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06:15 PM
Eric Zeman
Eric Zeman

Samsung Android Tablet Strategy Puzzles

Samsung took the wraps off not one, but two new Android tablets at Mobile World Congress. What is Samsung thinking?

Samsung seriously needs to stop announcing new Android tablets. Do you hear me, Samsung? Stop!

Sunday at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Samsung unveiled its newest Galaxy Tab, a warmed-over version of last year's Tab 10.1, with some new software on board. Not very exciting. Samsung also showed off the Galaxy Note 10.1, though it didn't say much about it.

Let's discuss Samsung's silliness here.

First, there's the the new Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1). Yes, that's the real, godforsaken name, complete with parenthesis. It comes with an almost identical set of specs as the Galaxy Tab 2 (7.0), which was announced earlier this month.

Those specs include a dual-core 1GHz processor accompanied by 1GB of RAM. That's kind of crummy--most new smartphones are shipping with 1.2GHz or 1.5GHz dual-core chips. The Apple iPad 3 is believed to have a quad-core engine. The Tab 2 (10.1) supports worldwide 3G data, with HSPA+ at 21Mbps in the 850/900/1900/2100MHz bands, in addition to 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth 3.0, USB 2.0, and a bevy of sensors.

The Tab 2 (10.1) has a 10.1-inch display with 1280 x 800 pixels. It comes with two cameras: a 3-megapixel fixed-focus main camera, and a VGA user-facing camera for video calling. It can record HD video at 1080p resolution at 30 frames per second.

About the only redeeming qualities of this device are that it has a 7,000mAh battery and Android 4.0. Yippee.

Then there's the Galaxy Note 10.1 This enigma has not been fully revealed, but we can take some educated guesses. First, it's a tablet with a 10.1-inch display. Not too difficult to figure that one out. Second, it will ship with a stylus and the S Note application that's currently on the Galaxy Note. Third, it will claim to be the next-best thing in the world of tablets because of its 2002-era technology.

Samsung might impress me if this tablet has a high-resolution display, 4G support, killer cameras, and the fastest processors known to mankind. Hopefully we'll learn more over the coming days.

These two devices, however, beg the question: Just what is going on over there in Korea? I mean seriously. Samsung is bringing two more 10.1-inch tablets to the market at the same time. It *just* announced a 7.0-inch tablet and a 7.7-inch tablet. It also already sells a tablet with an 8.9-inch display. While it is nice to offer consumers options, this adds up to too many. The effective differences between these products is practically nil.

At this point, Samsung offers Android devices with 10.1-, 8.9-, 7.7-, 7-, 5.3-, 4.7-, 4.3-, 4-, 3.8-, 3.7-, 3.5-, 3.2-, and 3-inch displays. All Samsung is missing is something with a 6-inch display and it'll have a full house. Or a royal flush. Or a marketing nightmare.

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Tom LaSusa
Tom LaSusa,
User Rank: Apprentice
2/28/2012 | 4:25:59 PM
re: Samsung Android Tablet Strategy Puzzles
Hi KevinSS,

The reason I removed the post was for two reasons.

1. The commenter's screen name was "InformationWeekEditor" -- that individual is not part of our staff.

2. The commenter used a photoshopped/distorted picture of Eric Zeman as his Avatar.

I removed the comments and asked the person to change his profile name and avatar, with the intent of restoring his comments once he did. I have yet to hear back from the individual.

As it has been pointed out, Eric is a columnist, which means his articles are more opinion-based. Here at InformationWeek, we have absolutely no issue with our readers disagreeing with our writers' opinions: everyone is entitled to their thoughts, so long as it's presented in a respectful manner.

Tom LaSusa
InformationWeek Community Manager
User Rank: Apprentice
2/27/2012 | 8:15:02 PM
re: Samsung Android Tablet Strategy Puzzles
Don't forget 4.52" and 4.65" too (Epic & Nexus)

According to what I've read, the Galaxy Note was targeted at a certain gender demographic.

Therefore, those happy with the note might want a bigger version of it that works exactly the same so they don't have to relearn a new model. (makes sense from a business point of view as a good selling point to buy both)

The Galaxy Tab and Galaxy Tab 10.1 needed upgraded to dual core processors and higher res screens along with a new Android dessert flavor so the Galaxy Tab 2 (7.0) and the Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1) were needed to replace them although I expected at least the Exynos 1.2 Dual core chip or faster. It's sad that my GX2/Epic 4G touch phone will wipe the floor with either model.

I really expected an Exynos 1.5 Ghz or faster chip or something faster than the 1.5 Ghz Qualcomm.
Dale Sundstrom
Dale Sundstrom,
User Rank: Apprentice
2/27/2012 | 7:54:29 PM
re: Samsung Android Tablet Strategy Puzzles
I really appreciate Eric's humor in the article, and think some humor was needed in reporting more of Samsung's absurdly prolific tablet releases (which were summarized well in the article, explaining why anyone might be "doggin on Samsung").

GǣGodforsakenGǥ is a good and perfectly appropriate way to describe the name "Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1)," and anyone who imagines that it's inappropriate should look it up.
User Rank: Apprentice
2/27/2012 | 5:18:37 PM
re: Samsung Android Tablet Strategy Puzzles
So I noticed information week deleted a post that was posted from a reader. The reader was complaining about Eric Zeman's use of "godforsaken" and how he found it offensive. Well I would like information week to know that I find that offensive too. And I don't like Eric's writing style either too much attitude in it. Why you doggin on Samsung? You sound like a whinning hinning thumb sucker! & Americandoo & Eric Samsung's tablet strategy doesn't suck, that's why they are #1 consumers like a choice. But really Information Week, find a new conlumnist please!
User Rank: Apprentice
2/27/2012 | 3:42:00 PM
re: Samsung Android Tablet Strategy Puzzles
Well, let's stop for a moment and consider:

1. The header does say "commentary". Eric is not a "reporter", he is a columnist, so he can state his opinion as biased as he wants to be.

2. Samsung's tablet strategy does suck.
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