iPad air 2 - why should I buy this instead of Samsung tablet?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by tompab, Nov 21, 2015.

  1. tompab, Nov 21, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2015

    tompab macrumors newbie

    Nov 21, 2015

    My wife has an old iPad 2 that is getting a bit slow etc, and I was gonna surprise her with an upgrade. However, when I went to the store I was very underwhelmed with the iPad air 2.

    Specifically as it was sitting right next to a Samsung Galaxy tab s2. The Samsung was thinner, lighter, cheaper and had an microsd slot. Although the materials of the iPad would be classified as premium, I personally preferred the look and feel of the (black) Samsung tablet as well. I later learned that the iPad only has 2gb ram as well, which seems very low (although I'm sure I'll be told of the superior memory handling in ios which leads to less memory needs or something like that :)). That said, the performance doesn't seem to be the strong point of the Samsung.

    My wife had an iPhone earlier, which she liked, but she is now on her second Android phone. It's a Samsung Galaxy note 4, and she loves it. She has no other apple devices. She still like apple products though, but she is also a Samsung convert, so either brand would please her I think. Other brands are not worth considering at this stage.

    Now the reason for this thread is that I then learned about the poor battery capacity in the Samsung tablet. The battery still performed well when watching movies etc, but for the general browsing test, they only got around 6 hours compared to iPads 10 hours. My wife would mainly use the tablet for browsing and reading forums and Facebook etc.

    The battery is a bit of a deal breaker. She uses the tablet very sporadically and is not good at charging it. So I'm very much on the fence now.

    I expect many people here to have strong feelings about the iPads superiority, so can you convince me why I should get that one despite all the benefits I listed above for Samsung?

    I think I might have to get iPad due to the battery as it's just a safer choice, but I'm finding it very hard to justify. Surely there must be more to the iPad that I'm missing?

    Any opinions are much appreciated!

    Edit: battery test here: http://www.anandtech.com/show/9709/samsung-galaxy-tab-s2-review/6

    Edit: both tablets would be 9.7 inch WiFi only models. The iPad would be 64gb model.
  2. cynics macrumors G4

    Jan 8, 2012
    Well, as you mentioned most of the main reasons to stick with an iPad are moot since it's mostly due to ecosystem or learning a new OS. Those aren't concerns.

    So tasked with the goal of trying to convince you to stick with Apple I would ask you :

    Since she is still using an iPad 2 do you think that Samsung tablet will have anywhere remotely near the same lifespan?

    That question is a bit rhetorical since we both know it won't but it leads me to another question, which one is actually cheaper when you keep in mind it's lifespan? Is it cheaper to replace the Samsung tablet twice?

    Also, how convinced are you with Samsungs implementation of Android when it comes to privacy and security?
  3. sracer macrumors 604


    Apr 9, 2010
    I've owned a few Samsung tablets in the past, and currently own a Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4. It was my go-to tablet for approx 6-8 months after my iPad 2 became a sluggish crashfest after upgrading to iOS 8. A beastly little tablet hampered by Samsung's bloatware, aka TouchWiz. I say "hampered" but that is relative to NOT having that bloatware. Battery life and performance were quite good. But after rooting it and freezing the bloatware, it was even more responsive and had even better battery life.

    The thing with Samsung devices, is that they produce so many different models so quickly that there aren't always enough accessory choices. It took a long time before I found an excellent case for the Pro 8.4.

    I recently replaced my iPad 2 (and iPad 4) with an iPad Air 2. There are some killer deals going on for the last month or so. Terrific device. One option might be to buy a higher capacity iPad to attempt to make up for the lack of removable storage. (not an exact functional replacement, but it's something)

    As for GTabs, they have great expansion options. Adding a bluetooth mouse and keyboard makes it feel more "pro" than an iPad Pro. Support for microSD cards is indeed very handy. Samsung's Multiwindow and PIP capabilities are well implemented and more mature than iOS 9's. I'm not a fan of Android's memory management (autostarting apps, and restarting if they are not running/loaded impedes the overall performance)

    Regarding the battery life, if you are tech-savvy and don't mind voiding your warranty, rooting the GTab and "freezing" some of the background processes that comprise Samsung's bloatware, can have a noticeable improvement on battery life and performance.

    For an overall "get it and go" device, I'd recommend the Air 2. For a "look under the hood, tweak and tune it" I'd suggest the GTab. Assuming of course that the apps that you'd most likely use are available for that platform.

    In my experiences, Samsung tablets have just as long if not longer lifespans that iPads. There are many factors that go into determining the "lifespan". Different people will have different definitions.
  4. Capt T macrumors 6502a

    Mar 20, 2010
    I know you want to surprise her.....but ask her what she wants. She seems to have gotten many years out of the iPad2 so this is a long term purchase.
  5. tompab thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 21, 2015
    I don't believe I mentioned it, but I did consider lifespan. The fact that the iPad 2 is still working well, and has not really had any major issues, is pretty impressive. As much as I personally prefer the more open Android system, I'm not sure what the performance will be in 6 months or a year, especially with Samsung's touchwiz skin etc. She has had her phone for about 6 months now though, and no lagging etc yet.

    Also worth nothing is that I wouldn't be too worried about doing a factory reset once a year or so on the tablet. It's not something I'd want to do on a phone as so much of your life is on the phone these days, but a tablet is a different matter.

    In terms of security and privacy, I think that's a moot point since her phone is Samsung already anyway.
  6. masotime macrumors 68020


    Jun 24, 2012
    San Jose, CA
    You should stick with Samsung..... I think eventually the most important thing is to use whatever you're comfortable using, and it seems like the additional customizability and micro SD slot are important features to you.
  7. tompab thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 21, 2015
    My wife would not want me tinkering with it, so it would be used as is. There are no platform specific apps to take into consideration.

    I appreciate where you are coming from, but if I asked she'd probably be too sensible and tell me not to buy one. I'm sure either one would make her happy, at least initially. I just want to make sure I get the one most suitable for her.

    For me personally maybe, not so much for wife. What I liked the most about it was that it was thinner and lighter. And it just felt much better to hold. Keeping in mind that my wife will use it in bed a lot (and it will not have a cover), these things make a big difference. However, if it's always out of battery so she can't use it, these points won't help much of course.
  8. cynics macrumors G4

    Jan 8, 2012
    Which factors would that be?

    All of Samsungs tablets running a tablet OS were released after the iPad 2, only tablets released in 2014 (3 years later) are still supported. NONE of them are running the latest version of Android admittedly because it's only 40-50 days old, which is a weird thing to say IMO. But you can be sure many of those 2014 devices will not be getting Marshmellow.

    Maybe you feel the latest version of the OS doesn't contribute to lifespan, which in a sense I can agree with. The problem is they totally drop support. Google does there best updating core apps but the core system no longer gets updates. So you never get something like a Microsoft service pack for your old OS.

    I concede to the fact Google updating core apps adds to its useful life but to me it's a wash.

    Too each their own I guess.
  9. iF34R macrumors 65816


    Jul 13, 2011
    South Carolina
    If she's happy with the iPad 2, and you want to surprise her with an upgrade, get the Air 2. Simple. She'll be familiar with it already, everything she uses on the iPad 2 should work really well on the Air 2.

    My wife was in the exact same position. Get a newer iPad to take the place of her original mini, or go with an Android tablet? She uses an HTC phone, so she's familiar with Android and has plenty of daily use apps/games on there. Same with the iOS apps/games. She chose a newer iPad, and doesn't look back at all.
  10. iSheep5S macrumors 6502a


    Jun 4, 2013
    I love android... in a phone. iOS wins on a tablet. I have had Samsung tablets and I own a Samsung phone. iPad every time from now on. My Tab4 was a laggy mess. Never again. The phone experience from Samsung id take over iPhone just now... although I will be back.

    Not to mention android lacks tablet apps.
  11. brentsg, Nov 21, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2015

    brentsg macrumors 68040

    Oct 15, 2008
    I was just reading a thread on a neutral forum and the entire thread was about how bad Samsung tablets are. I've never owned one myself, but the consensus was to buy an iPad for the best experience, and go Sony or Nexus if you prefer Android.

    Mist seemed to cite reliability and battery problems, plus dissatisfaction with the custom UI.

    My problem with Android tablets as a whole is the App Store. There are far fewer apps for Android tablets than iOS. Most android apps are made for phones and it's obvious. I own a Sony Z3 Compact tablet.
  12. macfacts macrumors 68030


    Oct 7, 2012
    The problem with people comparing Android devices to Apple devices are they usually compare the budget Android devices to the current Apple flagship device.

    That Sumsung Tab 4 tablet you are complaining about, I looked it up and it is about $120 new now ($180 when new when it came out).

    And the complaint about the lack of tablet apps maybe valid in 2011 with Android honeycomb but using that excuse today shows how weak the complaints about Android are today. If you want to see people complain about phone apps "blown up" to fill a tablet screen, goto the iPad pro threads on this forum.
  13. Michael Goff macrumors G5

    Michael Goff

    Jul 5, 2012
    My problem with Android tablets is that the only company taking Android tablets seriously is Google. Samsung? Have fun with last year's processor in this year's flagship.
  14. Badrottie Suspended


    May 8, 2011
    Los Angeles
    Give her a Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 tablet they are better than iOS 9 you know iOS lacks file management. Tab is very thin and light right I think that is what she wants.
  15. fieldsphotos macrumors 6502

    Aug 15, 2013
    I can't really help with the decision between the Samsung tablet and the iPad except to say to keep a sharp eye out for deals on the Air 2 which might bring the prices closer. There have been several really good sales on Air 2s lately for as much as $150 off all the models.

    That might help some if price is a factor against the IPad
  16. ACG12 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 9, 2015
    Go Air 2. The build quality and long term support would stray me away from a Samsung tablet. And this is coming from someone who's owned two in the past (Tab 3 and Tab 4).
  17. Michael Goff macrumors G5

    Michael Goff

    Jul 5, 2012
    >TW bloat
    >Slower processor
    >Likely won't get as much support
    >Somehow a better tablet, because File Management
  18. eyeseeyou macrumors 68030

    Feb 4, 2011
  19. brentsg macrumors 68040

    Oct 15, 2008
    Which someone's wife would almost certainly not know what to do with..
  20. brentsg macrumors 68040

    Oct 15, 2008
    Not really, not when things such as Samsung bloat and battery issues come into play. If we were comparing a top notch Android tablet and an iPad Mini 4, sure.
  21. Michael Goff macrumors G5

    Michael Goff

    Jul 5, 2012
    We know that 2gb of RAM on the 6S+ holds more apps than the 4GB Note 5. So, yeah, it kind of does handle memory better.
  22. thunng8 macrumors 6502a

    Feb 8, 2006
    From a technical hardware standpoint

    - iPad Air 2 has a much faster cpu. Up to 2x faster
    - iPad Air 2 has a much faster gpu. More than 2 x faster.
    - iPad Air 2 has much better battery life. It's wifi (eg browsing) battery life is more than 50% longer (video battery life is similar though) Samsung sacrificed battery life a lot when they made the device so thin.

    Here is a good review: http://www.anandtech.com/show/9709/samsung-galaxy-tab-s2-review
  23. eyeseeyou macrumors 68030

    Feb 4, 2011
    Isn't the bloat an android thing? All android tablets have a certain level bloat that IOS does not have.
  24. bufffilm Suspended


    May 3, 2011
    You said it yourself...battery life is one of the most important things. It's also very important to me also. In that respect, the iPad is definitely much better.

    I bought a tab pro 8.4 back in June to give android a try, and even after rooting it and freezing/deleting the unnecessary stuff, the battery life on the tab pro still isn't very good. My iPad2 (yep I also have the 2nd gen) runs rings around it in terms of battery life.

    Not only is battery life much better w/the iPad you'll also get much more support in terms of OS updates, security fixes, etc.
  25. brentsg, Nov 21, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2015

    brentsg macrumors 68040

    Oct 15, 2008
    Sony's is minimal and non-invasive. The Playstation stuff is actually great to have, as you can wirelessly connect to a DualShock4 controller and play PS4 games streamed.

    Nexus has none.

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