Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus - Keeping Up with The Competition

Launch SRP: S$768

Overview, Design and Features

Samsung Taking Charge

The South Korean company celebrated the end of 2011 with a record breaking global sales of over 300 million handset sales. This is largely due to the success of its Galaxy portfolio of phones. The momentum is set to swing over to the tablet scene as Samsung increases its presence in the market with new devices covering new screen sizes, such as an 8.9-inch tablet. It also refreshed its original Galaxy Tab slate by launching the Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus last week. Does the Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus have what it takes to keep up with the competition? Read on to find out. 

 Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus

  Key highlights of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus

  • Android Honeycomb 3.2v
  • 1.2GHz dual-core processor
  • 7-inch HD PLS LCD / 1024 x 600 pixels
  • 1GB RAM
  • 3-megapixel rear camera / Autofocus / LED flash + 2-megapixel front facing camera
  • 16 GB (microSD expansion, up to 32GB)
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n (2.4GHz / 5GHz)
  • 4000mAh battery
  • 345g
  • 193.65 x 122.37 x 9.96mm
  • Price and Availability: S$768 (available from 7th January 2012)


Design Aspects

The Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus is like a smaller sibling to the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in terms of physical attributes. The obvious difference, comes from its screen size. While some consumers may be able to live with the plastic build for a lighter Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus at 345g, we prefer a more sturdy device such as the ASUS Eee Pad Transformer Prime

You can find the SIM and microSD card slots on the left side of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus. Having said that, you can make and receive voice calls on the tablet, a functionality yet to be found on most tablets.

A 3.5mm audio output jack sits on top of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus.

The Power button and volume controls are found on the right side of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus. We had no problems using them as they are sufficiently raised and not flushed with the body of the device.

A pair of stereo speakers flanks the proprietary connector at the bottom of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus. We missed the convenience of file transfers and charging via a microUSB port, which is absent on Samsung tablets.

There is nothing much on the back of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus except for the 3-megapixel rear autofocus camera with LED flash.

While we had no major problems with the design and handling of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus, the plastic feel that we got out of the Samsung tablet didn't give us much confidence in handling it. Though one should take extra care in handling their devices, we were more worried about scratching the tablet and leaving a trail of damage on its exterior. Light as it may be, it doesn't have the solid and durable build that we are accustomed to on many other 7-inch tablets, such as the Huawei MediaPad.


Not Ready for Android 4.0 Yet

Despite the fact that Google has made the source code of its latest Android 4.0 platform available, we were disappointed to find the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus running on the one-year old Android Honeycomb operating system. The delay could be due to the fact that Samsung has to spend extra time to adapt its customized user interface for Ice Cream Sandwich. Fortunately, the Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus is among the few Samsung devices that are getting the Android 4.0 update. However, the company hasn't given a specific time frame on when this update will commence.

For now, you have to stick with Android Honeycomb 3.2 OS on the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus. Android 4.0 update will be delivered to the tablet once it's available sometime this year.

We are big fans of Samsung's implementation of the Notification menu in the Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus. It presents some of the most frequently used functions such as Wi-Fi and screen rotation in an easy-to-use layout.

You are still unable to close or quit apps from the multitasking menu on the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus. However, you can do that using the Program monitor widget or the Task Manager app.

Fortunately, the screenshot function is still available on the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus. You can customize the Quick Launch button (located beside the usual three buttons Back, Home and Multitask) to act as a shortcut for Applications, Search and Camera function.

The Good
Slim and lightweight
Good battery life
Reasonable price
The Bad
Sluggish performance at times
Build quality can be improved