Hands-on: Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 10.1
We got a little time with Samsung's Galaxy Tab 2 in Sydney - here's our first impressions.
By Zara Baxter | Friday, 1 June, 2012
The Galaxy Tab has, aside from the iPad, been the most popular tablet computer in New Zealand. Admittedly, we haven't seen the Amazon Fire over here, but it's safe to say that the Galaxy Tab is the most interesting tablet we're likely to see launch here before Windows tablets arrive in October.
When PC World spoke to Samsung product managers last night at a Sydney event for New Zealand retailers, telcos and media, they indiciated that the Tab 2 was at most a couple of months away from release.
I was offered time to play with a production sample of the Tab 2 (model name GT-P5100), so I gladly took it.
In design, there's not a whole lot to differentiate the Tab 2 10.1 from the Tab 10.1. It's a little bit lighter, perhaps, and looks more unibody in its styling. It feels solidly built, and didn't flex or give when I attempted to bend it out of shape.
It was running Android 4.0.3, with a dock-style layer of commonly used apps, a pop up menu of more common apps, and six screens for widgets and app placement - with the option to add more.
We couldn't get details on the processor, but given that the Samsung Galaxy S III is running a quad-core Exynos chip, we may see something similar in the Tab 2. Then again, when pressed, the Samsung spokesperson said only that it would be "very different" to the Tab 10.1.
Screen resolution seemed identical to the tab 10.1, and distinctly lower than that of the new iPad, but still sufficiently crisp and clear. I sampled a few apps, and found that screen responsiveness wasn't as fast as I hoped. Since this was a production sample, however, a number of hardwre and software kinks may be yet to be ironed out. On the production sample, however, using the S Memo app to produce a stick figure had noticeable lag between making a mark with my finger, and it showing up on the app. Things were the same for the dock apps, where a press-and-hold was needed to open them. I anticipate that this lag will be addressed before launch.
Similarly, we couldn't test the camera - autofocus was not functional on our sample.
One nice aspect was a readers hub among the docked apps - it incorporates books, news and magazines into a single attractive interface.
The Tab 2 10.1 will include the same proprietary connector a the Tab 10.1, and also has a full-sized SIM slot and micro-SD card slot. The model we saw had 16GB of memory, but we'd anticipate that models with higher storage will also be available at launch.