Still other apps refuse to run under DeX at all. Some are obvious, like Samsung Pay — after all, there's no reason to worry about mobile payments when your phone is plugged into a dock. Others, like Spotify, are much more frustrating. And let me be 100 percent clear: It's not that Spotify won't run in a resizable window; it refuses to run altogether, even the web player. The only way I could access my Spotify library was to fire up a virtual Windows machine (thanks, Amazon) on which I could install and run the desktop Spotify app. (Thankfully, other media apps, like Google Play Music, work just fine.)
And then there are the little things. Certain web apps, like Evernote, won't work in browsers, so you're forced to download the app. The phones don't keep track of the way you like your windows organized, so you're starting from scratch each time you dock. Sometimes the Samsung Pay tab appears at the bottom of the main display, which is, well, useless. Copying and pasting between apps can be tricky, if not impossible, because they don't all work well with mouse cursors. And unlike Microsoft's Continuum, which keeps the Windows Phone's screen active while docked, the S8 stays mostly inert. You can use the built-in iris scanner to authenticate yourself when DeX is locked. But "can" doesn't always equal "should." I had to hunch over my desk and move my face for a few moments to find the sweet spot. Trust me: You're definitely better off punching in your PIN.
DeX has issues, but as a whole, it works well enough that some little problems can be overlooked. There's no way to turn a phone into a computer without a lot of help from software partners and app developers, and despite some flawed execution, DeX blurs the line between phone and PC better than anything else in smartphone history. It's a hell of a technical achievement.
That doesn't mean you should rush out and buy a DeX dock, though. On some level, it feels like something Samsung built just to prove that it could. Because of that, it can be difficult to imagine how something like this meaningfully slots into someone's life. If you can afford a pricey smartphone, you almost certainly have a PC or two around the house already. You could feasibly use it as a computer for kids, but if they're old enough to be responsible for an expensive device, they probably already have access to a computer. Most important, the technical restraints here and the need for extra gear ultimately make DeX a hard sell.