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Buttonstc's avatar

Tablet owners: Which one do you have and where is the charge port located when held in portrait mode?

Asked by Buttonstc (27597points) April 20th, 2015 from iPhone

PORTRAIT = VERTICAL (like most pictures painted of people which are taller than they are wide)

LANDSCAPE = HORIZONTAL (like a landscape painting which is usually wider than it is tall)

When at home, I much prefer keeping my tab plugged in when using it rather than using it unconnected and repeatedly recharging.

Many times I’m lying in bed or on the couch while simultaneously watching TV in the background while doing various things on my tab.

My biggest problem with my Samsung 7 inch is that the charge port is at the bottom when in portrait mode. It prevents being able to comfortably prop it up on my tummy when in portrait mode as would be common.

And because the connector is a rather flimsy MINI-USB, I really dislike having to unplug and replug any more than absolutely necessary.

(Obviously, I made sure to choose a case which makes it easier to use in landscape mode cuz it props it up. )

But there are just times when it’s necessary to use it vertically and it is a major PITA. Unless I hold it at a weird diagonal slant I risk damaging the charge cord from too much crimping. I can’t just prop it up on my stomach and keep it straight. Grrrr.

So, don’t companies test this type of thing out in actual use or focus groups or something?

It would be far more sensible to place the charge cord coming out the right side or at the top. Why not put it there?

Is there some arcane aspect of electronics of which I’m unaware or is Samsung just clueless?

(I just remembered that apart from its many aggravations, my first tablet (Acer Iconia) did get this right. It was at the top of the right side and interfered with nothing. Perfect location.)

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23 Answers

canidmajor's avatar

I have an iPad mini, and when it’s in portrait mode, I hold it so the charge cord would be out of the top. It lives in its case, so the propping mechanism would interfere were I to have the plug at the bottom.
However, I don’t usually have it plugged in while I’m using it, I do fine just charging it when I’m not using it for a few hours at a time.

Edit to add: the plug is in the center of a short side.

sahID's avatar

Sounds to me like Samsung is clueless about how people use their tablets. Or they simply don’t care.

On my Amazon Fire HD 6 tablet, the charge cord port is at the top, next to the on/off switch. This makes it easy to use the tablet in portrait mode whether it is plugged in or not.

Thinking about this, I am puzzled why Samsung built their tablets with the charge cord port at the bottom, which makes zero sense. I also have a Samsung cell phone, and its cord port is at the top, where it should be.

Buttonstc's avatar

Interesting.

Of course, on a phone it isn’t as critical because it’s normally held in one hand.

My iPhone has the charge cord at the bottom and I can’t recall any major inconvenience because of it.

But knowing that Samsung put the phone port at the top while putting the Tab cord on the bottom makes even less sense.

I’ll be interested to hear about other mfr’s tabs.

Anyone here with a Google Nexus?

canidmajor's avatar

My iPad can be held with any side up, so it really makes no difference. Can’t your tablet do that?

2davidc8's avatar

@Buttonstc What happens if you turn your tablet completely around so that the charge port is on top?

hominid's avatar

@Buttonstc: “Anyone here with a Google Nexus?”

The Nexus 7 (2013) and Nexus 9 both have the port on the short side bottom.

Buttonstc's avatar

The problem with turning it upside down is twofold. Firstly, for browsing web pages, navigating becomes disorienting because then the back button is way out of place. Plus, on Samsung it’s not really a button, just a little ill- defined area on the black surround section. AND, it’s NOT LIT UP (the way it is on my iPhone). So you basically need to fish around in an unfamiliar upside down, right side left location. Definitely not fun.

Plus, many apps and games are not optimized for tablets and since they’re designed for phones, are in portrait mode by default. AND I haven’t yet found one that works upside down.

It would make life a whole lot easier if they’d just put the charge port out of the way at the top.

Believe me, I’ve tried the upside down method which sounds fine in theory but doesnt work comfortably in reality.

Buttonstc's avatar

@hominid

Damn it. I had my hopes up but….

hominid's avatar

@Buttonstc – Would something like this help a little?

Buttonstc's avatar

@canidmajor

Where is the charge port on the ipad?

See my post above for why it’s problematic with turning Samsung upside down.

Aren’t most Apple apps optimized for ipad? Or if not, how about the games designed for iPhone. Can they be used in landscape mode also?

For web browsing, I’m assuming that the back arrow is as nice and large and visible as it is on the phones? The one on Samsung is easily 1/10 the size (plus blending into the background).

I must say, NOW I have an even greater appreciation for the superiority of Apple’s design aesthetics than before.

hominid's avatar

@Buttonstc – Keep in mind that there is no back button on an Apple device. They just implement limited back feature by app only. It is more seamless, but primarily because it is far more limited in functionality.

I’ll check my Nexus 7 at work tomorrow, but I am almost positive that you should be fine to go with that because Samsung is the only soft-key holdout. Android dropped those a few iterations ago specifically so that you didn’t have to depend on proprietary positions of buttons.

canidmajor's avatar

The back button on the web is virtual, so the screen has the same configuration whatever the orientation. A few games won’t work in landscape, and very rarely only in one direction. I really do like the Apple platform for mobiles, whether phones or tabs.

Buttonstc's avatar

@hominid

RE: charger

From the right angle shape of it, that looks good. But I read completely through the specifications and it is clear that it’s for Samsung smartphones only. They have an extensive list so I’m sure that if it were compatible with the tab, they’d list it.

But I know from my previous unsuccessful experience using a multiplug Scosche iPhone charger to also put in my Samsung cord that it began overheating.

Calling Scosche gave me a brief lesson on the difference between the current drawing requirements of a phone vs. tablet. It’s considerable. I’ve forgotten the specific numbers, but lesson learned.

But if they had a right angle oriented charger for the Galaxy Pad 3, I’d buy it in a heartbeat (altho I’m not loving the coiled part of it either. It fine if you’ve only occasionally got to reach a lot but not practical for constantly trying to keep it stretched out. I’ve tried that in the past and it just doesn’t work. It depends upon how far the rest of it would reach without uncoiling.)

RE: back button. I’m aware of the limitations IN APPS. But, I was referring to web browsing when commenting. AFAIK, my iPhones back button works just fine in Safari. I assume it would be the same on ipad?

canidmajor's avatar

If my iPhone or my iPad has an actual, hard back button, I don’t know about it. Possible, as I am a serious tech idiot. So all the “backing” I do on the Web is on the header bar, top left on the screen, whatever the orientation of the device itself.

Buttonstc's avatar

I wasn’t referring to a hard back arrow on my iPhone, just a large VISIBLE one (compared to the small, almost invisible one on Samsung. And def. invisible at night because it’s unlit.)

Interestingly, I just turned my phone upside down and it stays in the same place. It doesn’t rotate with the phone.

But it’s nice and large and bright white so it’s not a problem to find it regardless of where it is.

canidmajor's avatar

Haha, I know I should never be a part of these discussions as I kind of can’t seem to follow along after them first comment.
But that’s why I like the Apple platform, it doesn’t make me have an understanding of the tech to use the device. :-)

Buttonstc's avatar

@canidmajor

Ha ha. I so agree with you in that which is why I would never give up my iPhone.

The vagaries of the various phone mfrs and Android iterations makes me reluctant to trust them for my primary communication device.

I didn’t mind branching out a little to Android with a tablet because it’s not critical to my life. If there’s a problem that takes a while to solve, so be it.

I would just never risk it with my phone.

Apple really knows how to design user-friendly stuff for technotards like us :)

jerv's avatar

Mine is dead-center in the bottom, but Cyanogenmod allows for full 360 rotation of the screen. That is one of the many little things about CM that makes people use it instead of the stock Android that their tablet/phone came with.

However, it’s actually a bad thing to keep it plugged in all the time. Lithium batteries are not fond of being 100% full 100% of the time and will actually degrade faster than if you let then run down a bit.

As for Apple’s simplicity, I feel that computers should have minimum user requirements just like cars do. I miss the old days when at least basic competence was mandatory.

Buttonstc's avatar

@jerv

I’m glad that you reminded me about Lithium batteries needing to be discharged from time to time.

Even tho I prefer not to unplug it, truth be told I do.

But how often is optimum for completely discharging it? Would once a month do it? Or should it be more often do you think?

Is there some type of official guideline on that?

canidmajor's avatar

Yeah, but @jerv, nobody’s likely to die if I don’t know how to tweak my phone. :-)

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

I have an Acer and the charge port is on the side which is actually more annoying than if it was on the bottom.
Lithium batteries actually want to stay charged. Their life spans are measured in charge-discharge cycles. After 200–300 discharges your battery will be down 20–30% in capacity. Do not ever fully discharge your lithium battery except for two or three cycles when it is brand spanking new. Don’t let them discharge too much also, it’s better to keep them topped off. Don’t keep them on the charger when they are fully charged though. The slight over voltage of the charger and the resulting heat will degrade your battery also but not near as bad as discharging it. Let it discharge to 70% or so then plug it in and remove the charger when it’s nearly done or at ~90% That’ll keep it happy.

jerv's avatar

@Buttonstc I generally run my tablet until the battery is around 30%, which may take a day or a week. For the most part, @ARE_you_kidding_me is correct; how quickly it degrades varies considerably by temperature, but otherwise spot-on.

@canidmajor No, but leaving your security settings wrong and having a black-hat or script-kiddie gank your banking info and it could get nasty. And it’s not unprecedented to get in trouble for stuff someone else did either, whether it be a child racking up hundreds of dollars in-game purchases on mommy’s phone or getting sent to prison for downloading kiddy porn because someone leeched off your unsecure wifi and the FBI traced it back to you.
That said, just as average drivers don’t have to know as much about cars as mechanics do, I don’t expect the average computer user to have my level of knowledge; I only expect enough to operate safely and have at least a basic understanding of what’s under the hood instead of treating it as magic. If you haven’t noticed, it’s a sore spot of mine.

XOIIO's avatar

There are generic right angle usb cables that should work on anything. http://www.adorama.com/images/300x300/ttcu5462rt.jpg Coiled ones will probably just be for charging purposes.

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