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Samsung Galaxy Tab review

The first major Android tablet release arrives to challenge the iPad

samsung galaxy tab

We like the Galaxy Tab, we really do. But the fact is that Samsung has launched a device with a massive identity problem.

Is it a phone? No - it makes phone calls, sure, but it's too big to use as a primary mobile phone.

Is it a tablet? Again, no we don't think it is one. It's too small and fiddly and lacking in optimisations. Tablets need to distinguish themselves from smartphones by being bigger, better, more powerful, feature rich and interesting.

Essentially, they need a reason to exist. And this is where we're struggling with the Galaxy Tab.

The pricing is all wrong, too. Clearly, Samsung needs to avoid undercutting the prices of its own Android smartphones like the Galaxy S. But in doing so, it's made the Galaxy Tab £100 more expensive than the cheapest iPad - a class-leading product.

It may be the same price as the 3G iPad, but we can't help feeling that this product would be much more appealing were it slightly cheaper. A better-value, non-3G model would have a much better chance of success. There are rumours that such a device is on the way, but Samsung is yet to confirm.

We liked:

The Android interface is fantastic, and in indoor conditions everything works pretty well. The screen is bright and colourful. Watching videos and listening to music is easy, as is transferring content to and from the device.

The Android Market enables you to customise the device beyond recognition, and so you'll never get bored of it.

The size has its benefits, too. It's a lot more pocket and bag friendly than the iPad, but it's still a pretty hefty object to have to lug round with you everywhere.

Flash support is a major advantage over the iPad, and the ability to surf online video is very well received.

We disliked:

The sluggish web browsing is very frustrating. As Google readily admits, Android 2.2 is in no way optimised for tablets, and so we can't help feeling that the Galaxy Tab has come along a bit too early.

The screen is also quite disappointing. It's not terrible, but it's in no way a class-leading piece of glass. With the 7-inch screen, it's an incredibly portable device, and so an AMOLED screen would have gone down a treat.

The camera, too, is fairly poor. Again, it's nice to have this feature, but remember this is a £530 gadget. It's expensive, and so you expect all the features to be top-notch... But they're not.

Verdict:

We can't hide our disappointment in the Samsung Galaxy Tab. It had the potential to deliver a serious blow to Apple's iPad sales. But in truth, the Galaxy Tab is no match for the iPad. It's nowhere near as smooth, it's not as polished and remarkably, it's not even a match when it comes to value for money.

If portability and Android are your main concern, the Galaxy Tab is certainly a handy gadget to have in your geeky arsenal. But for £530, we were expecting a hell of a lot more.

Tech Specs

Product TypeTablet
Green CompliantYes
Flash Memory Capacity16 GB
Processor ManufacturerARM
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
GPSYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA
Cellular Network SupportedGSM, WCDMA, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 1900, WCDMA 2100
Front Camera/WebcamYes
Operating System PlatformAndroid
Processor ModelA8
Operating SystemAndroid 2.2 Froyo
Brand NameSamsung
Processor Speed1 GHz
Processor TypeCortex
Screen Size17.8 cm (7")
Screen Resolution1024 x 600
Weight (Approximate)380 g
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityRoHS, WEEE
Memory Card ReaderYes
TouchscreenYes
Display Screen TypeActive Matrix TFT Colour LCD
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 3.0
Cellular Generation3.5G
Rear Camera Resolution3 Megapixel
Height190.9 mm
Width120.5 mm
Depth12 mm
ManufacturerSamsung
Product ModelP1000 Galaxy Tab
Product NameP1000 Galaxy Tab Tablet
Manufacturer Part NumberSAMP1000V
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.samsung.com/uk/
Marketing Information

The Samsung Galaxy Tab is perfect for life on the go. The 7" touchscreen packs incredible entertainment and communication features, while a slim and light weight design ensures both comfort and portability. It features the new Android 2.2 operating system, voice and face-to-face video calling, and four new amazing Hubs (Music, Media, Readers and Social) for the ultimate tablet experience. The Galaxy Tab also supports Flash 10.1 and delivers the full web experience for you to enjoy. Enjoy life without limits with the Galaxy Tab.

Thinkfree

With the Galaxy Tab, you can prepare and produce office documents and then conveniently view and share with others on a 7"screen. Develop spreadsheets, Word documents, PDF files, and PowerPoint presentations in their original formats.

Package Contents
  • P1000 Galaxy Tab Tablet
  • USB Power Adapter
  • PC Data Cable
  • Headset
  • Quick Start Guide
Limited Warranty2 Year