In many ways both Samsung Dex and NexDock are experimental products. Without much to compare them to, all I can answer in this review is if the product worked for me. It may or may not work for you, depending on your own goals and expectations.
Study Assessment Station
I am currently in the process of completing Assistant Practitioner apprenticeship with my employer. Approximately every 6 to 8 weeks I need to complete some sort of assessment; have it checked by my mentor; and sent to an external assessor. This process is rather painful. My work computer is severely restricted and monitored. I don’t want to log in to my personal accounts at work. I can’t send emails with attachments to external emails.
I used to send emails with my work as an email body, make any corrections on the work computer and send those back to my personal email as an email body again. Then I would copy it, format and send to my assessor. Now I can just bring the whole work and do corrections via google sheet.
Portable Entertainment Hub
As a father of 2 lovely children (Girl age 8 and Boy age 6), one of the biggest challenges I face is entertainment, especially when traveling. Any parent will know how difficult it is to keep little kids busy during a couple of hours long drive or train trip. I needed a portable device capable of accessing our media streaming services Netflix, Prime Video as well as Youtube. Netflix and Youtube work flawlessly, however Prime has presented some challenges.
While you are in Dex go to your Dex Settings > Click on Samsung Dex > Scroll to the bottom and click About Samsung Dex > Tap the word Samsung 5 times it’s easier with a mouse you must click exactly on a word “Samsung” > Accept Developer Settings and Restart samsung dex.
With my Galaxy Note 9 it was impossible to stream it to NexDock. The app would not work and streaming from the browser also failed. With a bit of research, I discovered how to turn on developer settings on dex and fix this problem. Touch screens are especially handy here for my little boy.
Big plus is the ability to download movies at home prior to travel in order to save the data.
Back when we could travel, I would occasionally attend conferences as part of my job. I wanted a device to keep me entertained for an hour or 2 at a hotel. I tested Stardew Valley – a game I occasionally play on my phone, and it works like a charm with extra precision controls from mouse and keyboard. Internet browsing works well between chrome and Samsung Internet. I can get all the work and entertainment I need done on the go.
My big disappointment was that my go to pixel art app Pixel Studio sadly doesn’t work well with Dex. It works okayish with screen mirroring but touch screen doesn’t work when screen mirroring is turned on. It’s workable but not very user friendly.
Battery life of the device is good. I got several hours worth of usage and I could easily extend that with a portable battery, or by disabling phone charging (Fn + F11). Nexdock is charged via USB C so there is always one available somewhere in the office or on a go. Forgetting a charger here isn’t a major issue.
Screen Quality. I’m not going to lie to you, if you were hoping to do some serious artistic work on NexDock, you are going to be disappointed as colours are far from vibrant. They are workable for watching a movie or youtube video on a go; and work more than fine for general office work.
Screen size is decent and balances my needs for real estate space and portability.
Track Pad is a pain in a butt. I only owned this device for a short while and I already hate it. If you are planning on typing longer text you will want to bring a mouse and turn this thing off. It’s far too big and accidental touches happen non stop. In a pinch you can use it but I wouldn’t want to rely on it. If I was to attend a conference where I need to take notes and have access to a desk and table I would definitely bring a mouse with me.
Touch Screen is great, does what you expect it to do, is responsive and I have experienced no issues with it.
Keyboard is fine slightly on a louder side but comfortable to type for light office work like emails, google docs etc.
NexDock The Company has been shy at communication. We are unlucky to deal with global pandemic and things have been delayed. I don’t check their blogs or sites so I would appreciate more regular emails with a state of a product. I have been offered a refund with each delay so I appreciate it and I am happy I haven’t taken it. My worry is that with the company being based in Hong Kong any repairs should I need them may take weeks.
The price is comparable to a cheap Google Chromebook that has probably more polished software. However while google chromebook with each year starts lagging behind your NexDock doesn’t. Each phone upgrade is also an upgrade for NexDock; you can’t beat that. I am hoping to get 5 years or 2 phone upgrades out of this device; maybe more.
Versatility is outstanding. At the end of a day this is a mouse, keyboard, screen and battery pack built in one. My friend is building his computer soon and wants my help. I am absolutely bringing NexDock with me. It will make testing the build so much faster. Plugging one device rather than several into a desktop PC will speed everything up. My partner has her own Samsung Galaxy S10; she can use her phone with my Nexdock without blocking my access to files that are stored on my phone. I am sure as times go on I will find more uses for it. I am considering bringing it to work as a secondary screen for my work laptop if I want to do some more work quickly.
Has Nexdock met all my goals? Simply yes. This device is exactly what I hope for. It is definitely not cutting edge technology and has its own quirks. However for a portable device to do some light office work, send occasional email, entertain kids on a go, and play a couple of games it is perfect.