Overall, Samsung’s new Galaxy Book3 Pro 360 offers an intriguing mix of stunning hardware and software experiences that attempt to elevate both work and play. one we would like to see more of and the other we would be happy never to see again.
To be fair, it’s unclear if any of these features are enabled by Samsung or if they’re just a quiet tweak from Microsoft to deliver new features we’ve never seen before. Our Book3 Pro 360 review unit includes Windows 11 Home 22H2 build 22621.1194 and my home PC’s default configuration is Windows 11 Home 22H2 22621.1105.
The feature I like the most is the “drain time” gauge that accompanies the actual battery percentage on the taskbar. Knowing how much battery you have left is handy, of course, but estimating the exact amount of time you have before you need to plug in is even handier.
This particular feature was more common in older versions of Windows, with some utilities dating back to Windows 7. Windows 10 added it, then subtracted it, and it hasn’t really appeared since. Some laptop manufacturers – Lenovo comes to mind – have incorporated this part of their standard utility configuration.
Mark Hachman / IDG
Yes, there is the question of whether the gauge itself is accurate. We don’t plan to specifically test this feature, but while it’s not accurate to the minute, it gives you an idea of how much time you’ll have. Fortunately, our tests show the Book3 Pro 360 delivers well over 12 hours of battery life, so you won’t have to worry too much.
…and the one we hate
We’re a little less enthusiastic about a feature that appeared early in our review… then disappeared later.
When you set up a new PC, Windows assumes you want to migrate from an older PC by offering to replicate your old setup. It does this because Windows and OneDrive attempt to back up files from three key locations: Desktop, Photos, and Documents. It also knows whether or not you have a Microsoft 365 account associated with your Windows account.
When we review PCs, we opt for a “clean” PC instead, just the default apps provided by the laptop manufacturer. Otherwise, we risk cluttering the laptop with a bunch of extra data that could slow down performance. To do this, we deny Microsoft’s request to configure the PC as an existing configuration and ask OneDrive to stop syncing with the cloud. The latter allows OneDrive to back up the laptop in question, but it also prevents OneDrive from sending placeholder files from all the documents and photos we’ve previously backed up. Normally this is not a problem.
Initially, however, we were dismayed to find that was not possible. OneDrive insisted on syncing all three locations, which included a folder of storage-intensive apps that I copied to the desktop and immediately started backing up. When I tried to stop this behavior, Windows informed me that these folders were needed and that I couldn’t prevent them from being synced. My only option was to stop OneDrive from syncing, which it only agreed to do until I restarted my PC, when syncing would start again.
Mark Hachman / IDG
Not only would this unwanted sync trigger a background task that I had no desire to run, but it threatened to hog my broadband connection. My home broadband suffers from a data cap, and if I lived in a rural area, backing up multi-gigabyte files would likely take several hours on a slow connection.
Luckily, once I was able to install what I needed to test on the laptop, I was able to shut down OneDrive and isolate the laptop via its airplane mode. When I came back to further document the “feature”… the objection disappeared? As I sat down to take a screenshot, I determined that I could turn off the automatic backup of the Desktop, Documents, and Pictures folders again. Unfortunately, the folder where all my reference files were located was still designated for backup, so I disabled OneDrive for the time being.
It’s not entirely clear whether OneDrive syncing was a glitch, a test feature, or some weird interaction between the laptop, a Windows account, or perhaps Samsung’s own backup services. I certainly appreciate the improved battery gauge. The heavy hand of OneDrive? Not really.