We will divide out software tour in three parts - tablet view, DeX view, S-Pen features. The Galaxy Tab S7+ supports both tablet and desktop mode, easily switchable, and easy to work with. The S-Pen experience is compatible with both modes and its behavior can be customized for both.
The Galaxy Tab S7+ runs on One UI 2.5 at launch, which is based on Android 10. It has one firmware update waiting for you to install with the latest August security patch.
The Tab S7+ defaults to its tablet view by default. Unless you manually switch to desktop (DeX) mode, this is how you will use the slate. There are a couple of major differences between tablet and desktop view - the interface and icon scaling, the homescreen look and behavior, and how multi-tasking is done.
So, the One UI tablet view is basically an enlarged version of the One UI we've all seen on the most recent Galaxy smartphones. Let's take a peek.
The basics of the UI are the same as on any other Samsung rocking One UI 2. You populate homescreen pages with apps, folders, and widgets, there is an app drawer, too. The leftmost page is the usual Samsung Daily. The notification area is familiar, too.
The latest trends in the user interface can now all be found on this Galaxy. For one, that means a system-wide dark mode that not only skins the UI but also triggers the apps' respective dark themes (if they have them) - thanks to Android 10.
The Galaxy Tab S7+ supports gesture navigation, as usual. We opted for the newer method where a swipe-in from the sides acts as 'Back', and a swipe up from the bottom takes you Home. Oh, if you like it old-school, the classic nav bar remains an option.
Our Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ is the Wi-Fi-only model, but you can still connect it to an Android phone and use its Phone app to make calls.
Biometric security on the Galaxy Tab S7+ comes in one of two shapes - fingerprint authentication and facial recognition. We thought the optical under-screen fingerprint scanner is an odd feature on the slate, but we have to admit we've grown to like it. It is very fast and accurate as far as these sensors go. Face recognition will offer a more convenient (if not as secure) access to your homescreen, too.
Multi-tasking in the tablet view is done as on the recent Galaxy Smartphones - via the Task Switcher, which has been updated to show at least six apps and has a Close App button. While in the task switcher you just tap on an app icon and you can choose between Split Screen view and Pop-Up view. Not all apps support pop-up, but the majority can do Split Screen view.
At first, we tried to do the Split Screen view by tap, hold and drag on an app thumb, but this only leads to pop-up view. It would have been nice to launch the Split View this way, too, if we, say, drag the app to one of the sides (like on Windows 10).
'Edge panels' is a well-known, long-standing feature. It gives you quick access to apps, actions, tools, etc. with a single swipe from the side. You can choose which side the handle is located on, as well as adjust its position along the edge of the phone.
Edge Lighting is not available on the Galaxy Tab S7+. Always-on screen is not available, either.
The usual Samsung apps are pre-installed - Gallery, Internet, Bixby, Game Launcher, Video. The Galaxy Store and Galaxy Members apps are available, too, and you can get some exclusive content, memberships and discounts from there.
Samsung and Microsoft also offer you the MS Office, Outlook and OneDrive apps, as well as native support for the upcoming xCloud gaming (requires Xbox Game Pass subscription).
And just a quick note before we wrap this part up - while we've used the Tab S7+ mostly in portrait orientation, everything is also optimized and will work in landscape view - from the homescreens, through the setting menus, and all the apps we had installed.
DeX (desktop) View
The DeX mode, not to be mistaken with the wireless DeX option, is a desktop-oriented interface for the Galaxy Tab S7+. You can trigger the DeX view from Settings or the Notification Center. The Samsung logo will appear, and your Android OS will switch from tablet to desktop-friendly mode.
And it is exactly what the name suggests. The Galaxy Tab S7+ is exclusively in landscape mode with Windows-like desktop where you put your apps. The Notification Center with the toggles has moved to bottom left corner and is easily reachable with your right hand.
There is a task bar at the bottom, which houses all currently opened apps. Upon transitioning from tablet to DeX and vice versa, your apps will not close and you will not lose progress. You can choose auto-hide task bar if you are not a fan of it being always visible.
The taskbar contains the app drawer and navigation shortcuts on the left, the currently active apps - in the middle, and the status bar (and notification center) - on the right. You also get volume and screenshot shortcuts here.
Right-click functionality is available everywhere across the DeX view, be it the taskbar, desktop, or system apps. You can trigger it with the usual tap and hold, or by a mouse, of course.
When you are in DeX mode, all apps open in window mode and at the top you will have the well familiar trio of __⬜╳. Most of the support native full screen in DeX mode, but even if they don't - the One UI will tell you that and it will still maximize the app properly in full screen, it may just need to be refreshed. We had no issues with the full-screen option on any other - both compatible (not needing a refresh) and not optimized (needs a relaunch).
You can stack a large number of windows, just like you would normally do on Windows and macOS. You can also snap windows in Split View, just like one Windows 10.
The DeX view is the most convenient way to use mouse and a keyboard. You can either opt for the rather expensive Keyboard Cover, or just pair your favorite Bluetooth keyboard and mouse. There is native support for both, and everything works as expected. You can use all popular office apps, web browsers like Chrome, mail clients such as Outlook, Photoshop, Maps, and whatnot - all in their desktop versions.
You can also use USB-C flash drives or hubs to access additional accessories like all kinds of external storages, input devices, even speakers and headphones.
The DeX view is the way if you want to turn the Galaxy Tab S7+ into a laptop and use it for work, writing, image and video editing, uploading various files to servers, and whatever else your work routine requires. The Tab S7+ can replace your laptop for most tasks and has the proper power punch to handle heavy-duty tasks. If you are thinking of buying a thin laptop or a convertible device, you may as well want to try the Tab S7+ in DeX mode before deciding.
The Galaxy Tab S7+ supports wireless DeX mode - meaning does not require the DeX dock to connect to a Smart TV screen or projector anymore. The device in question needs to support Screen Mirroring. Once coupled with a TV, you can continue to use your tablet in Table View and have the DeX view on your TV absolutely independent. For example, you can chat on the tablet, while switching slides with the S-Pen on the TV. Neat!
You can also use the tablet as a touchpad (and keyboard when necessary) and control what's on your TV (and thus bring no other accessories with you).
Finally, if you have a Samsung PC, you can use the tablet as a drawing pad or a second to your PC via the Wireless Display support tool. You can also use Samsung Flow app to exchange files between your Samsung devices by just dragging and dropping them.
Indeed, the DeX mode is very powerful and have many possibilities. Be it just for desktop experience, or wireless connection, or even secondary screen option - it gives you a lot of freedom even if the Tab S7+ is the only Samsung device you own.