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Samsung Series 7 Slate 700T – Virtual keyboard, Stylus and Screen

Ardjuna Seghers

By Ardjuna Seghers



Our Score:


Navigating through Windows 7 ‘pure’ is certainly the easiest of any tablet we’ve tried, thanks to the large, beautifully responsive capacitive screen and the 700T’s powerful innards, which we’ll cover in a while. For situations where a digit is too clumsy, the stylus comes in handy, and for typing Samsung has provided a Swype-enabled virtual keyboard that’s a huge improvement over Microsoft’s default effort.

Though we’re sorry to say it’s still far from up to the tablet competition, with it sometimes failing to appear when needed, appearing when not wanted, or covering the part of a form you’re trying to complete. The keyboard also can’t be moved from its central position and maintains large borders to either side, making it impossible to type using your thumbs in landscape mode and difficult to do so in portrait.

Of course, the included stylus isn’t just for pressing small virtual buttons. Thanks to the 700T’s inbuilt Wacom digitizer, the stylus is a sleek, matt black affair that’s light and doesn’t require batteries. Instead it works through electromagnetic resonance. And this is but one advantage over the rival stylus technologies found in Android tablets like the HTC Flyer and Lenovo ThinkPad Android tablet (review coming soon), which both use N-Trig’s pen system. Other advantages include deactivation of finger input when the stylus’ tip is near the screen, a pressure-sensitive eraser on the back of the pen, and interchangeable nibs which also support more sensitivity levels. A metal nib remover and five spare nibs are provided with the stylus.

Thanks to this pressure sensitivity and the interchangeable nibs, the 700T provides the next best drawing experience after a full-fat Wacom graphics tablet like the Intuos 4. It’s arguably a superior artist’s tool to the Asus EP121 too, not only thanks to the Slate’s reduced weight but also to the softer glass layer over its screen, which comes a little closer to the experience of drawing on paper than Asus’ Wacom-enabled rival. In addition, the Samsung’s faster CPU and better graphics help it to run demanding programs like Photoshop and Painter far more smoothly. Essentially then, if you want a miniature, portable Cintiq, this is as close as you’re going to get.

It certainly doesn’t hurt that the Slate’s 11.6in, 1,366 x 768 screen is one of the nicer ones we’ve come across. It sports the same PLS panel technology found in Samsung’s new S27A850D monitor range, and since this is a rival panel type to IPS, you can expect many of the same benefits. These include reasonably accurate colour reproduction, vivid colours and nearly flawless viewing angles.

Despite some minor backlight bleed from the right and bottom edges, backlighting is even. Contrast is good though not the best we’ve seen, with our darkest greyshade being indistinguishable from true black. However, it still holds up well for gloomy material, and has impressively white, erm, whites, thanks in part to its incredibly bright 400nits. This also helps to make the screen readable in sunlight or brightly lit environments. Keep in mind that at full brightness the battery will drain very quickly, and for average use we found a brightness of around 30 percent to be adequate.

Overall it holds up really well, and it’s a pleasure to use the Slate 700T for viewing photos or watching movies (the latter of which won’t show large black bars as one of the few benefits of the Slate’s 16:9 aspect ratio). Audio is decent for a tablet but that’s not saying too much, and as with most small mobile devices, you’re better off using some headphones.

Ala Miah

September 1, 2011, 9:24 pm

Everything aside this is genuinely the first tablet/slate that I want. I wanted something I can replace my laptop with and this is close to being it! It will 'hopefully' in the future be able to run windows 8 which would be great!

999 is a lot of money though so will need to sell my current laptop in order to fund it but hopefully it will be worth it.


September 1, 2011, 9:35 pm

It looks like a great piece of hardware, but I think Windows 7 will still hold it back. With Windows 8 installed, and if it lives up to the touch-friendly promise, this could do very well.


September 2, 2011, 2:48 am

Beside the price, which is pretty high, 700t has one more big problem that could hold back many of the potential buyers. To me it looked like perfect companion for photography runs, but it's lack of full sized SD slot really diged into my enthusiasm.


September 2, 2011, 4:43 pm

granted it's another thing to carry with you, but what about a tiny USB SD card reader? e.g. this: http://www.scan.co.uk/products/veho-vsd-001-sd-card-reader-all-sd-inc-hdsc-mmc-and-rs-mmc-memory-usb-20


September 15, 2011, 5:17 pm

@Ala Miah:
Likewise. And it can run Windows 8 very well indeed :D

Yes, it is rather a shame. The 7 Slate could really have done with a docking base/keyboard with an extra battery and connectivity thrown in, a la the Eee Pad Transformer. Then it would have been THE ULTIMATE Windows Tablet EVER :D

Another alternative to @ChaosDefinesOrder's good solution is to use a micro-SD card with full-size adapter in your camera... not ideal by any means, but it will work.

evan fotis

November 8, 2011, 10:13 pm

If the Asus was almost as thin as this one it would certainly be the more complete solution, not only due to all things mentioned already like ports, keyboard etc. but just from the screen size. The EP121 is not only 1" larger but also 16:10 thus making a difference. Basically the 700T screen is like a stretched ipad as can be seen in this size comparison:
From left to right, Asus Transformer, Apple Ipad, Samsung 700T, Asus EP121.

For the reviewers:
Which of the two had the better display (viewing angles, contrast, color rendition)
and less reflective one?

And just to reiterate: Was using he pen a clearly better experience on the 700T, with improved responsiveness and accuracy than on the Ep121?


November 9, 2011, 1:54 pm

Me want one


November 9, 2011, 3:07 pm

As I mention in the review, the main reasons to choose the Samsung over the EP121 are its faster, more efficient CPU/GPU, combined with its longer battery life. I also mention the screen aspect ratio difference.

As to your questions, not having both devices to hand I would say the displays are roughly comparable in quality, though from what I can remember the Asus takes the lead not only due to its aspect ratio but also with slightly 'blacker' blacks.

Using the pen was a better experience on the Samsung because the glass layer covering the screen is 'softer' than the Gorilla Glass on the Asus. Responsiveness was only better in situations where the EP121's CPU was failing to keep up with Photoshop et al.

Hope that helps :)

Arctic Fox

November 9, 2011, 4:07 pm

Given that we are talking Intel architecture (even though it is the latest iteration of this class of cpu) I have to say that Sammy has done a good job with this slate as far as battery life goes. I would be very interested in seeing what effect installing Win8 (the RC, when everything is pretty much fully tweaked) has on this aspect. It would give us a very clear idea what that os is bringing to the table as far as its "power footprint" is concerned on an x86 setup.


December 8, 2011, 10:15 am

I was also reading other reviews about the Samsung Series 7 Slate 700T I think it is the best Windows 7 tablet so far but I have one disappiontment on this tablet is that from other review the 3DMark06 is 1642 but the Apple MacBook Air scored 4251. Both machines are using the same CPU and GPU, could someone explain it to me why there is a huge difference in the Graph performance? Thank you very much in advance!


December 9, 2011, 1:57 am

I signed up just want to complain about the same problem mentioned in the review - low building quality. The following happens exactly to me and it's really annoying. "Worst of all, on our sample model the back separated from the glass front enough to be able to just see the components through the gap" I have sent it to Fort Worth, TX for repair last week as I thought it would be a isolated incident. But now I know I was wrong! Due to shortage of part, they promise to exchange a new unit to me. But what if it happens again?? Except for the quality issue, I reckon it is the best windows-based tablet so far in the market. Fei


January 6, 2012, 2:20 am

This is the third review site I have visited that knocks on the 16:9 screen ratio. Personally, for reviewing letter size documents, I prefer 4:3 even over 16:10 - BUT THAT IS IRRELEVANT because Microsoft has mandated this aspect ratio as the minimum for getting the full Win 8 experience (particularly the two resizable windows on a tablet). In effect, Samsung had no choice and neither will forthcoming vendors.


October 3, 2013, 7:05 am

Sorry to sound ignorant but is the keyboard built in or is it separate from the tablet

Rufus Pearce

February 17, 2016, 9:23 am

Windows and MacOS are hugely different Oses

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