Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business vs MacBook Air: Which one to buy?

The Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business is now official and it brings a lot of interesting specs and features to the table. It’s powered by Intel’s new 12th gen Alder Lake mobile processors and features a 14-inch Full HD display and a 1080p webcam. It’s shaping to be one of the best business notebooks out there on the market but we wanted to see how it stacks up against Apple’s MacBook options powered by the Apple Silicon. In this article, we’re going to take a look at the Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business vs MacBook Air to find out which one’s better to buy in 2022.

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Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business vs MacBook Air: Specifications

Before we jump into the comparison, let’s take a quick look at the specifications of each notebook to find out what each of them brings to the table:

Specification Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business Apple MacBook Air with M1
CPU
  • Intel vPro with up to 12th Gen Intel Core i7 P-series processor
  • Non vPro 12th Gen Intel Core i3, i5, and i7 models in select regions
  • Apple M1 (8 cores, up to 3.2GHz)
Graphics
  • Intel UHD Graphics
  • Intel Iris Xe Graphics
  • NVIDIA GeForce MX570
  • Up to an 8-core GPU
RAM
  • 8GB, up to 64GB DDR4 (2 Slot)
  • Up to 16GB of unified memory
Storage
  • 256GB, up to 1TB
  • 256 GB SSD
  • 512GB SSD
  • 1TB SSD
  • 2TB SSD
Display
  • 14-inch, FHD, Anti-Glare
  • 13.3-inch LED-backlit display (2560 x 1600) 16:10 with IPS technology, non-touch, 400 nits, True Tone technology
Battery
  • 51.5Wh (typical)
    • 65W USB-C charger
  • 49.9Whr battery
Ports
  • 1 x Thunderbolt 4
  • 1 x USB Type-C
  • 2 x USB Type-A
  • 1 x HDMI 2.0
  • RJ45
  • SD card reader
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • SIM Card slot (in select regions)
  • 2 x USB 4 / Thunderbolt (USB-C)
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
Audio
  • Stereo Speaker, Dolby ATMOS
  • Stereo speakers with Dolby Atmos support
  • 3-microphone array
Webcam
  • FHD 1080p + IR
  • 720p FaceTime HD camera
Security
  • IR Camera
  • Fingerprint Power Key
  • Touch ID on the power button
Connectivity
  • Wi-Fi 6E
  • Bluetooth 5.2
  • LTE (in select regions)
  • Wi-Fi 6
  • Bluetooth 5.0
Size (WxDxH)
  • 326.4 x 213.8 x 19.92 mm (12.85 x 8.41 x 0.78 in)
  • 304.1 × 212.4 × 16.1 mm (11.97 × 8.36 × 0.63 inches)
Weight
  • Starts at 1.51kg (3.32 lbs)
  • 1.29kg (2.8lbs)
Price
  • Starts at $1,850
  • Starting at $999

Performance

The M1 chip, as you probably already know, is no longer the most powerful option in the Apple Silicon lineup. That being said, it still performs better than a lot of Windows laptops out there. Apple managed to deliver an excellent SoC that strikes a good balance between performance and efficiency to deliver better overall performance than most other Intel and AMD chips at the time it came out. It’s no secret that the M1 chip handily beats Intel’s 11th gen mobile chips while offering more power efficiency.

The new Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business notebook, however, is powered by the new 12th gen Alder Lake mobile chips, and not the older 11th gen processors. In fact, Samsung is using the 12th gen P-series, and you’ll be able to configure it with up to a Core i7 processor with or without vPro. Intel’s new P-series Alder Lake processors, in case you don’t know, also have a hybrid architecture that combines performance cores and efficient cores. While we haven’t had a chance to test the performance of the Galaxy Book 2 Business since it’s not available to purchase just yet, we do have some Geekbench numbers to give you an idea of the kind of performance you can expect to see from these machines. Here, take a look:

Intel Core i7-1280P
(see test)
Intel Core i7-1265U
(see test)
Intel Core i5-1250P
(see test)
Intel Core i5-1245U
(see test)
Apple MacBook Air
(average)
Geekbench 5 score 1,790 / 9,312 1,232 / 6,336 1,522 / 9,142 1,560 / 5,414 1,705 / 7,417

The M1 chip, as you can see, is not as powerful as Intel’s new 12th gen chips but it does manage to hold its own, especially with its single-core performance. In this CPU-centric workload, for instance, it managed to score more than Intel’s new U-series chips and even came close to beating the Core i7-1280P’s single-core score. Sure, the Geekbench numbers may vary when you perform the test on the Galaxy Book 2 Business laptop, but this should give you a general idea of where Apple’s M1 chip stands against the competition right now. Even though the Galaxy Book 2 Business doesn’t use U-series processors, we wanted to add those numbers to give you an understanding of where the M1 chips currently stand.

Apple’s M1 chip is known to perform in comparison to other mobile chips in the graphics department. The M1’s graphics processor has shown great potential to beat many powerful Intel and AMD chips. But unlike a lot of other business notebooks out there, the Galaxy Book 2 Business comes with an optional NVIDIA GeForce MX570 discrete graphics chip, which we think should be able to go head to head with the M1’s graphics prowess. But you’ll have to spend more to get the discrete GPU inside the Galaxy Book 2 Business, and it doesn’t seem to be available at least at the time of writing this article. The base model of the MacBook Air with M1 should be able to beat the base model of the Galaxy Book 2 Business powered by the Intel UHD or Iris Xe graphics.

Intel Alder Lake vPro platform

As for the memory, we’re looking at up to 64GB of DDR4 RAM inside the Galaxy Book 2 Business. The base variant, however, will only have 8GB of RAM. You can upgrade the RAM yourself later, but it’s still quite less. The MacBook Air with M1, on the other hand, can be purchased with up to 16GB of memory. However, it’s worth noting that the M1 chip uses unified memory technology, which means you can expect to see significantly faster speeds and low latencies. This is because the memory modules are baked into the chip. Unified memory, in case you don’t know, means that it also gets used by the M1 graphics processor for relevant workloads.

Moving on to the storage, you can get up to 1TB storage on the Galaxy Book 2 Business whereas you can purchase a MacBook Air with up to 2TB SSD. If you are someone who wants to have more storage at your disposal without having to deal with external drives, then the MacBook Air might just be the way to go.

apple m1 chip

Unified Memory Architecture on Apple’s M1 chip

Lastly, there’s also the battery life. We’re looking at a 51.5Whr battery inside the Galaxy Book 2 Business and a 49Whr inside the MacBook Air. Despite the slightly smaller battery, we think the MacBook Air is going to deliver better battery life thanks to the M1 chip. This particular processor is known to offer more performance-per-watt in comparison to Intel’s 12th gen chips. Additionally, you’ll also have to consider other factors affecting the battery life including a unified memory, hardware-software integration, and more. We’ll have more to talk about the performance and battery life of these notebooks once we’ve had a chance to test them side-by-side, so stay tuned.

Display

The Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business sports a 14-inch Full HD display whereas the Apple MacBook Air comes with a 13-inch panel. The MacBook Air’s LED-backlit display has a 2560 x 1600 resolution but the one on the Book 2 Business has a lower resolution of 1920 x 1080. It’s also worth pointing out that the MacBook Air has a 16:10 display while Samsung has only added a 16:9 aspect ratio display. A 16:10 aspect ratio display is generally preferred for productivity as it allows you to see more of the webpage or the document that you’re editing. 16:9 is a more traditional aspect ratio, but it would’ve been nice to see Samsung using a 16:10 panel for the Galaxy Book 2 Business.

Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business webcam and display

Both notebooks in this comparison have a webcam on top of the display, so you don’t have to worry about buying an external camera to handle video calls and meetings. Apple is still using an HD FaceTime camera whereas the Galaxy Book 2 Business comes with a 1080p camera. The HD FaceTime camera on the MacBook Air has started showing its age now, so it’s safe to say that you’re probably going to get a better experience with the 1080p camera on the Galaxy Book 2 Business. Notably, the Book 2 Business also comes with an IR camera for Windows Hello authentication, whereas there’s no such option on the MacBook Air. You do get a Touch ID fingerprint scanner embedded in the power button of the MacBook Air, though.

Design and Ports

We recommend picking up the Apple MacBook Air if you are looking to buy a thinner and lighter notebook overall. As you can see in the specs sheet, the MacBook Air measures 16.1mm in thickness whereas the Galaxy Book 2 Business measures 19.92mm. The MacBook Air also weighs less than the Samsung notebook, so that’s worth considering too. In terms of the looks, well, the MacBook Air’s design has remained the same over the years. There’s nothing new with the MacBook Air’s design, but a lot of people seem to like its minimal design. You get three color options with the MacBook Air, all of which look great overall. The Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business also seems to have a muted design overall, but it’s only available in one color — graphite.

Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business

In terms of the ports, the Galaxy Book 2 Business is the superior option as it comes with a better selection of ports. You get a Thunderbolt 4 port, a USB Type-C port, two USB Type-A ports, an HDMI 2.0 port, an RJ45 Ethernet port, an SD card reader, and a 3.5mm combo jack for audio. The MacBook Air, on the other hand, only comes with two Thunderbolt/USB 4 ports and a 3.5mm headphone jack. You’ll have to rely on adapters and docks to add more peripherals. We should point out that the MacBook Air can only support one external display through the Thunderbolt port.

m1 MacBook Air

Even though Samsung hasn’t mentioned a SIM card slot in its specs sheet, the Galaxy Book 2 Business comes with one for 4G LTE support in some regions like Europe. So it’s safe to say that 4G connectivity is optional on the Galaxy Book 2 Business whereas it’s entirely missing on the MacBook Air. You do get support for WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5 with the MacBook Air while the Galaxy Book 2 Business comes with support for WiFi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2.

Windows or macOS?

The operating system becomes a key factor to consider every time you compare a Windows machine to an Apple MacBook. In this case, the Galaxy Book 2 Business comes with Windows 11 out of the box whereas the MacBook Air comes with macOS Monterey. Windows has evolved a lot over the years and the new OS brings many improvements over the previous versions. Windows is one of the most popular operating systems in the world and we consider it a solid choice for most users out there.

macos 12 monterey on macbook air m1

That being said, macOS is also known to be very intuitive, as we’ve mentioned in many of our comparisons before. The macOS also happens to be the preferred choice for content creators as it supports a lot of creator-friendly apps including Final Cut Pro, Adobe Photoshop, Premiere, and more. The decision to pick between Windows and macOS comes down to your personal preference, really. Both operating systems are great overall and you can’t go wrong with either.

Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business vs MacBook Air: Which one should you buy?

The Galaxy Book 2 Business is the way to go if you care about the raw performance of these notebooks. The M1 chip still holds up pretty well against other processors, but there’s no denying that Intel’s new 12th gen chips are pretty good overall. We recommend picking the Galaxy Book 2 Business with the MX570 discrete graphics unit for the best graphics performance though. The M1’s graphics processors will most probably beat Intel’s integrated graphics.

Even outside the performance, the Galaxy Book 2 Business has a lot of other good things going for it. It’s got a webcam with IR support for Windows Hello, and you also get more ports so you don’t have to worry about using dongles. You also get 4G connectivity in some regions with the Galaxy Book 2 Business, but that’s entirely missing on the MacBook Air. But if you are leaning towards the MacBook Air, then you’ll get a sharper display, slightly more portable form-factor, and more color options to choose from. Lastly, the operating system also plays a huge role in deciding which laptop to buy, so consider that too.

    Apple MacBook Air

    The MacBook Air powered by the M1 chip is still one of the most popular notebooks in Apple’s lineup.

    Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business

    The Galaxy Book 2 Business laptop is one of the notebooks on the market that’s powered by Intel’s new 12th gen Alder Lake mobile chips.

The Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business isn’t available to purchase yet, so we’ll add a link to buy it once it goes on sale. In the meantime, you check out our round-up of the best macs or the best Samsung laptops. Or, you can even consider taking a look at the best business laptops if you don’t mind buying laptops from other brands.

The post Samsung Galaxy Book 2 Business vs MacBook Air: Which one to buy? appeared first on XDA.

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