 2.8ms, whereas the Tab S8 offers 6.2ms and the Tab S7 series offered 9ms.

Otherwise, none of the Galaxy Tab S8 tablets ship with a charger or keyboard cover in the box. Particularly with the Galaxy Tab S8+ and S8 Ultra, they’re too large to regularly use in handheld form, so you’ll want to buy a case with a kickstand and a keyboard for productivity. 

Our guides on the best Galaxy Tab S8 cases and best Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra cases will get you started. 

You can buy the official Tab S8 Book Cover Keyboard in all three sizes; it’s expensive, especially for the Ultra version with backlighting and a trackpad, but it lets you connect or disconnect instantly while bypassing a manual Bluetooth connection. Otherwise, you can save a lot of money with a Bluetooth keyboard.

All three tablets offer 45W charging, so you’ll want a charging block and cable capable of hitting that mark. 

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