Amid the furore surrounding the unveiling of Samsung Galaxy Note 10 last August, the Galaxy Book S flew under the radar.
After all, it wasn’t coming to UK at launch, and there was no guarantee it ever would considering Samsung’s track record with laptops. However, more than six months after being released globally, the Galaxy Book S has finally been launched on these shores.
While you might think this makes it old news, this lightweight 13in laptop has a number of tricks up its sleeve that make it worth considering. It’s the latest to choose Qualcomm over industry-standard Intel, with a Snapdragon 8cx chipset coming from a company best known for its phone chips.
Like other Snapdragon laptops, that should bring with it two big benefits for the Galaxy Book S: always-on Gigabit LTE connectivity, and a whopping 23-hour battery life – which should be enough to handle most commutes.
Despite having the “essence of a phone” according to Samsung, the Galaxy Book S still runs Windows 10 – though like other Snapdragon laptops you should expect some compatibility issues, and it will likely default to running in the limited ‘S Mode’, which locks you into Windows Store apps. It’s compatible with both Home and Pro versions though, and it’s a relatively easy upgrade.
The 13.3in HD display will double as a 10-point touchscreen, and on the inside the Book S comes with 8GB of RAM and either 256 or 512GB storage – expandable up to 1TB with a MicroSD card. It also includes AKG speakers with Dolby Atmos support, though that’s no real surprise considering Samsung regularly includes AKG technology on its smartphones.
At just under 1kg, and only 6.2mm thick at its thinnest point, this is a seriously lightweight device too. That brings downsides too though – there’s only a headphone jack and two USB-C ports, one of which doubles for charging duty, though Samsung has squeezed a fingerprint sensor and webcam into the body too. The curved rear hinge also borrows from Asus, though it has a more natural flow to its design.
Since the Galaxy Book S was launched globally, Samsung has released three Galaxy S20 phones alongside a new foldable in the Galaxy Z Flip. We’re not sure how this evolving smartphone design could impact its laptops in years to come.
Frustratingly, we still don’t have a confirmed release date in the UK, although that may have been impacted by the ongoing coronavirus outbreak. Pricing also remains a mystery, so the $999 it’s on sale for in the US remains our best bet.
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