On Wednesday, Samsung held its annual Unpacked virtually due to the coronavirus pandemic. The event typically serves as the unveiling of a vast set of new product offerings and this year’s was no different. At Unpacked 2020, presenters revealed everything from the new Note 20, upgraded features for the Galaxy Watch 3, and even a sneak preview of the Galaxy Z Fold 2, although more product details about this particular product are to be released in the coming weeks. Samsung also announced the latest in its tablet series—the Galaxy Tab S7 and S7+. These two products include a host of new features including an entirely revamped keyboard.
A new keyboard with functionality built-in
At first glance, the addition of a sixth row of keys is the standout feature with the redesigned tablet keyboard. This row consists of 16 keys in total including 12 dedicated function keys. These new function keys will give users greater control over a bevy of settings and input commands such as dimming brightness, pausing media files, adjusting volume, and more.
This revamped row also includes a Finder key with a settings sprocket logo and a dedicated DeX button. We have not physically tested the product at this time although the DeX button will presumably grant users enhanced control over their desktop experience such as connecting with compatible devices and projecting to larger displays. A Delete and an Escape key bookend the new row of keys.
Aside from the new row, the Galaxy Tab S7 and S7+ also tout other upgrades focused on optimizing user experience. Both new tablets feature a larger touchpad area with multitouch gesturing. Overall, these new design elements give the Galaxy Tab S7 and S7+ the feel of a traditional PC workstation while offering the versatility and portability of a two-in-one tablet.
Tablets and the future of work
As more companies shift from the brick-and-mortar workplace to the digital office due to the coronavirus, the line between work and private life has become obscured to a degree. Two-in-one devices like the Galaxy Tab S7 and S7+ allow people to easily transition from work to more leisurely activities without being confined to a particular room in the home.
The Galaxy Tab S7+ includes a 12.4-inch AMOLED display. This provides ample screen space when running multiple applications at once or during virtual whiteboard collaboration or leisurely streaming after the workday. Both tablets also are 5G-enabled offering people faster downloads and crisp videos during professional meetings and more. Of course, there are currently gaps in 5G coverage around the country, so one’s ability to fully leverage the 5G capabilities will largely depend on location and network availability.
Galaxy Tab S7 Plus pricing starts at $849 (US). The Galaxy Tab S7 starts at $649 (US). Both models are scheduled to be released later this fall.