Gal­axy S4 Tab

Sam­sung’s new tablet is com­pli­cated for day-to-day use, but its draw­ing sur­face makes up for it

ImagineFX - - Reviews -

Sam­sung’s new An­droid tablet is avail­able. Is its por­ta­ble draw­ing po­ten­tial up to scratch? We find out…

While Ap­ple of­fers its pre­mium tablet – the iPad Pro – in a cou­ple of sizes and a va­ri­ety of colours, Sam­sung is keep­ing things sim­ple with this new, sim­i­larly priced de­vice. The Gal­axy Tab S4 just comes in one size, a 10.5-inch dis­play, and gives you the choice of an aus­tere grey or a glossy black body that’s so im­pen­e­tra­ble you could al­most use it to recre­ate the mono­lith scene from 2001: A Space Odyssey.

The min­i­mal­ist feel isn’t re­flected in the An­droid op­er­at­ing sys­tem driv­ing the Tab S4. It seems to get busier with each re­lease, with a lengthy setup se­quence of­fer­ing piles of set­tings and op­tional soft­ware down­loads, and early use in­ter­rupt­ing your ac­tiv­ity with tips and ad­vice. The feel­ing of busy­ness isn’t helped by the new DeX mode, which presents an al­ter­na­tive in­ter­face more rem­i­nis­cent of Win­dows run­ning on a lap­top. You can get an op­tional key­board cover to clip on to your Tab S4 to com­plete the lap­top tran­si­tion.

As might be ex­pected from the first try, DeX on the Tab S4 doesn’t re­ally com­pare with Mi­crosoft’s Sur­face run­ning Win­dows 10, which of­fers a far more so­phis­ti­cated pair­ing of desk­top and tablet in­ter­faces. Right now Sam­sung’s Tab S4 is bet­ter at be­ing a tablet than it is a lap­top.

What artists re­ally care about, though, is what a mo­bile de­vice is like to draw and paint with – and the an­swer for the Tab S4 is “very nicely in­deed”. The sen­sa­tion of draw­ing is sub­lime, with just the right bal­ance of smooth­ness and bite on the dis­play. The S Pen (which is in­cluded in the price, un­like the iPad Pro’s Ap­ple Pen­cil) fea­tures 4,096 lev­els of

The Gal­axy Tab S4 isn’t with­out its flaws, but if you’re look­ing for a draw­ing tablet first and fore­most, it has a lot to of­fer. If you’re happy to draw within the nar­row 16:10 screen, the Tab S4 is ideal for cre­at­ing art while out and about.

The S Pen is in­cluded in the price – take note, other man­u­fac­tur­ers – and de­liv­ers a pleas­ant draw­ing ex­pe­ri­ence.

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