Samsung’s Galaxy S8 comes with a familiar treat for ex- Lumia 950 and Moto Atrix users – the ability to turn your powerful handheld computer into a powerful desktop computer. Using Samsung’s DeX accessory, owners of the firm’s latest flagship device will be able to connect their smartphone to a monitor, keyboard, and mouse for increased productivity.
Samsung didn’t do this alone, collaborating with Adobe and Microsoft in order to get custom apps ready for business and enterprise customers.
Users of Samsung’s S8 will be able to use Microsoft’s Office Suite and its related apps like Outlook for email, OneNote for quickly taking notes and Word, PowerPoint and Excel for productivity.
For Adobe users, you’ll be able to use Adobe Lightroom Mobile, Adobe Acrobat, and other mobile productivity apps.
There’s even something for Windows users, with Citrix and VMWare’s remote desktop solutions, supported on the Samsung DeX.
The key question some will be asking is how this differs in any way from Microsoft’s Continuum.
Firstly, it’ll be sold on a phone people will actually buy and use. While Microsoft’s Lumia 950 XL brought a lot of firsts, the firm was loathe to innovate further on those features or even present them in a package worth lusting after.
Secondly, it actually has the mobile apps to enable some rudimentary form of productivity. The biggest flaw with Windows 10 Mobile’s Continuum is its lack of apps, and in comparison with the Galaxy S8’s DeX, this is especially egregious.
Finally, unlike Windows 10 Mobile’s implementation of Continuum, this actually looks like a desktop PC. You can run multiple Windows on this (with reviewers noting just a little lag that was attributed to Bluetooth keyboards). Microsoft planned ti introduce a desktop like UI for Continuum in Redstone 2, but seemingly lost interest and postponed it to the next release.
While Windows phone fans may see this as a missed opportunity, the truth is that Microsoft’s Continuum was never going to be successful anyway. With Microsoft’s “Continuum” apps supported on a popular smartphone – users can still be productive and turn their phones into PCs. That phone just isn’t going to be a Windows phone.