SAMSUNG NO LONGER releases laptops in the UK, having admitted defeat in 2014. However, the company no doubt hopes that the Galaxy TabPro S, its first Windows 10-powered 2-in-1, will make up for this and help to make a mark on the business convertible market.
Samsung is entering a crowded market as Dell, HP, Lenovo and even Microsoft churn out Windows-powered hybrid devices to keep afloat in the otherwise tanking PC market.
Aesthetically, the Galaxy TabPro S gives the iPad Pro a run for its money. It’s not crafted fully from magnesium like the Galaxy Tab S2 before it, but the matte plastic rear and metal edges still have a premium feel, and the device proved itself a robust piece of kit despite measuring just 6.3mm thick, much skinnier than the 9mm Surface Pro 4.
Despite this, the tablet portion of the device isn’t particularly comfortable to use one-handed at 700g, although it slipped discreetly into our bag.
Being this thin comes at a cost. Echoing Apple’s 12in MacBook, the Galaxy TabPro S has just one audio out port and one USB Type-C slot. If you want to hook up all your peripherals you’ll have to cough up for Samsung’s hub with HDMI, USB Type-A and Type-C ports.
Display and keyboard
The 12in 2560×1440 Super AMOLED display on the Galaxy TabPro S is one of the best we’ve seen on a Windows device, or any device for that matter. It matches the quality of the screens found on Samsung’s Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge smartphones, and offers vibrant colours, deep blacks and insane levels of brightness. We were even able to use it comfortably outdoors.
This screen can be paired with Samsung’s faux-leather keyboard add-on which comes in the box at no extra cost, unlike the keyboard offered with Microsoft’s Surface devices. Like most, this cover attaches to the rear of the tablet using magnets (bitch), but it feels more sturdy than others we’ve used and we could pick up the device by its display without the keyboard falling off.
It’s also a little different to other keyboard add-ons in that it covers the rear of the 12in display, creating a makeshift kickstand. However, this can be set to only two levels, which means the screen’s viewing angles are somewhat limited.
The keyboard is full-sized, and even offers a row of function keys along the top. We wrote this review using the keyboard, which meant a lot of pressing backspace and rewriting sentences owing to the limited space between each key and lack of travel which makes typing at speed a little awkward and fiddly.
We soon became more comfortable using it, but often found ourselves yearning for our MacBook keyboard. The trackpad is good, though, and handles Windows 10’s multitouch gestures with little fuss.
Another downside is that the keyboard isn’t ideal for use on your lap, and we knocked it over several times.
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