Galaxy Tab (Samsung)
The Galaxy Tab from Samsung is probably the highest-profile Android tablet in the pipeline right now. An impressive hardware list gives the device plenty of horsepower, while Samsungs relationships with all four major American cellular carriers means distribution will be a snap.
|Samsung Galaxy Tab|
|Operating System||Android 2.2 w/ TouchWiz 3.0 UI|
|Display Size, Reolution||7", 1024x600|
|CPU||1 GHz Cortex A8|
|GPU||PowerVR SGX 540|
|Onboard Storage||16 GB or 32 GB|
|Camera(s)||1.3 MP front, 3 MP back|
|Ports/Expansion||30-pin connector, microSD|
|Connectivity||WiFi, Bluetooth, 3G|
|Availability||Q4 2010, Multiple US Carriers|
From a hardware standpoint, the Galaxy Tab sounds like a high-end Android smartphone (screen size aside). The 1 GHz Cortex A8 CPU, PowerVR SGX 540 graphics, 512 MB of RAM and 16 GB of storage (there will be a 32 GB version as well) keeps the Galaxy Tab in line with Samsung’s Galaxy S line of Android-based smartphones.
The Galaxy Tab also packs two cameras, with a 1.3 megapixel sensor in front for video chat, and a 3 megapixel sensor on the back for taking video and pictures. It’s not as fancy as the PlayBook, but two cameras are better than none (we’re looking at you, iPad). Like the PlayBook, the Galaxy Tab can handle 1080p video, but the tablet will need either a dock or a proprietary-to-HDMI cable in order to pump video out to an HDTV. While expansion on the PlayBook is TBA , Samsung has equipped the Galaxy Tab with microSD, allowing for up to 32 GB of extra storage.
Much like its smaller brothers, the Tab will run Android 2.2 with Samsung’s TouchWiz 3.0 UI on top. Purists and power users will likely scoff at the included UI, but we’re still dealing with Android here. As for apps, Samsung has crafted a few of its own for the device, including video chat, email, messaging, among others. Beyond that, you’re traveling to the Android Marketplace. The Galaxy Tab also has support for Flash 10.1.
Samsung has adopted a very appealing strategy for its newest Galaxy S smartphones by releasing variants on all four major American cellular carriers (Epic 4G on Sprint, Fascinate on Verizon, Captivate on AT&T and Vibrant on T-Mobile). From the looks of it, Samsung will be deploying the Galaxy Tab in the same fashion, although the differences for each carrier will likely be less obvious than with the smartphone line (Sprint getting a QWERTY keyboard, Verizon getting stuck with Bing, etc). All four carriers will be getting a WiFi/3G-friendly Galaxy Tab, and it’s also been confirmed that Sprint’s version will not be 4G.
So the Galaxy Tab does share some traits with the iPad, especially in the CPU and GPU department. When it comes to software, we are looking at a matchup similar to the iPhone and Galaxy smartphones. Android 2.2 has been very well-received, but many are still on the fence regarding the Android Marketplace. There are going to be dozens of Android-based tablets in the coming months, but the Galaxy Tab is in the best position because of Samsung’s deployment strategy, solid hardware specs and the included custom apps.