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Samsung Galaxy Tab A vs iPad mini 5 (2020): Which Tablet Should You Get?

In the spring of 2020, the Korean tech giant released the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″, its affordable tablet exclusively distributed by major US telecoms. We compare the new Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ with the similarly-sized, best-selling Apple iPad mini 5. The new Galaxy Tab A is more affordable, but is it worth getting? Our review of their specs and features will help you decide which tablet is the better buy.

Samsung Galaxy Tab A vs iPad mini 5 Tablet Comparison Chart

ModelSamsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″Apple iPad mini 5
Samsung Galaxy Tab a 2020Apple iPad Mini (Wi-Fi, 64GB) - Space Gray (Latest Model) 
PriceCheck Price Check Price on Amazon 
Display Size8.4″7.9″ Retina
Resolution1920 x 12002048 x 1536 
Pixel Density270 ppi326 ppi
Dimensions7.95″ x 4.93″ x 0.28″
(201.93 x 125.22 x 7.1 mm)
8.0″ x 5.3″ x 0.24″
(203.2 x 134.8 x 6.1 mm)
Weight.68 lbs / 308.2 gWiFi: 0.66 lbs / 300.5 g
LTE: 0.68 lbs / 308.2 g
System ChipSamsung Exynos 7 Octa Apple A12 Bionic Chip with 64-bit architecture
Operating SystemAndroid PieiPadOS
LTEYesAvailable
Internal Storage32GB64 GB
256 GB
Expandable StorageUp to 512GB, microSDNo
Front Camera5 MP7 MP
Rear Camera8 MP8 MP
Touch IDNoYes
StylusNoCompatible with the Apple Pencil
ColorsMochaSilver
Space Gray
Gold
Battery LifeUp to 10 hoursUp to 10 hours
Released20202019

Design and Display

The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ has a larger display size but the iPad mini 5 has better resolution

design samsung tab a 8.4 vs ipad mini 5
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ is only available in mocha while the iPad mini 5 comes in three colors

While these tablets have similar dimensions, the 8.4-inch display of the Samsung Galaxy Tab A is slightly larger than the 7.9-inch display of the iPad mini 5. However, the 2048 x 1536 resolution of the iPad mini 5’s Retina display delivers more vibrant colors and vivid images than what the 1920 x 1200 resolution of the Samsung Tab A can offer.

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In addition, the iPad mini 5 boasts True Tone display that adjusts the screen’s brightness depending on the lighting. If you use your tablet in different lighting settings, this feature is significantly beneficial.

Both tablets are lightweight, sleek and slim, but the aluminum finish of the iPad mini 5 looks and feels more premium than the Galaxy Tab A. The Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ is only available in Mocha, while the iPad mini 5 comes in three signature Apple colors: silver, space gray, and gold.

Performance

The Apple iPad mini 5 is significantly faster than the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″

Multi-asking won’t be an issue with the Apple A12 Bionic chip in the iPad mini 5 (left)

Equipped with an older processor and running on Android Pie, the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ can’t match the speed of the iPad mini 5. The latest iPad mini model is equipped with the Apple A12 Bionic Chip that can handle running graphics-intensive apps like Adobe Photoshop CC and those that require augmented reality. That is not to say that the new Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ cannot load graphics well. However, compared to the iPad mini 5, it is significantly slower.

Both tablets can handle light day to day tasks such as surfing, reading, and video streaming. The iPad mini 5 is equipped with a fingerprint sensor for its Touch ID, a feature missing in the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″. For users who want an LTE connected tablet, the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ boasts 4G connectivity. Meanwhile, the iPad mini 5 has an LTE/cellular model, but it carries a heftier price tag than the Samsung Galaxy Tab A and the WiFi-only variant of the iPad mini 5.

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Cameras and Storage

The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ offers an option for expandable storage; both have 8MP rear cameras.

The Galaxy Tab A’s (left) front camera is only 5MP while the iPad mini 5’s is 7MP

Both tablets house an 8MP rear camera that boasts autofocus and vivid captures. They can both record Full HD 1080p videos as well. However, their front-facing cameras are different. The Samsung Galaxy Tab A’s front camera is only 5MP while the iPad mini 5’s is an impressive 7MP, making it the better tablet for taking selfies and video calls.

One of their major differences is storage. The Samsung Galaxy Tab is only available in 32GB and its storage can be expanded to up to 512GB through its microSD slot. Consistent to the rest of Apple tablets, the iPad mini 5 doesn’t offer this option. The iPad mini 5 is available in 64GB and 256GB storage options, with a price difference of up to 150USD.

Battery and Additional Features

Both Samsung Galaxy Tab A and the iPad mini 5 can run for up to 10 hours of regular usage

Use the Apple Pencil to draw and design anywhere with your iPad mini 5

The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ and the Apple iPad mini 5 boast up to 10 hours of usage when used for surfing the internet, video streaming and playback, or music streaming. The battery on the iPad mini 5 LTE model is reduced to up to 9 hours as the LTE connectivity tends to drain battery life faster.

Users who often use a stylus to draw and design graphics can get the Apple Pencil for the iPad mini 5. The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ doesn’t have an S Pen slot, which can be a deal-breaker for some who use a stylus often. However, third-party stylus pens will still work with the Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ without issues.

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Verdict

If you’re after a faster, more powerful tablet, get the iPad mini 5, but if you’re on a budget, get the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″.

Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ (2020)

Samsung Galaxy Tab a 2020

iPad mini 5 (Latest Model)

Apple iPad Mini (Wi-Fi, 64GB) - Space Gray (Latest Model) 

Check Price on Amazon 

Despite the similar size of the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ and the iPad mini 5 7.9″, their price difference is quite significant. There’s no doubt that the iPad mini 5 performs better and lets you do an array of demanding tasks despite its tiny footprint. However, like most Apple devices, its powerful features come with a steep price tag, especially if you want the 256GB or the LTE variant.

Meanwhile, the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ has fewer bells and whistles, but this LTE connected tablet is more affordable than the iPad mini 5. If your day to day tasks don’t require a powerful tablet, the new Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.4″ provides a worthwhile and cost-effective alternative.

Last update on 2020-08-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Rhodaline Escala-Phelps
Rhodaline Escala-Phelps

Managing Editor and Team Leader at Compare Before Buying. Writer and researcher passionate about people, product comparisons, culture, and current events.