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Samsung Tab S9 FE Review

Posted on 3-Mar-2024 18:00 by M Freitas | Filed under: Reviews

Samsung Tab S9 FE Review

After a few years of exclusively using a laptop, having a tablet available to me for a few weeks was quite interesting. 


In this case, the Samsung Tab S9 FE, with FE meaning “Fan Edition”, is a more affordable version of the Samsung Tab S9.


The Android-based Samsung Tab S9 FE comes with Samsung's long history of creating mobile devices.


It’s well finished, and at just a bit over 500g it feels right on your hands. With 2304 x 1440 pixels, 10.9” LCD TFT screen it’s just the right size to consume digital media in a personal setting – be it using a browser or a streaming service app.


With 6 GB RAM and 128 GB storage, the octa-core 2.4/2.0 GHz processor keeps it fluid and speedy. And if you want more storage, a SIM-style tray can add more storage with microSD cards.


Samsung does a good job with its One UI Android flavour. Out-of-the-box experience is seamless, and you can use your new tablet in minutes after taking it out of the box. 


With Samsung Dex, and with Bluetooth mouse and keyboard you can even use a larger monitor and have a desktop like experience.


But the most interesting feature for me was Multi Control. With this feature, you can use the mouse and keyboard connected to one Samsung device to control other Samsung devices connected to your account.


For example, if you have a tablet and a phone side-by-side, you can move the mouse cursor to the edge of the screen, and it will jump to the other device as if it were one single desktop area. You can even drag and drop files from one device to another and it will be automatically copied across. To use this feature, you only need to have those devices connected to the same Wi-Fi network. 


Using a keyboard and mouse allowed me to quickly complete tasks I normally use my laptop for. Current mobile browsers and apps are really at the level where they can easily replace most applications you usually run on a laptop or desktop. For me, those are Office 365 apps (including Outlook, Word, Excel and OneDrive), which run well on the Samsung Tab S9 FE. 


Biometrics scanners include a fingerprint reader built into the power button and facial recognition using the front camera.


The camera specs are probably not the strongest, with an 8-megapixel rear camera capable of UHD 4K (3840 x 2160) @ 30fps video recording. 


The interesting thing is IP68 rating, which means it’s water and dust resistant, giving you some flexibility and peace of mind – although being water resistant doesn’t mean being waterproof (or even resistant to other liquids).


Battery life is around 16 hours with Wi-Fi connected, and specs say you could get up to 113 hours if playing music only. In any case, I didn’t worry about battery the whole time I’ve had it around here.


The bit that disappointed me was the USB-C connector being rated as USB 2.0 only, as I always expect more from a wired connection and moving files between the tablet and a computer should be as fast as possible.


At this point, you might be asking: if the Samsung Tab S9 FE is so good, what is the main difference with the more expensive Samsung Tab S9? The most visible difference here is that while the Samsung Tab S9 FE has a LCD screen the Samsung Tab S9 has a slightly larger AMOLED screen with a higher refresh rate. In addition, the Tab S9 has a faster processor, USB C 3.2 and support for Wi-Fi 6E. These differences carry a price tag, though.


Overall, I was very surprised at how comfortable it was to use a table after a long time away from this form factor. It could well be worth looking at this device as a replacement for a laptop if you don’t use CPU or GPU-heavy applications and want something lighter to carry around.