When I began reading this review, my Galaxy Tab S5e had its fair share of issues, all of which have been fixed, but because this is a review, I’m going to have to point them out.
The Galaxy Tab S5e is a uniquely positioned device, what I mean by that is that it is trying to fill the space between two different device categories. One as a tablet, the other as a laptop. If it weren’t for the fact that Android is optimized fully for a tablet, I would say it fits in both categories.
Here’s the problem, Android is not optimized for tablets, it never was. Developers don’t take advantage of the extra screen real estate. And those that do, don’t do a very good job. While DeX, Samsung's answer to the desktop problem, not all apps fully take advantage of it. In fact, I would estimate the supported app list is a lot smaller than that of the Google Play Store. A perfect example of this is LastPass, which does not work at all.
Overall, the Galaxy Tab S5e is a small, almost adorable looking tablet. With thin bezels all around the front of the device, you would almost forget that it was even a tablet because all of your controls are on the side of the device. The front facing camera is in a weird spot because Samsung seems to think that you are going to want to use it in portrait mode and it is really easy to cover up when holding it. Talking about bezels, it’s really hard to hold the device without touching the screen. While it is relatively light, I can’t help but get tired of holding it after a while.
I only opted for the Folio keyboard when I purchased my device, and the experience is kind of what you would expect. Not that great. While I like the convenience of having a keyboard with me, I can’t help but feel like they could have done better. The keys are very firm, and the deck is very cramped. Coming from someone who has big hands, that’s a serious issue and for the price I paid, it isn’t really worth it.
Performance and DeX
Packed with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 670, and 6 gigs of RAM for the model I chose, it packs quite a bit of punch. Everything I threw at it, didn’t slow it down, which is what I expected it to do. When I initially wrote this review, I ran into a few video playback issues which I have since resolved by doing a soft restart, it was kind of weird considering it had more than enough power to handle the video that I was playing back, and it’s worth mentioning that it was on YouTube. I’ve had similar issues on my Samsung Galaxy S7 edge, but that never required a reboot, simply a change in the quality of the video that I was playing. I’m not really sure what the issue was, but I would not be surprised if it came back.
Samsung DeX is a fantastic proof-of-concept when connecting to a USB Type C dock with monitor, mouse, and keyboard. It works well for the most part and although this is an unpopular opinion, DeX is good. Keep in mind, not all apps are going to work properly. In most situations oh, I never had an issue. Only once did an application not work, and that was LastPass. There aren’t a whole lot of customization options other than changing your wallpaper, and going from light to dark, and I can’t help but feel that Samsung could do a lot more to allow customization. For example, the title bars.
As I said in my video review if they want a tablet that isn’t an iPad oh, and you need something to get some work done, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S5e as a pretty solid device, so long as you’re willing to live with a half Baked offering from the Google Play Store. If there was a specific app that I needed but I could not use on the tablet, I found myself reverting to using Microsoft Remote Desktop to connect to my workstation. It’s affordable, and I really a well-rounded device, just don’t get the keyboard.