Recent Articles

Headlines

5 days ago

Best Cases for Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 in 2018

Best Cases for Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 in 2018

There aren't a ton of great Android tablets options out there, but one of the best is the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3. The Tab S3 includes the S Pen along with the stylish hardware we've all come to expect from Samsung.

With all that you can do with this top-tier Samsung tablet, you're going to want to get a case to keep it protected for unexpected drops. Here are your best case options for the Galaxy Tab S3!

Productivity and protection

Samsung Keyboard Cover

Offering protection as well as functionality, this case includes Samsung's latest keyboard, featuring chiclet-style keys, along with intuitive POGO pin connectors, which let you set up your tablet in keyboard mode right quick. Samsung offers a fairly standard look for this keyboard case, featuring a white folding back panel that provides protection for your tablet, while the keyboard is made of gray, physical keys.

$69 at Amazon

Classic style

Samsung Book Case

Ehis is the classic folio-style case that offers full-screen protection for storage and travel with a little kickstand-style stand for hands-free media watching. Because it's designed by Samsung, it includes some really handy features like a magnetic connection that keeps the cover closed and also turns the screen on or off when it's opened or closed.

$30 at Amazon

Drop-free design

BRAECNstock Hybrid Protective Shield w/ Hand Strap

This awesome case features a hand strap mounted on a swiveling mount that lets you firmly hold onto your Galaxy Tab S3 with less grip while still ensuring you won't drop it. It also includes a shoulder strap that you can clip onto the case for easy carrying when you're on the go. The case itself is dual-layered with a silicone and polycarbonate shells working together to provide excellent protection for your tablet.

$24 at Amazon

Keyboard case for less

Fintie Keyboard Case

For those looking for a keyboard case at a discount price, Fintie has got you (and your tablet) covered. Unlike other third-party Bluetooth keyboard cases you might have seen, Fintie used classic hard keys like you'd find on a laptop in lieu of those grody silicone keys that can get grimy and gross real quick.

$32 at Amazon

Best value

ProCase Hard Shell Case

You don't need to spend more than $15 for a reliable case for your tablet. Check out this sleek and stylish case from ProCase. Its a basic folio-style case with a synthetic leather finish. The cover can be folded over to create a kickstand for watching your favorite Netflix shows.

$13 at Amazon

No cover, no problem

Poetic TurtleSkin Rugged Case

Much like a standard case for your phone, the TurtleSkin case is made of silicone material that's both grippy and very shock resistant. On the back, it's got a unique pattern of raised supports helps with grip (and also explains the TurtleSkin name). Most importantly, there are air vents that help keep your Tab S3 cool.

$13 at Amazon

What's good for your phone is good for your tablet

SUPCASE Unicorn Beetle Pro Series Case

SUPCASE offers full-body protection for your tablet, which includes a protective front casing with a built-in screen protector and a raised bezel to keep that beautiful screen protected. On the back, a dual-layer hybrid casing designed with a shock-absorbing TPU bumper will keep your tablet well-protected from any accidental drops and also features a pop-out kickstand for hands-free viewing.

$24 at Amazon

During the first week of owning my first tablet, it slipped out of my hands and landed screen-side down. The display (and my excitement for the new device) was shattered. An ounce of prevention would have saved me a ton of stress and the cash I spent to buy a replacement screen. No matter what you want to get out of your

Update September 2018: Updated pricing information. These are your best options for the Galaxy Tab S3!

2 weeks ago

Samsung Galaxy A6 and Galaxy Tab A 10.5 coming to the U.S. Sept. 14

6

Samsung Galaxy A6 and Galaxy Tab A 10.5 coming to the U.S. Sept. 14

Both gadgets are being sold on their own and at carriers.

Now that the Galaxy Note 9's been out in the wild for a couple weeks, Samsung's launching two new devices in the U.S. to make sure its portfolio is stocked for the 2018 holiday shopping season. Starting September 14, both the Galaxy A6 and Galaxy Tab A 10.5 are coming to the States.

The Galaxy A6 is a mid-range phone that was first announced back in May. The phone features a 5.6-inch 1480 x 720 Super AMOLED display. Above that is a 16MP front-facing camera with an f/1.9 aperture and around back is a 16MP f/1.7 shooter.

Inside the Galaxy A6 is the Exynos 7884 processor, 3GB RAM, 32GB of expandable storage (up to 400GB), and a 3,000 mAh battery. You'll also find Android 8.0 Oreo, NFC, Bluetooth 5.0, and a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor.

Moving over to the Galaxy Tab A 10.5, this is Samsung's budget tablet that's designed to be a lesser companion to the Galaxy Tab S4. As the name suggests, there's a 10.5-inch 1200 x 1920 LCD display. Qualcomm's Snapdragon 450 processor and 3GB RAM power the gadget, and along with this, you'll also find 32GB of expandable storage, a 7,300 mAh battery, and Android 8.1 Oreo.

The Galaxy A6 carries a retail price of $359.99 and will be available at "carrier partners" in the next few weeks after first launching on Samsung's website. As for the Tab A 10.5, it costs $329.99 and will be available at Amazon, Samsung, and Walmart. Later this year, an LTE model will launch at Sprint and Verizon.

Samsung Galaxy Note 9 review: Welcome to the one comma club

1 month ago

Lenovo announces a slew of budget Android tablets starting at just $69

8

Lenovo announces a slew of budget Android tablets starting at just $69

Get acquainted with Lenovo's new tablet family.

Android tablets are on a lifeline that refuses to go out, and most recently, Lenovo is the latest company keeping this form factor alive with five new tablets that are coming out just in time for the holiday shopping season — including the Lenovo Tab E7, Tab E8, Tab E10, Tab M10, and Tap P10.

Tab E7

With the Tab E7, E8, and E10, Lenovo's specifically targeting families that want affordable tablets to keep their kids entertained without breaking the bank. The E7 is running Android Oreo (Go Edition) and has a 7.3-inch display with a battery that's rated for 5 hours of video watching. If you upgrade to the E8, you get an 8-inch HD display, 10 hours of local video playback, and a front-facing speaker with Dolby Atmos support.

Tab E8 (left) and Tab E10 (right)

Lastly, the Tab E10 gives you a 10.1-inch HD display, Dolby Atmos, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 210 processor.

In regards to pricing, the E series goes as follows:

  • The Tab E7 should be available this October for $69.99 exclusively through walmart.com
  • The Tab E8 is available in Walmart stores now for $99.99
  • The Tab E10 starts at $129.99 and will be available from Walmart and other "select retailers" this October

Tab M10

Next up, we've got Lenovo's more premium tablet offerings — the Tab M10 and P10.

While the M10 has a 10.1-inch screen just like the E10, the resolution is bumped up from HD to Full HD. A Snapdragon 1.8GHz octa-core CPU is found under the hood, and an optional "Kids Pack" gives you a special bumper case and kid-focused software features.

Tab P10

Moving over to the P10, this ditches the plastic design of all the other tablets in favor of a glass and metal one. There are four speakers paired with Dolby Atmos, an 8MP autofocus rear camera, and a 5MP fixed-focus front-facing camera.

On the pricing and availability side of things, both the M10 and P10 will be available for pre-order from Amazon this winter.

What do you think about these tablets? Do you plan on picking any of them up? Let us know in the comments below!

I, for one, am totally OK with Chromebooks replacing Android tablets

1 month ago

Best Accessories for the Amazon Fire HD 10

3

Best Accessories for the Amazon Fire HD 10

Amazon Fire HD 10 cover
Amazon Fire HD 10 SD card

Amazon Fire HD 10 cover

You've got a sweet little tablet that didn't break the bank. That leaves some money left over for accessories!

The Amazon Fire HD 10 is a remarkably good tablet for the price. Starting at $149, you get a 10-inch device that does everything Amazon has to offer — that's movies, TV, books, games, the web — and it does it very well.

But getting the tablet itself is just the start. You're going to want to snag a few accessories for the Fire HD 10.

Best Case for Fire HD 10

Amazon Fire HD 10 Tablet Case

Amazon's first-party offering is a slim design case with a fabric-lined shell. The front cover is lined with microfiber material and folds up nicely as a hands-free stand in both portrait and landscape orientation. Available in different colors and priced at $39, it's your best option.

See at Amazon

Amazon's case offering might seem a bit more expensive, but you get what you pay for with this premium case that will keep your tablet safe and secure.

Best Case for Kids

Moko Shockproof Case

Made with shock-resistant polycarbonate with a reinforced inner shell, this case is designed to withstand drops of all sorts. The handle makes for easy carry — especially for smaller hands — and also converts into a hands-free stand. It's available in seven different colors and it's an affordable option for parents starting at $24.

See at Amazon

If you live in a house with kids, you know that everything that can be made kid-proofed should be made kid-proof. This heavy-duty case is designed with kids in mind, so you'll be able to share (or give) your Fire HD 10 to your kids without worrying about them destroying the thing.

Best microSD card

Samsung Evo Select 128GB MicroSD

This is a highly-rated microSD card that offers read/write speeds designed to handle 4K video and comes with a 10-year warranty. Samsung's microSD is a fantastic value, with the 128GB option available for just $35.

See at Amazon

The Amazon Fire HD tablets don't have all that much storage in them out of the box, with 32GB and 64GB options available.

Sure, apps take up space, but your favorite media content takes up much more. If you're planning to download a ton of movies and other videos for offline watching (that's the sort of thing you do if you have kids, right?) then you're definitely going to want some extra storage.

Best Screen Protector

NuPro Anti-Glare Screen Protector (2-pack)

To keep your tablet's screen unscathed, you'll want a screen protector. This two-pack of screen protectors from NuPro are highly rated on Amazon and is anti-glare, anti-fingerprint, and scratch-resistant. An essential accessory for $15.

See at Amazon

If you're the type of person who is eternally bothered by a scratch on your screen, you're definitely going to want to get some screen protectors. This is a great option that keeps it simple, includes all the installation tools you need, and comes with a spare if the first one ever needs replacing.

Best Value Bundle

Fire HD 10 Essentials Bundle with Fire HD 10 Tablet (32 GB, Black)

If you want to buy a Fire HD 10 as a gift and want it to come with all the best accessories, you'll want to check out this great bundle. It comes with the tablet, the Amazon case, and a screen protector for just $190.

See at Amazon

This bundle is an incredible offer that will save you $15 if you were to buy the tablet and accessories separately.

How are you loving your Amazon Fire 10 tablet?

The Fire HD 10 is a great option if you've bought into the Alexa smart home ecosystem. How do you use your Amazon Fire HD 10 around the house?

Update August 2018: Added a section for screen protectors and best case option for kids.

Amazon Fire tablets

See more at Amazon

.devicebox { background: #fff; border: solid #000; border-width: 2px 0; box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0 auto 30px; overflow: auto; padding: 20px 0 15px; position: relative; } div .devicebox ul li, div .devicebox p { box-sizing: border-box; color: #000; display: table; font: 16px "Proxima Nova Th",helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; width: 100%; } .devicebox h3 { color: #000; font: 26px/0.9 "Proxima Nova Bold",helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; margin: 0 0 15px; text-transform: uppercase; } .devicebox a { color: #008099; } .devicebox .video { margin: 0 auto 15px; } .devicebox p { margin: 0px; } .devicebox p.list-head { font: 20px "Proxima Nova Bold",helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; padding: 0 15px; } .devicebox p img, .entry-content .devicebox p > img { width: 100%; height: auto; } .devicebox ul { display: table; margin: 0 0 10px; width: 100%; } .devicebox ul li { background: #f7f7f7; margin: 2px 0; padding: 4px 15px; } .devicebox ul li:hover { background: #fff; } .devicebox ul li:before { display: none; } .devicebox p ~ p { line-height: 1.25; } .devicebox p:first-of-type + p { padding: 15px; } .devicebox a.cta .shop { border-radius: 5px; display: inline-block; font: 14px/31px "Proxima Nova Extrabld",Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; text-align: center; } .devicebox a.cta .shop, .devicebox a.cta .shop:link, .devicebox a.cta .shop:active, .devicebox a.cta .shop:visited { background: #37B5D7; color: #FFF; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:hover { background: #2694B2; text-decoration: none; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:before { content: "\e61e"; font: 40px/0 "ac_iconset" !important; margin: 0 3px 0 -8px; vertical-align: middle; } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { /* div:not(.columns-3) excludes help menu content */ .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p img, .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 660px) { .devicebox h3 { text-align: center; } .devicebox ul, .devicebox p { display: block; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox p img, .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 661px), all and (max-width: 500px) { /* 2x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.cta .shop { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-of-type(even) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:last-of-type:nth-of-type(odd) { width: 100%; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 659px) and (min-width: 501px) { /* 3x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.cta .shop { width: calc(100%/3 - 10px/3); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-of-type(3n):not(:nth-last-of-type(2)) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:only-child { width: 100%; margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop, .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop, .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(odd) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } } @media all and (max-width: 500px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:before { display: none; } } .page-admin .devicebox {max-width: 350px;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe {position: relative; height: 0; padding-bottom: 56.9%;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe iframe {width: 100%; height: 100%; position: absolute;} -->

1 month ago

Best Android Tablets in 2018

Best Android Tablets in 2018

Why trust us? We're a virtual company that's always on the move. That means we use tablets for everything — from watching shows and playing games to getting work done. These are the best Android tablets you can buy.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 offers the best overall Android tablet experience, with a big screen, high-end specs, a stylus, and support for a full keyboard. It's expensive, and not the right pick for anyone who wants a smaller and more portable tablet, but as an all-around device it can't be beat.

Our Pick

Samsung Galaxy Tab S4

$649 from Amazon

The best Android tablet for most people

This is Samsung's best-ever tablet, and a single device that can do it all. It's built extremely well, with a metal frame and glass back that looks great and feels worthy of the price.

Who should buy this tablet

The most important things to have in a full-size Android tablet are a great screen, loud speakers, strong build quality, and software that makes use of the extra screen size. That's what makes the Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 the best Android tablet.

An amazing screen from Samsung is no surprise — that's been their specialty for years. The 10.5-inch 2560x1600 Super AMOLED on the Tab S4 carries on the tradition, and it's simply the best display on any tablet. Android and Samsung mesh to provide a great software experience, and the included S Pen stylus with 4096-level pressure sensitivity makes taking notes or producing digital artwork a breeze. Add on the optional keyboard to get some typing done, or just prop it up to watch a movie with that great screen and loud speakers.

Is it a good time to buy this tablet?

Yes. The Galaxy Tab S4 was released just a few weeks ago, so you don't have to worry about it getting replaced any time soon. It has high-end specs to handle anything you could throw at it, and easily the best display of any Android tablet. There are super-loud speakers, a stylus in the box, and support for a detachable keyboard that make the Tab S4 an all-around performer for work and play.

Reasons to buy

  • Best screen available on an Android tablet
  • S Pen stylus included in the box
  • Robust and beautiful metal-and-glass frame
  • Powerful specs, including the Snapdragon 835
  • First-party detachable keyboard support
  • High-quality speakers

Reasons not to buy

  • Expensive if you're only a casual tablet user
  • Not really suited for portrait or handheld use for long periods

The Android tablet market is weak, but this one stands way above the rest

There aren't a lot of good Android tablets available today, so if you want a great one, the Galaxy Tab S4 is practically your only option. That's not so bad though, since it's such a good tablet, and it can even be used as a makeshift laptop using Samsung's DeX service when paired with the optional keyboard.

Its spec sheet leaves little to be desired, with a super-fast Snapdragon 835 processor, 4GB of RAM, plenty of expandable storage, and well-optimized software. And because it's a Samsung product, you're getting a best-in-class display and an amazing metal-and-glass build.

Because you're spending top dollar on the Tab S4, you don't have to make any compromises — you get it all. Beyond the specs, you get extras like great quad speakers, a microSD card slot, an iris sensor, an S Pen stylus included in the box, and an optional first-party keyboard case that rivals some laptops. And despite being thin and light, it gets great battery life. If you want an Android tablet and you're wiling to spend the money, there's really nowhere else to go but the Galaxy Tab S4.

Alternatives to the Samsung Galaxy Tab S4

Runner-up

Huawei MediaPad M5 8.4

Powerful, yet affordable

$319 from Amazon

Huawei's MediaPad M5 series of tablets leans more towards the midrange, but that's all you need for the majority of online browsing and gaming most people do from their tablets.

The MediaPad M5 8.4 isn't going to blow you away with amazing speakers or a class-leading display like the Galaxy Tab S4, nor does it have a companion stylus or a keyboard, but it has excellent build quality and great performance, thanks to its powerful specs — namely, a Kirin 960, a Quad HD display, and 4GB of RAM. Though Huawei makes a larger model (and even a Pro model that does support a pressure-sensitive stylus), the MediaPad M5 8.4 is the perfect size for comfortable, casual browsing and play.

Large budget option

Amazon Fire HD 10

Solid, budget-friendly tablet that gets the job done

Amazon's Fire HD 10 is all about giving you the basic tablet experience that's focused on media consumption on a big screen without the extra complication (and cost) of productivity features.

$149 from Amazon

The Amazon Fire HD 10 is one of those deals that's almost too good to pass up if you're after a device with a large screen but a small price tag. It's simply the best big Android tablet for doing the basics, from watching movies and TV shows to playing some basic games. You don't get the Google Play Store or Google's great apps and services — instead, you'll rely on the Amazon App Store — but you also don't pay much for this solid tablet.

Small budget option

Amazon Fire HD 8

Solid, budget-friendly tablet that gets the job done

A light and portable tablet well under $100 — there isn't much you can complain about in that equation. Better yet, it comes in four colors.

$79 from Amazon

Amazon also makes the best super-inexpensive Android tablet available, the Fire HD 8. At $80 with 16GB of storage, it's an amazing deal. Like the HD 10 it doesn't have the Google Play Store or Google apps, but you're even more likely to look past that when you're spending under $100 on a tablet. This is a great choice for media consumption, browsing, or handing to your kids.

Bottom line

For those who don't need every bell and whistle under the sun, the Amazon Fire HD 8 and 10 offer a good media experience without costing you an arm and a leg — so long as you can live without Google Play services. If you need a bit more from your tablet but still want it in a handheld package, the MediaPad M5 8.4 won't leave you disappointed either.

For someone who wants the best possible Android tablet experience, though, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 is the best choice for its high-end materials, great screen, capable software, and accessory options.

Credits — The team that worked on this guide

Andrew Martonik is the Executive Editor, U.S. at Android Central. He has been a mobile enthusiast since the Windows Mobile days, and covering all things Android-related with a unique perspective at AC since 2012. For suggestions and updates, you can reach him at andrew.martonik@androidcentral.com or on Twitter at @andrewmartonik.

Jerry Hildenbrand is Mobile Nation's Senior Editor and works from a Chromebook full time. Currently, he is using Google's Pixelbook but is always looking at new products and may have any Chromebook in his hands at any time. You'll find him across the Mobile Nations network and you can hit him up on Twitter if you want to say hey.

Daniel Bader is the Managing Editor of Android Central. As he's writing this, a mountain of old Android phones is about to fall on his head, but his Great Dane will protect him. He drinks way too much coffee and sleeps too little. He wonders if there's a correlation.

1 month ago

Galaxy Tab S4 vs. HP Chromebook X2: Which one should you buy?

6

Galaxy Tab S4 vs. HP Chromebook X2: Which one should you buy?

This is the ultimate battle between Android and Chrome OS.

Android tablets have taken a backseat for the past couple years as larger and larger smartphones have diminished the need for them, but even so, that hasn't stopped Samsung from releasing the large, beautiful, and powerful Galaxy Tab S4.

The Tab S4 is easily one of the best Android tablets you can buy in 2018, offering a stunning Super AMOLED display, snappy Qualcomm processor, and all sorts of accessories that turn it into the ultimate productivity machine. However, during the absence of Android tablets, Chrome OS has quietly risen as the replacement for work and play on the big screen.

One of the most enticing Chrome OS laptops/tablets to come out this year is the HP Chromebook X2, and with similar features and a lower price compared to the Tab S4, looks like the clear winner.

However, how do these gadgets truly stack up to one another? Let's find out.

Specifications

Category Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 HP Chromebook X2 Operating System Android 8.1 Oreo Chrome OS Display 10.5-inch
2560 x 1600 Super AMOLED
16:10 aspect ratio 12.3-inch
2400 x 1600 WLED
3:2 aspect ratio Chipset Qualcomm Snapdragon 835
Octa-core
2.35GHz + 1.9GHz 7th gen Intel Core m3-7Y30
Quad-core
1GHz GPU Adreno 630 Intel HD Graphics 615 RAM 4GB 4GB Storage 64GB or 256GB 32GB Expandable Yes (microSD slot up to 400GB) Yes (microSD slot) Battery 7300 mAh 4-cell 48 Wh Rear Camera 13MP
1.12µm pixel size
f/1.9 aperture 13MP Front Camera 8MP
1.12µm pixel size
f/1.9 aperture 5MP
HP Wide Vision Connectivity Bluetooth 5.0
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
USB Type-C
3.5mm headphone jack Bluetooth 4.2
Intel® 802.11b/g/n/ac (2x2)
USB Type-C (x2)
3.5mm headphone jack Security Iris scanning
Face unlock N/A Dimensions 249.3 x 164.3 x 7.1 mm 292.1 x 210.82 x 8.4mm Weight 482g 725g

What the Galaxy Tab S4 does better

Samsung's been the top dog when it comes to screen technology for years, and with the Galaxy Tab S4, the company's prowess in this field is shown off yet again. While the Chromebook X2's LED display looks great, the Tab S4's sharper resolution and Super AMOLED panel result in a superior viewing experiencing whether your playing games, watching a movie, or browsing the web.

On top of that, Samsung pairs its AMOLED screen with four fantastic external speakers. All of them are AKG-tuned and support Dolby Atmos technology. Daniel got a chance to check these out during his hands-on time with the Tab S4 and said they're "some of the best-sounding speakers you'll hear on a tablet today."

When it comes time to get some work done, Samsung has a unique approach for overcoming Android's poor optimization for large form factors. The company's DeX interface can be run directly on the Tab S4, allowing you to run multiple apps at once in their own windows, drag and drop content from app-to-app, use keyboard shortcuts, and more. You can hop into DeX at any time and pair it with your own Bluetooth keyboard or spring for the official $150 Book Cover Keyboard that automatically launches DeX when it's connected.

Lastly, if you enjoy having a fast way to securely unlock your tablet, the Galaxy Tab S4 gives you the choice between iris scanning and face unlock — two things you won't find on the Chromebook X2.

See at Samsung

What the HP Chromebook X2 does better

The Galaxy Tab S4 offers a powerful combo of features, but when you add everything together, things get very expensive very quickly.

The base configuration with 64GB of storage costs $650. While you do get the S Pen included for free, you'll need to hand over another $150 for the official keyboard cover — bringing the final price up to a staggering $800.

While the HP Chromebook X2 does have half the internal storage at 32GB, its $650 price tag includes both a stylus and detachable keyboard. Speaking of which, if you plan on doing a lot of typing with your next tablet/laptop hybrid, the X2's keyboard takes the lead with a built-in palm rest, adjustable display angles, and is easier use on your lap. While the Tab S4's keyboard cover feels like a keyboard accessory, the keyboard for the X2 really does transform it into a proper laptop.

Also, while we appreciate Samsung bringing DeX over to the Tab S4, Google's been making big improvements with Chrome OS over the last few months (with plenty more to come). Chrome OS still has better Android app support, works great with progressive web apps, can run Linux software, and is expected to get deep integration with Android phones in the near future.

See at Best Buy

Which one should you buy?

If money isn't an object, you live in the Samsung ecosystem, and/or want a machine that can be used well for both productivity and entertainment, the Galaxy Tab S4 really is an impressive piece of tech. Its AMOLED display and speaker setup make it a phenomenal media-consumption device, and while its official keyboard accessory is pricey for what it offers, the ability to run DeX directly on the tablet gives you a lot of flexibility for how you can use it.

With that said, the HP Chromebook X2 is a much better purchase if you value getting your money's worth. Despite being $200 less than the Tab S4 with the keyboard cover, the X2 still offers solid performance, a really great display, and one of the best 2-in-1 designs you can find.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 hands-on preview: The two-faced tablet

HP Chromebook X2 review: Great Chromebook, better Android tablet

Chromebooks

.devicebox { background: #fff; border: solid #000; border-width: 2px 0; box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0 auto 30px; overflow: auto; padding: 20px 0 15px; position: relative; } div .devicebox ul li, div .devicebox p { box-sizing: border-box; color: #000; display: table; font: 16px "Proxima Nova Th",helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; width: 100%; } .devicebox h3 { color: #000; font: 26px/0.9 "Proxima Nova Bold",helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; margin: 0 0 15px; text-transform: uppercase; } .devicebox a { color: #008099; } .devicebox .video { margin: 0 auto 15px; } .devicebox p { margin: 0px; } .devicebox p.list-head { font: 20px "Proxima Nova Bold",helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; padding: 0 15px; } .devicebox p img, .entry-content .devicebox p > img { width: 100%; height: auto; } .devicebox ul { display: table; margin: 0 0 10px; width: 100%; } .devicebox ul li { background: #f7f7f7; margin: 2px 0; padding: 4px 15px; } .devicebox ul li:hover { background: #fff; } .devicebox ul li:before { display: none; } .devicebox p ~ p { line-height: 1.25; } .devicebox p:first-of-type + p { padding: 15px; } .devicebox a.cta .shop { border-radius: 5px; display: inline-block; font: 14px/31px "Proxima Nova Extrabld",Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; text-align: center; } .devicebox a.cta .shop, .devicebox a.cta .shop:link, .devicebox a.cta .shop:active, .devicebox a.cta .shop:visited { background: #37B5D7; color: #FFF; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:hover { background: #2694B2; text-decoration: none; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:before { content: "\e61e"; font: 40px/0 "ac_iconset" !important; margin: 0 3px 0 -8px; vertical-align: middle; } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { /* div:not(.columns-3) excludes help menu content */ .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p img, .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 660px) { .devicebox h3 { text-align: center; } .devicebox ul, .devicebox p { display: block; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox p img, .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 661px), all and (max-width: 500px) { /* 2x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.cta .shop { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-of-type(even) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:last-of-type:nth-of-type(odd) { width: 100%; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 659px) and (min-width: 501px) { /* 3x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.cta .shop { width: calc(100%/3 - 10px/3); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-of-type(3n):not(:nth-last-of-type(2)) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:only-child { width: 100%; margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop, .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop, .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(odd) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } } @media all and (max-width: 500px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:before { display: none; } } .page-admin .devicebox {max-width: 350px;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe {position: relative; height: 0; padding-bottom: 56.9%;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe iframe {width: 100%; height: 100%; position: absolute;} -->

1 month ago

Amazon's Fire HD 8 Kids Edition drops to £95 for today only

0

Amazon's Fire HD 8 Kids Edition drops to £95 for today only

Treat your kids without breaking the bank.

For today only, you can pick up Amazon's Fire HD 8 Kids Edition tablet for just £94.99 — that's down from its usually asking price of £129.99 and within £5 of its previous low price on Prime Day.

Available in Blue, Pink or Yellow, the Kids Edition is a fully-featured Fire HD 8 tablet wrapped in a vibrant, child-friendly and rugged case to prevent the tablet from being damaged. In fact, Amazon is so confident in its ability to protect the device inside that they offer a 2-year 'worry-free guarantee' that allows you to return a damaged tablet and have it replaced for free.

It features an 8-inch HD display, quad-core processor, 12-hour battery life and 32GB of on-board storage. You'll probably want to pick up a microSD card to add more space for movies, games and more — with the money you save on this deal, you could pick up this £15 64GB Samsung microSD card and still have money to spare.

For those not needing the ruggedised Kids Edition, there's also a promotion running on the regular Fire HD 8 tablet which is down to £84.99 from its usual £99.99 price tag.

For more UK deals coverage, be sure to keep an eye on Thrifter UK, sign up for the newsletter and follow the team on Twitter.

See at Amazon UK

1 month ago

Acer Chromebook Tab 10 review: Not quite Android, not quite Chrome OS

10

Acer Chromebook Tab 10 review: Not quite Android, not quite Chrome OS

Not like this, Google. Not like this...

Ever since the first time we saw a virtual keyboard in Chrome OS code a couple of years ago, I've been waiting patiently for a Chromebook tablet. Not a Chromebook convertible where I can fold the keyboard back, but a tablet running Chrome OS with no keyboard at all unless I wanted one attached. As Android apps started coming to Chrome this seemed inevitable, and now thanks to Acer we have a reasonably priced Chrome OS tablet with no keyboard in the box.

I got exactly what I wanted, so why am I so damn unhappy with this thing? Let's take a deeper look.

Acer Chromebook Tab 10

Price: $345

Bottom line: Google turned off a lot of the things I like about the Chrome OS UI to make this work, and that sucks.

The Good

  • Textured back is perfect for grip
  • Decent display with solid viewing angles
  • Fully functional USB-C port
  • Battery life is great

The Bad

  • Speakers make me want to cry
  • Windowed Chrome OS UI straight up gone
  • Rockchip processor struggles under load

See at Amazon

Acer Chromebook Tab 10 What I like

Out of the box, Acer has delivered a super simple Chrome OS tablet that checks all of the important boxes. This 10-inch tablet is a little thicker than an iPad, but not quite as thick as a Surface, which means the textured backing and healthy bezel on this tablet is greatly appreciated for one-handed use.

The power and volume rocker are up in the top left so they're out of the way, and the USB-C port is on the bottom so it can be used while attached to a keyboard. In fact, the headphone jack on the top makes using both at the same time exactly as convenient as you'd expect.

The 10-inch IPS 2048x1536 display is great for using just about anywhere. I can have it resting on the counter and see the screen from weird angles with no problem, and it gets both bright and dark enough to use in most places. Bright reflections aren't huge problems, and the touch interface is perfectly responsive. As inexpensive tablets go, Acer has assembled something well worth using.

It feels good to have something that largely feels like an Android tablet in your hand, but with all of the functionality of a full desktop browser.

Digging into the software is exactly what you'd expect, more or less. This is Chrome OS, Android apps and all. It feels good to have something that largely feels like an Android tablet in your hand, but with all of the functionality of a full desktop browser. It's nice to be able to grab a keyboard and write for long periods of time without worrying about the browser not being able to handle an image uploader the right way or having to wonder if you'll be able to do things like change a file name at will.

When you dive into the browser, it feels like you're using a full PC. When you're playing games, it feels like you're using an Android tablet. It's simple, straightforward, and it works.

Thanks to the Rockchip CPU and the typical battery-sipping nature of Chrome OS, this thing gets incredible battery life for a tablet. My 10-inch iPad Pro will get me through a little over an 8-hour day of browsing and writing and the occasional game, which is nice. This Chromebook tablet got me through two full days of the same kind of work, and the only reason it didn't get me a little further than that was because I left the Bluetooth keyboard connected to it overnight so it died by morning.

Acer Chromebook Tab 10 What I don't like

I'm used to the Chrome OS experience feeling a little spartan. This OS was built to make the browser front and center, which works well for a lot of workflows these days. But the Chromebook Tab 10 takes that minimalist approach to an extreme I'm not overly fond of.

To help deal with the smaller display and typically handheld orientation, this version of Chrome OS has no home screen. There's no home button, no need to worry about what your desktop wallpaper is, nothing. You have the last browser tab you were using, and you have the app drawer. That's literally it since Chrome OS puts things like settings in a browser tab as well.

There's no home screen because there are no windows. Everything opens in full screen all the time. The option to put a browser or app in a windowed mode simply doesn't exist, and the Chrome flags which ordinarily give you some control over this have been disabled. This works fine in some situations but really frustrates me in others.

The option to put a browser or app in a windowed mode simply doesn't exist, and the Chrome flags which ordinarily give you some control over this have been disabled.

Android as a tablet platform has grown to accept side-by-side and windowed apps, and as an Android tablet user, this Chrome OS tablet experience feels like a step backward. The tablet experience for Chrome OS simply isn't ready to compete on the same level Android is when it comes to multitasking, which is frustrating because this limitation feels so artificial.

Unfortunately, my issues with this tablet don't end with what could possibly be a simple software update. The speakers, microphone, and cameras on this tablet are sub-par. Trying to use what should be a fully functional tablet computer to join a video meeting proved to be miserable for everyone involved.

The speakers just don't get loud enough, the microphone does a terrible job picking my voice up over ambient noise, and the cameras are exactly what you'd expect from a $300 PC tablet. This last point is especially frustrating, since one of the things this tablet was being sold to schools for was offering teachers a way to conduct Augmented Reality lessons in the classroom.

There's a stylus in the box, but it's not particularly useful. At least not yet.

Finally, the stylus. At the bottom of this tablet, there's a little stylus you can pull out and use, but it's really not clear what for. Chrome OS has no special pen input functionality, like Microsoft's handwriting recognition in the keyboard or the ability to take notes on a screenshot with ease.

The closest thing you get to useful out of the box is pen-based notes in Google Keep, which allow you to record drawings and sync them to your phone. There's potential for a pen to be really useful in this form factor, but Acer did nothing extra to make that obvious and none of the really cool Pixelbook pen features are available on this tablet.

Acer Chromebook Tab 10: Should you buy it? Probably not.

There are things Acer and Google has done with the Chromebook Tab 10 that I really like. It's a nice sturdy tablet that I can hold comfortably with one hand and actually enjoy using in both portrait and landscape modes. But when I try to use it for more than just a casual media consumption device, the artificial limitations Google put in place for the interface make it less functional than any other Chromebook or Android tablet I would otherwise reach for.

On the other hand, at $350 with a $30 keyboard from Logitech, you get an incredibly portable browser with a nice screen.

3 out of 5

Considering the bloated price tags on the iPad, Samsung Galaxy Tab S4, and Surface Go with their keyboards, this thing is a bargain. Here's hoping Google can sort its software out and really make this worth using for me.

See at Amazon

Chromebooks

.devicebox { background: #fff; border: solid #000; border-width: 2px 0; box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0 auto 30px; overflow: auto; padding: 20px 0 15px; position: relative; } div .devicebox ul li, div .devicebox p { box-sizing: border-box; color: #000; display: table; font: 16px "Proxima Nova Th",helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; width: 100%; } .devicebox h3 { color: #000; font: 26px/0.9 "Proxima Nova Bold",helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; margin: 0 0 15px; text-transform: uppercase; } .devicebox a { color: #008099; } .devicebox .video { margin: 0 auto 15px; } .devicebox p { margin: 0px; } .devicebox p.list-head { font: 20px "Proxima Nova Bold",helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; padding: 0 15px; } .devicebox p img, .entry-content .devicebox p > img { width: 100%; height: auto; } .devicebox ul { display: table; margin: 0 0 10px; width: 100%; } .devicebox ul li { background: #f7f7f7; margin: 2px 0; padding: 4px 15px; } .devicebox ul li:hover { background: #fff; } .devicebox ul li:before { display: none; } .devicebox p ~ p { line-height: 1.25; } .devicebox p:first-of-type + p { padding: 15px; } .devicebox a.cta .shop { border-radius: 5px; display: inline-block; font: 14px/31px "Proxima Nova Extrabld",Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; text-align: center; } .devicebox a.cta .shop, .devicebox a.cta .shop:link, .devicebox a.cta .shop:active, .devicebox a.cta .shop:visited { background: #37B5D7; color: #FFF; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:hover { background: #2694B2; text-decoration: none; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:before { content: "\e61e"; font: 40px/0 "ac_iconset" !important; margin: 0 3px 0 -8px; vertical-align: middle; } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { /* div:not(.columns-3) excludes help menu content */ .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p img, .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 660px) { .devicebox h3 { text-align: center; } .devicebox ul, .devicebox p { display: block; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox p img, .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 661px), all and (max-width: 500px) { /* 2x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.cta .shop { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-of-type(even) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:last-of-type:nth-of-type(odd) { width: 100%; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 659px) and (min-width: 501px) { /* 3x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.cta .shop { width: calc(100%/3 - 10px/3); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-of-type(3n):not(:nth-last-of-type(2)) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:only-child { width: 100%; margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop, .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop, .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(odd) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } } @media all and (max-width: 500px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:before { display: none; } } .page-admin .devicebox {max-width: 350px;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe {position: relative; height: 0; padding-bottom: 56.9%;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe iframe {width: 100%; height: 100%; position: absolute;} -->

1 month ago

The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.5 is a cheaper version of the Galaxy Tab S4

10

The Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.5 is a cheaper version of the Galaxy Tab S4

There's still no word on price, but it should be a lot less than $650.

Samsung just announced the Galaxy Tab S4 as its flagship tablet for 2018, and while it has a lot to get excited about, the $650 price that accompanies it certainly is a downer.

For those of you that want a new tab but don't feel like shelling out that kind of money, Samsung also unveiled the more affordable Galaxy Tab A 10.5.

As its name suggests, the Galaxy Tab A has a 10.5-inch TFT LCD display with a resolution of 1920 x 1200. That's not as impressive as the Super AMOLED panel found on the Tab S4, but it still retains slim bezels and the 16:10 aspect ratio.

Under the hood, you'll find the Snapdragon 450, 3GB RAM, 32GB of expandable storage (up to 400GB), and a large 7,300 mAh battery. Other specs include an 8MP rear camera, 5MP front camera, Android 8.1 Oreo, LTE support, and USB Type-C.

Although the Tab A 10.5 doesn't support DeX or come with an included S Pen, it can still use the Book Keyboard Cover and Charging Dock accessories that are being sold alongside the Tab S4.

There's still no word on pricing or availability for the Galaxy Tab A 10.5, but we'll update this article once that info is made available.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 hands-on preview: The two-faced tablet

1 month ago

Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 hands-on preview: The two-faced tablet

35

Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 hands-on preview: The two-faced tablet

Samsung's best tablet in years is trying to be all things to some people.

Samsung has returned to the tablet game after a near 18-month hiatus. In that time, the market has shifted to 2-in-1s, and Chromebooks have largely superseded Android tablets in bringing a great mobile experience to the Google ecosystem.

But Samsung lives in its own world, and the stylish, expensive Galaxy Tab S4 tries to work many of the same ideas we're seeing in the Chromebook and Always Connected PC space into its new tablet.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 The hardware

Category Spec Operating System Android 8.1 Oreo Display 10.5-inch Super AMOLED, 2560x1600
16:10 aspect ratio Processor Snapdragon 835
Octa-Core 2.35GHz + 1.9GHz Storage 64GB / 256GB Expandable microSD card
up to 400GB RAM 4GB Rear Camera 13MP, Auto-focus, Flash
1.12µm pixels, f/1.9 aperture Front Camera 8MP, fixed-focus
Iris scanner for face unlock Connectivity Wi-Fi 802.11ac dual-band, Bluetooth 5.0
Wi-Fi Direct, USB Type-C 3.1, GPS
LTE (optional) Charging USB-C
Adaptive fast charge Battery 7300mAh Input S Pen
4096-level pressure sensitivity Security Intelligent scan (face unlock + iris scan) Dimensions 249.3 x 164.3 x 7.1 mm Weight 482g (Wi-Fi)
483g (LTE) Colors White, Black

The first thing you'll notice about this tablet is its display. At 10.5 inches, it's one of the largest Super AMOLED panels out there, and the fidelity is striking, particularly because Samsung uses bright, colorful wallpapers to show off its vivid 287 pixel per inch density.

The now-16:10 aspect ratio is considerably longer and narrower than its predecessor, the Galaxy Tab S3, which was meant to be used as often in portrait as landscape (and was meant to compete directly with the iPad, which shares a similar shape).

Nearly two years later, the market is full of 2-in-1 Windows and Chrome laptops, and Samsung's aim is squarely for those always-docked slates — the ones that spend more time in landscape with a keyboard case at a desk than sitting on a coffee table or in portrait mode propped up in your lap.

Both to modernize the tablet's look and to encourage unfettered use as laptop replacement, Samsung has done away with any buttons on the front — there's no fingerprint sensor to be found on here — in favor of a larger screen and slimmer bezels. All your unlocking will be done via the combination of iris scanner and front-facing camera, but the effect is a much more streamlined, attractive product, one that looks less a Samsung tablet than a small monitor.

At 7.1 mm thin and 482 grams, the Tab S4 is thicker and heavier than its predecessor, but it's well balanced. And to be honest, you may not even notice considering the new aspect ratio and laptop-like configuration. It's still easy to grasp in one hand, though the awkward aspect ratio certainly discourages portrait use as much as possible.

There are four AKG-tuned, Dolby Atmos-optimized speakers positioned on the top and bottom (or two sides, depending on how you're holding the thing), and from my brief time listening to demos, they sound excellent. On one of the longer sides sits a dock connector, one that facilitates the Tab S4's transition into a laptop replacement.

These are some of the best-sounding speakers you'll hear on a tablet today.

Thankfully, there's still a headphone jack on board, along with a USB-C port for fast charging, and a 13MP camera protruding slightly from the glass back. This is possibly the most understated, unSamsung piece of hardware Samsung has ever built — and that's a compliment. Note that Samsung didn't even put its logo on the front of the tablet, only the back (and on the stylus).

Inside, the specs are 2017 smartphone: a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 platform with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. The 7300mah battery is considerably larger than the one in the Tab S3, and Samsung says it should get many days of mixed use, and about 16 hours of constant video playback.

There's also a redesigned S Pen stylus in the box, and I have to say, despite there being nowhere to stash it like there is in the Note phone series, it's quite the performer. Thick and weighty like a real pen, Samsung said its aesthetic overhaul was one of its biggest priorities when building this tablet. And it shows.

Despite no technical improvements over the last generation — it's still passive, so no charging, and has 4096 points of pressure — it feels much nicer to use while note-taking or doodling. And if you buy the $150 Book Cover Keyboard, there's a little slot to stash the stylus, like on the Tab S3's keyboard, so it won't get lost.

Enter the laptop

For a great software experience, you're still at the mercy of Android developers optimizing their apps for tablets.

And chances are, if you're spending $650 on this tablet already, you're probably going to want to pick up the Book Cover. While Samsung wouldn't outright say it, the Tab S4 is basically designed for one function: productivity. It wants to be part of the conversation when you're thinking about buying a Surface Go or a HP Chrombook X2 or any number of "detachables" that are hitting the market.

That's why, by default, when you dock the Tab S4 in the Book Cover, it launched DeX, the desktop experience that launched with the Galaxy S8 in 2017 but required an external dock and monitor. DeX works even if you don't have a keyboard, but it's a lot better with one. Thanks to the tablet's beefy hardware (though it really should be launching with a Snapdragon 845 at this price) it can run many windowed apps at the same time, and with a Bluetooth mouse can pass for a Windows or Chrome laptop quite easily.

The problem isn't the experience — DeX is quite nice to use, in fact — but the quality of the apps. On the Windows 10 side, every app was built with a landscape-oriented screen in mind. Chrome apps were too. (Plus Chromebooks can run Android apps, which for the most part play nice with Chrome.)

Here, you're at the mercy of whether Android developers have optimized their apps for the big screen, and chances are, given the state of Android tablets these past few years, they haven't. Even if they have, unless the app is made by Samsung, Microsoft, or Google (or had money thrown at it by Samsung or Google), the feature set of the average tablet-optimized app may not compare to its iOS or Windows counterpart.

Samsung has curated a bunch of DeX-optimized applications, including Microsoft's suite of Office 365 apps and a bunch of news, to-do, and email apps, but the pickings are slim. The big question I'm going to need to figure out is whether regular windowed Android apps are adequate substitutes for a true Windows, macOS, Chromebook, or even iOS experience. There's just so much competition in this space right now it's hard to see how, at $800 with the keyboard, the Tab S4 is worth its asking price.

All about the transition

It takes a few seconds to jump between productivity-forward DeX mode and Samsung's good ol' regular Android software. And while that may not seem like a long time, it's a good example of the two worlds this tablet is attempting to bridge. There's no question that Android tablets are in a bad place right now, but Samsung doesn't seem to care; it's moving in parallel, utilizing Android's extensibility and scalability to build an entirely new desktop experience on top of its traditional software layer.

As an Android tablet, the Tab S4 is fine. It has a beautiful screen, great speakers, and has hardware more than capable enough to run every demanding game and social media app on the Play Store. But no one is spending $650 for an Android tablet just to browse, read, and watch — there are dozens of sub-$200 choices that will do that just fine.

Instead, if you're considering the Tab S4, you're likely doing so because you see a world in which it can function as both tablet and laptop, and that experience lives and dies by DeX's ability to recreate a great desktop experience. At this point, I'm not convinced — but I'm willing, as always, to be proven wrong.

The Wi-Fi version of the Galaxy Tab S4 goes up for pre-order August 3, and fully on sale August 10 in the U.S. and August 22 in Canada. An LTE version will be available later this year for an undisclosed price. The tablet will be available at Verizon, Best Buy, Amazon and Samsung.com, and until August 9, pre-orderers can get the Book Cover for 50% off its $150 retail price.

See at Samsung

1 month ago

Samsung Galaxy Tab S4: Everything you need to know!

46

Samsung Galaxy Tab S4: Everything you need to know!

Get aquainted with one of 2018's most powerful Android tablets.

Android tablets are few and far between in 2018, but if you're someone that's been hunting for one to add to your gadget lineup, Samsung's Galaxy Tab S4 should be at the top of your list.

With a large AMOLED display, powerful internals, and a few nifty tricks that you won't find anywhere else, the Tab S4 makes a compelling argument for anyone that's tablet-shopping this year.

Whether you're ready to throw down some cash or just want to learn more about what Samsung's been working on, here's everything you need to know about the Galaxy Tab S4!

What are the specs?

The Tab S4 is a flagship gadget, and as such, has flagship specs to accompany it. Here's the full rundown of everything it's packing:

Spec Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 Specs Dimensions 9.81-inches tall
6.47-inches wide
0.28-inches thick
17-ounce weight Colors Black
Grey Operating system Android 8.1 Oreo Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 Screen 10.5-inch 2560 x 1600 Super AMOLED panel
16:10 aspect ratio RAM 4GB LPDDR4X Storage 64GB or 256 GB
Expandable up to 400 GB Rear camera 13MP
f/1.9 aperture
1.12µm pixel size Front camera 8MP
f/1.9 aperture
1.12µm pixel size Battery 7,300 mAh
Fast charging
Up to 16 hours of video playback Connectivity USB Type-C 3.1
3.5mm headphone jack
Bluetooth 5.0
Wi-Fi 802.11 ac Audio 4 speakers
Tuned by AKG
Dolby Atmos surround sound Security Iris scanning
Facial unlock S Pen Included for free
4096 levels of pressure sensitivity

There's no fingerprint sensor

We've come to expect fingerprint sensors on just about every mobile device these days — even smartphones that cost ~$200. Even so, Samsung's chosen to forego such a feature on the Tab S4.

Instead, the Tab S4 can be unlocked using either iris scanning or facial unlock.

This isn't too big of a deal considering the improvements Samsung's made on these fronts, but even so, I imagine some users will be put off at the lack of a sensor we've grown so used to over the years.

DeX can be run directly on the tablet

Samsung's DeX platform has been around since last year as a way to turn your Galaxy smartphone into a desktop computer by plugging it into a special dock and then plugging said dock into a monitor.

DeX has come a long way since it was introduced alongside the Galaxy S8, and this time around, Samsung's allowing you to run its DeX interface directly on the Tab S4.

While you can manually open DeX at any time, Samsung's also created a special keyboard accessory that'll automatically launch DeX once it's connected to the Tab S4.

Once you're in the DeX mode, the traditional Android UI will be replaced by something you'd expect to see on a desktop computer. You can open multiple apps at once and run them in their own windows, drag content from one app to another, use keyboard shortcuts, and much more.

You'll probably want to get the keyboard accessory

If you plan on using the Tab S4 as a productivity machine, you'll definitely want to pick up that keyboard accessory to go along with it.

Samsung's calling it the Book Cover Keyboard, and along with giving you a comfortable typing experience, also protects the Tab S4 from all sorts of daily wear and tear.

The Book Cover Keyboard connects to the Tab S4 using a special POGO connection system (the same one found on the 2018 Galaxy Tab A) and will set you back a pretty penny at $149.99. Thankfully, if you order it together with the Tab S4 between now and and September 8 on Samsung's website, you can take 50% off to bring the price down to just $74.99.

An S Pen is included for free!

While your wallet might be mad at you for buying both the Tab S4 and Book Cover Keyboard, it'll be relieved to know that the S Pen comes included with the tablet out of the box.

This is a much bigger S Pen compared to what you'll find on the Galaxy Note 8 with a weight of 9.1 grams, but even with the added heft, it should still be plenty comfortable for long writing or drawing sessions.

The rubber pen tip measures in at 0.7 millimeters and the S Pen supports an impressive 4096 levels of pressure sensitivity.

Daily Board turns it into a smart home display

Lenovo's new Smart Display is one heck of a smart home gadget, but if you're planning on picking up the Galaxy Tab S4, it can actually pull double duty as a smart display of its own.

In addition to the Book Keyboard Cover, Samsung's also selling a Charging Dock accessory that connects to the same POGO system.

When the Tab S4 is in the Charging Dock, it goes into Daily Board mode and shows your favorite photos, the time, weather, and other useful info — all while charging the tablet. It's certainly not as fully-featured as what Lenovo or Amazon's crafted, but it's a nice extra nonetheless.

You can buy it starting August 10

If you're interested in the Galaxy Tab S4, pre-orders are open now on Samsung's website and the tablet is set to go on sale August 10. The 64GB model costs $649.99 while the 256GB option goes for $749.99.

Once August 10 rolls around, sales will begin at Amazon, Best Buy, and Verizon. In Q3 2018, it'll then make its way to Sprint and US Cellular.

See at Samsung

Updated August 1, 2018: Completely refreshed this guide now that the Tab S4 has been announced.

1 month ago

Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 officially announced, includes DeX and costs $650

35

Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 officially announced, includes DeX and costs $650

The new flagship tab launches August 10 at Amazon, Best Buy, and more.

After weeks of rumors and leaks, Samsung officially announced the Galaxy Tab S4 on Tuesday, August 1. This is the company's latest flagship Android tablet, and while that may seem like an odd product to launch in mid-2018, there are some interesting things going on this time around.

Starting off with the specs, you'll find a large 10.5-inch Super AMOLED display that has much slimmer bezels compared to last year's Tab S3. There's also a Snapdragon 835 processor, 4GB RAM, 64GB/256GB of internal storage (expandable up to 400GB), a 7,300 mAh battery, and Android 8.1 Oreo.

All of that's fairly generic tablet stuff, but the Tab S4 stands out in a couple key ways.

First off, the thing comes with an included S Pen. Just like on the Note 8, you can use the Tab S4's S Pen for writing notes, doodling, navigating through the UI, and more.

Samsung will also be selling an official keyboard case for the Tab S4, and when this is connected, you'll automatically transition into Samsung DeX's desktop interface directly on the Tab S4's screen. In this mode, you can have multiple apps open at once in desktop-style windows, drag content between them, use keyboard shortcuts, and more. It's essentially the same DeX experience you previously needed a sperate monitor for with the Galaxy S9, and that could result in the Tab S4 being genuinely useful as a productivity machine.

The Galaxy Tab S4 officially goes on sale on August 10 at Amazon, Best Buy, and Samsung's own website. The Wi-Fi only model with 64GB of storage costs $649.99 while the 256GB option goes for $749.99.

Samsung's also selling an LTE-equipped model that'll be available at Verizon on August 10 as well, in addition to US Cellular and Sprint in Q3 2018.

Pre-orders are open now on Samsung.com, and if you place your order between then and September 8, you can take 50% off the $149.99 keyboard cover.

See at Samsung

1 month ago

Which Android Tablets Should You Buy For Under $100?

51

Which Android Tablets Should You Buy For Under $100?

There are a number of reasons to buy a cheap tablet, but which ones are worth your money?

Tablets are incredibly useful, but if you're buying one for under $100, you're going to have to settle for some compromises. From durability issues to potentially out-of-date software, there's a reason why these are considered budget products and priced to move.

But there's still some good value to be had here, especially if you're planning to buy a tablet as a gift for a younger child. It can also be convenient to have a nice and portable device to take on trips, while leaving your more expensive tech safely stored at home.

Here's a breakdown of the best tablets you can get under $100!

Amazon Fire HD 8 Tablet

Amazon has been producing some of the best budget tablets for years, and its latest HD tablet is the best yet. The Fire HD 8 features an 8-inch screen with battery life of up to 12 hours of reading, surfing, the web, watching videos, and listening to music. And audio is going to sound pretty decent with stereo speakers and Dolby Atmos support. It's also Alexa-enabled, which means you'll be able to talk to your smart home products from wherever you are in your home.

If you've never bought a Fire tablet before, you should know that Amazon has its own store for accessing content like apps, movies, TV, songs, books, and more. If you're an Amazon Prime subscriber you'll have Amazon Video and Amazon Music at your fingertips.

Our very own Phil Nickinson (aka Modern Dad) says it's the best tablet for kids because it's still a pretty capable Android tablet that you won't be distraught if dropped. There's also the Amazon Fire 7, which is $30 cheaper and another great option for kids, but the choice is ultimately yours — compare the specs and pick the one that's right for you.

See at Amazon

Amazon Fire 7 Kids Edition Tablet

The standard Amazon Fire tablets are already pretty great for kids, but Amazon has smartly gone a step further by offering both the Fire 7 and Fire HD 8 packaged with a kid-proof case that's designed to take all the abuse a younger child can throw at it.

It's got some built-in tools for parents that allow you to control what and when your kids can access on their own tablet, without sacrificing specs or feeling like a cheap toy.

If durability is at top of the list for you, you'll want to get this tablet. It's also backed by a 2-year worry-free warranty, meaning if anything happens Amazon will let you return and replace it for free, no questions asked. That's music to any parents ears!

See at Amazon

Lenovo Tab 10

This one is kind of a cheat because it's $7 over the $100 budget. But, if you're comfortable with that, the Lenovo Tab 10 is a solid buy for $107. It's a 10-inch tablet with a 1280 x 800 resolution display, Snapdragon 210 processor, 16GB of onboard storage and 1GB of RAM.

It won't set any records when it comes to performance, but it's got solid build quality and while it's still back on Android 6.0 Marshmallow, it's far from the oldest version of Android you'll find on a super-cheap tablet. It's also fairly un-customized, so even with low specs should be ok for lighter use.

It also has a microSD card slot to expand the storage some, and the rear speakers support Dolby Atmos, which isn't something you find on most cheap tablets!

See at Amazon

RCA Viking Pro

The RCA Viking Pro is likely the only 10-inch tablet with a detachable keyboard that you will find for around $100. Sure, the internal specs are mediocre at best, but it comes with 32GB of internal storage along with a microSD slot, so that's pretty decent. It's a great option if you're looking for a cheap tablet with a larger screen for watching Netflix and other downloaded content — just make sure to use headphones or a Bluetooth speaker for audio.

The detachable keyboard is a nice addition, too, giving you the option to get some writing done on the go. It's running Android 5.0 Lollipop, so you might not be able to play the latest games, but at just $ it's a great portable option for blogging and watching videos.

There are limited quantities available on Amazon, but you can also buy this tablet from Walmart.

See at Walmart

Updated July 30, 2018: Updated pricing info for our picks.

2 months ago

Should You Buy The Samsung Galaxy Tab E Lite for Kids?

8

Should You Buy The Samsung Galaxy Tab E Lite for Kids?

Samsung Galaxy Tab E Lite for Kids

The Kids Tab E Lite doesn't have to be a powerhouse for $100

It's easy to say that Android tablets are dead in the water, and in the high-end market that might be true (though we're pretty fond of the Galaxy Tab S3). But not everybody shopping for a tablet wants to spend $300 or more on an iPad — especially if they're just looking for something to distract their kids during a long drive or doctor's appointment.

Samsung seems to have a good solution with its confusingly named 7-inch tablet; depending on who you ask, it's either called the Galaxy Tab E Lite Kids or the Kids Tab E Lite. Regardless of its name, it's been extremely popular on both Amazon and Best Buy, getting overwhelmingly positive reviews from satisfied parents. So what's all the fuss about? And should you buy one for your own kids?

It should be obvious, but it's important to keep in mind that the Kids Tab E Lite isn't meant to be a powerhouse iPad competitor like some of Samsung's other tablets. Its specs are minimal, with a 1.3GHz quad-core processor, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of storage (expandable by up to 32GB via microSD), and Android 4.4 KitKat. Yep, you read that right. That's all you need to run Samsung's kid-friendly software, though, along with the media and games the tablet is meant to handle.

If you've ever enabled Kids Mode on your Galaxy phone, the interface on the Kids Tab E Lite will already be familiar — it's a pared down version of Android that displays large shortcuts to the bundled apps on the tablet … and not much else. This is by design, to keep your kids from meddling where they shouldn't, and make it easy to jump straight into the various STEM- and Common Core-focused games and books.

The Kids Tab E Lite comes with over 20 kid-friendly apps to get you started, but you also get a free three-month subscription to Samsung Kids to download more. There's plenty of content from distributors like DreamWorks, Sesame Street, PBS Kids, and National Geographic to keep your kids educated and entertained at the same time. After the first three months, it's either $7.99 each month or $59.99 for a year.

There's a reason this tablet has so many great reviews — it's kid-proof and has plenty of stuff for kids to do.

Aside from its kid-friendly software, the Kids Tab E Lite is essentially just Samsung's Galaxy Tab E Lite with a durable, non-toxic case that protects it from the inevitable drops it'll endure. It packs a 3600mAh battery that'll keep it running all day, and a 2MP rear camera to kickstart your kid's artistic side — no front camera though, so selfies are off the table.

The Kids Tab E Lite isn't the most powerful tablet around by any means, but for $100, it doesn't have to be. It just has to compete against Amazon's Fire tablets and other inexpensive, kid-oriented tablets, and it seems to do so pretty well with Samsung's well-versed ecosystem. If you're on a Benjamin budget, give this tablet a shot — and if you've already got one, let us know about your experiences in the comments below!

See at Amazon

2 months ago

What is Fuchsia, and why should you care?

18

What is Fuchsia, and why should you care?

Fuchsia isn't going to be a thing you can see on your phone; it will power the things you can see on your phone.

A long time ago, in 2016, the internet learned about a supposed Google initiative to merge Chrome OS and Android. It was to have the codename Andromeda and would unify all of Google's computing platforms so that they all used the same operating system. It made sense in many ways; it is similar to what Microsoft is doing with mobile, tablet and desktop software and supposedly the direction Apple is moving with iOS and macOS. Codenames and rumors aside, what ended up happening was the ability to visit the Google Play Store with a Chromebook and run Android apps natively.

This was a big deal, and if it was what Andromeda turned out to be it was certainly enough. Everyone benefits from having Android apps available on Chromebooks — Google can sell more and we can use them better because there will be an "app for that" whenever we need one. But the idea of Android and Chrome merging never really went away. It just got a new codename: Fuchsia.

More: These are the Chromebooks that can run Android and Linux apps

Fuchsia got its name, according to some of the developers, from existing projects.

Pink + Purple = Fuchsia (a new Operating System)

Project Pink was an original idea from Apple's engineering team when they decided it was time to build a new object-oriented operating system with a new user interface, and the notes were written on pink index cards. Project Purple was the original name given to prototype production of a touchscreen phone from Apple; the iPhone. The original developers of Fuchsia are well-versed with this history, as they were also part of former projects like BeOS, iOS, and WebOS.

But an operating system needs more than a name. And without Google telling us anything about its new project, we're left to piece together all the breadcrumbs the internet can find. Here is what we know so far.

Fuchsia is not going to replace Android or Chrome OS

Android is a complicated thing. It can be thought of as a complete operating system that you would find on a smartphone or tablet, or it can be a small part of an operating system that is built to run applications as we saw from BlackBerry on OS 10 devices. Most of all, Android is familiar to about two billion people and has a huge ecosystem of software, devices, accessories and support staff. You never abandon something this successful — you build on it instead.

Google learned the benefit of using their own software from Oracle in the courtroom.

Fuchsia will probably replace the part of the software you don't see; the part that makes the hardware run and lets you tell your phone to do something when you tap the screen or talk into the microphone.

Right now Android uses the Linux kernel and a handful of utility programs written to work with Linux. Linux is great in many ways. It's built to work with almost anything hardware-wise, has a huge community that contributes and makes every version better than the last one, and will be around a lot longer than any hardware you buy today that uses it. Chrome is mostly the same way. Its's a bunch of user-facing services and utilities that run atop the Linux kernel. So is Android Auto, and Android TV, and Wear OS.

But Linux doesn't "belong" to Google and it wasn't designed specifically for mobile hardware. These are two things Google wants and eventually will need in order to continue to compete.

Fuchsia will be built for 2019 and beyond, not for the legacy of the past.

Google needs a mobile operating system built from the ground up at every level designed for 2018. It has to be lean and easy on resources, be able to compute quickly without taxing the chips inside our phones, and it has to be able to instantly respond to all the ways we can "talk" to it like touch, mouse and keyboard, or voice. And it has to do all of this while still being the same user-friendly Android we already know and still run the millions of applications written for Android.

In short, Fuchsia is replacing Linux and parts of Android (and probably Chrome, Android TV, Android Auto, etc.) with something that works better for Google's purposes. The user interface — what you and I see on our phones or Chromebooks or watches — has nothing to do with this part of the operating system. Besides, Fuchsia is too hard to spell.

Benefits of the change

As mentioned, Google wants software they have more control over and that was designed to be lean and fast on the relatively low-end hardware we see in mobile products. But there are two other very important benefits from moving to a custom operating system, and this time we do get to see them.

Developers will be able to use more current programming languages to write applications. We're already seeing this with programming tools like Dart and Flutter making their way to Android, and any new OS is certainly being written with modern programming tools in mind.

Sometimes you need a sledgehammer. Other times you need something more delicate.

There is nothing wrong with programming in C or Java. Both languages are very robust and can make any hardware do anything. But that also means they are designed to do a lot of things a mobile app developer doesn't need, and this can make them a little cumbersome to learn and use. An Android app developer doesn't need his code to communicate directly with the CPU using machine code. But an app developer does need access to easier and more efficient ways to have smooth UI transitions or scalability for different screens. C++ is great for powering a robot, but Flutter is great for building a great app interface. Letting developers leverage tools that help make better apps means we get better apps.

These new tools combined with a unified bottom layer of software across all devices means one app can work everywhere. That's great, but Android already lets one app work everywhere, and to be frank, that means apps mostly suck on any device except a phone. Different size screens need different user interfaces, and most developers only code for a phone-sized one because it's not easy to make an app look great everywhere.

Better developer tools mean better apps on every screen.

That will change with tools like Flutter and that's our second benefit. Right now it's difficult to build an Android app that works on a small 5-inch display but transforms to take advantage of a 12-inch display. It can be done beautifully — see the Gmail app for an example — but the work involved usually puts developers off the idea. If the tools would let a developer define a few different ways to use the full display to give us the right amount of information with just a few steps, most developers would do so.

Fuchsia demo installed on the Google Pixelbook.

This is what Fuchsia looks like on the Pixelbook. Developers can easily define what goes into the smaller content fields, what is used as a pleasant background, how things are laid out and how much content we need to see with just a few steps. Right now there are only examples and demos, but those give us an excellent idea of what to expect. Compare it to Fuchsia on a phone-sized display below.

Notice the similarities, then notice the differences. This is how one piece of software, in this case, a simple user interface or "home" app, can be changed to perform on two different size displays. This is what Android in its current state is lacking. This is what we need to happen. This is why Google — and we — want Fuchsia to become a real thing.

Nothing is final, everything can change

As mentioned at the top of this article, we've built this on a mixture of rumors, source code uploads, tidbits of insider information, and a dash of imagination. Google has said nothing about any future where Fuchsia is a reality.

That's important because this is a HUGE undertaking. It's even bigger than creating Android in the first place was because much of it involves coding for the bottom layer instead of depending on existing software. Android was built atop Linux, iOS was built atop BSD, Fuchsia is being built from the ground up. It will take a few years until we could see a consumer version or even a version for the public to test that's not just a proof of concept demo. This is hard work that will take thousands of hours to finish.

I believe that Google does have plans for Fuchsia and it's not just a pet project of some talented developers or something Google will start and never finish. I'm paying close attention to all of this, not just because it's how we make our living, but because we're both interested and amazed at what might develop from the project. We'll continue to revisit this space and add information as it becomes available, but for now, there is mostly educated guessing and plenty of wishing involved.

Top 3 ways Fuchsia can be a better operating system than Android

Chromebooks

.devicebox { background: #fff; border: solid #000; border-width: 2px 0; box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0 auto 30px; overflow: auto; padding: 20px 0 15px; position: relative; } div .devicebox ul li, div .devicebox p { box-sizing: border-box; color: #000; display: table; font: 16px "Proxima Nova Th",helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; width: 100%; } .devicebox h3 { color: #000; font: 26px/0.9 "Proxima Nova Bold",helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; margin: 0 0 15px; text-transform: uppercase; } .devicebox a { color: #008099; } .devicebox .video { margin: 0 auto 15px; } .devicebox p { margin: 0px; } .devicebox p.list-head { font: 20px "Proxima Nova Bold",helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; padding: 0 15px; } .devicebox p img, .entry-content .devicebox p > img { width: 100%; height: auto; } .devicebox ul { display: table; margin: 0 0 10px; width: 100%; } .devicebox ul li { background: #f7f7f7; margin: 2px 0; padding: 4px 15px; } .devicebox ul li:hover { background: #fff; } .devicebox ul li:before { display: none; } .devicebox p ~ p { line-height: 1.25; } .devicebox p:first-of-type + p { padding: 15px; } .devicebox a.cta .shop { border-radius: 5px; display: inline-block; font: 14px/31px "Proxima Nova Extrabld",Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; text-align: center; } .devicebox a.cta .shop, .devicebox a.cta .shop:link, .devicebox a.cta .shop:active, .devicebox a.cta .shop:visited { background: #37B5D7; color: #FFF; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:hover { background: #2694B2; text-decoration: none; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:before { content: "\e61e"; font: 40px/0 "ac_iconset" !important; margin: 0 3px 0 -8px; vertical-align: middle; } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { /* div:not(.columns-3) excludes help menu content */ .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p img, .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 660px) { .devicebox h3 { text-align: center; } .devicebox ul, .devicebox p { display: block; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox p img, .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 661px), all and (max-width: 500px) { /* 2x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.cta .shop { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-of-type(even) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:last-of-type:nth-of-type(odd) { width: 100%; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 659px) and (min-width: 501px) { /* 3x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.cta .shop { width: calc(100%/3 - 10px/3); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-of-type(3n):not(:nth-last-of-type(2)) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:only-child { width: 100%; margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop, .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); } .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop, .devicebox a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.cta .shop:nth-last-of-type(odd) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } } @media all and (max-width: 500px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } .devicebox a.cta .shop:before { display: none; } } .page-admin .devicebox {max-width: 350px;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe {position: relative; height: 0; padding-bottom: 56.9%;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe iframe {width: 100%; height: 100%; position: absolute;} -->

Show More Headlines

Pages