What can we say? It’s about time we see more and more Honeycomb devices hit the 7-inch platforms in my opinion. I personally was an early adopter to Sammy’s first tablet, the original Galaxy Tab. It was great and I never purchased a bigger tablet because of how much I loved the size and form factor. At 7-inches the device is still pretty mobile for times when you need more than a cell phone but less than a laptop. I’ve been waiting patiently for Samsung to update my original Galaxy Tab but instead, they’ve opted to release an entirely new device. However, before you just dismiss this for another Galaxy Tab, only sporting Honeycomb, you might want to consider what’s under of the hood of this particular model. The Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus is a highly welcomed addition to the Samsung Galaxy Tab lineup as it joins the ranks of the 8.9 and 10.1 series devices. The 7.0 Plus offers more entertainment on-the-go than you’ll know what to do with, like Media Hub, Social Hub and excellent web browsing, you’ll surely crush boredom fast in its place. The device comes in a lighter weight package than its predecessor, weighing in at 12.1 oz and comes in at .39” thin. Add to that Honeycomb 3.2, a dual-core CPU, TouchWiz customization and Android’s 250 thousand applications available on the Android Market, and you’ve got yourself a killer mobile media device without the burden of being heavy and uncomfortable to hold.
When it comes to design, Samsung tends to lead in the innovation dept more often than not. And the Tab 7.0 Plus is no exception. The device is extremely appealing with its gun metal/metallic finish and sleek curves. Samsung nailed this one as far as design is concerned in my opinion. Can you picture a Galaxy Tab 10.1 in a more refined package? Well, that’s what you have here with the 7.0 Plus. Aside from the standard Samsung nomenclature on the backside of the device, they’ve kept it clean only sporting a 3 meg backside auto-focus camera with single LED flash. The front side shows the Samsung logo along the bottom and like its predecessor, the bezel is clean all around of any logo’s or printing. And as the name implies, it sports a 7” Super AMOLED display that renders colors beautifully in WSVGA fashion (1024 x 600). If you look carefully you can make out a front facing camera coming in at 2 mega-pixels. Overall, we love what Samsung did with the hardware here. It’s much thinner than the original and more streamlined while simultaneously keeping things “simple and clean”. You can find all of your standard ports and slots such a microSD card slot, (no SIM, it’s WiFi) along side the volume rocker and on top your typical 3.5 mm headphone jack. The device comes with Samsung’s proprietary head phones which sound great on any device. In addition, you can still perform all of your day to day tasks and media consumption while holding this baby in one hand, something bigger tablets can’t really tout.
The battery is the same as the original coming in at a whopping 4000 mAh’s. The device is a WiFi only tab and even with WiFi turned on nearly all of the time, it virtually took days for the battery to drain of its charge. Under heavy use, I found I could on average use the device for about 2-3 days before requiring a recharge. In addition, the Tab charged back up pretty quickly allowing me to return to a productive day with the device.
Call Quality & Speaker Phone:
While obviously not having call capabilities as their is a lack of radios in the device, the 7.0 Plus does have excellent speaker quality thanks to its dual speakers which offer crisp and clear sound located at the bottom of the device if you’re holding it up vertically. The Tab 7.0 would make a great audio device if docked at a party sounding off your favorite tunes or if you’re simply watching/streaming a movie.
The device sports a rear facing 3 mega-pixel camera offering 720p HD recording and auto-focus. There’s also an LED flash and 2 megapixel front facing camera for video chatting. There’s software available as well which allows image sharing & editing and comes with Picasa on board the camera application for easy uploading to your galleries.
Performance & Software
If you’ve read our Galaxy Tab 8.9 review, performance was pretty much on par with its older middle brother. Running Android 3.2 Honeycomb under Samsung’s TouchWiz UX, the tab offers a wide array of cool widgets and smooth performance. All of your standard Honeycomb applications are present accompanying a multitude of apps and widgets supplied by Samsung. Performance is crisp and clean with very little lag thanks to the Exynos 1.2 GHz dual-core chip set housed in the device. With such apps like Task Manager, Messaging, Memo Pad, Calculator, World Cock, an Excellent integrated Calendar and Music features, this makes for one incredible and productive device both for the media consumer and the business user. The 7.0 Plus is an HD device offering a full HD player for your video and movie streaming. The integrated HTML Web browser is excellent and offers Adobe Flash support for those viewing flash content on the go. With the ability to free up RAM and close multiple apps at once, the device experienced no hiccups as we continued to navigate and use multiple applications simultaneously. The device sports 1 Gig of RAM which comes in handy with excessive video streaming.
In addition to all of the standard features, the device comes drenched with entertainment from Samsung. with a hub on board for virtually everything, boredom won’t have a leg to stand on. The 7.0 Plus comes with Samsung’s standard Media Hub offering instant entertainment with movies and TV shows. The service touts the fact that the streaming content will begin playing while it’s still loading in the background so you don’t have to wait for any unnecessary buffering.
In the storage dept, the device comes in two different models. A 16GB and 32GB. We reviewed the 16 GB and found it to be more than adequate in meeting our storage needs. In addition, there is a microSD slot available which allows up to 32 GB of storage expansion should the need arise. This, plus a number of cloud storage services available, we don’t think anyone will have a problem exceeding storage capacity anytime soon.
Furthermore, IT folks will benefit greatly from the device as it comes with full support for professionals requiring Enterprise applications and also comes with a Cisco Anyconnect VPN client. Include Sybase Afaria mobile device management and your IT requirements are met with ease.