Another Samsung Galaxy, What?! It’s the 7 Inch Tab 3 with 4G
We’re Samsung fans over here at Tech 4 Moms, which you might have noticed, what with all the Samsung Galaxy reviews you’ve seen on the site. But the only reason there are so many Samsung Galaxy device reviews is because there is so much variety. I think Samsung set out to make a Galaxy gadget for everybody. So, it’s our privilege to distinguish their differences so that you can figure out which best suits your needs.
Because of our affiliation with Sprint as a #SprintMom, Sprint sent out a seven inch Galaxy Tab 3 7.0 4G a couple months ago. At first I was skeptical because I’ve only ever gone for Tablets that had the biggest screen, the fastest processor, the most memory storage…all of that. Could the Tab 3 possibly be enough machine for me?
So, if you’ve sometimes questioned if you really need to blow five-hundred dollars (or more) on a tablet, or if you might be happy with one that’s not that high on the line, here’s my evaluation of just such a tablet.
What the 7 inch Tab 3 is good for:
Decent screen makes for decent movie/ TV watching and game playing experience.
I have some devices with very high resolution. The Tab 3 is not one of them (1024x 600 resolution with 169 ppi), but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s still HD and it doesn’t look blurry. On the contrary, have you ever accidentally gone to the non-HD channels on your HD TV? They are still out there, and they look worse than they would if you watched the same thing on an analog TV. I’ve suffered so much annoyance watching sucky graphics on super high resolution screens, and this was not an issue on the Tab 3. So no, a screen on the lower end of the HD spectrum isn’t the deal breaker I used to think it was—unless your main intent is to watch ultra HD content. In that case, you’ll want something with an ultra HD screen.
Fast enough processor to play games that lower end devices cannot.
In the line of duty, we play lots of apps and games in our house. You know, for blogging purposes. Woe is me, I know. We’ve quickly learned which devices are capable of running the more intensive apps, and which devices crash. For the most part, this one has performed admirably. I have noticed that when the kids run their games and don’t shut them down before opening new ones, the Tab 3 will eventually crash, but an easy way to fix or avoid this is to just shut down all the background apps every once in a while.
Perfect compact size for fitting in a purse, letting the kids play, or use an eReader.
I love using my tablet or phone as an eReader. In the past I’ve used a 10.1 inch tablet for this. My arms (plural, because I have to hold it with both hands) get tired of holding it. It’s just a little too big for that sort of thing. But the Tab 3 7.0 is the perfect size to fit in one hand and can be comfortably held in any variety of positions without losing feeling in your fingers. Definitely a bonus for a person who likes to read into the wee hours of the morn’.
It’s small enough that it isn’t unwieldy in the hands of a child, which is doubly awesome. First that decreases the chances of them dropping the thing, and second it’s the perfect size for them to play their games. Have I mentioned that the Tab 3 7.0 has a kids version? It comes with a heavy duty rubber case, cool colors, and some kid friendly tweaks on the user interface (two separate interfaces to be exact. One for the kids and one for the parents), but it’s the same hardware underneath.
And last thing about the size, it is so much less conspicuous when stowed away in my purse. Do you know I actually bought a couple purses specifically because they were big enough to tote around my previously mentioned 10.1 inch tablet? It still stuck out. This thing has no problems fitting into any one of my purses (I had to pose it ever so carefully to get a picture of it sticking out of the above purse).
What you might not want to use it for: Productivity
So, I’m kind of a computing snob. I love having my phones and tablets so that I can access my stuff on the go, and stay productive, and keep the kids busy, and entertain myself. True. But I also infinitely prefer my desktop or laptop for productivity purposes (like word and excel documents, or blog posts, or emails, and especially photo and video rendering. I avoid doing those last two on mobile devices). Mobile apps are great for the in-between moments when you need to get stuff done but don’t have your laptop at hand.
If you use your tablet as a laptop by attaching a keyboard, that’s great too. I’ve done my share of that. But I felt like the Tab 3 7.0 was a little too small for this. So, no. I wouldn’t attach a keyboard to this baby, and with the smaller screen it might be annoying to create documents, or complete other minute tasks in it. But it would still be better than trying to do it on a phone.
Really, the only thing to say about the camera is that it has one. Two actually. Both are relatively low resolution cameras. You most likely won’t be doing any award winning photography, but it would be a terrible oversight if it didn’t have, not one, but two cameras. We all know that.
And finally, what will you pay for a tablet like this?
The Sprint 4G Tab 3 7.0 retails for $300 (without a contract)
The WiFi version retails for $200
For a full Android tablet with decent specs, that price tag can be classified as “awesome sauce”. It really is a nice solid tablet. Compare this with the Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 (the biggest and best Galaxy that Samsung has to offer). It’s $850. And that’s for WiFi only.
So the question is: Do you need the biggest and best? Or is a middle of the line tablet looking dandy right about now?
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I’m a technological enthusiast with a completely unrelated degree in English Literature. I’ve also been known to dabble in photography and DIY furniture refinishing, with occasional stints of fitness sprinkled among all of the above.