The tablet market has been shrinking over the years as the initial euphoria failed to translate into sustained sales for the segment. Whatever is left of the tablet market is monopolised by Apple’s iPad. But that does not mean there are no other good tablets in the market. In fact, Samsung, which had a lot of options in the segment once, has just launched the new Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 which could give it some traction in the space.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 specifications: 10.5-inch display with 2560 x 1600 resolution at 287 ppi | octa-core Qualcomm MSM8998 | 4GB RAM | 64GB storage | 13MP rear camera with f/1.9 aperture + 8MP front camera | Android Oreo | Four speaker audio | Wi-Fi (802.11 a/b/g/n/ac) | Bluetooth 5.0 | 7300mAh battery | Nano SIM
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 price in India: Rs 57,900
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 review
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 is a very handy 10.5-inch tablet. I say handy because this is a thin slate that is easy to hold despite its shiny back. The Tab S4 has a bezel and on the top there is a camera with sensors for the face unlock feature. This is a secure and easy way to protect your tablet and should become the standard across all tablets.
Samsung makes the best displays in the world and you can rest assured that it will pack a stunner in its flagship tablet. The HDR ready Super AMOLED display is one of the best in the industry and you will love even using this tablet with its black log screen. The tablet comes with Dolby Atmos tuned by AKG and together with the the display this brings a cinematic experience to your hands. The audio is spatial and you can feel movement from one side to the other. It is a shame that you can’t really use the tablet in full blast when there are other people around.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 comes with its own S Pen which looks nothing like the stylus on the Galaxy Note series. This one is more like a ball pen and is very comfortable to hold. There is a small button for you to select stuff on the screen and that’s very useful too. Like with the Note 9, the stylus is the real big feature of the Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 too. This is without doubt the best you can buy for a tablet and as natural as it gets. It offers the grip of a regular pen and is pressure sensitive and feels like using a real pen on paper. I got a few artist friends to use this and within minutes they were asking me about the price and even complaining about the equipment they use now to digitise their works.
The stylus offers many features for the artistically inclined, from regular notes to Penup which lets you create art on top of photos and even share it with like-minded people. I personally loved the ability to take notes easily — the options show up as soon as you bring the pen near the tablet. At the moment, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 with its stylus seems like best stylus option for creative people. Like on the Note 9, there is the Screen Off memo where you can just take notes without even waiting for the tablet to switch on.
Then there is the option to buy a book cover for the tablet that offers a sturdy keyboard for input and protect the tablet from unnecessary damage. However, this book cover from Samsung also triggers the Dex mode which makes the tablet work like a desktop with the stylus almost transforming itself into a mouse. This improves productivity as you can type faster, drag and drop elements like on a desktop and use apps in a more familiar PC mode. I highly recommend picking up the cover, despite the additional cost. And you can use a converter to use a larger screen if needed.
The Samsung Tab S4 is powered by an octa-core Qualcomm processor and you will not have any surprises when it comes to sheer processing power. A lot of the stuff the tablet does with ease, including the near natural input using the stylus require processing power that is fast and smooth. And this tablet has no issues handling any of that. Also, it stays cool with most of the stuff you make it do.
The tablet has a 7300 mAh battery that can last you a full day of high-power usage, binge watching movies, writing, scribbling and listening to music. This is an LTE tablet and the availability of a stable network does impact the battery life a bit, but with a battery this large there is always some juice left for critical use.
Overall, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 is in my books the best Android tablet you can buy. The Dex mode makes it more productive that other tablets and the S Pen is unparalleled across mobile devices. The only question to be asked is why more people are not using Android tablets.
Huawei Mate 20 X 5G Goes Official With 5G Support, Smaller Battery, and 40W Fast Charging
Huawei Mate 20 X 5G – the 5G ready variant of the Huawei Mate 20 X – has finally gone official. After an alleged render and retail packaging of the phone surfaced online last month, Huawei has officially launched the phone and has also detailed its availability and pricing for the UK market. The Huawei Mate 20 X 5G is identical to the Huawei Mate 20 X, except the fact that the former is 5G compatible and packs a smaller battery with support for faster 40W charging.
Huawei Mate 20 X 5G price, availability
The Huawei Mate 20 X 5G has been priced at GBP 999 (roughly Rs. 89,500) in the UK. The phone will reportedly hit the shelves in June and will be available from leading operators like Vodafone, Three, EE, and O2. Three and O2 have individually confirmed that they will offer the 5G-ready Huawei phone in summer. Additionally, the Huawei Mate 20 X 5G will be up for grabs from retail partners likes SKY, MPD, and A1 in the UK. There is no word from Huawei regarding the phone’s availability in other markets, including India. Huawei is also bringing the Huawei Mate X foldable phone to the UK market, but there is no official information regarding its pricing and availability as of now.
Huawei Mate 20 X 5G specifications
As mentioned above the main difference between the Huawei Mate 20 X 5G and the standard Huawei Mate 20 X is 5G support, which comes courtesy of the Balong 5000 modem inside the Huawei Mate 20 X 5G. But it has a smaller 4,200mAh battery with support for 40W charging, compared to the 5,000mAh battery inside the Huawei Mate 20 X that only supports 22.5W fast charging standard, just as a recent leak had indicated.
The rest of the Huawei Mate 20 X 5G specifications include a 7.2-inch OLED full-HD+ (1080×2240 pixels) display and the in-house Kirin 980 SoC paired with 6GB of RAM. The phone features a 40-megapixel sensor with a wide-angle lens on the back, accompanied by a 20-megapixel ultra-wide-angle-lens, and an 8-megapixel telephoto camera. The Huawei Mate X packs a 24-megapixel front camera and comes with IP53 water and dust resistance rating.
Sony HT-X8500 2.1 Channel Dolby Atmos Soundbar Launched in India
Sony is steadily expanding its Dolby Atmos soundbar range in India, as its just added a new budget option called the HT-X8500. This soundbar supports Dolby Atmos, DTS:X and connects to a Bravia TV wirelessly, over Bluetooth. The HT-X8500 is on sale in India now for a price of Rs. 29,990 and is available online and through all of Sony’s stores and authorised retail partners.
Up until now, Sony had just one Dolby Atmos soundbar in the market called the HT-ST5000, which came at a steep premium of Rs. 1,39,990. The new HT-X8500 is a lot more accessible in that respect, which is part of Sony’s strategy to bring Dolby Atmos to a lot more living rooms. One of the reasons for this price gulf between the two models is that the HT-X8500 doesn’t come with a stand-alone sub-woofer and has fewer drivers in the soundbar.
Instead, there are two sub-woofers placed at the centre of the soundbar, which is supposed to deliver good bass. At either end of the soundbar are two full-range drivers, which together with the sub-woofers, simulate a 7.1.2 channel audio experience. Sony claims its Vertical Surround Sound technology is what makes getting a Dolby Atmos sound experience possible, without dedicated speakers for each channel. It also says that it can take stereo audio and simulate a surround effect too, with a dedicated mode on the remote.
The HT-X8500 soundbar measures 890x64x96mm and weighs around 3.1kg. It supports Bluetooth 5, HDMI ARC input, HDMI eARC output, is HDCP 2.2 compliant, and is compatible with HDR and DolbyVision. The soundbar can be placed on your TV stand or it can also be wall mounted.
“[The] Sony HT-X8500 soundbar is designed to enhance the audio to complement the TV viewing experience, said Hidenori Hino, Business Head, Audio, Sony India. “With Dolby Atmos and built-in subwoofer, cinema and music lovers will see, hear and feel their favourite shows, movies, and music like never-before,” he added.
I like challenges thrown at me: Shreyas Talpade
Shreyas Talpade says there have been times when he was written of as an actor but he always managed to prove his talent.
In his 19-year-old career, Shreyas has had a mix bag of hits and flops but every film has been a learning for him, says the actor.
“Coming from a non-film background, all you need is an opportunity to show your work, show your versatility. And I am grateful for all the work that I have done and reached this far and still doing work I think it is great. Every film has taught me something. The journey is not over yet,” he told PTI in an interview.
Best known for his critically-acclaimed turns in Dor and Iqbal, the actor says he has learnt to balance praise and brickbats that are a part of being a performer.
“If everything is going in your favour or is good, then you will become complacent. I like challenges thrown at me, I don’t mind when I am not called a star, or when people say I am finished or think I am a non-actor. I know what I am capable of. I believe in myself.”
Shreyas says it is tough to sustain in this industry and he is aware that everyone goes through highs and lows.
“Even the biggest of stars including Amitabh Bachchan sir had to go through a weak phase, he had to struggle. It is part of your professional journey. One who has the hunger and passion for cinema will do whatever it takes to do good work.
“One thing that the industry has taught me is that it is never too late to start or restart at any point. Like how Bachchan sir reinvented himself,” he says.