Now it looks like Samsung is planning on giving the tablet the Lite treatment. Sammobile (opens in new tab) has uncovered evidence that the company is working on a new mid-range tablet it suspects will eventually appear on shelves labelled either Galaxy Tab S7 Lite or Galaxy Tab S8e, in a nod to the cut-back Galaxy S10e smartphone.
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According to the site’s sources, the Tab S7 Lite (or whatever it ends up being called) will arrive in three possible configurations: Wi-Fi, LTE and 5G, with the model numbers SM-T730, SM-T735 and SM-T736B/SM-T736N.
Sammoblie goes on to cite more unspecified evidence that Samsung might also plan on making a version of the tablet with the Plus or XL designation, presumably with both a larger battery and more screen real estate, as seen on the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus.
That’s all the details provided, but if past form is anything to go by, we shouldn’t have too long to wait to find out more. The Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite emerged in April 2020, so it wouldn’t be wholly surprising if the cutback version of the S7 appeared this spring.
Speaking of the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite, the tablet may offer some clues into how Samsung plans on making the Galaxy Tab S7 Lite that bit more affordable. The answers are everything you’d expect: internally, Samsung went from using a Snapdragon 855 SoC to its own Exynos 9611 chip, and cut the RAM from 8/6GB to 4GB.
The screen was pared back from a 2,560 x 1,600 AMOLED display to a 2,000 x 1,200 LCD panel, the camera megapixel counts were dropped on the front and back, and the in-screen fingerprint reader was nowhere to be seen.
There was also no first-party keyboard cover for it, and no DeX support, damaging its productivity credentials. Still, the Tab S6 did keep the bundled S Pen, which is quite a big deal when compared to its iPad rivals, where an Apple Pencil must always be bought separately.
Of course, just because this is the route Samsung has taken with its ‘Lite’ tablets in the past, doesn’t mean it will be the same this time around. And perhaps a Plus or XL model of the Tab S7 Lite means there will be a bit of choice over just how cut-back things will be. We’ll have to wait and see as more details emerge over the next few months.