Overview & Price
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.1 was released pm the 10th of May in 2016, although the version with the S pen was released in September 2016. In this Samsung Tab A review we give you all of the information you need to make an informed purchase decision on this device.
This may feel like a lifetime away but this tablet still has plenty to bring to the tablet and is a favourite among Android tablet users.
The Tab A is a mid-range device that offers users an option with or without the use of 4G, meaning that if you opt for the 4G option you have the freedom to take it out and about with you and it can connect to a network.
The Samsung Tab A specification is impressive, with a decent amount of internal storage and the ability to increase this with a microSD if needed.
To buy the Samsung Tab A, you will be looking at £249 here in the UK, the Tab A is great to keep the kids entertained and thanks to its stylus pen, it is also great for designers and artists.
Lets take a look..
Design & Display
So when it comes to the design of the Samsung Galaxy Tab A, it is very impressive.
The tablet has thin bezels all the way around the display meaning you have somewhere to put your finger when holding the tablet without making the display all grubby.
The Tab A comes in two different sizes, 10.1 version and the 9.7 (includes the S Pen), both of the devices are very well made and we found the build quality to be solid, there is no bend of flex in the tablets whatsoever and they both feel nice to hold in your hand.
We were lucky enough to get our hands on the 10.1 version for this review so we will mainly be discussing this variant of the Tab A.
One thing we did notice about the Tab A 10.1 is that it is rather heavy, weighing in at 525g the tablet is definitely heavier than we expected, not so much that its going to ache your arm when holding the device. Although it is heavy enough to feel it when carrying it in a handbag.
Both of the tablets are 0.32 inches thick, this isn’t too thick and feels just right to use in one hand, we loved the plastic design of the tablet too as it doesn’t get fingerprints on the back of the device unlike the Samsung Tab S4.
At the top of the display you will find the Samsung branding next to the front facing camera, down at the bottom there is a fixed home button too.
On the right hand side of this device is where you will find the power button, alongside the volume rockers. At the top of the tablet you will find the microUSB, a headphone jack and a microphone.
The Tab A also has a microSD slot that can be used to expand the storage even more, but we will get to that later.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.1 has a stunning display; it has a 16:9 aspect ratio, which means it gives users an awesome media experience.
We found that watching Netflix and YouTube videos on this tablet were awesome considering the price and even when used in landscape the tablets media experience is great.
The Tab A has a 1920 x 1200 resolution that gives you 224ppi, we found text to be clear and easy to read.
Viewing angles are also strong on the tablet too, and we did find that when using the tablet in direct sunlight it copes really well thanks to its high brightness levels.
This tablets display isn’t quite as good as what you would find on an iPad Pro or Samsung Tab S4, and if your someone who is solely buying a tablet for media, then you may want to opt for something with an AMOLED display to ensure you get the best colours and a better display.
That being said for the price of the Tab A, we couldn’t complain, we had fun watching the full Scooby Doo 2 movie without any complaints to report.
However when compared to the likes of the Lenovo Tab 4, we found this tablet to have some better features.
When it comes to the Samsung Tab A specification, its not going to win any gold medals but it is certainly enough horsepower to play games and navigate through the UI without any lag or stutter.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.1 comes with 16GB of internal storage, this isn’t a lot for a tablet but thanks to the microSD port you can add another 256GB to give you plenty of room to store movies and photos on your tablet.
At the bottom of the tablet is where Samsung has placed the two speaker, these aren’t the best we have seen on a tablet of this price but overall they are pretty good, when turned up to the max the bass is weak but we recommend plugging some headphones into the headphone jack if your going to be gaming or listening to music for long periods.
The Tab A 10.1 also comes with 2GB of RAM, whilst the newer model that includes the S-pen comes with 3GB of RAM.
We reviewed the tablet that did not come with the S-Pen so we cant give you much of an accurate description on this the stylus performs on this tablet.
However we have used tablet in the past that have shipped with a stylus and we found them very fun to use and could see how artists and designers would love this feature.
One thing we did notice when using the tablet in landscape is that the two buttons either side of the home button would often interfere with out experience.
Simply tapping the button will send the tablet to the previous page which becomes extremely annoying when watching YouTube videos or gaming on the device as it will literally throw you to your previous page unintentionally when you graze your finger over the back button.
The Tab A is by no means a performance powerhouse but it does have the power to handle your everyday tasks with ease, things like reading, browsing through the web and social media are all effortless for the Tab A.
We did test the tablet out on a couple of games, but we found the graphically demanding games such as PUBG were almost unplayable on this device, so we found ourselves sticking to the games that were on the Play Store and these ran just fine.
The tablet runs on Android 6.0 Marshmallow and has the Exynos 7870 processor, this is an easy UI to navigate through and everything is simple and easy to use, the tablet doesn’t struggle when navigating around and we found features to load up extremely quickly.
As a whole the Samsung Tab A specification is impressive but we recommend something with a little more firepower if you’re planning on gaming intensely on this device.
We haven’t yet came across anyone who purchases a tablet purely for its camera, but we know how important it is capture the moment as it comes and sometimes a tablet may be the only device to hand.
This is why it is important to make sure that your tablet has a camera that is capable of producing some decent shots, for the most part your smartphone will be able to produce way better images than a tablet but it is a feature we can’t forget about when it comes to making a purchase decision on a tablet.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.1 has a 2MP front facing camera with an f/2.2 aperture than can record video in 1280 x 720, this is decent for face time and video chat and we found that the quality is good too.
Around the back of the Tab A is where you will find the 8MP lens with an f/1.9 aperture, it has a flash meaning you can light up the room before taking a quick shot.
Colours do feel slightly dull on this tablet, with image quality being a country mile away from the quality of what you would find in an iPads camera.
Auto-focus is features on this lens too meaning it will automatically focus in on the subject before taking an image to try and increase the quality of the image.
Video can record in 1080@30fps on the rear lens, which is rather impressive; we found the footage to be clear and detailed but its not going to win any gold medals.
Overall the image quality of the Tab A is decent, your smartphone camera will most definitely be better than the one on this tablet, but if your in an emergency and need to grab a quick shot of your pet doing something funny then the Tab A has got you covered.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.1 has a 7300mAh battery which you can expect to last your for 13 hours of screen on time.
That being said this is down to the individual using the tablet and if you are going to be using the Tab A in max brightness whilst viewing lots of movies then you can expect around 9 hours.
We found that the tablet wouldn’t need charging for around 3-4 days after it was fully charged, and when charging the device from 0-100% it takes around 5 hours as it doesn’t have any quick charge feature built in.
The Samsung Tab A does have a power saving and ultra power saving mode which will definitely help you squeeze the most out of the last 20%, thanks to the CPU and processor the tablet hardly uses any of its battery when in standby which we thought was awesome.
As a whole we were impressed with the Samsung Tab A battery life and we had no real issues to report, the one thing we would have liked is a quick charge feature but for the price of this tablet we were impressed at its power saving abilities.
Throughout this Samsung Tab A review the battery life was one of the most impressive features of the device, as it kept us going for hours even when using the device intensely.
So is the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.1 worth you hard earned cash?
Well if your someone not looking to break the bank but are also looking for a well built tablet, then yes this could be the one for you.
We found that the tablet has a strong display that is great for watching media on, and the performance of the device is decent too.
However if your going to be gaming on this device then we recommend investing into the 9.7 version of the tablet as it has 3GB of RAM and also comes with a stylus.
Battery life is also great on this device and we loved the fact that we could take it out and about with us confidently without having to worry about charging the device up before leaving the house.
To buy the Samsung Tab A is a good purchase decision, considering it low price and strong display, but we would recommend checking out our Lenovo Tab 4 review before investing as Huawei offers some incredible value for money devices too.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 can also be a great alternative if your budget can stretch a little.
We hope you enjoyed our Samsung Tab A review and feel free to check out where to buy the Samsung Tab A up top.
Full Spec Below:
Launch: 2018, May
- Dimension: 254.2 x 155.3 x 8.2mm (10.1 x 6.11 x 0.32 in)
- Weight: 525g (1.16 lb)
- Build: Plastic body
- Sim: Nano-SIM
- Type: PLS LCD capacitive touchscreen, 16M colours
- Size: 10.1 inches, 295.8cm² (-74.9& screen-to-body ratio)
- Resolution: 1200 x 1920 pixels, 16:10 ratio (-224 ppi density)
– Stylus (only S pen models)
- OS: Android 6.0 (Marshmallow), upgradable to Android 8.1 (Oreo)
- Chipset: Exynos 7870 Octa (14nm)
- CPU: Octa-core (4×1.6GHz Cortex-A53 & 4×1.0 GHz Cortex-A53)
- GPU: Mali-T830 MP2
- Card slot: microSD, up to 256GB (dedicated slot)
- Internal: 16/32 GB, 3GB RAM (S-Pen version only) or 16GB, 2GB RAM
- Primary: 8MP, AF, f/1.9
- Features: LED flash, panorama
- Video: 1080p@30fps
- Selfie Cam: 2MP, f/2.2
- Video: 1080p@30fps
- Loudspeaker: Yes
- 3.5mm Jack: Yes
- WLAN: Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, WiFi Direct, hotspot
- Bluetooth: 4.2, A2DP, LE
- GPS: Yes, with A-GPS, GLONESS, Beidou (market dependent)
- Radio: No
- USB: microUSB 2.0
- Sensors: Accelerometer
- Non-removeable Li-Ion battery (32.4 Wh)
- Colours: Pearl White, Metallic Black
- Price: As seen in above post