The Samsung DeX is a bit of a venture into the unknown for the South Korean tech company, but it is very much there to compliment the new Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus smartphones. DeX is Samsung’s venture into the mobile hybrid desktop space, aiming to bridge the gap between mobile and office work. The device lets a user slot-in their new smartphone and then uses that very same Android operating system to run a full desktop experience. You’ll need a monitor, keyboard and mouse plus of course your new S8 smartphone, though that’s all you need – And depending on the tasks you use a computer for it might be a capable system for you.
Will DeX replace your PC? well that depends on what you use a PC for, but it is certainly a capable device. Samsung are not the first to create a mobile-hybrid desktop, you might get a sense of deja vu with the DeX. in 2011, Motorola created something pretty similar to the DeX, though the Atrix was hardly met with commercial success. Nevertheless, just because Motorola failed before doesn’t mean you should ignore Samsung’s hybrid – Apple didn’t invent the tablet, but the iPad was the first to go ultra-mainstream, so Samsung could be onto something with the DeX.
So what can the DeX do and who should buy one? Here’s all the details you need to know. Also, if it has sold you on buying the Samsung Galaxy S8, check out our full review for the new flagship smartphone right here.
Samsung DeX: What can it do?
Multitasking has been possible on a smartphone for a few years now, but multitasking tends to still be much easier on a full desktop compared to a small handset. Even bigger smartphones like the iPhone 7 Plus or Galaxy S8 Plus can’t offer the same experience as a desktop on their own, sometimes leaving you longing for a mouse and keyboard. Samsung knows this and with the DeX you can multitask, albeit on the Android operating system that is found on your mobile.
All the PC features you’d expect are there; including the added simplicity of right-clicking, something you just don’t get on a smartphone. Right clicking as you would on a PC, is easy and allows you to navigate options or get work done much quicker – Being able to right click with an Android operating system is pretty cool too. Drag-and-Drop plus all your standard keyboard shortcuts are there too, don’t expect a watered-down experience in that respect.
A nice little extra is being able to still use the S8 as a phone even when its docked, so you won’t miss an important calls just because you are doing some desktop work. DeX isn’t as powerful as a PC but it is a pretty seamless experience from handset to desktop.
Samsung DeX: Who should buy it?
The DeX isn’t designed for everyone but it is there to improve general productivity of the Samsung Galaxy S8 by allowing users more flexibility with their work. On a mobile you can work anywhere, but integrating a mobile and desktop office into one can make life much easier, no more carrying around a heavy laptop as everything you need is there with your phone and hub.
Smartphones tend to have many of the apps we need for work, but it can be difficult to complete tasks with the precision you’ll find on a full desktop, be it formatting long work emails, viewing images – sometimes you need a bigger screen and precise controls to get the job done. When it comes down to it, whether the DeX is right for you depends on the kind of work you do. DeXt isn’t a super-powered PC by any means, but if you mainly use the Office suite, Google docs, and Slack, it might be a good cheaper alternative to investing in a new laptop or home PC. However, if you do need to do design heavy work such as the Adobe-suite, Photoshop etc. this probably isn’t the product for you.
Samsung DeX: Price and availability
The Samsung DeX has released alongside the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus here in the UK. Though, unfortunately European customers won’t be able to get their hands on a bundle like that found in Asia where they have the S8 Plus with an astonishing 6GB of RAM bundled with the DeX dock. So that means if you want the DeX in the UK you are going to have to buy it separately, which is steep if you’re already paying the full price for a Samsung Galaxy S8 or S8 Plus. Although, the good news is that the Samsung DeX has already dropped in price a bit from some retailers. The RRP is £130 but Amazon UK have been selling it for £110 (or on Amazon US for $150), so keep an eye out for a bargain. If you can’t find t on Amazon then you can obviously pick it up direct from Samsung, but expect to pay the full RRP.
Samsung DeX: What are the specs?
The Samsung DeX is pretty straightforward when it comes to specifications. It doesn’t have many ports, but on the product itself you’ll find an Ethernet port, so no need to count on the S8’s Wi-Fi for your internet connection. Furthermore, you’ll get USB Type-C and USB 2.0 ports. The DeX does charge your smartphone when its docked as you’d expect, there is also the option to use an HDMI to power instead. Although, Samsung is slightly sneaky here asking that you buy that cable separately if you want HDMI charging for the DeX. Nevertheless, the option is there if you want to simply things even further.
The Samsung DeX is minimal apart from the access ports, though there are some nice touches. It has a cooling fan to prevent your mobile from overheating when it operates, so there shouldn’t be an issue with ventilation. The DeX is also very portable weighing just 230g. This is much less that a laptop, and given the Samsung Galaxy S8 is about 200g, you’ll be getting a desktop PC experience to carry round with you for less than half a kilo in weight, not bad.
Quite a few of what we can convey in this article, Samsung DeX: With the S8 reviewed, here’s the details on Samsung’s docking hub, including price, hopefully this article useful.