Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus LTE review: The best Android tablet
| New Delhi |
Updated: September 15, 2020 11:26:45 am
The pandemic induced work and study from home situation has also spawned a new problem for most families. That family PC is no longer sufficient as everybody in the house has to work simultaneously most of the time. This means the family has to invest in new devices, but then this also means there is the opportunity to invest in different devices.
Recently, when a sea-faring friend of mine called me to check about the new Samsung Galaxy Tab S7, he was trying to replace a MacBook he had given to his daughter for her classes. But then he had already decided that he needed a tablet given the nature of his work and the TabS’s note and annotating capabilities. So while a tablet was essentially an on-the-move device earlier, now people seem to be swaying this way also because of specific capabilities.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus LTE
As expected the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus LTE is a sleep, simple design that is as minimalist as it can get on a tablet. But then there is the stunning 12.4-inch Super AMOLED WQXGA+ display, the sort Samsung excels at creating. In landscape mode, there is a power button, volume rocker and SIM slot on top of the device, magnetic connectors for the keyboard below, and dual speaker grills on both sides.
This is also how you will tend to use the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus more, as the device is best used with the keyboard stand which you will have to purchase separately though. However, the S Pen is included in the box and is an important part of the tablet’s functionality.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus LTE price in India: Rs 79,999 + Rs 17,999 (Keyboard cover)
Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus LTE specs: 12.4-inch Super AMOLED 2800 x 1752 (WQXGA+) display | Qualcomm Snapdragon 865+ octa-core processor | 6GB RAM + 128GB storage (micro SD slot up to 1TB) | 13.0 MP + 5.0 MP rear camera + 8.0MP front camera | UHD 4K (3840 x 2160)@30fps video recording | 4G TDD LTE | 10090 man battery | S-Pen | 575 g weight without cover
What is good in the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus LTE
The first thing that impressed me, as almost always with a Samsung device, was the keyboard. It is clear and extremely bright when needed. In fact, this is important for those who will use the tablet for creative purposes as they will be able to do some precision stuff when the need arises. Plus, the screen size aligns with the quad speakers with Dolby Atmos makes the Tab S7+ a good consumption device too.
Though an Android tablet, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus runs a customised UI that is more akin to what you would find on a laptop. The apps are neatly lined up on the left and there is a dock below which shows the apps that are currently open — all user friendly and intuitive. However, I kept swiping on the screen to get back to the home screen from an app and that does not work here. But the dock has buttons that take you to the home screen or the app try. On the right are quick access buttons for settings are notifications, as well as a very handy one for taking screen shots. Overall, this is the best UI I have experienced on an Android tablet.
If someone opts for the Tab S7 series from among the other tablets options out there, then the S-Pen has to be one of the considerations behind it. The S-Pen for the tablet, though much larger than the one on the Galaxy Note smartphones, works very similarly. There is a transparent Pen icon hovering on the side of the screen at all times and you just need tap it to see the options available from the Penup to the note apps. Interestingly, the pen icon appears only when the S-Pen has been removed from its magnetic resting place at the back.
— Nandagopal Rajan (@nandu79) September 15, 2020
I loved using this version of the S-Pen and it just reaffirms the fact that Samsung makes the best stylus for tablets, way superior than both the Surface Pen and Apple Pencil. A few minutes I spent using the colouring option on Penup underlined the low-latency capabilities of the S-Pen. However, this does not give you a pen on paper feel like with the S-Pen on the new Galaxy Note 20. For someone like me who keeps taking screenshots and making notes on the same, this is an excellent device.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 865+ processor which means you don’t really need to worry about processing power. I worked on the device for a couple of days, replacing my MacBook and I did not miss much except for the smaller form factor and the awkwardness or doing certain functions on such a screen. But I was impressed when it could open and let me work on some large spreadsheets, as well as multi task easily.
Now for the keyboard cover. The keyboard cover that Samsung is selling for the Tab S7+ is good enough to make this a laptop replacement. It is almost full size and comes with a decent size trackpad. The keys are well spaced out and offer the right amount of travel. They don’t need to be charged and connect to the tablet with a magnetic hinge. It also offers a kick stand at the back so that you can prop up the screen and get typing. What I loved more was the flap on top of the rear to protect the S-Pen, which otherwise would be just sticking to the tablet.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus comes with a mammoth 10,090 mAh battery, which for me translated to about three days of whatever I was doing, but on Wi-Fi. On LTE, you might need to charge this once in two days with a full work schedule, which for a tablet is quite good.
What to keep in mind while buying the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus LTE
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus LTE does not have any negative as such. But for those switching from an Apple device or even a Windows laptop, the UI will take some getting used to and some fighting back years of muscle memory. Also, some websites open up on mobile mode on the tablet which can be quite frustrating — I found that this was an issue more if you use the native browser.
The keyboard cover is an expensive piece of equipment and I suggest you avail the pre-booking offer where you get it for Rs 7,999, an off of Rs 10,000. While very functional and sturdy, I did not enjoy using it on my lap as the stand has a sharp base that starts hurting your lap after a while. Also, with the stand on, using the tablet for jotting notes becomes awkward.
Should you buy the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus LTE?
If you are looking for a powerful, capable and versatile Android tablet, then the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus LTE is worth every Rupee you spend on it. The choice here is clearly with the new iPad Pro, which offers similar capabilities. But if you are not an Apple user otherwise, then this is a better option for you. Also, I think the S-Pen is a better stylus than the Apple Pencil, though the new stand on the iPad Pro offers more versatility for creative users. The choice is clearly a function of price and the ecosystem you are on. But there is no doubt that the iPad Pro has some good competition now.
I recommend the Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 Plus LTE for compulsive note-takers who are always on the move. You will be able to do most of the stuff you did on the laptop, plus scribble and not carry around too much weight. You can’t buy a better Android tablet at the moment. Period.
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