Samsung’s newest Galaxy Tab S8 tablets are some of its best devices in a while, offering a lot of great software features, high-end hardware, and performance that rivals even that of Apple’s newest iPads. However, it’s no secret that the Tab S8 devices are rather expensive, which is something to consider if you’re interested in getting one.
However, if you’re thinking of getting a Samsung Galaxy Tab device that has decent specs and is a bit more wallet-friendly, then the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite is a device that might fit your needs. Launched back in 2020, the device is still officially sold by Samsung (at the time of writing) and comes with some interesting hardware and software features.
Today we’re going to take a look at the device, and see what it has to offer. Let’s get started!
Design and Display
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite comes in an all-aluminium body, which looks very identical to a lot of current-gen tablets from Samsung and Apple. The overall design has a slim and sleek feel to it thanks to the metal unibody, which comes with a dual-speaker set-up on the top and bottom, in addition to the microSD card slot and 3.5mm headphone jack.
The front of the tablet is dominated by the 10.4-inch display with a 1200x2000p resolution. It’s fast, bright, and responsive, but unfortunately there’s no AMOLED display or 120Hz refresh rate on here. On one hand, it’s understandable due to the tablet’s lower price, but it’s a feature that would’ve been a welcome addition. Samsung hasn’t officially stated if the display uses Gorilla Glass, so a screen protector might be a necessity for this one.
The tablet isn’t too heavy, and handling it is comfortable thanks to the slim build and small bezels. Overall, it’s got an impressively sturdy design, and I haven’t noticed any creaks or irregularities in the construction of my unit.
Performance & Software
Inside the tablet you’ll find Samsung’s Exynos 9611 chipset, paired with 4GB of RAM and the choice of either 64 or 128GB of internal storage. It’s the same chip that’s found in a number of Galaxy “A” and “M” series phones, and while it’s not on par with the latest Snapdragon chips on the new Galaxy Tabs, it’s no slouch when it comes to performance either. The Galaxy Tab S6 Lite ran all the games I threw at it, although there are some games on the Google Play Store that wouldn’t show up, as they weren’t compatible with the hardware on the tablet. Moderate and casual games should run fine, and you’ll have no problem blasting away at COD Mobile on the tablet.
When it comes to software, the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite currently runs on Android 11, with Samsung’s One UI 3.1. It’s worth mentioning that Samsung has begun rolling out its latest software updates for the Tab S6 Lite, although not all regions have received the update yet.
If you’re after a tablet that runs “stock” Android or something similar to the user interface on Google’s Pixel phones, then you might be overwhelmed by the amount of customization that Samsung has added with One UI. On the other hand though, One UI adds a lot of useful software features, such as Samsung’s DeX feature, which transforms the tablet’s interface into a desktop set-up, making it ideal for productivity purposes. It does drain a bit more battery though, but the layout lets you get the best out of your productivity apps.
Speaking of productivity, the tablet features split-screen for apps, which is useful if you like to multitask a lot on your Android devices. There’s barely any lag, and while navigating through the UI isn’t lightning fast, it’s enough to let you get work done, edit documents, work on spreadsheets, and such. The included S-Pen is also a great addition – it’s bundled with the S6 Lite, and I’ve used it a lot for working and drawing on the tablet. While there’s no storage slot for the pen, it attaches magnetically on the tablet, so you’re less likely to lose it.
The S6 Lite is also perfect for media consumption. The large screen and speakers makes the device ideal for streaming movies and music, and the inclusion of a microSD card slot means that you can store a lot more media files on the device. If you’d prefer to stream everything though, binge-watching is no problem as the 7040 mAh battery manages to last long, and I rarely need to charge the device often – maybe twice a week with constant use. If you do need to charge it, the Tab S6 Lite fortunately comes with a USB-C cable and charger packed in the box.
The cameras on the tablet are nothing exceptional, however. On the back sits a single 8-megapixel camera, paired with a 5-megapixel front facing camera embedded into the bezel. They’re not terrible per se, but they’re not impressive either. They’d do great in video calls for example, but I would refrain from using the tablet as my main camera.
Still Worth Getting?
At a price of £399 for the 4G LTE version and £329 for the Wi-Fi only model, the Tab S6 Lite is considerably more affordable than the latest Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 series, and even last year’s Tab S7 FE. While it may have a bit of catching up to do in the specs department, we think that the build quality, performance, and included S-Pen functionality do a great job of giving you a competent Android tablet experience.
Of course, you can always opt to go with a cheaper Samsung tablet like the Galaxy Tab “A” devices, but those usually cut back on performance to keep costs low, and lack certain hardware features in comparison to the S6 Lite.
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