Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite review: Ideal for work from home professionals, students
Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 review: The Wi-Fi variant of the Tab is priced at Rs 27,999 while the LTE model costs you Rs 31,999. For that price, you get a LCD display, dual speakers and an entry-level processor. Is it enough to spend on? Let’s find out in our review of the Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 review: Tablet is the most useless of gadgets ever, I would have told you last year around the same time. With a 13-inch laptop on my desk and a 6.7-inch tall smartphone in my pocket, it didn’t make much sense to spend on an additional 10-inch screen! Owning a tablet always was more like a luxury than necessity. And then, coronavirus happened.
While working from home for almost four months now, I have truly understood the importance of an additional portable screen, that can make your life so much easier. And, not just working professionals, a tablet could be a great option for students as well with most institutions taking online classes.
The only challenge was the price. There are only a handful of affordable options in the Indian market.
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So, when Samsung launched the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite – for almost half the price as last year’s Galaxy Tab S6 - I was really looking forward to test this device. The Wi-Fi variant of the Tab is priced at Rs 27,999 while the LTE model costs you Rs 31,999. For that price, you get a LCD display, dual speakers and an entry-level processor. Is it enough to spend on? Let’s find out in our review of the Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite review: Design
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite is identical to the more premium Galaxy Tab S6 with one lens less at the back and a marginally smaller display. The Tab S6 Lite ships with a 10.4-inch display and a fairly minimalistic design with power button and volume controls on the right, Type C USB charging port at the bottom and a 3.5mm headphone socket at the top.
The tablet comes with dual speakers with one on each end. This is the first major difference from the Tab S6 as well which was equipped with four speakers and sound a lot louder than the S6 Lite.
The Galaxy Tab S6 Lite is available in three colours – Angora Blue, Oxford Gray, and Chiffon Pink. We had the Oxford Gray colour for review purposes and while the device doesn’t feel as premium as the Tab S6, the quality is pretty solid even now. Samsung has given this tab a metallic finish and is also shipping the S Pen stylus inside the box. The back panel has magnet to keep the S Pen attached. However, the Pen doesn’t have Bluetooth, as we saw on the Tab S6.
The Galaxy Tab S6 Lite is 7mm and weighs about 467grams. The tablet is clearly not designed for a single hand use. But, is quite comfortable to use otherwise.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite review: Display and Performance
To keep the cost down, Samsung has made some major sacrifices with the specs on offer. To begin with, the AMOLED display on the Galaxy Tab S6 has been replaced by a 10.4-inch TFT LCD screen with a 2000x1200 pixel resolution. So, the quality of text, icons and the content you are streaming automatically goes down.
The bigger problem for me was the brightness. The display simply isn’t bright enough, even if you switch to maximum brightness. Because of this, using the Tab S6 Lite outside of home was a bit of a pain.
Surprisingly, there is no fingerprint scanner in any form either. I remember last year’s Galaxy Tab S5e had a side-mounted fingerprint scanner while the Tab S6 came with an in-display sensor.
The LTE model allows you to make calls from the tab also supports 4G connectivity which is quite useful, especially if you plan to make work calls using the tab and keep your smartphone for personal contacts.
Another let down comes in form of the Exynos 9611 SoC used by Samsung on this tab. It is the same chipset being used by the company in its entry level and mid-range smartphones of the Galaxy M and Galaxy A series – some of which are priced less than half of what the Tab S6 Lite would cost you. The processor is supported by 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. The latter can be expanded using a microSD card.
The limitations of the processor were clearly visible while running Call of Duty: Mobile in high graphic setting. The frame rate was dropping frequently but the game ran smoothly once I switched to medium settings.
Otherwise, multitasking was never a problem. I attended a lot of video conferences, meetings, exchanged mails and took notes on the Tab S6 lite without much trouble.
One thing you can’t complain much about though is Samsung’s clean One UI 2.0 which runs on top of Android 10. If you have used a Samsung smartphone in the past, the tab won’t take much time to adjust to. Most users will also appreciate the fact that there are not too many pre-installed apps. All you get are Samsung’s own apps along with offerings from Google and Microsoft.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite review: The S Pen
One of the reasons why you could seriously consider buying this tab is the S Pen experience, which you don’t get at this price point. It definitely allows you to do most tasks so much better and adds to the productivity too. The Pen comes with a button, pressing which you can bring up a floating menu with shortcuts for Smart select, Smart write, Live messages, AR doodle, and Notes.
Even here you see some budgeting as Samsung has removed the Bluetooth functionality from the S Pen. This means it can’t be used to click pictures anymore. But, the usual features like Air Command and Samsung Capture are still supported.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite review: Battery
The massive 7,040 mAh battery makes a strong case of the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite. The device can easily last between 36 to 40 hours, on medium usage. So, you don’t need to charge it frequently.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite review: Cameras
There is little to offer in the camera department. The Galaxy Tab S6 Lite comes with a single 8-megapixel rear camera and a 5-megapixel front-facing camera. Both the lenses manage capture decent images but have their set of limitations.
But honestly, you should expect much in the camera department from a tablet. Treat it like an improved version of a web-cam instead of an upgrade on your smartphone. The 5MP front camera is more than enough to make video calls and attend online meetings.
In fact, I conducted an interview using the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite which you can find below to judge the video quality.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite review: Should you buy?
With the Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite, the South Korean electronics manufacturer has definitely made some comprises by using a basic processor, a sub-standard display and ditching basic features like fingerprint scanner. The tablet, however, comes with an impressive battery life, decent cameras and of course, the magical S Pen.
What works in its favour is that there is very little competition in this segment. Now, the decision is very simple.
If you are a working professional looking for a device to attend online meetings, Tab S6 Lite is a good buy. If you are planning to buy this for your children so that they can attend online classes, go for it.
But, if you are looking at the Tab S6 as an alternate to a notebook or for gaming, stop right there. Invest some more to buy a laptop or maybe the Galaxy Tab S6.
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