What to Look for When Buying Your Tablet: iPad vs Samsung

Perhaps you’re a creator who needs a powerful tablet for digital art, video editing, or illustration. Or maybe you need a basic tablet for watching Netflix, browsing the web, writing, or making video calls.

The number of brands and models available can make it hard to decide which tablet to buy. However, it doesn’t take long to discover that Apple and Samsung create the greatest tablets.

Both brands make excellent tablets for a variety of uses. This article will compare various aspects of Apple’s iPads and Samsung’s Tablets to help determine which brand and model is best for you.

Price Comparison

While iPads are more expensive than Samsung tablets, both brands offer affordable options. Samsung may be a better option if you’re on a budget but still need a high-end tablet.

Pro Tip: If the price of a new tablet is outside your budget, you can always sell your old tablet or other devices for extra cash to put toward your purchase.

*(Prices are from Apple’s and Samsung’s websites with comparable storage options.)

High-End Tablets

Apple iPad Pro 12.9” (2022)

Apple iPad Pro 12.9” (2022)

  • Price: $1,199
  • Storage: 256GB
  • Processor:  M2 processor chip
  • Display: 12.9-inch mini-LED backlit display with IPS technology
  • Main Cameras: Pro camera system: Wide and Ultra Wide cameras
    • Wide: 12MP, ƒ/1.8 aperture
    • Ultra Wide: 10MP, ƒ/2.4 aperture, 125° field of view
  • Selfie Camera: 12MP Ultra Wide camera, ƒ/2.4 aperture, 122° field of view

Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 UltraSamsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra

  • Price: $1,080
  • Storage: 256GB
  • Processor: Qualcomm SM8450 Snapdragon 8 Gen 1
  • Display: 14.6” Super AMOLED display
  • Main Cameras: Dual Cameras: Wide and Ultra Wide
    • Wide: 13MP, ƒ/2.0 aperture
    • Ultra Wide: 6MP, ƒ/2.2 aperture
  • Selfie Cameras: Dual Cameras: Wide and Ultra Wide
    • Wide: 12MP, ƒ/2.2 aperture
    • Ultra Wide: 12MP, ƒ/2.4 aperture, 120° field of view

Budget Tablets

Apple’s most affordable tablet is the iPad (9th generation), with 64GB of storage. It costs $329 and has a 10.2” display, an 8MP wide rear-facing camera, and a 12MP ultra-wide selfie camera.

Samsung’s best budget tablet is the Samsung Galaxy Tab A8 with 64GB of storage, which costs only $199.99. This tablet has a 10.5” display, an 8MP rear-facing camera, and a 5MP selfie camera.

Operating Systems

Apple’s tablets run their proprietary iOS operating system, while Samsung tablets run Google’s Android operating system.


Apple’s iOS is more user-friendly than Android OS since iOS is optimized for Apple tablets. In contrast, Android OS is developed for various tablets from different brands. However, if you’re already familiar with using Android OS on your mobile device, you may find it easier to navigate.


Apple’s App Store ensures quality over quantity. Android’s Google Play Store excessively approves low-quality apps.


Android is the more customizable OS of the two. Apple’s iOS is more simple overall, making for an easy-to-operate interface.


The iPad Pro 12.9” display has a slightly higher pixel density (264 ppi) than the Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra (240ppi), as well as better color accuracy.

iPad Pro 12.9” (2022) Display:

  • Type: mini-LED-backlit IPS
  • Size: 12.9” Diagonal
  • Refresh Rate: 120Hz
  • Resolution: 2732 x 2048 pixels
  • Pixel Density: 264 pixels per inch
  • Color Accuracy: 117.1% sRGB

Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra Display:

  • Type: sAMOLED
  • Size: 14.6” Diagonal
  • Refresh Rate: 120Hz
  • Resolution: 1848 x 2960 pixels
  • Pixel Density: ~240 pixels per inch
  • Color Accuracy: 99.5% sRGB

The iPad (9th generation) display takes a clear win over the Samsung Galaxy Tab A8 with higher pixel density and improved color accuracy.

iPad (9th generation) Display:

  • Type: LED-backlit IPS
  • Size: 10.2” Diagonal
  • Refresh Rate: 60Hz
  • Resolution: 2160 x 1620 pixels
  • Pixel Density: 264 pixels per inch
  • Color Accuracy: 97.7% sRGB

Samsung Galaxy Tab A8 Display:

  • Type: TFT LCD
  • Size: 10.5” Diagonal
  • Refresh Rate: 60Hz
  • Resolution: 1200 x 1920 pixels
  • Pixel Density: ~216 pixels per inch
  • Color Accuracy: 91.6% sRGB


On top of an already expensive tablet, Apple charges extra for accessories. Samsung does include their S Pen with the S8 models but not with their budget models.


Apple has the Apple Pencil and Samsung the S Pen, which are equal in terms of quality. Samsung includes the S Pen with the Galaxy S8 models, whereas Apple charges $129 for the Apple Pencil.


Apple and Samsung offer keyboard folios that magnetically attach to tablets. Apple’s Magic Keyboard for the iPad Pro 12.9” costs $350, as does Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra Book Cover Keyboard.


Samsung’s tablets sport microSD card slots, which allow for expandable storage (up to 1TB), while the iPads do not. However, the iPads can connect to external hard drives via USB-C for additional storage.

Apple charges more than Samsung for extra internal storage. For example, selecting 512GB over 256GB is $150 more for the Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra and $200 more for the iPad Pro 12.9”.

Pro tip: Consider selling your old tablet or other devices so that you can put that money toward extra storage or hard drives.

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Frequently Asked Questions

For most people, iPads will deliver a better user experience. The build quality of iPads is spectacular, and the operating system is unrivaled by any other tablet OS. Samsung’s tablets are high-quality hardware, but the Android operating system limits them.

Apple’s iPads are the superior tablet for most users due to their advanced proprietary operating system. The Android operating system holds Samsung’s tablets back significantly because it’s less intuitive, more technical, and more clunky overall than Apple’s operating system.

The main difference between an iPad and a Samsung tablet is that iPads use iOS, Apple’s proprietary operating system, while Samsung uses Google’s Android operating system. And Samsung tablets have microSD card slots that allow up to 1TB of additional storage, and iPads do not.

The Samsung Galaxy S8 Series Tablets are comparable to Apple’s iPads. The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra is most similar to the Apple iPad Pro 12.9” (2022). The iPad Air and iPad are comparable to the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8.

The lifespan of a device depends on whether it’s a phone or tablet, but generally speaking, Apple tends to support their devices for longer (5-6 years) than Samsung (4-5 years). Using third-party software, it is possible to extend your device’s lifespan much more.

Samsung does some things better than Apple. Their phone cameras have been consistently better (at least in terms of software) for the price. They also provide much more value for the money in terms of components. Their software allows for more customization for those who are interested in that.

Apple’s iPads operate on the proprietary iOS, which is the best-in-class operating system for tablets, period. The quality of the apps available in the App Store exceeds that of the Google Play Store due to a strict approval process for developers to publish an app.

Because Apple’s operating system is proprietary (meaning the source code cannot be viewed by just anyone), it is much safer than Android. Anyone can view the source code of Android OS, allowing hackers to create strategies to hack into Android devices easily.

Android tablets have microSD card slots, which allow for expandable storage of up to 1TB by inserting a microSD card. iPads, on the other hand, do not have microSD card slots. So if you want external storage on an iPad, you must use an external hard drive.

The best tablet or iPad for most people is the Apple iPad Air (2022). It takes advantage of the mighty M1 processor, has an excellent display, and has high-quality 12-megapixel cameras. The price is an affordable $599, making it a fantastic value.

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