Sunday, November 21, 2010

Oh the geeky goodness of the Samsung Galaxy Tab

Our Verizon rep brought me an early Christmas present on Friday.  The new Galaxy Tab from Samsung.  Weighing in 13.4 ounces and with it's 7" form factor, it is a nice device.

Having gotten the device late Friday afternoon, I rushed to put the beta Lotus  Traveler for Android on it and so far that is working pretty much flawlessly.  The Gmail integration and Google calendar is fantastic.  The calendar app on the device for Google is a lot prettier then the iPad.  But as we all know, having a tablet device to play with means that getting email on it is usually the last thing you're looking to do.  At least for me.  I really wanted to see if the Galaxy and it's Android 2.2 could be the Android we were looking for.  From what I've seen, that answer is yes, but not a strong one.

For starters, I LOVE the 7" form factor.  Holding the device oriented in the same way that it's shown in the picture above, I'm pretty much able to type and enter text very quickly using my thumbs.  That to me is a huge plus over an iPad.  One of the things I found frustrating when I had the iPad for testing was trying to input data on it.  Seemed a little clumsy to me. 

I've read other reviewers comparing the Tab to the iPad and they have all given the iPad the advantage with it comes to the screen. I couldn't disagree more.  The images that I've viewed on the device are brighter and more vivid then what I've seen on the iPad.  Now granted, if the next generation of the iPad has the "Retina Display" on it, that could change everything.  But for now, I'm in love with the display.

I've also enjoyed playing with the multimedia on the Tab.  The video playback has been pretty smooth and the stereo speakers on the bottom give ok sound without headphones on.  So far on the sites I've gone to that require Flash have worked pretty well.  So as a multimedia device, this Tab really holds its own very well.

While I really enjoy using the device, I still feel there were a couple of problems.  First, lack of spell check.  Where is it!?  I know it exists on my Droid X, iPod Touch and BlackBerry, but on here it doesn't seem to have it.  Secondly, the power button placement.  I've turned the device off on myself several time accidentally while playing with it.  It's a form factor thing that I would probably get use to over time, but it's ackward are first. Lastly, the front facing camera is neat to have, but, is there anything out there you can use it with yet?  Gtalk?  Skype?  Dare I say...Sametime?  While that is a cool feature to have built in, it just doesn't seem like anything is ready yet to use it yet.

So do I recommend running out and spending money on it?  That's up to you.  The rumor mill has it that the wifi only version will cost $499 when it's released next year.  That is too steep for my pocketbook.  But like all cool toys, this is just the first in many new tablets about to hit the market.  Some sites are reporting that the Consumer Electronics Show in January will have many more device just like this, just as fast but at a much lower cost.  So like all things in the mobile arena, this is just the beginning of many more cool things to come.


Darren Duke said...

Mine arrives today. Happy, happy day. did I say this was a happy day?

Curt said...

Curious if I already have a data plan with Verizon for my phone, do you know if I can add this device penalty free? Thanks