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Samsung’s Galaxy Tab is ready for a fight with the iPad
by Kathryn Robbins on September 5, 2010
Apple’s iPad has been wildly successful for two major reasons, namely its functionality and portable nature. Students are using the tablet for interactive textbooks to lessen their load and governments are using the device to cut down on paper costs. What if you could make a tablet computer like the iPad that could be put easily into a purse or pocket and had additional features like a camera? Samsung seems to have done just that with their new Galaxy Tab.
The Galaxy Tab’s compact nature may be appealing to customers that don’t have room for the 9.7 inch iPad in their briefcase or pocketbook. The tablet’s 7 inch TFT-LCD display is more akin to the size of an e-reader like the Nook or Kindle. The device only weighs 380 grams (.84 pounds) which won’t make it impossible to carry in a jacket pocket when compared to the 1.5 pound iPad.
Besides its size, iPad users may be envious of the other features Samsung included with the Galaxy Tab. Many iPad owners are looking for some sort of camera function in future generations and the Facetime video chat feature that’s included with the iPhone 4. The tablet includes a front and rear camera that can use 3G networks for video enabled calls instead of only relying on Wi-Fi, unlike the iPhone 4 or upcoming iPod Touch.
In addition to the video chat feature, the Galaxy Tab acts as a cell phone as well. Instead of carrying another device and another data contract, users can make calls via a Bluetooth headset or through a speakerphone. A few service providers have already made deals with Samsung such as Vodaphone in the UK and O2 in Germany. Rumors are swirling that Sprint may be the service provider in the US via their WiMax network.
One stumbling block for the Galaxy Tab may be pricing. Unlike Apple who sells the iPad in multiple outlets like Best Buy and their own stores, the tablet will be sold by the respective service provider in each country. These providers may be forced to subsidize each purchase due to the extraordinary list price of the device. O2 in Germany says that their price will be about $972 while a Swedish gadget lover can expect to pay $1,240 after taxes are applied. That makes the contract-free Wi-Fi only iPad look very attractive for price conscious consumers.