While 2016 might not have been a great year for tablets, things are starting to look up for 2017. According to a new report from South Korea-based Naver News, Samsung is prepping the release of a new Galaxy Tab S, the first update to its high end Android tablet in nearly a year and a half.
So, while Samsung won’t be bringing the Galaxy S8 to next month’s Mobile World Congress, it reportedly won’t be arriving empty handed. According to the publication, the new tablet will be the electronics giant’s premier release at this year’s conference in Barcelona, and it looks to be a pretty significant upgrade over the long-in-the-tooth S2.
The size will reportedly be similar to the larger of the two 2015 models—with a 9.6-inch, 2048×1536 display, versus 9.7 inches on the S2—but the internals will receive a massive boost. Under the hood, Samsung’s new tablet is expected to sport a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor, as well as a 12MP rear camera and 5MP front camera (up from 8MP and 2MP, respectively, on the S2), and 4GB of RAM. The operating system will be based on Android 7.0, and the chassis is expected to be thinner than its predecessor, already quite slim at just 5.6mm thick.
Additionally, Naver reports that the device will cost 700,000 South Korean won, or approximately $600, about $100 more than the 9.7-inch Galaxy Tab S2. Incidentally, a $600 price tag would put the Galaxy Tab S3 in line with the similarly sized iPad Pro, but while the report says the tablet will come in Wi-Fi and LTE varieties, it doesn’t mention whether Samsung will position it as a professional device with accessories like a keyboard or S-Pen.
Should I be excited: At this point, any new Android tablet release is reason to take notice, but we’re going to need a little more information before we can draw any conclusions. So far, the specs here, while nothing to sneeze at, are pretty much what any premium 2017 Android tablet should be expected to include. And there’s a lot we don’t know, like whether there will be a smaller companion, how much storage it will have, whether it will include a Smart Connector-type hookup, etc. But at least we know something is in the works.