“These are not the droids you’re looking for, and these are two different tablets from Samsung…” And with a sweep of its hand, Samsung mesmerized the Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2012 participants… Not.
Same Case, Multiple Uses
Like Samsung’s design department, I just copied the image on the left, pasted it beside the original and changed a bit of text on the screen (blurry now, so it wasn’t really worth the effort). One tablet is called the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1), and the other is the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1. Both products were unveiled at the MWC 2012, and stymied journalists and reviewers. First, because Samsung updated the Galaxy Tab 10.1 with mere cosmetic changes. Second, because they slapped a faster CPU on the Galaxy Note 10.1, but put it in the same case as the Tab 2 (10.1), and marketed it as a new tablet version of the popular Samsung Galaxy Note 5.3 smartphone.
Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1)
I wrote earlier about the lack of major updates to the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 — except for the front-facing speakers, micro SD card slot, HSPA+ connectivity and Ice Cream Sandwich OS. Everything else is stock Galaxy Tab 10.1 first-gen. I didn’t realize Samsung took engineering and design lessons from Porsche. Some people say this might make the Tab 2 (10.1) less expensive than last year’s model, but I’ll believe it when Samsung ships units next month.
Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1
The Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 is the Galaxy Note smartphone’s bigger brother, so if you look at it from this standpoint, a lot has changed from the popular large-screen smartphone. However, those who loved the smartphone’s S Pen stylus will have to use the same stylus (or buy a new one) for their tablet because the Galaxy Note 10.1 does not come with it’s own S Pen — which is why there’s no slot for keeping the stylus in the tablet.
The faster processor gives the tablet better speeds for image-editing apps such as the preloaded ICS versions of Adobe Photoshop Touch, Adobe Ideas, Zen Brush, Omni Sketch, and Hello Crayon. Nifty tip: You can turn the S-Pen upside down to use it as an eraser.
The Galaxy Note 10.1 shares the rest of the specifications with Tab 2 (10.1): 3-megapixel rear facing camera, 2-megapixel front camera and two memory options (16GB and 32GB), plus a microSD card slot for memory expansion.
Open the Floodgates
Looking at the rumoured features of the iPad 3, I’m not too sure Samsung has done enough this year to surpass, much less match Apple’s dominance of the market — upstart Huawei made a better effort with its quad-core tablet. Samsung’s marketing plan seems to be an inundation of the arena with so many variants and sizes of its tablets and smartphones in order to crumble Apple’s share of the pie. The glut of choices will be a bonus to consumers, but I’m worried about Samsung spreading itself too thin. Nokia tried this and lost its dominance of the mobile phone market.
February 26, 2012
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