All the added features when paired with the new Galaxy Note
by Nicholas Yong
When the Samsung DeX was first introduced together with the Samsung Galaxy S8, it was an ingenious concept - Turning your phone into a mobile desktop.
All you needed to do was get the Samsung DeX, plug it into an existing display, keyboard and mouse, and your Galaxy S8 transforms into a legit desktop, with proper UI complete with Microsoft Office functionality for corporate workaholics on the move.
Fast forward a few months, and the portable desktop experience has been greatly improved. For those who're curious, here’s a list of what you can expect when you plug in the new Galaxy Note 8 into your existing DeX (yes, you won't need to splurge on a new DeX if you already own one).
MORE TO SEE AT ONCE
The first thing you’ll see is a lot more apps on the app drawer displayed at once - a whopping 36 per page, so you don’t have to scroll far to look for an app to add to your desktop shortcut.
E-MAIL LIKE A DESKTOP PRO
Probably the most-needed update to the DeX was the e-mail functionality - Using the native Samsung e-mail app (or Outlook or Nine Mail, whichever you prefer), you can now right click and delete, as well as drag and drop attachments into your e-mail, just like how you would when sending stuff to clients on a regular basis.
Adding bullet points, bolding and inverting text is just as easy.
VIDEO CONFERENCE MULTITASKING
If you’re using Zoom (or Meeting, or BlueJeans) to speak to colleagues, DeX now allows you to display an additional window to everyone at the same time. For instance, you can be talking about the new company proposal, mark changes on PowerPoint, and everyone in the chat will be able to see the changes in real-time. Pretty cool for teaching students when you're on-the-go too.
And if you need to head off, just plug out your Galaxy Note 8 and the chat continues as per normal, or continue your current chat by plugging your phone into the DeX (there’s a little load time when slotting or removing the phone, but that’s normal)
FULLSCREEN GAMING GALORE
Now more and more gaming apps support fullscreen gameplay - Just head into the Game Launcher and try it out. Take Super Evil Megacorp’s popular MOBA Vainglory - you can play using keyboard shortcuts and the mouse just like a real desktop experience.
CREATE YOUR OWN SICK TUNES
If you’ve used Soundcamp on your phone before, then the desktop experience will be right up your alley. Plug in a midi USB keyboard onto the DeX to play music, then you can mix and match different instruments with Multitrack DAW to create your personal jam.
Otherwise, use the in-built Looper to make your own music loop - or throw your friends a challenge to make their own signature tracks the next time the gang meets up.
BEAUTIFY PHOTOS WITH LIGHTROOM
Photographers already using the Lightroom app on their phones will be happy to know that you’ll get a fullscreen, desktop experience when plugging your Galaxy Note 8 into your DeX. It’s close to full functionality, with all the dials and sliders you want to edit that portrait or landscape photo just the way you intend it.
THE SECRET FULLSCREEN OPTION
Current DeX users will know that most apps don't support a fullscreen desktop. Samsung has added a secret option to try and force apps to display in fullscreen.
Open your settings on the desktop, then hit on Samsung DeX - you should see a toggle for Samsung DeX Labs. Click that, and the DeX will try to resize all apps not officially supported by Samsung DeX.
WHAT ABOUT MY SAMSUNG GALAXY S8 (OR S8 PLUS)?
Bad news for Galaxy S8 owners - these new features won’t be coming at the same time as the arrival of the Galaxy Note 8, and Samsung hasn't confirmed if an update will arrive for Galaxy S8.
But they didn’t explicitly say it won’t be coming either, so watch this space - we’ll let you know once we can update our Galaxy S8 phones to use the new DeX features too.