Samsung Galaxy Tab4 8.0 unboxing and first impressions: carrying the Tab legacy forward

“The Tab4 is a classic example of how tab users are evolving and are looking at gadgets that can take on multiple roles”

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The Samsung Galaxy Tab is undoubtedly the one that started the voice-calling tablet trend in India, making the whole country fall in love with something that may not be a all-out performer, but is more utility based and attempts to fulfill multiple requirements with a single device.

Despite facing stiff competition from both foreign as well as Indian brands, the philosophy is still going strong and Samsung has entered the latest generation of its Tab range. While many things have changed, the products still offer the same trusted functionality. Along with the 10.1-inch model (first impressions), we also have the Galaxy Tab 4 8.0, (or the T331 if you’d prefer the exact model number) with us, so let us take a look at what all you get inside the box.

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The tablet ships in the same standard cardboard box as most other Samsung devices, though over the years the box size has actually gone down. Upon opening the box, and sliding out the contents, you will notice the slate placed on top, covered in scratch-protective film from all sides. 

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Underneath the device, there is a tab to lift the package flap that reveals the accessories compartment. The Galaxy Tab 4 ships with the usual wall charger and a USB cable as accessories and as with its 10.1-inch sibling, there’s no headset included. Along with the accessories, there is the standard user guide, warranty manual and other documents included in the box.

Let’s get a closer look at the slate itself.

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The design of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 8.0 can be straightaway compared with most of the smartphones from the brand, only bigger. To be really honest, it’s like looking at a bigger version of the Galaxy S4 smartphone. However, the designers need to be complimented on making the tablet as lightweight as possible. While the original Galaxy Tab P1000 weighed as much as 380 grams, the new Tab4 8.0 has managed to shed a fair bit, tipping the scales at 320 grams, despite the bigger display and battery.

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The front of the device features a flush finish, which is only disturbed by the small bump of the dedicated home key at the bottom. The hardware button has been given up by most device makers, but Samsung still sticks to the conventional design, which has become its signature design as well. Along with this, the slate also uses two capacitive keys for back and recent apps menu.

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The display take up almost 80 percent of the real estate on the tab, and rest of it is covered by the bezels, which have lost considerable flab compared to older devices. At the back, the Tab4 features a textured faux-leather finish. It’s not as detailed as the Galaxy Note 3, but this manages to give a premium look-and-feel to the slate.

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As for the exclusions, the Tab 4 now offers a singular loudspeaker at the back and sheds the IR blaster, which was there on the previous generation 8-inch tablet. The key placement is still the same on the right side of the tablet, with the power/standby key on top, followed by the volume rocker below. In addition, the SIM slot has been provided under the volume rocker, with the memory card slot provided on the bottom of the right side. The left has been left untouched, while the micro-USB port is located on the bottom and the 3.5mm audio socket finds its place on the top of the device.

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The user interface is not much different from before, or so it looks at the first glance. The company is offering free 50GB of Dropbox storage with the tablet, and as soon as it’s turned on for the first time, it prompts the user about this. 

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In terms of added functionality, the tablet comes with the multi-window feature and considering the 8-inch display, this should come in very handy. The tablet comes with integrated 3G and calling features, though it would be interesting to see how many users would be willing to put an 8-inch tablet next to their ears.

For imagery, the Tab4 flaunts a 3-megapixel fixed focus camera at the back and a 1.3-megapixel fixed focus shooter on the front. A complete lowdown of the Tab 4 8.0, including details on its performance in various aspects will be offered in out full review, which we will be bringing to you in the coming days.

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