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Samsung Galaxy Book3 Ultra Review: Portable and Powerful MacBook Pro 16 Alternative with Intel Inside

  • The Samsung Galaxy Book3 Ultra is powered by the Intel Core i9-13900H processor.
  • It features NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 4070 discrete GPU and maintains a thin and light form factor.
  • The laptop seamlessly connects with the Galaxy device ecosystem.

 Samsung launched the Galaxy Book3 series laptops along with the Galaxy S23 smartphone lineup at the Galaxy Unpacked event in early January 2023. In the laptop lineup, the Galaxy Book3 Ultra is the most premium model and has the most impressive features, which we sampled for a long duration. Aimed at content creators, professionals and gamers, the Samsung Galaxy Book3 Ultra is packed with powerful hardware and priced from $2,199 onwards.

I am a MacBook Pro 16 user and I apply the device heavily for content creation. However, I have always been looking for a Windows-based laptop that could run on a par with the MacBook Pro 16 and I think Samsung has done a great job with the Galaxy Book3 Ultra in this regard. Featuring top-of-the-line specs such as the Intel Core i9-13900H processor and NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 4070 discrete GPU, this maxed-out version, which we are currently testing, is priced at $3,000 but can be purchased for around $2,399 with discounts.

Typically, Windows laptops do not offer hours of battery life, but Samsung and Intel have worked that out as the Galaxy Book3 Ultra offers a long battery life and powerful performance. Although Apple’s seamless ecosystem connectivity sets its devices apart, Samsung is offering the same connected ecosystem experience with its Galaxy devices.

Here is our in-depth analysis of the Samsung Galaxy Book3 Ultra after having used it for around two months.

Design: Sleek, lightweight and elegant

As a competitor to the MacBook Pro 16, the Samsung Galaxy Book3 Ultra scores full marks on sleekness. It offers a sturdy design while looking elegant at the same time. Despite the all-aluminum body, it weighs about 1.78 kg, which is an impressive feat. In comparison, the MacBook Pro weighs 2.1 kg. The clean graphite finish with just a Samsung logo on the lid adds to its neat look. The lid can be opened with one hand, and the hinge is sturdy too. However, due to its thin profile, the upper side of the screen wobbles slightly as you type.

counterpoint-samsung-galaxy-book3-ultra-review-thin-and-light

The laptop comes with a full-size keyboard and a separate number pad. The keys have enough travel to offer a good typing experience. The power button comes integrated with a fingerprint scanner, offering secure access, thanks to Windows Hello. Below the keyboard is a huge, awkwardly placed off-center touchpad on which the click is not very satisfying. Overall, the touchpad offers an average performance. It is a bit of a letdown, especially for someone like me who does not use a mouse, but it should not be a big issue for those who do.

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“The Galaxy Book3 Ultra looks elegant. It has a thin, lightweight profile while packing ‘almost’ all the necessary ports.”

In terms of connectivity ports, you get an HDMI out and two USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports on the left. A USB Type-A, 3.5mm jack and a microSD card slot are placed on the right. However, having an SD card slot would have been better as most content creators shoot on mirrorless cameras that have SD cards.

counterpoint-samsung-galaxy-book3-ultra-review-ports

Intel “EVO” Inside: Power, efficiency and more

On the hardware side, the Galaxy Book3 Ultra is powered by a 13th-gen Intel Core i9-13900H processor made on Intel 7 (10nm node). It comes with a 14-core CPU that has six performance cores with a max turbo frequency of 5.4GHz, eight efficiency cores with a max turbo frequency of 4.1GHz, and a total of 20 threads. It offers a TDP of 45W (with max support for 60W, while the processor is capable of up to 115W), making it a high-performance system for gamers, professionals and content creators. Our laptop configuration also included 1TB SSD, 32GB of RAM and NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 4070 laptop GPU with 8GB GDDR6 VRAM (60W TGP – Total Graphic Power).

“The hardware on the Galaxy Book3 Ultra makes it the most powerful laptop with a sleek form factor.”

counterpoint-samsung-galaxy-book3-ultra-review-intel-evo

The Book3 Ultra is also Intel EVO certified, meaning it offers core features including:

  • Instant wake where the system wakes up from sleep in under a second.
  • A battery life of over nine hours in real-world usage (FHD resolution).
  • Fast connectivity options such as the Thunderbolt 4 and Wi-Fi 6E.
  • Quick charging feature where users can get up to four hours of usage on just 30 minutes of charge.

Commenting on the laptop market and Samsung’s positioning, Senior Analyst William Li said, “The MacBook Pro series has been the role model for premium laptops for a while, largely due to both its powerful hardware and seamless ecosystem support. Although Samsung is not yet a Tier-1 vendor in the PC industry, the accumulated product development efforts, new product launches and the competitive Galaxy ecosystem have earned it a ticket to the next battlefield. With Samsung’s efforts to make a mark in the laptop business, the new AI PC chapter in 2024 is likely to boost its ambition of gaining more share.”

Powerful performance: Hybrid laptop for work and play

There is often a tradeoff with Windows laptops, but that is not the case with the Galaxy Book3 Ultra. The device features a 16-inch, 10-bit 3K AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate. It has a 16:10 aspect ratio, 2880×1800 pixel resolution and supports HDR. The screen is sharp and offers excellent color reproduction with deep blacks, bright whites and vivid colors. Moreover, the thin bezels around the display frame ensures an immersive viewing experience.

“Watching content, be it gaming or a movie is a treat for the eyes.”

 The Galaxy Book3 Ultra is Samsung’s most powerful laptop and offers top-notch performance. Day-to-day tasks like checking emails, browsing the web, Teams calls, and more are smooth. Even with all these apps running in the background, and multitasking on Word, PowerPoint while also editing a video on DaVinci Resolve, there were no signs of lagging.

As this is a laptop meant for content creators, we tested its video editing performance. We loaded a five-minute 720p podcast video on DaVinci Resolve, added intro and outro animations with some background music, a couple of lower thirds (title graphics) and rendered the video in 1080p (30fps). The Galaxy Book3 Ultra took one minute and 18 seconds to render the video. We did the same on the MacBook Pro 16(with M1 Pro SoC) and it took 59 seconds. The MacBook Pro is clearly the winner here, but the Galaxy Book3 Ultra with Intel Core i9 processor, without a dedicated NPU, comes impressively close.

counterpoint-samsung-galaxy-book3-ultra-video-editing

Having the NVIDIA RTX 4070 means you also get technologies like DLSS and ray tracing. We did try our hand at gaming but did not get enough time to run the laptop at its full potential. We managed to run old classic games such as Left4Dead2 and Counter-Strike: GO with maxed graphics settings and they ran smoothly.

counterpoint-samsung-galaxy-book3-ultra-review-gaming

We also tried out Forza Horizon 5, which is a graphics-intensive game. With maxed-out settings 3K display resolution (and laptop on high-performance mode), it offered up to 60fps initially, but after five minutes or so, the PC started to heat up and the frame rate dropped to about 49fps as the GPU took the maximum load. Some throttling was noticeable as the device worked to keep the thermals under control. We did not push it further beyond that, but this is a tradeoff of having a thin chassis.

“Gaming performance is good, but for intensive gaming titles, you may have to rely on a proper gaming laptop or desktop.”

In terms of battery life, the Galaxy Book3 Ultra is rated at 76Whr and can be charged using the bundled USB-C 135W wall charger. During our usage, we noticed that a full charge took about two hours. Battery life depends on individual usage, and we tested multiple scenarios:

  • On a full charge, the battery would only last for about three hours when on a Teams video call, with screen brightness at 60%, speaker at full volume, and camera with a blurred background effect at all times. That is about 40 minutes less than what we get on a MacBook Pro 16 with the same usage.
  • The battery lasts nearly the entire workday for regular work with Teams running in the background, some web browsing, listening to music and writing blogs. The laptop only needed charging around the last hour.
  • With heavy-duty tasks like podcast audio or video editing workloads or mild gaming, the laptop offers a battery life of around four-and-a-half hours.

For an immersive audio experience, the laptop also has a quad-speaker system tuned by AKG and supports Dolby Atmos too. The output is good but lacks the bass and punch like in the MacBook Pro. However, with some Dolby tuning, the audio gets slightly better.

Samsung Studio Plus: AI effects for your video calls

Ever since the COVID-19 pandemic subsided, a lot of businesses and professionals have been following a hybrid work model. Some are still working from home, some are working from co-working spaces and cafes, while others are back to the office full-time. To help tackle these situations and to make sure one has a consistent look during video calls, Samsung Studio Plus with AI works really well.

There are key features, such as the Face Effect which can add subtle looks or smooth complexion. The Background Effect lets you blur the background while keeping you in focus.

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The Auto Framing feature uses AI to detect you in the frame, crop and keep your face in focus. The camera can also track you around as you move. And finally, there is the Eye-Contact feature, which also uses AI to make your eyes appear to be looking at the camera, even if you look elsewhere – to the content on the screen, for example. So, even if you have a script or a list of pointers offscreen that you are looking at while presenting online, this feature makes you appear like you never looked away from the screen.

“The AI video effects on the Samsung Studio Plus app is a great addition for those hybrid work use cases.”

 The Samsung Studio Plus app works well with the default 1080p camera and activates when you start the camera app, or start a video call on Zoom, Teams or Google Meet.

The Galaxy Book “Connected Ecosystem” Experience

The connected ecosystem experience offered by Apple is something that sets it apart. Samsung is one of the OEMs with a huge portfolio of products across different categories that offer seamless connectivity. For instance, the Samsung Galaxy smartphone seamlessly connects with the Galaxy tablet, Galaxy smartwatch and Galaxy TWS, with a multi-point connectivity.

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The Galaxy Book brings a host of interesting features to elevate user experience:

Samsung Account: You need to sign in with the same Samsung account as on your Samsung smartphone, which will sync details like your passwords saved on Samsung Pass. This will let you sign with and authenticate using your fingerprint, without punching in the credentials. Your Samsung Notes will also get synced and so will the IoT devices that you have added in the SmartThings app. With the SmartThings app on your PC, you can control all your IoT devices from one place.

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Multi Control: When the Samsung laptop and smartphone are close, you can move the mouse cursor to the right of the screen, onto your smartphone (where the smartphone will effectively act like an extended display). You can use the cursor to scroll through the web pages on your phone, scroll through the UI and more.

Samsung Gallery: You can access all your photos and videos in the smartphone gallery directly from the Samsung Gallery app on your Galaxy Book3 Ultra. You can even wirelessly transfer items from your smartphone to your PC with a drag-and-drop move.

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Bixby, Samsung Flow: Samsung has also included the Bixby assistant to the Windows laptop, which allows voice commands for weather updates, playing music, opening apps, and more. You can even give commands, like start a drier, or turn the light on and off, provided they are connected with SmartThings. During our usage, it was a hit and miss, so maybe Samsung needs to fine tune it more.

With Samsung Flow, you can get all your Galaxy smartphone notifications on your PC. There is also a clipboard feature where you can copy/paste text between devices, just like on the iPhone/Mac.

YourPhone: This is a Microsoft app emulator that lets you run Android apps on Windows, among other features. It is not an exclusive feature for Samsung phones, and is available for other Android phones via the “Link to Windows” app. You cannot play games but can definitely run apps like WhatsApp, Instagram or Facebook to scroll through timelines, or launch Netflix or the Maps app among others.

With YourPhone app, your smartphone screen can be mirrored on the PC. There is a call and messaging app, that lets you make and receive calls on PC, and even send, receive, and reply to text messages right from your PC.

Do note, for all these features to work, your PC and smartphone need to be on the same Wi-Fi network. We would like to highlight that during our usage we faced some glitches at times with some apps. The laptop needs more fine-tuning to make the experience seamless.

“The connected ecosystem experience with Galaxy devices adds great value as a differentiator from the competition.”

Final thoughts

The Samsung Galaxy Book3 Ultra is a great laptop for creative professionals, content creators, and gamers. Despite its ultra-portability, it does not compromise on heavy-duty performance apart from intensive gaming.

Along with a great screen, good battery life, and AI video call features, the Galaxy Book3 Ultra has a lot more to offer. The Galaxy-connected ecosystem experience is a value addition for Samsung smartphone, tablet, and TWS users.

 However, there are a few things that Samsung can improve on with future generations of the device. The camera could be improved to offer higher resolution and capture accurate skin tones. The speaker system can be better to compete with the MacBook Pro. Battery life and thermal management can be improved further, ideally with a new processor and further optimization. Lastly, the “Galaxy Book Experience” app can be polished to work seamlessly without glitches.

Lenovo M10 5G Tablet Review: Solid Performer with Future-proof Connectivity

Lenovo was one of the top five players in the Global Tablet Market according to Counterpoint Research Global Tablet Tracker. The company offers a wide range of tablets for different segments and use cases, from budget-friendly models to premium devices. Lenovo’s M series tablets are designed to offer a balance of performance, features and affordability for mainstream consumers.

The Lenovo M10 5G, which was launched in July 2023, is the brand’s first mid-tier tablet capable of 5G connectivity, a feature that is usually found in more expensive models. Unlike other brands in the same segment, which focus more on technical aspects than connectivity, the Lenovo Tab M10 5G stands out as a product that is ideal for work use, especially for B2B cases. Moreover, it appeals to a wide range of users with its attractive price of $276 (₹22,999), amid the growing demand for 5G-capable tablets.

Lenovo M10 5G Tablet - Front
Credits: Lenovo

In this review, we will evaluate the product on various aspects, such as design, performance, battery life, display, camera and 5G capability.

Sleek and Elegant Design

The Lenovo tablet has a slate-type design, with a semi-frosted metal back inside a plastic frame. It weighs 460 g and measures 9.6 mm in thickness with good grip around the edges, making it easy to hold and carry. The tablet has relatively wide bezels around the screen, giving it an 82% screen-to-body ratio. However, the bezels also pack a reliable front-facing camera with a light correction sensor for high-quality video calling.

Built for work and play, the tablet comes with dual Dolby Atmos speakers on the top and bottom edges. The rear camera is placed in the top left corner while the front camera is on the top centre of the screen, which is good for long video calls when the device is placed horizontally. Overall, the tablet feels sturdy and comfortable in the hand with a premium look and feel.

Lenovo M10 5G Tablet - Front & Back
Credits: Lenovo

Performance: Decent Daily Driver for Casual Users

The Lenovo M10 5G has a 16:10 aspect ratio in a 10.61-inch IPS LCD display with a resolution of 1200×2000 pixels, and a pixel density of 220 ppi. The screen also has a 90Hz refresh rate, making it ideal for watching videos and reading documents. With a peak brightness of 400 nits, the screen is well-suited for indoor use, although it can be challenging to view outdoors. However, tablets are predominantly used indoors.

Under the hood is a 6nm Qualcomm Snapdragon 695 SoC. The tablet features an eight-core CPU – two Kryo 660 Gold performance cores (Cortex-A78) clocked at 2,200MHz and six Kryo 660 Silver efficiency cores (Cortex-A55) clocked at 1,800MHz.

Lenovo is offering the M10 5G in two SKUs where you get 128GB of storage, and two RAM options to choose from – 4GB or 6GB. The tablet also has a microSD card slot to further expand the storage up to 1TB. The device comes with a 20W standard power adapter with a USB Type-C cable.

In terms of performance, the Lenovo M10 5G was smooth and responsive during our usage, and it handles multitasking well. The tablet can run most games but showed occasional frame drops during long hours of usage at high graphic settings.

When an extendable display is required, the tablet can also be used as a second screen for your PC. During our testing, we used a Windows laptop to extend the display on a Lenovo M10 Tablet and it worked seamlessly, wirelessly and without any lags. Using Bluetooth 5.1, two devices can be connected simultaneously. Users can also connect a Bluetooth mouse like the HP Slim using a Type-C to Type-A connector and it works swiftly. During our usage, we connected a Logitech keyboard and a combination of wireless mouses, which offered a PC-like experience.

Lenovo M10 5G Tablet - Extended Display Mode
Credits: Lenovo

5G Performance

The Lenovo M10 5G is one of the few tablets on the market that support 5G connectivity (especially at sub $300 price point), which is the next generation of mobile network technology. 5G offers faster speed, lower latency, higher capacity, and better reliability than previous generations of mobile networks. According to Counterpoint Research, the Global Tablet Market is expected to grow in 2023, driven by the demand for 5G tablets.

The tablet can connect to different types of 5G networks around the world depending on the availability, including the network coverage. The device supports Wi-Fi calling and voice over LTE (VoLTE) features, which enable high-quality voice calls over data networks.

It provides a fast as well as seamless internet experience with its 5G capability to achieve download speeds of up to 2.4 Gbps and upload speeds of up to 660 Mbps. The device can also reduce the latency (the time it takes for data to travel between devices) to about 1 ms on 5G networks from about 50 ms on LTE networks (4G). The tablet is 5G ready, which ensures future-proof connectivity for a great viewing experience that is both high-resolution and lag-free. The tablet’s internet latency (ping) was very low on both 5G and 4G networks, not just for media consumption but also while running heavy games like PUBG and Call of Duty Mobile. However, it is worth mentioning that long hours of usage on a 5G network did result in faster battery draining as compared to on a 4G network.

Lenovo M10 5G Tablet - 5G Capable
Credits: Lenovo

Battery: Easy Full Day Usage

The 7,700mAh battery lasted us for over a day, with mixed usage. However, the battery life will differ from user to user and different use cases like gaming and streaming videos. With 20W fast charging via USB-C port, the tablet charges from 0% to 50% in about 40 minutes and from 0% to 100% in about two hours.

Lenovo M10 5G Tablet - Decent Battery
Credits: Lenovo

Decent Camera for Video Calls

The Lenovo M10 5G has a 13MP rear camera with autofocus and LED flash, and an 8MP front camera with fixed focus.

The front camera can take good selfies and support video calls with good clarity and sound quality. However, the front camera can also be afflicted with noise and distortion in low-light or backlit scenarios. Nevertheless, it can meet the basic needs of users. The mics are well-placed and capture holistic sound from all angles.

Android 13 with Some Nice Customizations from Lenovo

The software is one of the very underrated gems of this tablet. It runs Android 13 out of the box, and there are a lot of features such as multi-window, window pinning, pop-up window, split screen keyboard and dynamic taskbar for making full use of such a wide display.

The apps can be resized smoothly using a top-appearing menu option that is available at all times. The device also features Lenovo Vantage (an exclusive Lenovo product care suit) which states that Lenovo is serious about its customers’ satisfaction.

Animations across the tablet feel smooth and look beautiful. The tablet can also be used as a big clock display on your table or by your bedside. The device shows vital information such as calendars, notifications, weather, or alarms with easy access to Google Assistant. The tablet also gives the option to add more users and profiles in the OS which can help various people in a family to have their own profiles stored securely inside the tablet itself.

Lenovo M10 5G Tablet - Android 13
Credits: Lenovo

Conclusion

Overall, the Lenovo M10 5G is a premium-looking tablet with a decent performance. A good display, speakers tuned by Dolby Atmos, a full-day battery life, and reliable software make it a good tablet for casual users. Of course, there are certain areas where improvement is required like mics, cameras and software optimization. There is also room for the implementation of smarter and more effective features such as smarter UI capabilities and app predictions in the tablet which could be tackled over regular OTA updates promised with the device. The demand for quality, budget-friendly tablets is still largely untapped, and the Lenovo M10 5G aims to fill that gap.

Lenovo M10 5G Tablet - Flip Cover
Credits: Lenovo

Global PC Shipments Continue Normalization in Q3 2023, Stronger Rebound Expected in 2024

  • Global PC shipments fell 9% YoY in Q3 2023 but marked second straight QoQ growth
  • HP had a resilient quarter; PC OEM vendors looking for solid growth driver
  • We maintain our double-digit YoY shipment decline forecasts for 2023 post Q3 2023 shipment results
  • AI-enabled PC models are expected to fuel PC market in 2024

London, Hong Kong, Boston, Toronto, New Delhi, Beijing, Taipei, Seoul – Oct 17, 2023

Global PC shipments declined 9% YoY in Q3 2023 as the market continued to be weighed down by weak demand amid a slowdown in consumer and enterprise purchases. However, global shipments grew sequentially for the second straight quarter in Q3 2023 helped by moderate seasonality. We reiterate that the PC market has already bottomed out and are expecting gentle shipment recovery along with several new product launches over the next couple of months, especially from AI function-enabled models.

A Chart Showing Global PC Shipments Q3 2023 vs Q3 2022 (In Million Units)

Vendors are eyeing a shipment comeback next year

Lenovo’s shipments saw a single digit percentage YoY decline in Q3 2023, outperforming most PC OEMs except HP, whose Q3 2023 shipments registered mid-single digit YoY growth in percentage terms as the company benefitted from robust consumer and educational demand. However, other tier 1 PC vendors such as Dell, Apple and Asus still struggled to find strong shipment drivers to boost shipments across the board. Fortunately, we are now entering the first replacement cycle after the COVID-19 pandemic along with a potential pick-up in AI PC momentum as we move into 2024.

AI PC to drive another wave of shipment growth in 2024

Over the past five quarters, PC OEMs have been working hard to resolve inventory issues and have had a difficult time searching for a new growth engine for their PC businesses. In this context, AI PC has emerged as the next big thing and will very likely drive the next wave of shipment rebound in 2024.

We expect AI PCs to have a 50% 10-year CAGR from 2020 and dominate the PC market after 2026 with an expected penetration rate of more than 50%. Intel, Qualcomm and other PC CPU makers are working closely with PC OEMs toward next-generation mainstream models and we expect to see a lot of new product launches after Q4 2023, marking a new chapter for the PC industry.

A Chart Showing Over 50% 10 Year CAGR on AI PC Shipments Since 2020

Annual PC shipments to return to pre-COVID-19 levels in 2024

We expect the global PC market’s shipment volume to return to pre-COVID-19 levels next year helped by the Windows 11 replacement, the next wave of Arm PCs, and AI PCs. Although AI PCs may not gain much traction in the very beginning, we believe that with the increase in applications around the world, AI PCs could progress tremendously in H2 2024.

Background

Counterpoint Technology Market Research is a global research firm specializing in products in the TMT (technology, media and telecom) industry. It services major technology and financial firms with a mix of monthly reports, customized projects and detailed analyses of the mobile and technology markets. Its key analysts are seasoned experts in the high-tech industry

Counterpoint Research
press(at)counterpointresearch.com

 

Tablet Specs Now Favoring Productivity Over Portability

  • With tablets gaining a wider consumer base, tablet specifications are undergoing changes to meet the demands of a diverse range of applications.
  • Display sizes are increasing every year to cater to the growing range and consumption of multimedia and applications.
  • Battery capacity has seen continued advancements following the adoption of bigger displays.
  • Previously seen as only optional, devices such as the stylus and external keyboard have been accepted as necessary tools to realize the tablet’s fullest capabilities.

From a device used by a niche consumer base to a device widely used for work, study and entertainment at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, the tablet has covered a big distance in a short span of time. This surge in its popularity can be attributed to its ability to combine the portable appeal of smartphones and the productivity offered by notebooks. The popularity, in turn, has triggered changes and improvements in the tablet’s features to meet the demands of a diverse range of applications.

These changes range from enhancements in technical specifications to refinements in the tablet’s light and slim structure. However, with tablets steadily approaching maturity in the market, certain ubiquitous preferences have emerged that are shifting the device away from its core design philosophy of portability. The focus is now more on increasing its productivity by improving certain technical parameters and features.

Tablet display size

One such improvement is the steady increase in display sizes. Being the sole medium through which users interact with tablets, displays have increased in size with every subsequent year, despite an increase in the weight of the device, to cater to the growing range and consumption of multimedia and applications.

Global Tablet Market Shipment Share by Display Size

Global Tablet specs market

Source: Counterpoint Research

Over the three years from 2020 to 2022, tablets continued to adopt increasingly larger display sizes with the 11” and above screens gaining share in total volumes. This trend is expected to continue in 2023. With the display sizes of 11” and above taking 34% of the tablet market in 2022 and forecasted to grow an additional around 4% points in 2023, tablets have started to take on roles traditionally filled by laptops for tasks in professional and educational settings, according to Counterpoint’s Tablet Research.

Battery capacity

An increased battery capacity is another technical aspect that has seen continued advancements following the adoption of bigger displays. Occupying the maximum weight in a tablet, larger battery capacities have been crucial in supporting the ever-increasing demand for more power, stemming from larger and brighter displays and other performance enhancements.

Average Battery Capacity

Tablet specs- average battery capacity

Source: Counterpoint Research

After remaining relatively stagnant until 2021, the average battery capacity of tablets increased by 8% in 2022 due to the pandemic-triggered increase in usage. With the emphasis now being placed on longer usage than portability, tablet OEMs have started introducing devices with larger battery capacities to reduce the frequency of charging between uses. The average battery capacity is expected to continue growing, reaching 6658 mAh in 2023.

External hardware

Lastly, the most noticeable shift in preference from mobility to productivity is the acceptance of external hardware as the new normal in the use of tablets. Previously seen as only optional, devices such as the stylus and external keyboard have been accepted not as remedial devices but as necessary tools to realize the tablet’s fullest capabilities. While these devices still come separate from tablets, they are offered by most tablet OEMs, with the majority of popular tablets optimized for their combined usage.

While tablets are still valued for their lightweight nature compared to their heavier and bulkier notebook counterparts, they are expected to continue favoring productivity over portability as larger tablets continue to maintain their popularity among consumers and grow further upon the increasing frequency of adoption of these preferences.

Related Posts

Global PC Shipments Fall 15% YoY in Q2 2023, Record First QoQ Growth After Q1 2022

  • Global PC shipments fell 15% YoY in Q2 2023 but rose 8% QoQ.
  • PC OEMs’ rankings remained unchanged.
  • HP and Apple reported relatively resilient performance.
  • We maintain a double-digit YoY shipment decline outlook for 2023.
  • Global PC shipments will return to pre-COVID-19 levels in H2 2023.

London, Hong Kong, Boston, Toronto, New Delhi, Beijing, Taipei, Seoul – July 14, 2023

Global PC shipments fell 15% YoY in Q2 2023 but rose 8% QoQ, according to Counterpoint’s PC tracker service. Although the inventory levels continued to normalize in Q2, another double-digit YoY decline was recorded after the 28% YoY decline in Q1. Therefore, the YoY decline in Q2 can be seen as relatively stabilizing the shipment downturn since Q1 2022. Also, the QoQ growth in Q2 was the first since Q1 2022. The shipment numbers of Q2 can be considered an early sign of stabilization in the PC market. We can expect a mild recovery in H2 2023 due to the absence of solid growth drivers.

Global PC shipment
Source: Counterpoint Research

Vendors except HP and Apple suffered double-digit shipment declines

Lenovo’s solid #1 place in shipments remained unchanged in Q2, though the company still experienced an 18% YoY decline due to persistent soft demand in some markets. The double-digit sequential growth is a sign of normalizing demand and healthier inventory levels.

HP’s 22% market share was the highest since Q2 2021, while its resilient shipment numbers were a mix of early inventory correction and incremental Chromebook orders.

Dell reported sequential shipment growth in the quarter but a double-digit YoY decline due to overall demand weakness.

Apple saw a high single-digit shipment growth when compared to last year. The growth was largely due to the relatively low Q2 2022 and partially due to new product launches.

Negative factors are weakening in H2 2023

Though the global PC market shipments saw their first QoQ rise after Q1 2022 in Q2, according to Counterpoint’s Macro Index Tracker, the market may have to experience some turbulence in the second half of this year before seeing the first sunrise. Based on our checks, the end demand has picked up to become stronger than OEM shipments (sell-in), which would likely translate into accelerating re-order demand. In H2 2023, we are expecting back-to-school momentum to strengthen sales numbers coupled with potential AI-enabled and Arm laptop launches. Overall, the market is stepping away from the lull and moving toward a new post-COVID-19 normal.

Global PC shipment
Source: Counterpoint Research

Global PC shipments to return to pre-COVID-19 levels in H2 2023

We expect the QoQ rebound seen in Q2 2023 to sustain throughout the rest of the year. However, we reiterate our cautiously optimistic view on shipment performance in H2, as we still expect the shipments to decline YoY in the coming quarters before ultimately regaining their growth momentum. Therefore, we maintain our outlook of a double-digit YoY shipment decline in the 2023 full year. But the shipments will return to pre-COVID-19 levels in H2 2023.

We believe the PC inventory will enter 2024 at a healthy level after two more quarters of adjustments. Replacement demand, AI-enabled models and Chromebook renewal could be potential growth drivers even as we keep a close eye on enterprise expenditure plans.

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Apple Mac Studio First Impressions: Mighty Little Computer for Creative Professionals

  • The refreshed Apple Mac Studio was launched during WWDC 2023.
  • It is powered by the M2 Max SoC or M2 Ultra SoC and comes with up to 192GB of unified memory and 8TB of SSD.
  • The Mac Studio has a price tag starting at $1,999.

Apple announced the new Mac Studio earlier this month at the WWDC 2023. Although it looks the same as last year’s Mac Studio, the internals have seen an upgrade. With prices starting at $1,999, the new Mac Studio is powered by either the M2 Max SoC or M2 Ultra SoC, while the memory and storage can be configured depending on the user’s needs.

We have acquired the M2 Max variant at the Counterpoint studio and have customized the machine with 64GB of unified storage and 1TB SSD, which cost around $2,599.

WATCH: Apple Mac Studio: Unboxing and First Impressions

Here are our initial impressions:

Solid build, compact and neat design

Unlike Windows-powered desktop computers, the Mac Mini and Mac Studio line have a very impressive compact design. Although it weighs between 2.7kg and 3.6kg, depending on the configuration, it takes up little space, reduces clutter and looks neat. The Mac Studio is a square-shaped aluminum box with rounded corners, a flat top with the Apple logo, and flat edges.

counterpoint apple mac studio first impressions top

The bottom half is tapered and has grille holes for the exhaust fan. The back houses all the major connectivity ports and a grille for ventilation. Talking about buttons and ports, you get two USB-C (Thunderbolt 4) ports in the front along with one SDXC card slot.

counterpoint apple mac studio first impressions back

At the back, there are four Thunderbolt 4 ports, two USB-A ports, a 10Gb ethernet port, one HDMI port, a 3.5mm headphone jack, and a power button. The main power port is in the center. Overall, we love the neat and clean design.

One notable aspect is the use of sustainable materials for packaging. The packaging box is made from recycled cardboard and there is no plastic used.

ALSO READVision Pro, iOS 17, New Macs: Here’s Everything Announced at Apple WWDC 2023

Mac Studio specifications and configurations

The Mac Studio is available with either M2 Max or M2 Ultra SoC options. The base model with M2 Max SoC comes with a 12-core CPU, 30-core GPU, and a 16-core neural engine for $1,999. For an additional $200, users can opt for a 38-core GPU.

Made on TSMC’s 5nm process node, the M2 Max has 67 billion transistors, and its AI performance can reach 15.8 TOPS (trillion operations per second). The chipset supports up to 10 streams of 8K ProRes video playback and support for up to five displays. It also brings upgrades to the wireless connections in the form of Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3, making it future-proof for the next few years (although Wi-Fi 7 will become widely available from early 2024 after the standard is finalized).

counterpoint apple mac studio first impressions front

For a more powerful machine, users can get one with the M2 Ultra SoC featuring a 24-core CPU, 60-core GPU, and 32-core neural engine starting at $3,999. For an additional $1,000, users can get a 76-core GPU.

With the base model of M2 Max SoC, you get 512GB of SSD and 32GB of unified memory, but configurations allow up to 96GB of unified memory and 8TB SSD. This maxed-out version will cost $5,399. Similarly, the M2 Ultra Mac Studio base model comes with 64GB unified memory and 1TB SSD, which can be reconfigured to get up to a massive 192GB of unified memory and 8TB of SSD. The maxed-out version costs $7,799.

counterpoint apple mac studio first impressions bottom

ALSO READ: MacBook Pro 16 with M1 Pro SoC First Impressions: A Promising Upgrade for Content Creators

Initial impressions

It has only been a day since we got our hands on the Apple Mac Studio and we are still setting up the apps we require, like Adobe Premier Pro and After Effects, along with the required resources. Currently, we are using the M1 Pro-powered MacBook Pro 14 and MacBook Pro 16 as our video editing devices at the Counterpoint studio. We often run out of memory when rendering videos with a big timeline that includes audio, video, and some effects. That is a key reason why dedicated workstations are a must-have. With our new Mac Studio, featuring 64GB of unified storage, we expect the video editing process to be much smoother.

That said, we will be putting our M2 Max-powered Mac Studio through the paces for editing different forms of content and assessing the gaming performance. We will be putting it under stress tests too. More about the performance will be presented in our upcoming review, so stay tuned!

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White Paper: Growth Potential for Accessible Premium Tablets in Emerging Markets

Growth Potential for Accessible Premium Tablets in Emerging Markets

WHITE PAPER

PDF | 16 pages
Published date: 25th May 2023

Having faced a substantial surge in demand during the COVID-19 pandemic from work/study-from-home measures, tablets have become more commonplace in our device ecosystems, expanding their application of solely being used for multimedia to a wider array of business, productivity and creativity. As more applications for tablets emerge, the tablet market is likely to face further paradigm shifts as specifications and device options diversify further.

  • Introduction
  • Tablet Market Analysis & Forecast
    • Global Tablet Market Analysis
    • Global Tablet Market Forecast
    • India as an Emerging Market
  • Bigger and Better Displays, Larger Battery Trends Unlock Further Tablet Productivity
    • Display (Size, Refresh Rate)
    • Network Capability (Cellular vs Wi-Fi)
    • Battery Capacity (mAh)
    • Productivity (Device Ecosystems)
  • OnePlus Pad Looks to Invigorate a Banal Tablet Market
    • OnePlus Pad’s Distinct Features and Offerings
    • New Android iPad Challenger
    • OnePlus’ Promising Outlook

KEY HIGHLIGHTS

CONTRIBUTORS

John Doe
Designer
John Doe
Designer
John Doe
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John Doe
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John Doe
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John Doe
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Global PC Shipments See Record YoY Decline in Q4 2022

  • Global PC shipments fell 27.8% YoY in Q4 2022 to reach 65.2 million units.
  • For the full year of 2022, the shipments declined 15% YoY.
  • Macroeconomic headwinds, increasing inflation pressure and frozen PC demand affected the global PC market in 2022.
  • Soft demand in H1 2023 will cause heavy pressure on shipments. Therefore, we do not see annual shipment growth in 2023.

 

Taipei, London, Hong Kong, Boston, Toronto, New Delhi, Beijing, Seoul – January 19, 2023

Global PC shipments left Q4 2022 with a record-high YoY decline of 27.8% to reach 65.2 million units, according to Counterpoint Research’s data. Although inventory levels of several OEMs and ODMs likely peaked in Q3 2022, the year-end season failed to accelerate the PC shipment momentum in Q4. At 286 million units, the total PC shipments for 2022 also reflect a muted global PC demand with four consecutive quarters of YoY shipment declines. Therefore, we are not expecting a decent rebound in H1 2023.

Macroeconomic headwinds, increasing inflation pressure and frozen PC demand affected the global PC market in 2022, with shipments declining 15% YoY. Besides, consumers who bought new PCs were still enjoying the latest models, whereas enterprises were working more carefully on their budgets. Also, the lack of appealing functions and financial support could not bring in incremental demand in 2022, not to mention the aggressive inventory digestion target of OEMs since H1 2022.

 

Record YoY Shipment Decline in Q4 2022

Counterpoint Research - Global PC shipments

Source: Counterpoint Research

 

Lenovo continued to lead the market in Q4 2022 but with a flattish 23.7% share. Mild inventory correction dragged the company’s performance amid a lackluster holiday season. Its shipments declined 17% YoY in 2022 to take a 23.7% market share. We expect Lenovo’s shipment decline to normalize along with demand revival in the Chinese market in 2023.

HP secured its second place in Q4 2022 with a 20.3% share. Its shipments declined 29% YoY during the quarter but it was the only major PC OEM to report positive sequential shipment growth in Q4, thanks to improving shipment performance in North America and a lower base in Q3. HP had the largest shipment pullback in 2022 due to weak consumer demand across the globe. The company ultimately recorded a below 20% market share in 2022. But we expect a meaningful share rebound in 2023.

Dell’s 16.7% market share was the lowest in the past seven quarters largely due to an enterprise demand slowdown. As the economic situation remains weak, the company is not expected to see rapid pick-up for commercial models in 2023, which is crucial for Dell to narrow the market share gap with HP. Therefore, we may see pressures on Dell’s share (17.4% in 2022) and shipment performance in 2023.

Apple’s comparatively tiny 3% YoY shipment decline in Q4 2022 helped the company close the book with a flattish shipment volume performance for 2022. Apple kept gaining market share at the expense of x86-based vendors and recorded a double-digit share in the second half of 2022 and 9.4% in the full year. Arm-based M-series models helped the company weather the slump cycle in both consumer and commercial devices in 2022.

Global PC Shipments by Vendor, Q4 2022

Counterpoint Research - Global PC shipments_2

Source: Counterpoint Research

 

Windows on Arm a key focus in 2023

Despite near-term headwinds, we could still see global PC shipment volumes higher than pre-COVID levels in the coming years, thanks to the continuous work environment and lifestyle changes and delayed procurement from both consumer and commercial sectors after H1 2023. Consumer demand will likely see gradual rebound in H2 2023 followed by a slower warm-up in enterprise procurement. Soft demand in the first half will cause heavy pressure on global PC shipments. Therefore, we do not see annual shipment growth in 2023.

Eying Apple’s M-series success, Qualcomm’s Arm-based Oryon CPU will likely enter the market and heat up Windows-on-Arm momentum in 2023. We see mid-single-digit YoY shipment growth for Arm-based laptops compared to the global laptop market’s high-single-digit shipment decline in 2023.

 

Background
Counterpoint Technology Market Research is a global research firm specializing in products in the TMT (technology, media and telecom) industry. It services major technology and financial firms with a mix of monthly reports, customized projects and detailed analyses of the mobile and technology markets. Its key analysts are seasoned experts in the high-tech industry.

 

 

Global PC Shipments’ Double-digit Crash in Q3

Taipei, London, Hong Kong, Boston, Toronto, New Delhi, Beijing, Seoul – October 25, 2022

Global PC shipments fell 15.5% YoY in Q3 2022 to reach 71.1 million units recording another wave of huge YoY declines after the severe annual and sequential falls in Q2, according to Counterpoint Research data. The Q3 2022 decline was largely due to demand weakness across both consumer and commercial markets, which was mainly driven by global inflation. Despite components shortage issues being largely resolved, OEMs and ODMs are holding a relatively conservative view on Q4 2022 and first half of 2023.

The lull in PC demand continued in the quarter despite broad promotional activities from major OEMs, especially for consumer product lines. In addition, inventory digestion processes have been activated to deal with abnormally high levels as we enter the second half of the year. Although it is the season of peak consumer device sales, PC OEMs believe the destocking process will continue into 2023. Based on our conversations with supply chain members, especially with components suppliers, the largest inventory numbers were in Q3 2022 and will likely begin to decline in coming quarters but there is uncertainty within the supply chain on when shipment growth will restart.

Global PC Inventory Accumulation Since 2022

Counterpoint Research - Global PC shipments

Source: Counterpoint Research

Lack of consumer demand in the back-to-school season, shrinking enterprise purchasing due to economic uncertainty and increasing promotional events all created a drag on Average Selling Price (ASP) growth momentum and also impacted PC market revenue.

Apple reported a counter-market 7% YoY shipment growth amid muted market momentum, thanks to its new product launch in late Q2 with shipments refilled after the China lockdowns in Q2 that interrupted ODM manufacturing schedules. Meanwhile, Asus reported a 9% YoY shipment decline in the quarter, reflecting a relatively resilient performance due to its enterprise focused strategy, in line with management’s target of outperforming shipment in 2022.

Lenovo booked a 16% YoY decline, largely in-line with the global PC market, consumer demand weakness was partly offset by enterprise spending. Its 23.7% market share remains flattish compared to last year, reflecting Lenovo’s strong position efforts to cope with a shaky market.

HP took an 18% share in Q3 with 12.7 million unit shipments. This is the second quarter of lower than 20% market share by HP since 2016, largely due to its higher consumer mix, which meant it exited Q3 with a 26.5% YoY decline.

Dell also reported more than a 20% YoY shipment decline with and 17% market share. Its 12 million units were a bit higher than Q3 2020, right before Dell began to benefit from working style changes post the initial waves of COVID.

Global PC Shipment by Vendor, Q3 2022

Counterpoint Research - Global PC shipments in Q3

 

PC market unlikely to grow until H2 2023

Overall, global PC shipments in the second half of 2022 will still be comparatively higher than the level before Covid broke out. However, Chip maker AMD claimed that PC market weakness already caused negative impacts to its results and outlook; while the management of Taiwan OEMs Acer and Asus, both shared their views that the PC industry will not recover until H2 2023.

Looking into 2023, the sky is still covered by dark clouds. We are also adjusting our 2022 shipment forecast to a 13% YoY decline on soft PC demand. Among all PC product segments, we believe Arm-based PCs and gaming PCs are poised to weather the market downturn best, with the help from Apple’s M-series offerings as well as incremental R&D efforts from chip makers and the wider ecosystem.

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