Most people have a very straightforward use-case for monitors. You plug them to a PC and use it to see the computer’s output. That’s it. If you want to do graphics work, get one with a high resolution and excellent color reproduction. If you want to play games, get one with a high refresh rate and a quick response time. If you just want to browse Facebook and work on Excel sheets, just get the cheapest one at the size you like. Simple. With the Samsung Smart Monitor M8, though, the humble desktop display is being rigged to do just a little bit more.
More than a dummy display, the device is designed to do things even without a PC hooked up to it, similar to the outfit’s previous smart monitors. For this iteration, though, they’re bundling a bunch of standalone functions that feel genuinely better suited for the places where you will normally use a monitor, making it much more than a glorified TV.
The Samsung Smart Monitor M8 is a 32-inch display that boasts 4K resolution, 400 nits of brightness, and 99 percent sRGB color gamut coverage. Of course, it comes with connectors, so you can hook up your PC to the screen via HDMI, DisplayPort, or USB-C if you simply want to use it like a regular monitor. Since it’s not a regular monitor, you can also opt to go wireless and simply cast your laptop’s display to the bigger screen, allowing you to use it without having to run a messy cable across your desk.
Like previous versions, it comes with smart TV built-in (only online channels, no TV tuner), so you can take a break from your work and enjoy a little binge-watching. They make no mention of whether there are speakers onboard, but the last M7 model had one, so we expect it to have onboard audio, too.
The Samsung Smart Monitor M8 comes with a Workspace hub that gives you access to Office 365 applications, remote PC access (so you can use your work PC while you’re at home), and even video call apps (complete with an included magnetic webcam). There’s also a SmartThings hub that lets you access and control compatible smart home devices right from the monitor, as well as a Game Home hub that aggregates different game streaming services in one place, complete with support for built-in support for different game controllers.
It supports 65W power delivery on the USB-C slot, so you can use it to charge your phones and laptops, as well, in case that extensive function list still isn’t enough. The monitor, by the way, is just 11.4mm thick, which is three quarters thinner than their last smart monitor model, with a flat back design that makes it look very streamlined. It comes with an ergonomic stand that supports a variety of adjustments, all while being compatible with the VESA mounting standard.
No details on exact pricing or availability date has been released for the Samsung Smart Monitor. It makes it debut in CES this week.