Galaxy Tab S6 Lite at 8 months in
I decided to do a follow up on this as I didn’t really conclude the original and there’ve been some updates, if not particularly many.
TL;DR – not disappointed, not feeling cheated, not feeling excited. Comfortably numb.
OK, so at 8 months in I’m not disappointed with the thing, but I’m not particularly amazed. We’re going to go with what I’m sort of down on, but realize this is what I do. Also since almost everything below sounds negative, this is the best tablet I have played with in the price range. To be fair this is also only about one of 5 in this price range I have messed around with so take this with a grain of salt.
The battery life is not the greatest for the purposes I use this for. These being reading, putting the thing next to my bed and forgetting about charging it, and then remembering to pick it up again a few days later. I find even in battery saving mode, with what I have running, it’s not surviving quite as long as I’d like.
I also find I’m fighting the brightness control, which is a software issue that appears related to the battery saver. Sorry Samsung, I need it bright for reading in the modes I do.
Much of the battery probably has to do with having connected it to my Google Messages as a way to send texts via my phone, Facebook Messenger just because I’m an admin in a few groups that need to tell me someone’s gone crazy, etc. These things drain battery, but they seemed to drain it less on an ancient tablet I still have. Who knows. Use cases vary and it lasts for weeks beside the bed without a charge.
The magnetic case and S-Pen … man I so want to use these somehow but I’m not. I mean they’re freaking cool and I love having them but I feel I should probably just put the case and pen away because I find that I’m just fiddling with them. I’ve flipped the pen out significantly more times than I’ve used the pen.
The processing speed is ok, even in battery saver mode. It works. I don’t feel like I’m waiting.
WiFi is a little weak – not horribly so, but the antennas in this are not as good as the ones in my Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G when it comes to 2.4ghz wall penetrating signals. Know how I know this? I read in the tub occasionally and yeah, phone works meh, tablet works less than meh.
Lordy, I know this doesn’t sound like a glowing review but there’s not a whole lot that stands out about this other than it is well designed, solid, and can give you a bruise when you accidentally drop it on your face.
Sound works, well, something I don’t use much of because I’m using it for reading. Cameras as well. They work, they’re pretty good. I don’t use them. Have only had one issue that I’m pretty sure was an app I was using being a punk and not related to the tablet.
I don’t dislike the OS, it’s been getting updates, but it’s generic. Pretty, nice design, but feels generic.
Maybe I just am not enthused about a non-gaming WiFi only laptop? I don’t know. I mean I would miss it if it were gone but man, it’s like what the best phone was about 4 years ago and then make it 4x larger.
Galaxy Tab S6 updates incoming?
It’s Feb 7th, 2022 as of this writing. The last security patch level was from November 1, 2021 which was installed on January 1, 2022. I’m not really familiar with Samsung’s tablet time tables, but it feels like their phones are generally only a month behind at the most.
Eh, no huge whoop, this tablet’s supposed to reach Android 13 (or at least 3 years of support,) when it comes out, we’re currently at 11.
There’s nothing with 12 on my phone that compels me to demand an upgrade at the moment, and with my experience on the S21 Ultra with Samsung’s really really buggy 12 update, I’m going to let them take their sweet sweet time.
Overall I am pleased
To end this incredibly glowing review, here’s what would have made me sound a lot more enthusiastic in my use cases:
Better grip for reading/holding. Lighter – this thing weighs on your wrists after a while. Either better battery or wireless charging of some sort. Maybe a little thinner. Slightly better speakers. Better 2.4ghz WiFi antenna.
But no, really, this is a good tablet. I’m gruntled about it, just not particularly excessively.
You can grab a Galaxy Tab S6 Lite at Amazon for between $250 and $403, or pick one up at Costco like I did. Remember you can expand the storage with a microSD card, so no need to blow a lot on the highest capacity unit.