Leaning towards returning S7. A few questions first...


Jan 31, 2011
I've had the S7 for a week, and I think the it's the best value going in a tablet right now; but it falls a little short of "on target" for me.

First the positive:
VALUE. Low entry cost & no extra monthly $$ (already on T-Mobile USA)
Android Market onboard
Phone & data available T-Mobile
Bluetooth onboard
Performance & interface (I like the "hard" buttons)
GPS onboard

Neutral, but often cited:
Resistive screen (Same as my N900 phone, so I'm used to it. I sometimes like the precision of using a stylus.)

Negatives (high to low priority)
1. Android = no double or shift-click on web application I use several times daily for work
2. Data teathering not simple (N900 on T-Mobile USA.) First shot at it = fail.
3. Android 2.1 = limited app space and no flash support
4. Camera so bad I couldn't get BarCode app to work.
5. Rumblings say better alternatives are coming to market soon
6. Battery under-performs competition
7. Zinio (e-book / magazine outlet) not yet out for Android
8. Mobile versions of some webpages load with no option to switch to normal version
9. VideoPhone not yet available
10. T-Mobile data not 4G & some reported getting locked out (I only used it to test once)
11. WiFi a tad glitchy. Often drops on sleep & must be manually re-established
12. Speakerphone only.
13. Non-standard charger (should use mini/micro USB)
14. Lack of accessories--does that foretell shallow support and quick abandonment?

Solutions to many of my concerns (1, 2, 3, 7, 8, and 9) SEEM likely to be just around the corner, but there are so many, and I keep hearing rumors of many new tablet offerings later this year. By the time these S7 issues are resolved, better options might be available on the shelf. I'm leaning towards "eating" the $37.50 restocking fee and returning the S7.


I just spent a week in Texas, using the S7 for GPS navigation, finding places to eat, etc.

2) Tethered to my N900 (using power kernel and mobile hotspot). First time I set it up, I ended up removing, but gave it a second shot, and it ended up working pretty well. I can even use wep. I did have to replace the wpa supplicant file on the S7. I can try to help on this if you want.

3) I setup the app2sd (on internal card) hack following directions here, no issues so far, now I have plenty of space for apps. Still no flash support.

5) Better alternative may be just around the corner, but I decided the S7 was still a very good price/features ratio. I think most alternatives (that are worthwhile) will still be pretty pricey.

8) Check out the Dolphin browser, it can be set to show up as a "desktop" browser to load the normal websites.

10) Tethering via N900?

11) You can set wifi to stay connected all the time. Haven't notice a big hit on battery, but doesn't have disconnect problems for me.

Can't argue on some of the other issues. If you want any help, I am happy to try.
Thanks for the quick and helpful replies!

I almost have to laugh at how much I flip-flop on keeping or returning this device.

I'm not the tech savvy enough to be a good "early adopter", which is what this is really is at this point. For me, doing anything root-y or kernal-ly is nerve-racking and takes 11.3 times longer than I think it should to get working. I was singed (though not fully burned) last year by jumping on the Nokia N900 phone/internet device, which Nokia has not supported adequately. The N900 community is GREAT, and they've upgraded the N900 experience to just moderately disappointing. This has that same feel to it (but at less than half the hardware investment), so I'm a bit leery.

Lemmy's point 5-B is the main issue that has me hanging on. The S7 is a lot of hardware for $250. Future products with improved features might be twice the price (especially when you factor in the $40 restocking fee to Best Buy to return the S7).

I just tried the Dolphin browser (seems very nice, BTW--thanks!) and set it up to use "desktop" as the user agent. It still loaded Google Docs mobile. I found an option on the Google webpage to "click to use desktop" instead of mobile version. Even after doing that, Google Docs' spreadsheet is pretty much unusable for me on this thing. The N900 actually does it much better. Any other suggestions?

p.s. I can't "click-to-thank" anyone--is that option restricted for new users for a time? EDIT: I updated my profile & avitar to gain "points" and now this feature appears for me.
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You can find me with the same name over at TMO. Just tried Google Docs spreadsheet with dolphin, that's a mess. Earlier today I found this thread: http://www.androidtablets.net/forum...uickoffice-tablet-edition-work-huawei-s7.html

I opened and easily edited an excel spreadsheet. Not too bad, for occasional use, and free!

If you can muddle through using the N900, I'm sure you can work with the S7. I'm guessing support will be about the same, ie mostly through the community. I was unsure about buying an S7 as well, even started a thread here too.

Here was my rationale:

1) There are cheaper tablets <$200, from what I can see they are pretty much bare bones, minimal hardware, very hit or miss to get a good one. I hadn't found one I thought I could live with.

2) There are more expensive tablets: Galaxy Tab (~$600), Viewsonic G-Tablet (~$400, 10" too big for me).

3) There should be some more tablets later this year, for instance a wifi only Galaxy Tab. I suspect this may not have GPS and I'm guessing will be ~$400?? I'll bet most of the nicer tablet coming out will be in that range.

So, right now for $250, I got a tablet that can double as a phone (in a pinch if needed), can share my data via wifi from my N900, and I could get payg data (although expensive) if needed. It's got wifi, bluetooth, and gps. 8GB storage isn't great, but it has an sd card slot (and I already have several of those).

I got it as a companion device for my N900. Right now I play with it far more than the N900, better(bigger) for browsing and reading. There are plenty of games and apps to play with in the market (an area where the N900 suffers). Works great for navigation (blows the N900 away), and with the new Maps 5, you can start a route on wifi, scroll through the route a little (which caches it to memory) and go. It will re-reroute without a data connection as long as you don't get too lost. Maps 5 uses vector maps, so downloads are small.

I'm quite happy at this point, I believe that 2.2 (and perhaps even 2.3) will come either supported or not. Seems like the community is very helpful, much like TMO.

Good luck deciding.
Thanks again, Lemmy.

Having just tried out the Google Maps 5.0-Navigation combo, I'm back on the "it's a keeper" side. That's some good stuff there :). I need to step away from this for a day or two, but after that, I'll likely be in touch again to try to work through the teathering issue. Thanks for offering to help!

I'll also have to give the QuickOffice Tablet Edition a try, although a quick glance shows some pretty scathing reviews--and yeah...Google Spreadsheet is a mess with this thing.

6. Put your device on charge and leave it on. Max capacity will be obtained after 7-10 days.
10. This is Tmob US fault for deciding to use a frequency unrecognised by the rest of the world.
And 12. What do you mean speakerphone only?
I use mine with a BT headset and the one included with the unit without any problem!
6. Put your device on charge and leave it on. Max capacity will be obtained after 7-10 days.
10. This is Tmob US fault for deciding to use a frequency unrecognised by the rest of the world.
12. What do you mean speakerphone only?
6. Never heard of any battery working like this. Source??

10. It's not about assigning blame--it's "what's it do--or not do--for me?"

12. During the few hours when I had the sim card in, I got two incoming calls. My choices were to answer on speaker phone or to let it go to voice mail since I didn't have a headset plugged in. Sometimes, holding the big-ole' tablet up to your ear would be more appropriate than going full-on speaker phone. It's not a show-stopper. Just a minor preference. That's why it's listed #12 and not #2 or 3.

Lion battery technology attains max potential after some use. If the use has been at a constant low level then the chemistry suffers and gives less than its max capacity. The best way to maximise this is to charge as often and for as long as possible. Its just a characteristic of a newly commissioned battery. It wont hurt the battery and the gain is significant.
I ran very exhaustive tests on this subject a number of years back with three identical nokia N95s which were charged in differing ways and the resulting real world battery life noted. All was done over an extended period and the discharge time was greatest with the unit that had been left on charge constantly for 10 days without discharge cycling. All possible factors were kept equal.
Good background info can be found at battery univercity.
So, to maximize S7 battery life, I just have to buy ten more of these things, and rotate them through--taking using each one out only after it's 10th day on the charger. Great!

Seriously, thanks for pointing out the benefit of charging as often and long as possible.

I don't think that is what he means. I think he means that you should do that early in the life of a battery. If you do not do a PROLONGED charge early in the life of a battery, it develops a memory and will not work to its optimum performance. Correct me if this is wrong.