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Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ review: a productivity partner with nods and nays

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ with the detachable keyboard   | Photo Credit: Divya Kala Bhavani

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There are few devices that have the colours literally jump out at you in the dark. The Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ is one of them. I was able to play around with the device to my heart’s content, finding both nods and nays. The tablet sports a clean design with a magnetic strip for the S-Pen (which we will get into later). The matte finish on the back keeps it grip-friendly but given it was always attached to the stand, this did not matter.

Setting up the tablet itself was a breeze, and I had (probably too much) fun customising my home screen with widgets and ultra HD or 4K wallpapers to test the display… and I have to say, unlocking the device is a visual treat.

Specifications (Galaxy Tab S7+)
  • Display: 31.50cm (12.4”) ; 2800x1752 (WQXGA+) Super AMOLED ; upto 120Hz
  • Dimensions & weight: 185.0 x 285.0 x 5.7mm ; 575g
  • S-Pen: 5.79” x 0.32” ; 8g
  • Battery: 10,090mAh
  • RAM + Storage: 6GB + 128GB

Samsung knocks it out of the park once again with impressive displays; the Galaxy Tab S7+ has a vivid 12.4-inch Super AMOLED display, unlike its basic brother (Galaxy Tab S7) which has an 11-inch LTPS TFT display. The 16:10 display of the Galaxy Tab S7+ is elevated by the 120Hz refresh rate, decreasing blurs and preventing tears which ultimately make gaming, streaming and other heavy tasks smoother.

This is enabled by the monster Qualcomm Snapdragon 865+ processor which powers a smarter voice assistant with contextual awareness. The AI in the Galaxy Tab S7+ is more intuitive and this is evident when the device is on low battery.

Speaking of battery, this tablet model comes with a whopping 10,090mAh capacity while the Galaxy Tab S7 comes with a somewhat disappointing 8,000mAh. I am, of course, joking; those who do not want to fork over the extra cash but still want the luxury experience of a high-end Android-powered tablet, should give the S7 a go. Use the in-box 15W charger (not just any old USB-C charging cable and adaptor), and the Super Fast charging is a treat. However, I found myself charging the Galaxy Tab S7+ twice a day, perhaps owing to the power distribution to the display and the high refresh rate.

Flip it

One of the many welcome joys of this device is the camera placement, encouraging more use of the tablet horizontally. Using the device in portrait orientation is awkward and feels a bit too weighted. However, placed along the right length of the tablet, video-chatting is no longer awkward with vertical video nor was I finding myself staring off camera to stay in visual touch with others on a call while my camera was in an entirely different spot.

The rear camera system for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+

The rear camera system for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+   | Photo Credit: Divya Kala Bhavani

The Galaxy Tab S7+ comes with an impressive rear camera system powered by the chipset’s Qualcomm Spectra 480 ISP that captures richly-detailed photos and videos with faster processing speeds of up to 2 Gigapixels per second, thanks to the main 13 megapixel and 5 megapixel ultra-wide lenses. While I am not big on tablets with rear cameras (after all, what would I even do with it when my phone suffices?), the massive battery and the intuitive power-redistributing AI of the chipset could serve well for longer videos.

One of the pitfalls of the experience has been the ergonomics of the device. At this point, after a successful range of devices and accessories, the kick-stand has been a disappointment from Samsung. The stand is a fuss to adjust while the magnetic latch keyboard has an overly bendable hinge which makes stability impossible. Working on the tablet at a desk is fine, but for lazing in bed or on the couch where the device would be on my lap, I was battling with the keyboard.

While we are on the topic of the keyboard, I have to hand it to Samsung for including a full Function keys line and a large trackpad, emulating the authentic keyboard experience. The 2020 Apple iPad Pro’s Magic Keyboard sadly does not have the Function keys and there is a considerably smaller trackpad. The keys’ mechanism of the Galaxy Tab S7+ is much more sturdy but there are a few moments where the keys do not respond as quickly as they should have given the internal improvements, chipset-wise, to the tablet.

The detachable folio for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ with the kick-stand

The detachable folio for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ with the kick-stand   | Photo Credit: Divya Kala Bhavani

Pretty precision

The Galaxy Tab S7+ comes with an updated S-Pen, too. It is more ergonomic and also has reduced latency for quicker responsiveness to writing speed and sensitivity, which can be adjusted as per preference. The precision is also much appreciated; I found myself hitting undo a lot less. Sketching, creating diagrams and jotting down general notes were a breeze, engendering faster productivity with the tablet.

When launched, the tablet promised a better experience with DeX mode, the brand’s One UI task bar which mimics the typical desktop experience. I found switching between apps annoying and often, apps crashed and I lost work or a point of a YouTube video I was watching. DeX needs more of an overhaul rather than bells and whistles, especially when more potential users are looking for products which help them get work done without glitches.

The Galaxy Tab S7 series is pricey (starting at ₹55,999). If this is still too expensive for you, opt for the recently-released Galaxy Tab S6 Lite if you are keen on keeping it Samsung-relevant, which comes with a host of great basic features and is quite sturdy too. The after-care for the brand’s ecosystem of products is also prompt and helpful, so do be sure to take on the insurance plans especially with the few ongoing glitches and drawbacks in the device itself.

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Printable version | Nov 29, 2020 10:29:42 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/technology/gadgets/review-samsung-galaxy-tab-s7-plus-tablet-2020-productivity-partner-nay-and-yay/article32659410.ece

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