We tested the DeX mode of Samsung Galaxy Note 9: here's what we learned

Originally introduced with the Galaxy S8, Samsung's DeX function has always been a kind of curiosity.

But in all honesty, as admitted in the review of the original DeX dock that we performed this time last year, this has always been part of the appeal. As an idea, there are many ideas about convergence – and I'm always able to see how companies try to tap into and execute things that are convincing about it.

It's been over a year since that review and Samsung continued to build on DeX – so it seemed appropriate to revisit the function and see how it has evolved and improved.

The plan was simple: for a full work week, I would rely as much as possible on the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 and on the DeX for as many of my works as possible. The idea was to highlight Samsung's bold statements about functionality.

Is Samsung's DeX really close to achieving its goal of offering users the chance to realize the dream of mobile convergence from one device to another for all of them compared to a year ago? Is this the future of computing or another deadlock like HP's Elite X3?

Terms and conditions

In front of it, there are some warnings for my experiment.

From time to time I had to go back to my Windows-based workstation for a few bits during the course of the week. Sometimes I need a specific file, sometimes I need to use a Windows application – so I did not trust 100% of DeX. As much as possible.

The other warning is that while the Galaxy Note 9 now supports DeX mode via a USB Type-C-to-HDMI cable, the limited usability of this configuration was more problematic than it was worth. While I have no shortage of keyboards around the office, most of the wireless options were Logitech products – requiring the company's proprietary wireless USB connector to connect and use.

Opting for the HDMI cable option meant giving up on any USB functionality, which meant that you could not use any of these keyboards and mice. Therefore, we opted for the use of last year's DeX dock, as it offered a simpler configuration.

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