Launched at a Samsung Galaxy Unpacked event on the 9th February 2022, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra is a brand new addition to the tech giant’s lineup and it’s one of the best tablets there is right now.
A whole new world for tablets, the screen is a whopping 14.6-inches. For context, that’s 1.7-inches bigger than last year’s Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ and it’s about the biggest you can buy right now. Even Apple doesn’t have anything this big.
Not everyone has the need for so much screen real-estate, not everyone will be keen on spending so much money on it and as I pointed out in the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra review 'realistically, the huge screen will be overkill for most people and ultimately means it won't be that easy to carry around with you.' But despite all of that, it has still managed to win me over.
Because the screen is so big, it feels like a truly hybrid device. You can use it as a tablet, as a TV and if you buy the optional Book Cover Keyboard, it becomes a laptop as well.
All things considered, this slate is surprisingly portable as well. It’s 5.5mm thick (about the same as a coaster) which is incredible given everything it packs in, and it only weighs 726g, which is still lighter than even the best lightweight laptops. So while it is huge it’s not actually as much of a burden as you’d expect it to be.
Drawing and digital art, in particular, is a pleasure on the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra. It’s more realistic than elsewhere and feels closer to drawing on an A4 sheet of paper. You’ll be able to go into more detail than ever before thanks to the huge screen, getting a better view of the pixels to perfect fine lines and to shade even more precisely, more so than on the Apple iPad Pro 12.9-inch (2021). Similarly, you can edit photos in minute detail so that every inch of the shot is taken care of.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra comes with the S Pen included in the box to help you achieve all of that. It's accurate with excellent pressure sensitivity so your masterpiece comes out looking exactly how you intend it to. I’m no Picasso but I loved getting creative on the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra, digital artists are sure to swoon over this!
Those who need a tablet to work on will enjoy using the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra, at least I did. Packing the latest 4nm processor, it's very fast and it runs on Android 12 with Samsung's One UI 4.1 which means there are some handy features built into it to make it even more efficient.
My favourite productivity feature is the fact that you can open and use up to three windows at the same time, and because the screen is so big, you can see each one clearly. If you’re reading a book, presentation or article, you can have that up on one side of the screen while taking notes on the other. Or you could have your email inbox open while watching a video on YouTube and simultaneously editing a spreadsheet. The possibilities are endless. You just drag and drop an app from the sidebar then adjust the size and shape to how you need it.
All of that is helped by the quality of the Super AMOLED display, it has a resolution of 2960 x 1848p (WQXGA+) and to cut a long story short: it's stunning. Colours pop without looking over the top, lettering is clear and sharp and it’s very bright too. It’s a complete joy to look at and a great example of just how impressive screen technology has become.
Because of how good the on-screen content looks, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra could double up as a small TV as well. Streaming shows and movies from the likes of Netflix is much more comfortable here than on a smaller slate, so you can spend your days getting work done and your nights binge-watching Breaking Bad.
When I first saw the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra, I thought ‘who in their right mind would need such an obnoxiously big tablet’ but then I realised just how versatile it is and my mind was quickly changed - I need such an obnoxiously big tablet.
If you’re considering buying one of the best 2-in-1 laptops but you're likely to spend more time using it as a tablet, then this could be a better alternative, especially if you already own one of the best Samsung phones because it’ll work seamlessly with their ecosystem of products.