Samsung Galaxy Book vs iPad Pro

It’s been a while since we’ve seen any new tablets from Samsung, then three arrive at once. The Galaxy Book is perhaps the most interesting, since it’s (another) rival to Microsoft Surface Pro 4, reviewed. Lenovo and other manufacturers also have Surface Pro alternatives, but here we’re comparing the Galaxy Book to another rival: Apple’s iPad Pro.

Two of Samsung’s new tablets are Galaxy Books and, like the iPad Pro, this means a choice of screen size: 10.6in and 12in. Currently, the iPad Pro is available with a 9.7in or 12.9in screen, but rumour has it that Apple is about to introduce a 10.5in iPad Pro, plus an updated version of the 12.9in iPad Pro (which is now well over a year old). For more, see iPad Pro 2 rumours.

Our brief comparison here is based on our extensive use and testing of the iPad Pro and our short time with the new Galaxy Books at MWC 2017. You can read our hands-on review of the Galaxy Book, and our in-depth iPad Pro review.

See also: Galaxy Book vs Surface Pro 4 

Samsung Galaxy Book vs iPad Pro: Price

Frustratingly, Samsung is yet to reveal any prices for the Galaxy Book, so it’s impossible to know how it will compare with Apple’s pricing.

Like Microsoft, Apple charges separately for the keyboard case, but the Galaxy Book comes with one in the box – plus an S Pen stylus. If you want one of those for your iPad Pro, that’s an extra £99. Apple’s Smart Keyboard cover costs a whopping £169. The 9.7in version isn’t much cheaper at £149.

Samsung Galaxy Book vs iPad Pro: Software

Unlike Samsung’s third new tablet – the Tab S3 – which runs Android, the Galaxy Book runs Windows 10. This means you can install desktop apps such as Photoshop and Office and have as many windows open as you like.

While the iPad Pro does have a few software features aimed at productivity, such as the ability to run two apps on screen at once, it can’t really compete with a full-blown Windows tablet if you want to use it primarily for work.

Samsung Galaxy Book vs iPad Pro: Connectivity

The 12in Galaxy Book has two USB-C ports which means it’s quite versatile in terms of what you can connect to it. Right now, though, USB-C is a bit of a pain, as you need convertors to attach standard USB devices such as a mouse. But in years to come, they will be very welcome as peripherals switch to the new standard.

The iPad has a Smart Connector, but its single Lightning port also has to be converted if you want to attach it to an HDMI screen or something else.

Of course, both tablets have Wi-Fi and Bluetooth for wireless peripherals, so you can print and do many other things without needing to connect any cables at all. Thanks to AirPlay, you can send video wirelessly from an iPad Pro to an Apple TV, and audio to an AirPlay speaker.

Samsung Galaxy Book vs iPad Pro: Core specifications

Samsung Galaxy Book

Apple iPad Pro 12.9

Windows 10 (version not specified)

iOS 10

12in Super AMOLED display, 2160x1440, 216ppi

12.9in display, 2732x2048, 264ppi

7th Gen Intel Core i5 processor, 3.1GHz

Apple A9X

4GB / 8GB

4GB RAM

128GB / 256GB

Up to 256GB storage

2x USB-C

Lightning port

Video output via USB-C

Video output via Lightning adaptor

MicroSD reader

No card reader

802.11ac Wi-Fi

802.11ac Wi-Fi

LTE model available

LTE model available

Bluetooth 4.1

Bluetooth 4.2

5Mp front camera

1.2Mp front camera

13Mp rear camera

8Mp rear camera

Pogo Keyboard case included

Smart Keyboard not included

S Pen included

Apple Pencil not included

291.3×199.8×7.4mm

307.7x220.6x6.9mm

754g (tablet only)

713g (723g LTE model)

Samsung Galaxy Book 12: Specs

  • Windows 10
  • 12in Super AMOLED display, 2160x1440, 216ppi
  • 7th Gen Intel Core i5 processor, 3.1GHz
  • 4GB / 8GB
  • 128GB / 256GB
  • 2x USB-C
  • Video output via USB-C MicroSD reader
  • 802.11ac Wi-Fi
  • LTE model available
  • Bluetooth 4.1
  • 5Mp front camera
  • 13Mp rear camera
  • Pogo Keyboard case included
  • S Pen included
  • 291.3×199.8×7.4mm
  • 754g (tablet only)
  • Windows 10
  • 12in Super AMOLED display, 2160x1440, 216ppi
  • 7th Gen Intel Core i5 processor, 3.1GHz
  • 4GB / 8GB
  • 128GB / 256GB
  • 2x USB-C
  • Video output via USB-C MicroSD reader
  • 802.11ac Wi-Fi
  • LTE model available
  • Bluetooth 4.1
  • 5Mp front camera
  • 13Mp rear camera
  • Pogo Keyboard case included
  • S Pen included
  • 291.3×199.8×7.4mm
  • 754g (tablet only)

OUR VERDICT

It's hard to say which is the best since Samsung has not yet announced pricing for the Galaxy Book. However, the bottom line - as in any comparison with a Windows 10 tablet and an iPad - is that you're really choosing between iOS and Windows. That's the fundamental difference, and what will determine which tablet is best for you. The iPad Pro is the better device for entertainment and for use as a tablet, while the Galaxy Book will be the better choice for productivity, especially if you want to install desktop Windows apps and use a keyboard and mouse.

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