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Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 review: Low cost, high value
Samsung Galaxy Tab A7
Retail price: $229.99$229.99 at Amazon
What we like
What we don't like
Seeking a slate that slays? The Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 is an affordable option that boasts excellent design and performance for the money. This device is a more powerful alternative to simpler fare in more ways than one. Is it the tablet for you? Find out in this Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 review.
See also: The best cheap Android tablets
What you need to know about the Samsung Galaxy Tab A7
- Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 (32GB): $229.99/€195/£165
- Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 (64GB): $279.99/€235/£199
The Galaxy Tab A7 runs at the higher end of the entry-level segment. It comes in two storage variants and several different colors, including gray, silver, and gold. The 32GB model is much more appealing from a price perspective, though many would consider 32GB a limited amount of storage.
Basic features of this attractive tablet include a 10.4-inch display, Snapdragon processor with 3GB of RAM, a huge battery, quad speakers, expandable storage, and a headphone jack. It offers a lot for the money.
Similarly priced alternatives include the Lenovo Smart Tab M10 HD and Amazon Fire 8 HD Plus. If you want to spend a little more, the Galaxy Tab S6 Lite and Apple’s entry-level iPad are also worth a look.
The display is very, very good. It measures 10.4-inches across the diagonal and boasts a better-than-Full HD resolution of 2,000 by 1,200 pixels. It’s by far the best screen I’ve seen in the entry-level segment for tablets. I found it a joy to use day in and day out. It was bright, clean, and colorful, with sharp text and clear icons. The display is great for watching movies and TV shows.
Samsung put together some excellent hardware here. The Galaxy Tab A7 has a metal chassis with all the trimmings. In addition to the roomy display, you’ve got four speakers, USB-C for charging, a headphone jack, and a microSD slot that accommodates memory cards up to 1TB. It’s nice that it comes in three colors, which is more than most tablets in this class. Further, Samsung has some first-party accessories for it, such as a folio case, that complete the experience.
Samsung put together some excellent hardware in the Galaxy Tab A7, which has a metal chassis and all the trimmings.
Processing speeds are above average for this class. The tablet includes a Qualcomm Snapdragon 662 processor with 3GB of RAM. This combination was hearty enough to power the tablet through most tasks with ease. Everyday activities such as email, browsing, YouTube, and social networking didn’t tax the tablet at all. When I tested the popular racing game Asphalt 9, I saw dramatically better performance than I did on the MediaTek-powered Lenovo Smart Tab M10 HD.
Battery life is fantastic. With a 7,040mAh battery inside, you’ve got more than enough juice to last you through a long day. The Tab A7 easily soared past 10 hours of video playback, which is above average for this class of device.
Samsung nailed the speakers. With four speakers aboard and Dolby Atmos for tuning via headphones, you can expect great sound. I was very pleased with the overall response of the speakers, which produced rich, detailed sound. Though you can plug directly into the headphone jack, I found the speakers great on their own.
Samsung phones buyer’s guide: Everything you need to know
What’s not so good?
At well more than a pound, it’s a bit heavier than competing tablets. Combine this with the elongated 16:9 form factor and you have a slate that some might struggle to use comfortably. This is doubly true for kids.
Speaking of kids, there’s no kids mode or dedicated space on the tablet for children’s content. You can download Google’s Family Link from the Play Store, but Samsung could have put something together.
There's no kids mode or dedicated space on the tablet for children's content.
The Galaxy Tab A7 runs Android 10 and Samsung One UI 2.5 on the September security update. This is not the latest build from Google, nor the latest UI variant from Samsung. It most certainly isn’t a recent security patch. Software updates, even those pertaining to security, will be less frequent with the Tab A7 than they will be with a mid- to top-end Galaxy smartphone. It’s not a bad platform for the tablet, but Samsung’s One UI 3 (the current version) is much better.
Don’t rely on the cameras. Except for Apple’s most expensive iPad, I’ve yet to encounter a tablet with merely good cameras, let alone great ones. The Tab A7’s 8MP user-facing camera and the 5MP rear-facing camera are passable at best. They get the job done in a pinch if you’ve got nothing else to use, but surely your phone — whatever it happens to be — will take better pictures than this tablet.
Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 review: Should I buy it?
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 is the most complete entry-level Android tablet I’ve reviewed. While I found a few things to complain about, overall it offers a fine experience across the board. With a sturdy chassis, great screen, excellent battery life, and other amenities onboard, the Tab A7 nearly has it all.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 is the most complete affordable Android tablet to date.
The Tab A7 may cost a bit more than competing low-cost tablets, but the extra cash is well spent. It’s no pro-grade machine, but for everyday activities such as watching videos, browsing the web, and even gaming, it gets the job done and then some.