Why you can trust ZDNET : ZDNET independently tests and researches products to bring you our best recommendations and advice. When you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. Our process

'ZDNET Recommends': What exactly does it mean?

ZDNET's recommendations are based on many hours of testing, research, and comparison shopping. We gather data from the best available sources, including vendor and retailer listings as well as other relevant and independent reviews sites. And we pore over customer reviews to find out what matters to real people who already own and use the products and services we’re assessing.

When you click through from our site to a retailer and buy a product or service, we may earn affiliate commissions. This helps support our work, but does not affect what we cover or how, and it does not affect the price you pay. Neither ZDNET nor the author are compensated for these independent reviews. Indeed, we follow strict guidelines that ensure our editorial content is never influenced by advertisers.

ZDNET's editorial team writes on behalf of you, our reader. Our goal is to deliver the most accurate information and the most knowledgeable advice possible in order to help you make smarter buying decisions on tech gear and a wide array of products and services. Our editors thoroughly review and fact-check every article to ensure that our content meets the highest standards. If we have made an error or published misleading information, we will correct or clarify the article. If you see inaccuracies in our content, please report the mistake via this form.


Samsung's new Galaxy Tab S9 series beats the iPad in two major ways

At Unpacked, Samsung announced the Galaxy Tab S9, Tab S9+, and Tab S9 Ultra. Here's what's new.
Written by Maria Diaz, Staff Writer
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 Ultra and S9 on a table.
June Wan/ZDNET

With Samsung Unpacked underway in Seoul, South Korea, most of the buzz has surrounded the new Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Galaxy Z Flip 5 phones. But, some of the biggest innovations were expertly built into Samsung's Galaxy S9 Tab series, including two notable upgrades that put them ahead of Apple's best iPads.

Also: How to preorder the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5, Flip 5, Tab S6 and more

Besides a faster processor, the latest iterations of Samsung's Galaxy tablets feature improved AMOLED displays and an IP68 rating, a feature typically reserved for rugged tablets. 

With an IP68 rating, the tablets can withstand dust intrusion and be submerged in up to 1.5 meters of water for up to 30 minutes. And with new Dynamic AMOLED displays on every model, these devices may just offer the most vibrant images on the market.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 and S9+

Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 S Pen

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 is the most affordable of the three tablets and the most compact. With an 11-inch display, the S9 can fit into smaller bags easier than the rest of the lineup, but its features are anything but minor.

To start, Samsung stuck with the "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" approach this time around. The Galaxy Tab S9 features the same 8,400mAh battery as its predecessor, the Galaxy Tab S8, which was appreciated for its long battery life

Also: Best Android tablets: Forget the iPad

With the addition of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy processor, we expect even greater battery life this time around, lasting you through the workday and into the evening. 

The larger Samsung Galaxy Tab S9+ also features an improved AMOLED display and is a 12.4-inch middle ground between the more affordable S9 and the flagship Ultra.

The Tab S9 starts at $799 for the 128GB model, and the Tab S9+ starts at $999 for the 256GB model. Samsung is also selling the Tab S9+ in a 5G-supported variant, starting at $1,149.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 Ultra

Person holding the Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 Ultra
June Wan/ZDNET

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 Ultra is the company's high-end tablet, featuring the longest battery life of the S9 series with up to eight hours of browsing on a single charge. 

The beauty of the Galaxy Tab S9 Ultra is that it can become both a casual, entertainment device and one for professional workflows. The large 14.6-inch screen allows it to display your most important documents, allowing space to sketch, edit, or take notes with the included S pen or stream videos after work.

Also: Samsung's new foldables have one very important feature no one is talking about

The flagship 14.6-inch Ultra tablet now also features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy chipset, the same processor powering the Galaxy S23 series. If its benefits hold true, expect the Tab S9 series, in general, to see faster performance and more efficient battery life.


Galaxy Tab S9 UltraGalaxy Tab S9+Galaxy Tab S9
Price $1,199$999$799
Color Beige, GraphiteBeige, GraphiteBeige, Graphite
Main camera 13MP AF, 8MP UW13MP AF, 8MP UW13MP AF
Rear camera 12MP, 12MP UW12MP UW12MP UW
Battery 11,200mAh10,090mAh8,400mAh
RAM & storage 12GB/256GB, 12GB/512GB, 16GB/1TB12GB/256GB, 12GB/512GB8GB/128GB, 12GB/256GB
MicroSD card Up to 1TBUp to 1TBUp to 1TB
Water/dustproof IP68IP68IP68
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for GalaxyQualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for GalaxyQualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy
Display 14.6-in Dynamic AMOLED, 120Hz12.4-in Dynamic AMOLED, 120Hz11-in Dynamic AMOLED, 120Hz
Audio Quad stereo speakers with Sound by AKG, Dolby AtmosQuad stereo speakers with Sound by AKG, Dolby AtmosQuad stereo speakers with Sound by AKG, Dolby Atmos
Connectivity 5G, LTE, Wi-Fi 6E, Wi-Fi Direct Bluetooth 5.35G, LTE, Wi-Fi 6E, Wi-Fi Direct Bluetooth 5.35G, LTE, Wi-Fi 6E, Wi-Fi Direct Bluetooth 5.3
Dimensions 12.85" x 8.21" x 0.21"11.23" x 7.3" 0.22"10.01" x 6.53" x 0.23"
Weight 1.61lbs1.29lbs1.1lbs
Editorial standards