Mobile World Congress 2017 hasn’t officially kicked off just yet but most major manufacturers have already held launch events prior to the second major tech trade show of the year, and Samsung is obviously no exception. Although the Galaxy S8 has been confirmed not to make an appearance at MWC this round, the South Korean manufacturer has an almost equally impressive device launched in the tablet category. Yes, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 is now official so let’s take a look at what comes with it.

MWC 2017: The Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 is the iPad Pro's direct competitor 4

At first glance, the Galaxy Tab S3 features pretty much the same design elements from its predecessor the Galaxy Tab S2. with the exception of its rear glass panel, which is most likely inspired by the current Galaxy flagship handsets. That also means that the tablet will turn out to be very much of a fingerprint magnet. As usual, there’s no doubting in Samsung’s own displays, with the Tab S3 sporting a beautiful 9.7-inch Super AMOLED display with a resolution of 2,048 x 1,536.

Carrying the torch of being a flagship tablet, the Galaxy Tab S3 continues to shine underneath the hood, packing a serious amount of power. It features a Snapdragon 820 processor, the same processor found in most of 2016’s flagship smartphones, and remains powerful even till today. Alongside the chipset, Samsung has equipped a total of 4GB of RAM which should be sufficient, plus 32GB of internal storage, which is of course further expandable up to a further 256GB of your media consumption needs. 

As for the Galaxy Tab S3’s camera, it’s as good as cameras get on tablets – a 13MP rear camera coupled with a 5MP front facing camera for selfies and video calls. The device sports a decently sized 6,000mAh battery, and supports fast charging via its USB Type-C port. Samsung claims the Tab S3 to provide up to 12 hours of video playback, which is pretty impressive.

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A welcome addition for the Galaxy Tab S3 is a new S Pen. The main difference is that the Tab S3 does not have a slot for the S Pen, unlike its Galaxy Note handsets of the past. This new S Pen has 4,096 levels of pressure, making it as accurate as you’d expect it to be. It works and functions just like how an S Pen would work on a Note device – doodling, taking screenshots, notes and so on. 

You can definitely conclude that the Galaxy Tab S3 is Samsung’s champion to compete against the fellow 9.7-inch iPad Pro from Apple, as the latter also comes with an option keyboard case, further enhancing the tablet’s ability to perform productivity tasks. The keyboard differs from most conventional Bluetooth tablet keyboards as it doesn’t require charging at all. The keyboard case is attached to the Tab S3 via a pogo pin connector, hence dismissing the need for charging. 

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Samsung wants to ensure its consumers that the Galaxy Tab S3 isn’t made only for productivity purposes. The tablet packs quad stereo speakers tuned by Austrian sound manufacturer AKG. Media consumption will definitely be a pleasing experience with the stereo speakers and the beautiful Super AMOLED display.

The downside of the Galaxy Tab S3 however, is its version of Android – the dreadfully aging Marshmallow. This is rather disappointing considering most launched devices of today run on the newer Android Nougat. Having said that, the Tab S3 should still be able to perform well given its powerful internals. 

Samsung has yet to announced the pricing of the Galaxy Tab S3 just yet, so do keep an eye out for that. Specs wise, the Tab S3 does seem like the tablet version of the unlucky Galaxy Note 7 from last year. Regardless, it is definitely an Android competitor to Apple’s iPad Pro. What do you think?

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