Samsung today unveiled its flagship tablet product in an event at New York’s Madison Square Garden. The Galaxy Tab S will be available in two sizes, 8.4in and 10.5in, and its biggest drawcard is the use of a Super AMOLED screen.
Samsung said it’s the first time such screen technology has been brought to the tablet form factor, and it has done so in order to vastly improve the image quality that can be supplied by a tablet. In particular, Samsung cited a 20 per cent increase in the colour spectrum, delivering 90 per cent of the Adobe RGB colour coverage, and said that one of the major benefits of the Super AMOLED technology is its ability to turn off pixels and produce a true black colour.
The resolution of the screen is 2560x1600 (WQXGA) and it has a 16:10 aspect ratio that the company said is best suited to the types of content that it’s designed to display, mainly ebooks, magazines, and photographs. Samsung said that while having a high density of pixels is a good thing, the most important part of creating a great viewing experience is to make sure the pixels are of a high quality, and this is one of things that Super AMOLED brings to the table.
Because of the way Super AMOLED works, extra layers that filter the light, and backlights that provide constant light, are not needed like they are in an LCD screen. The lack of layers means you get an unfiltered light that is claimed to produce a better overall viewing experience due to colours being truer to form, and it’s also the main reason Samsung has been able to keep the new tablet to a thickness of only 6.6mm.
Samsung’s use of Super AMOLED is also part of the equation that should make the tablet more easy to view while outdoors. The company claims that the screen is 40 per cent less reflective than an LCD screen, and there are sensors to adapt the screen brightness and contrast according to the environment.
Key to this is Samsung’s Adaptive Display Technology, which detects the content type and the lighting in the environment that you’re in. An RGB sensor adjusts white balance according to the environment’s lighting, and local contrast adjustments are also be made to the content on the screen. Samsung also said the tablet uses the same mDNIe display engine that is found in its televisions.
Battery life doesn’t take a hit due to the new screen, with Samsung claiming the Super AMOLED screen is more efficient than an LCD and that it can supply the tablet up to 11 hours of 1080p video playback on one charge. It also has Ultra-Power Saving mode.
In addition to the flashy screen, Samsung touted other major features for this tablet, including biometrics. It’s the first time a fingerprint reader has been put into a tablet, and it can be used as part of Samsung’s Multi User Mode feature to enable up to eight different users to log into their own areas of the tablet. Samsung said that tablets are often used by multiple members of a family, and that this feature can give each user their own home screen, apps, and secure storage area. There is also a Kids Mode that features child-friendly applications.
Multitasking is also a big play for Samsung, with the new tablet featuring SideSync 3.0 for mirroring a smartphone on the tablet, which can enable things such as forwarding calls from the phone to the tablet over Wi-Fi (802.11ac with MIMO is built into the tablet), as well as transfering files from one device to the other without making a physical connection or using the Cloud. A Quick Connect feature is also present for allowing the tablet to find the best possible scenario for connecting to other devices on a network.
The Galaxy Tab S 10.5 weighs 465g, while the Galaxy Tab S 8.4 weighs 294g. These weights are for the Wi-Fi versions. Colours include bronze and white, and there are accessories available for typing and allowing the tablet to stand on its own.
Tech specs for Australia and New Zealand haven’t been specifically stated yet, but include an Exynos 5 Octa CPU (1.9GHz quad-core and 1.3GHz quad-core) or Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 2.3GHz quad-core CPU, 3GB of RAM, up to 32GB of storage, Android 4.4 KitKat, 8-megapixel (rear) and 2.1-megapixel (front) cameras, and a microSD card with support for up to 128GB cards. A 4900 milliamp-hour battery is in the 8.4in tablet, while the 10.5in tablet has a 7900 milliamp-hour battery.
We’ll provide an update once we have local pricing and specs.