Samsung’s February Unpacked event was home to announcements across Samsung’s mobile and tablet lines, including the S22 series and the Tab S8, but with so much information to sift through, what is the difference between the Tab S8, the Tab S8 Plus and the Tab S8 Ultra?
We’ve put together this guide to help you decide which 2022 Galaxy tablet is right for you. Read on to learn how the three tablets compare in terms of design, camera, specs and battery life and whether it’s worth splashing out on the £1000 Ultra model or sticking with the more affordable Tab S8.
Pricing and availability
As you can probably guess from their names, the Galaxy Tab S8 is the cheapest of the three tablets, followed by the larger Tab S8 Plus. The Tab S8 Ultra is the most expensive device in the Tab S8 series thanks to its larger display and higher-end specs.
You can find all of the prices below.
Galaxy Tab S8:
- 128GB/8GB (Wi-Fi) – £649
- 128GB/8GB (5G) – £799
- 256GB/12GB (Wi-Fi) – £699
- 256GB/12GB (5G) – £849
Galaxy Tab S8 Plus:
- 128GB/8GB (Wi-Fi) – £849
- 128GB/8GB (5G) – £999
- 256GB/12GB (Wi-Fi) – £899
- 256GB/12GB (5G) – £1049
Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra:
- 128GB/8GB (Wi-Fi) – £999
- 128GB/8GB (5G) – £1149
- 256GB/12GB (Wi-Fi) – £1099
- 256GB/12GB (5G) – £1249
- 512GB/12GB (Wi-Fi) – £1249
- 512GB/12GB (5G) – £1399
All three tablets were announced on February 9 and are available for pre-order now with an official release date still to be confirmed.
Design and display
Physically, the Tab S8 is the smallest and thickest tablet in the Tab S8 series, measuring 165.3 x 253.8 x 6.3mm. However, that doesn’t mean that it feels like a cheap tablet, with mobile writer Peter Phelps noting the cool metallic feel and stunning screen in our hands-on review.
The S8 Plus is larger at 185 x 285 x 5.7mm, making it a good option for those looking for a larger display for drawing and watching content without it being unwieldy.
The S8 Ultra meanwhile is the biggest and slimmest tablet in the series at a massive (for a tablet) 208.6 x 326.4 x 5.5mm.
“If you’re an artist who wants a portable canvas then this is going to be ideal, simply because you’ve got so much space to play with”, wrote Editor Max Parker in our hands-on review of the Ultra. “It’s stunning for watching movies on, too, based on my early tests streaming video on the device”.
The S8 Ultra is, however, the heaviest of the three tablets, weighing 726-728g (depending on whether you opt for the Wi-Fi or 5G model), followed by the 567-572g Tab S8 Plus and the 503-507g Tab S8.
The Tab S8 and S8 Plus are available in Graphite, Silver and Pink Gold colours, whereas the Tab S8 Ultra only comes in Graphite.
As far as the display goes, all three tablets take advantage of sharp screens with fast 120Hz refresh rates, which should make scrolling and gaming feel noticeably smoother than standard 60Hz tablet screens.
The Tab S8 packs a 11-inch WQXGA (2560 x 1600) TFT display, while the S8 Plus has a 12.4-inch WQXGA+ (2800 x 1752) Super AMOLED display and the S8 Ultra boasts a bigger 14.6-inch WQXGA+ (2960 x 1848) Super AMOLED display. The Ultra actually features the best screen-to-body ratio on any Tab S device, according to Samsung, with an incredibly slim bezel.
The Tab S8 Plus and Tab S8 Ultra feature in-display fingerprint authentication, while the Tab S8 has a fingerprint scanner on its side key.
All three tablets come with the S Pen stylus in the box, offering 30% lower latency for better responsiveness, and they can be paired with the Book Cover Keyboard, Book Cover or Protective Standing Cover. The S8 and S8 Plus can also be protected with the Book Cover Keyboard Slim, the Note View Cover or the Strap Cover.
All three tablets feature the same dual camera array on the back, consisting of a 13-megapixel wide angle sensor and a 6-megapixel ultra-wide angle sensor with flash.
On the front of the Tab S8 and the S8 Plus, you’ll find a 12-megapixel ultra-wide camera for selfies and video calls. The Tab S8 Ultra features a dual front camera set-up comprised of a 12-megapixel wide angle lens and a 12-megapixel ultra-wide angle lens, however this also makes the Ultra the only one of the three to require a notch above its display.
All three tablets support 4K/30fps recording with their front and rear cameras, along with 8K/60fps playback. The tablets also feature three microphones each and quad stereo speakers with sound by AKG and Dolby Atmos support for recording and playing video, as well as joining video conferences.
We didn’t get the chance to test the cameras out properly in our hands-ons, but keep an eye out on Trusted Reviews for a more in-depth look at each tablet’s camera in our final verdicts.
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The Galaxy Tab S8, S8 Plus and S8 Ultra are all powered by the same Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 4nm octa-core processor found in the S22 in the US (UK versions of the smartphone pack the Exynos 2200).
Like the camera, it’s tough to test the performance properly in a hands-on environment, so you’ll have to wait for our full review to read more about how the tablets perform when faced with a range of tasks.
All three also take advantage of 5G, LTE, Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2 support, along with security features from Samsung Knox and Samsung Knox Vault.
The Tab S8 and Tab S8 Plus are available with up to 256GB of storage and 12GB of RAM, while the Tab S8 Ultra can be configured with up to 512GB of storage and 12GB of RAM. The storage is also expandable up to 1TB with a MicroSD card.
All three devices in the Tab S8 series run Samsung’s One UI 4.1 based on Android 12, making them pretty much identical in terms of software. All of the tablets also support Samsung’s DeX mode, which allows you to use your tablet like a desktop computer with windows and additional shortcuts, and they can even be used as secondary monitors for your actual PC.
The base S8 also has the smallest battery of the three Tab S8 devices, but that shouldn’t be a problem for a tablet of its size. The device comes with a 8000mAh battery, while the Tab S8 Plus comes in second with a 10090mAh battery and the S8 Ultra has the largest 11200mAh battery.
Again, you’ll have to wait for our full reviews to hear more about how this translates into real-world use.
All three tablets can be charged up with a USB Type-C charger (sold separately) and they support Super Fast Charging 2.0 with up to 45W charging.
There are a lot of similarities across Samsung’s Tab S Series devices in 2022, including the design, dual rear camera, One UI software and chipset. All three tablets also come with an S Pen in the box for sketching and note-taking.
However, there are still plenty of differences to note across the line. If you’re willing to spend more on your tablet, you’ll be treated to the massive display, larger battery and secondary front camera of the Tab S8 Ultra. If you’d prefer something small and light, but nevertheless very premium-looking, then the Tab S8 is your best bet. For something in between the two, opt for the Tab S8 Plus.