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Samsung Galaxy Tab review

The first major Android tablet release arrives to challenge the iPad

Our Verdict

Nice size; Solid build; Android 2.2; Excellent connectivity

Product features

  • Screen Resolution : 1024 x 600
  • Rear Camera Resolution : 3 Megapixel

View full specification

For

  • Nice size
  • Solid build
  • Android 2.2
  • Excellent connectivity

Against

  • Laggy performance
  • Weak battery
  • Poor camera
  • Lack of optimisations

samsung galaxy tab

The interface on the Galaxy Tab is basically Android 2.2 with a few minor tweaks here and there.

You start at the lock screen which you move past with a quick finger-swipe to the left. You can customise this by adding either password protection, a PIN or a pattern lock.

Once you've unlocked the device, you're through to the five homescreens which you can load up with as many or as few icons as you desire.

main unlock

As with most Android phones, you can move an App onto the homescreen by pressing and holding its icon. The device will instantly take you and the chosen icon back to the homescreen where there is ample space for you to pile up your favourite Apps while leaving the others to lounge around inside the Applications menu.

Software not optimised?

In general, Android 2.2 works well enough, although Google itself admits that the OS is not optimised for tablets yet. You can read Google's full confession elsewhere on TechRadar, but the main quote from Hugo Barra, Google's director of products for mobile, goes like this:

"…the way Android Market works is it's not going to be available on devices that don't allow applications to run correctly.

"Which devices do, and which don't will be unit specific, but Froyo is not optimised for use on tablets.

"If you want Android market on that platform, the apps just wouldn't run, [Froyo] is just not designed for that form factor."

So there you have it from the horse's mouth, despite the Samsung shipping the Galaxy Tab with Android 2.2, it's just not a finished piece of software in terms of tablet optimisation.

apps

This is blatantly clear when using the device, as most apps and even the Android Market refer to the Tab as a phone instead of a tablet.

What this ultimately amounts to is that most applications you download from the Android Market are intended for use on smaller, often lower-resolution screens.

And that means a lot of the graphics and text within them can look a bit blurry on the Galaxy Tab's 7-inch display. It's not a massive problem, but it certainly doesn't have the polish of the iPad, which has its own section on the Apple App Store.

This could also certainly explain the laggy nature of the device's performance when browsing the web, for example.

And talking of Apps, there's more confusion to be found in the form of three separate places to download them on the Tab.

There's the standard Android Market option, along with separate stores for Samsung's own apps and games. It's a bit of a hassle, if you ask us, but the promise of Galaxy Tab-specific Apps to download in future does appeal.

It would be easier if it was all done via the Android Store, but you can see why Samsung might want to bypass that particular avenue for some of its content.

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