Which tablet is better, the iPad Air 5 or the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8?

By ANAS KHAN 10 Min Read

The iPad Air 5 arrives just in time to compete with Samsung’s new tablet portfolio, which includes the Galaxy Tab S8. Both firms’ mid-tier tablets appear nearly identical to last year’s versions, but a couple of modifications inside both make a substantial difference.

The iPad Air 5 gained Apple’s M1 chip and optional 5G, which were previously exclusive to the iPad Pro series. The Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip is used in the Galaxy Tab S8, and Samsung includes the new-and-improved, low-latency S Pen in the box.

While many people associate the word tablet with the iPad, don’t forget the Galaxy Tab S8. These are without a doubt two of the best tablets available today, so let’s see which one is ideal for you. 

iPad Air 5 vs. Galaxy Tab S8: design

iPad Air 5 vs. Galaxy Tab S8: design

The iPad Air 5 and Galaxy Tab S8 share one feature: their designs are nearly identical to their predecessors. This isn’t a criticism in any case because both tablets have a sleek aluminum finish and are thin, light, and comfortable to use.

The now-familiar squared-off style that defines Apple’s current lineup is seen on the iPad Air 5. While it looks good on the iPhone 13, I think it looks even better on the tablet because the greater size makes the hard-edged design more comfortable to hold. The bezels are still a little thicker than necessary, but it keeps you from accidentally touching the screen. A power button, volume up and down buttons, and a USB-C port are located around the tablet’s edges. 

With a little more rounded rectangular shape, the Galaxy Tab S8 nearly equals the iPad as a study in simplicity, but it adds a handful of expands to prevent the fully blank slate effect. The most noticeable feature is the black glossy area on the tablet’s back that also serves as a magnetic charging port for the S Pen and flows seamlessly into the rear cameras. An outlined border hugging the left and right sides of the tablet on the rear and wrapping towards the front is a more modest touch. Its connector and buttons on the outside are identical to those of the iPad Air.

Both tablets also rely on a fingerprint sensor in the power button for biometric authentication, which is unfortunate because facial recognition would be great for a tablet. 

The Galaxy Tab S8 is somewhat larger and heavier than the iPad Air 5 (9.7 x 7 x 0.24 inches, 1 pound) at 10 x 6.5 x 0.25 inches and 1.1 pounds, but not by much.

There is no clear victory in terms of design between these two. The huge thin glass and aluminum slate limits the design options, and both of these tablets have settled into a very similar look and feel.

Battery Life and Charging

A tablet’s battery life is important. After all, it was created to be a mobile productivity and entertainment gadget. We were unable to conduct side-by-side battery testing between the iPad Air 5 and the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8. However, when used gently, they both provide all-day battery life. So, if you plan on using your tablet for note-taking, music listening, or movie watching, you should be able to go through the day on a single charge.

Speaking of charging, both tablets offer USB Type-C charging and data transfer interfaces. The iPad Air 5 comes with a 20W charger. According to our tests, it will charge your battery from 0 to 100% in about 2 hours and 15 minutes. Surprisingly, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 does not include a charging brick, so you must purchase one separately.

Performance of the iPad Air 5 vs. the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8

In terms of performance, both businesses provided their best in-line internal hardware with competitive performance in this iPad Air 5 vs Samsung galaxy tab s8 comparison. Both the iPad Air 5 and the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 have amazing performance, but they employ different chipsets. 

Performance of the iPad Air 5 vs. the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8

The iPad Air 5 includes a powerful Apple M1 CPU with 8GB of RAM and a clock speed of 3.2GHz, allowing for greater gaming and multitasking. The iPad Air’s M1 processor breakthrough provides up to 60% quicker performance, making it a mobile gaming powerhouse. Multitask between advanced programs while playing graphics-intensive games. The 16-core Neural Engine accelerates machine learning for incredible results such as intelligent photo editing in Adobe Lightroom.

The Galaxy Tab S8, on the other hand, is powered by the Snapdragon 8 Gen1 chipset, which features the most complex 5G platform yet and an Octa-core 3.0GHz CPU. The Galaxy Tab S8 also has expandable storage of up to 1TB, 8GB RAM with 256 storage, and an Adreno 730 GPU with a 10% boost in GPU clock speed.

Despite having a lower clock speed than the iPad Air 5, the Galaxy Tab S8 nevertheless provides excellent performance and can play many heavy-duty games without any space difficulties.

Apple iPad Air 5 vs. Samsung Galaxy Tab S8: Audio System

When it comes to music, both tablets have four speaker grills, although the iPad Air 5 has two and the S8 has four. While the speakers on the iPad Air 5 are acceptable for a tablet at this price point, the Tab S8’s four AKG-tuned speakers beat them. If audio quality is important to you, the Tab S8 sounds fuller, richer, and has a broader soundstage.

Apple iPad Air 5 vs. Samsung Galaxy Tab S8: Audio System

I now wear headphones for the vast majority of my activities, including watching and editing videos, streaming movies or music, and playing video games. We won’t be receiving a 3.5 mm headphone port in any situation, so you’ll have to use Bluetooth headphones or an adaptor.

Which is better for you: the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 or the iPad Air 5?

There are a few significant distinctions between these two tablets that may impact your decision. If you need a work companion, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8, which Android Central’s Michael L. Hicks called a “multitasking powerhouse” in his review, is the way to go thanks to Microsoft 365 integration, an included S Pen, Google Duo, the ability to attach an optional keyboard and other simple ways of sharing content among devices. You can work from the beach, or a nearby coffee shop, or easily switch between home and the office. It’s still an excellent tablet for fun and entertainment, but professional users will benefit the most.

If you enjoy taking and manipulating images, watching videos with friends, playing games, and other creative activities, the iPad Air 5 is an excellent option. Similarly, the neural engine, rapid operation, Quick Note for writing down thoughts, FaceTime with Centre Stage, and overall processing capacity make it useful for work. However, if you want a tablet that can also function as an on-the-go computer, you’ll need to factor in the cost of the Magic Keyboard and Apple Pencil. However, you could get more capacity with the Galaxy Tab S8 – selecting the 256GB version of each would cost hundreds more for the iPad Air 5. There’s also no way to expand local storage with an extra memory card.

However, if you frequently work on the go, the iPad Air 5’s 5G capabilities may make it attractive because you won’t have to look for Wi-Fi networks wherever you go. Keep in mind, however, that 5G service from a cellular service provider will be an additional expense.

The final conclusion is that the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 is the better choice for work, especially if you use a Microsoft-based computer. Choose the iPad Air for entertainment or creativity, or if you already possess other Apple products such as an iPhone.

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