Samsung has doubled down on tablets, unveiling not one, but two, at the company’s first major product announcement since the Galaxy Note 7 debacle.
The company postponed the launch of the Galaxy S8 until the end of March after it was forced to recall the flagship Note 7 last year due to battery fires. Instead, Samsung presented the Galaxy Tab S3 and the Galaxy Book at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on Sunday.
At Sunday’s event, David Lowes, Samsung’s chief marketing officer, said he thinks “we’re now at a turning point for tablets.”
“The shift from desktop to mobile has been even more rapid than predicted as people embrace the full meaning of personal in a personal computer,” Lowes said. “The tablet of today should be versatile and a product that allows you to do whatever you want, whenever you want, wherever you want.”
With the launch of the new tablets, Samsung is setting its sights on Microsoft’s Surface and Apple’s iPad by including more productivity features and sleek redesigns.
Galaxy Tab S3
The Galaxy Tab S3 follows Samsung’s Tab S2, which it launched in 2015. It features a 9.7-inch screen that supports HDR and has four speakers. It also has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor. With a glass back, the tablet is only 6mm thick and includes several new productivity features.
A new S Pen is included directly in the box, and can do all the standard tasks such as taking notes and capturing screenshots. There’s also an optional keyboard case that attaches to the bottom of the tablet and doesn’t require charging.
For people who use their tablet to stream movies, Samsung has created a feature that allows the S3 to detect which direction you’re watching video and automatically adjust the sound to match.
The device weighs a scant 429 grams and comes in silver or black, with an aluminum frame.
The Galaxy Book is Samsung’s response to the Microsoft Surface. The two-in-one tablet comes in two models, the 10-inch Galaxy Book 10 and the 12-inch Galaxy Book 12. Both run Microsoft’s Windows 10 operating system.
Each device also comes with a stylus and keyboard case and features two USB Type-C ports.
The Book 10 is the lighter of the two tablets, featuring an Intel Core m3 processor and 1920 x 1280 pixel LCD display. The Book 12 is equipped with Intel’s Core i5 processor and a 12-inch AMOLED HDR display.
Samsung partnered with Microsoft and Adobe on the Galaxy Book hardware. The S Pen, for example, has a new tilt feature for drawing in Adobe Illustrator. The S Pen will also feature more than 4,000 levels of pressure sensitivity.
The keyboard also includes new features, such as backlighting, a bigger touchpad, and improved key travel.
Samsung didn’t release the pricing information of either tablet or details on when they will be released.