TODO alt text

Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 8.0 review

Samsung adds an eight-incher to its Tab line-up, but can it beat the Nexus 7 and iPad Mini?

Our Verdict

With the Galaxy Tab 3 8.0, Samsung has delivered below-par build quality, poor performance and an unattractive plasticky case and then slapped on a price tag that means it costs more than an iPad Mini. It's hard to find any reason to recommend this particular Tab.

Product features

  • Screen Resolution : 1280 x 800
  • Processor Core : Dual-core (2 Core)
  • Rear Camera Resolution : 5 Megapixel

View full specification

For

  • Slim build
  • Decent screen
  • Excellent battery life

Against

  • Performance issues
  • Plasticky design
  • Unjustified high price
Ratings in depth

Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 8 0 review

Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 8 0 review

Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 8 0 review

Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 8 0 review

Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 8 0 review

Samsung hasn't been afraid to try different sizes of Galaxy Tab with 7.9-inch and 8.9-inch Tabs both figuring in the last few years. However, it has now introduced the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 8.0, the golden child of the Galaxy Tab range.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.0 has undoubtedly been given the most love in this trio of third-gen slates, and it's the sleekest and best looking of the Tab 3 range, putting the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7.0's bloated build to shame.

It runs Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean, which is of course daubed with Samsung's own TouchWiz interface that's become synonymous with the Galaxy brand.

With the battleground of the 10-inch tablet largely abandoned to Apple – aside from the excellent Sony Xperia Tablet Z – things have got extremely competitive in the seven and eight-inch range. While Apple is still strong here with the iPad mini, the lack of a Retina display and high price-tag means there's an opportunity to make an impression.

Samsung has decimated the size of the bezels to make a considerable saving in bulk over the equivalently sized Note 8.0. It's impressive how different two eight-inch devices can be, and while it's impossible to hold the Note 8.0 without gripping the bezel, we had no problem wrapping our hand around the Tab 3 8.0 and holding it in one hand.

Galaxy Tab 3 8 0
Sleek and nicely designed

The Galaxy Note 3 8.0 also falls short in terms of build quality. HTC has shown that you can use quality materials and keep prices down, but it seems Samsung still hasn't got the message.

While many of the software innovations have followed on from the Galaxy S4, so has the plasticky design on the back. It's perplexing why Samsung has decided to blindly use this material again when build quality is the biggest bugbear of the Galaxy range.

Galaxy Tab 3 8 0
The back is the typical Galaxy plastic

Again, the new Nexus 7 wins out here again. While it's still made of plastic, it feels more solid than the Tab 3 range, and scores a secondary punch by weighing in 50g lighter.

We could excuse the Galaxy Tab 3 8.0's plasticky build if it was saving a dramatic amount of weight, but this simply isn't the case. The Tab 3 tipped the scales at exactly the same weight as the iPad mini, but given the latter has a discernibly superior build, this isn't really a victory.

Google has made its play with the new Nexus 7 (2013) which is available for £199/$229 (around AU$240), and Samsung's 7-inch tablet can be picked up for £179/$179 (around AU$190). However, the Galaxy Tab 3 8.0 is available for a whopping £280/$279 (around AU$295), – more than the iPad Mini.

So can this all-new Galaxy Tab 3 score a direct hit on the iPad? Could this be the tablet to capture our imaginations and do for tablets what the Samsung Galaxy S2 did for phones? Or will it be another lacklustre slate with no genuine reason to fork out?

Tech Specs

Product TypeTablet
Green CompliantYes
Flash Memory Capacity16 GB
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
Optical Drive TypeNo
GPSYes
Product FamilyGalaxy Tab 3
Front Camera/WebcamYes
Operating System PlatformAndroid
ColourPearl White
Operating SystemAndroid 4.2.2 Jelly Bean
Brand NameSamsung
Form FactorSlate
Processor Speed1.50 GHz
Screen Size20.3 cm (8")
Screen Resolution1280 x 800
Standard Memory1.50 GB
Weight (Approximate)314 g
Processor CoreDual-core (2 Core)
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityWEEE
Memory Card ReaderYes
TouchscreenYes
Display Screen TypeActive Matrix TFT Colour LCD
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11a/b/g/n
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 4.0
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Rear Camera Resolution5 Megapixel
Height209.8 mm
Width123.8 mm
Depth7.4 mm
Screen ModeWXGA
ManufacturerSamsung
Product ModelSM-T310
Product NameGalaxy Tab 3 8.0 (Wi-Fi)
Product LineGalaxy Tab 3
Aspect Ratio16:10
Manufacturer Part NumberSM-T3100ZWABTU
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.samsung.com/uk/
Marketing InformationIt's a whole new world with the GALAXY Tab 3 at your fingertips. Slimmer, narrower and with a thinner bezel, this new and improved Tab offers incredible grip for easy handling on the go. It's lighter, too, even though it doesn't skimp on performance. In fact, the Tab features a powerful Dual Core processor, dual cameras. You'll also enjoy more apps from Samsung and Google, and free 50 GB worth of Dropbox Storage. It just doesn't get any better than that!

Slimmer for a Comfortable Fit in the Hand
You will feel secure when grasping the GALAXY Tab 3 in your palm. Slimmer and narrower, the new GALAXY TAB 3 is a better fit, while the thinner bezel ensures you have more screen to touch and operate to your advantage. Lighter to boot, the new GALAXY Tab 3 puts your comfort at the forefront.

Useful Device with Up-to-date Technology
This Tablet doesn't shy away from power. Equipped with a 1.2GHZ Dual Core Processor, it can handle just about anything you ask it to do - smoothly, quickly and expertly. Enjoy the convenience of two cameras (3 MP/1.3 MP) for video chatting, taking shots of others or even perfectly-framed photos of yourself. Web browsing has never been easier, quicker or more reliable with the Channel Bonding connections. Surf away and enjoy fast and easy data transfers.

Absolutely unlimited entertainment
Video Hub is your personal video store concierge -- 1.000+ titles and counting -- with virtually no wait time during progressive downloads so that you can enjoy video contents right away. Forget lugging around stacks of books, For your best convenience and satisfaction, Music Hub provides a full music store loaded with your favorite tunes. Game Hub, your go-to source for premium and multi-player games, lets you jump into action any time, wherever you are.

Dropbox - 50GB free
Enjoy 50 GB worth of free Dropbox storage for 2 years. This enables storage of all files that are accessible directly on your mobile and anywhere else there is an internet connection.

More voice & messaging options
Engage in spur-of-the-moment, group video sessions with Google+ Hangouts, as easily as bumping into somebody on the street. ChatON connects your friends and acquaintances across devices and platforms in a more expressive, dynamic way with unique features like Group Chat, Multimedia Transmission, Buddy Interaction and more.
Package Contents
  • Galaxy Tab 3 8.0 (Wi-Fi)
  • AC Adapter