Customer Review

102 of 107 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A safe rather than leading edge proposition, 8 Dec 2013
This review is from: Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7-inch - (Black, Wi-Fi) (Personal Computers)
I am a keen iPad user and when the opportunity came to get one of these Galaxy Tab 3 (7") models I thought I'd try it as it's more compact than a full size iPad and much cheaper than an iPad Mini.

As I see it these are the pros and cons of this latest model, the Tab 3, 7 inch tablet from Samsung;

Pros

- Samsung build quality and pedigree - it looks stylish and feels well made.
- The size is ideal to hold in one hand (size = 111.1 x 188 x 9.9mm and it weighs in at 300g) - the bezel around the display is slimmer than the previous model.
- The 1024 x 600 pixel (WSVGA), 16M colour, TFT display offers a reasonably sharp image even when magnifying a web page or text but it's certainly no retina display - colours are good, although, not as vibrant as the AMOLED screens on some Galaxy products or certain competitors such as the Nexus 7.
- The Tab 3 sports a dual core 1.2GHz processor plus 1GB RAM and 8GB of built in storage expandable by 32GB through use of the Micro SD slot. I am using a 32Gb Micro SD card and the Samsung site says 32GB max but other sites suggest you can use 64GB. The SD card can be encrypted to make the data unreadable if it is removed.
- The overall speed of the device is adequate and it keeps pace with demands but performance is more Ford Focus than Ferrari.
- It has front and rear cameras - the front is 1.5MP for video calling via Skype etc. and the rear one is 3MP - their quality is okay but particularly the rear camera is modest by contemporary standards.
- You can lock and unlock the device using facial recognition or a PIN if you wish. If you face isn't recognised or light levels are too low you can unlock the tablet using the PIN - this system works well.
- The twin (stereo) speakers are quite effective considering the size of the unit plus it has a earphone socket.
- Battery life is reasonable - around 6 hours on average and the tablet can charge from a USB port or mains charger.
- Good range of connectivity - USB support (via micro USB socket), Bluetooth, DLNA support plus it has an accelerometer, geo-magnetic and light sensor support as well as GPS/GLONASS location finding technology. Also, supports both 2.4 and 5 Ghz WiFi.

Cons

- Comes loaded with the older Android Jelly Bean 4.1 OS overlayed with a Samsung interface (the 8" model runs Android version 4.2.2) - I don't get why there's a step down from the latest iteration of Android in a product that is just being launched.
- The Android/Samsung interface is not as intuitive or as slick as the iPad in my opinion (but it is just that, an opinion).
- Considering Samsung have made their name through their expertise in screens the resolution of this screen is not by any means "leading edge" compared, for example, to the Google Nexus 7 although it is certainly adequate.
- Be warned, as far as I can ascertain, this model does not support HDMI via an MHL adaptor, although my understanding is that the Tab 3 8" and 10" models do.
- No flash on the rear facing camera.
- No SIM slot for mobile data on this model.
- No iPad style automatic cover lock.
- Quite pricey for the spec on offer especially with only 8Gb of built in storage.
- Samsung's Kies connectivity software is quite basic and can be temperamental.
- Nothing else obvious as yet.

This is one of those devices that works fine and delivers what it claims, but it lacks the emotional appeal of some other gadgets I own. I also think given that this is a brand new model, the specifications are modest by contemporary standards, delivering adequate but not outstanding performance. However, the Samsung pedigree ensures quality, support and immunity from the dangers of buying an unknown tablet plus, the size strikes an ideal balance between being portable, usable and viewable.

As my old schoolmaster used to say "he'll pass but could do better" - that's exactly where I am with this latest offering from Samsung. Finally, consider the 8" version of the Galaxy Tab which offers a step up in both screen size and specification (faster processor & more memory), although at present, the price is a fair step up too.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 4 Jan 2014 10:23:40 GMT
WrathofKhan says:
Really useful review. I have the 7 inch tab 2. Can't find a TV out for it. Might be worth purchasing this. Are you aware if the Tab 3 supports HDMI for tv out? Many thanks

In reply to an earlier post on 4 Jan 2014 17:47:57 GMT
Paul Madge says:
Hello, thanks for the kind feedback. Apparently, you need an adaptor lead for HDMI, and in the case of the Tab 3 (7"), it doesn't support HDMI at all - so a bit of learning for me too! This page might be of interest http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2478743 Regards Paul

In reply to an earlier post on 4 Jan 2014 18:09:53 GMT
WrathofKhan says:
Thanks Paul. Saved me a bit of as well as the hassle of sending back. HNY

In reply to an earlier post on 17 Sep 2014 16:48:26 BDT
Useful review, but, who would want to buy an expensive mobile phone with a battery life of 6hours
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Paul Madge
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