Mobile // Mobile Devices
News
5/2/2012
04:31 PM
Connect Directly
Google+
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Samsung Galaxy Tab 2: The First Must-Have Android Tablet

The Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (7.0) doesn't cost much more than the ultra-popular Kindle Fire, yet this 7-inch tablet comes loaded with iPad-like hardware and the latest Android operating system, a.k.a. Ice Cream Sandwich. Here's hoping the Galaxy Tab 2 launches a new breed of affordable yet capable Android tablet.

Looking for an inexpensive but capable tablet that does a lot more than the Kindle Fire? Check out the new Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 with 7-inch screen. It's the first Android tablet that's priced like a Kindle Fire but offers iPad-like features. With any luck, the Galaxy Tab 2 (7.0) will launch a whole new category of affordable Android tablets that can compete with low-end iPads.

Here's how.

It's cheap

The Galaxy Tab 2 (7.0) Wi-Fi-only model with 8GB of built-in storage and a 7-inch screen costs only $249.99. That's only $50 more than the Kindle Fire. The Kindle Fire owns 54.4% of the Android tablet market, according to comScore. But the Kindle Fire is a custom device with limited features and functions compared to more general-purpose tablets such as the iPad and the Samsung Galaxy Tab. That's how Amazon can sell the Fire for $199 and grab a larger share of the market.

Unlike the Fire, the Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 provides rear- and front-facing cameras, GPS, and flash-storage expansion. Previous Android tablets with this many features typically cost almost twice as much. The $150 to $250 price range appears to be the sweet spot for grabbing the attention and credit cards of people who might not want to spend between $499 and $829 for one of the third-generation iPads.

Smaller screen: mostly a plus

Back in 2010, Steve Jobs dismissed tablets with 7-inch screens as "dead on arrival". And yet the Kindle Fire's quick rise to popularity shows that some consumers prefer smaller tablets.


Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 (top-right). Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 (bottom-left).

A tablet with a 7-inch screen is harder to touch type on in landscape mode. On the other hand, thumb typing in portrait mode is much easier than on a larger tablet or even on a smartphone. I hacked an even better solution by hooking up my old Stowaway Bluetooth folding keyboard, which lets you prop up the tablet.


Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 and Stowaway Bluetooth keyboard.

The Galaxy Tab 2 (7.0) has a 1024-by-600-pixel resolution, the same as most netbooks. However, it offers only 60% of the resolution of the Galaxy Tab 10.1, which has a 10.1-inch screen with a resolution of 1280 by 800 pixels. This means far fewer Android widgets will fit on one screen. You'll have to use multiple home screens to house all your widgets.


Previous
1 of 2
Next
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Building A Mobile Business Mindset
Building A Mobile Business Mindset
Among 688 respondents, 46% have deployed mobile apps, with an additional 24% planning to in the next year. Soon all apps will look like mobile apps and it's past time for those with no plans to get cracking.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Tech Digest - July 22, 2014
Sophisticated attacks demand real-time risk management and continuous monitoring. Here's how federal agencies are meeting that challenge.
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.