10
May
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Last Updated: July 24th, 2011

Wow, what a day! Music, movies, APIs, alliances - the list of exciting announcements from Google I/O 2011 goes on and on today. While the rest of the Android Police crew is blasting through the bulk of the new stuff, I decided to unpack and play with the "Oprah moment" Limited Edition Galaxy Tab 10.1 that everyone here at I/O received as a gift. And let me tell you, this baby is fast, sleek, slim, and gorgeous. Let's see what we've got here, shall we?

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This 32GB Galaxy Tab 10.1 is running a 1GHz dual-core processor - from the looks of it, it's the Tegra 2 rather than the Exynos, at least according to the Quadrant benchmark, which reports an NVIDIA GPU (see towards the bottom).

Obviously, as you can tell by the name, it sports a 10.1" screen, which I found to be just as reflective as the one in the XOOM. It won't win any kind of awards for its brightness or crispness - unfortunately, it's just LCD, rather than AMOLED. The screen resolution of 1280x800 matches the XOOM exactly.

A whopping 7,000 mAh battery powers this slim device, which should provide plenty of power for hours of usage.

The Tab version we got seems to be LTE-enabled on the Verizon network - we'll be given sim cards tomorrow, so I'll be able to verify and test it out then. If it indeed has working LTE, that would mean Samsung beat Motorola to the LTE punch, and the XOOM had 2+ months to get it done! Kind of embarrassing for Motorola, isn't it? Correction: It looks like the LTE sim cards were not related to the Tab, although they were promised by Samsung and Verizon at the exact same time we were all picking up our tablets. Motorola, you can breathe easy for now.

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In fact, there aren't many differences outside of external looks and some hardware between the XOOM and the Tab 10.1. We've got the same screen, same resolution, same OS - yes, the Tab is currently running an unskinned Android 3.0.1 without any sign of TouchWiz anywhere. When I asked Samsung about this yesterday, they promised TouchWiz would be arriving via an over-the-air update (OTA) sometime in the future. Before you start bashing TouchWiz, however, I'd urge you to hold off, as its tablet iteration is actually supposed to be pretty sweet. You can bet we'll post our full impressions once it is released.

Before I move on to the software, let's take a look at the externals once again. We have a charging port on the bottom, 2 speakers on the sides (1 on each side), and the volume rocker, the power button, and the 3.5mm headphone jack at the top. On the front, we have the 2MP front-facing camera, while on the back we have the 3MP (only) camera with flash as well as the glossy backing full of little Androids, which, compared to the pure white surface of the regular non-Limited Edition Tabs that I saw yesterday, is a very nice touch. I'm not sure whether Samsung is planning to release more of these limited editions outside of I/O, because the box it came with actually has an I/O logo imprinted. It's also nice to see no Samsung logos whatsoever on the front, although this may change in final production units.

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Shockingly, there are no HDMI, USB, MicroUSB, or any other ports of any kind at all. I'm guessing we'll have to deal with proprietary connectors and cables yet again - what a step back, Samsung.

Moving on to the box the 10.1 Tab came in - we have a set of earbuds with some extra gel tips and and a button mic, a charging cable, and the plug.

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I need to pay my respects to the thickness and weight of the new Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1. It is much lighter than the XOOM, and no wonder - the XOOM weighs 730g (1.6lb), while the 10.1 weighs only 565g (1.3lb). The thickness difference is even more impressive - the XOOM is about 13mm while the 10.1 is a stunning 8.6mm or so. This thing is THIN.

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A couple of words on the software. As I already mentioned, the Tab runs pure Honeycomb 3.01, without any sign of TouchWiz. As soon as I logged in with my Google account, the tablet started downloading 41 of my apps it knows are installed on the XOOM, ALL AT THE SAME TIME. The tablet didn't croak, but was noticeable slow. Can we get some limit on the simultaneous number of downloads put in place, Google?

There are a few Samsung apps, such as the Music Hub and Samsung Apps, but none seem to be working right at all yet. For example, when I went into the Apps (oh no, is that yet another Market?), it showed a bunch of test apps (see below). The Music Hub refused to work and instead showed me an "Unable to find location" warning, even though my GPS was turned on. Checking for updates prompted me with a list of 5 countries, none of which was the United States. Should I move to the UK to update it then? Alright.

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Lastly, before I disappear back into the deep abyss of Android here at I/O, I ran the Quadrant benchmark a few times to show you where the Tab stands compared to other devices. Don't take these benchmarks too seriously, but for comparison it's worth noting that the Galaxy S2 scores well over 3,000 points. My results were 1,894 and 2,157 (in the former case, it may have been installing some apps in the background).

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I hope this first look was helpful to those of you interested in the new Tab. If you have any questions about the device, don't hesitate to ask them below.

Additional reading: Galaxy Tab 10.1 from Samsung

Artem Russakovskii
Artem is a die-hard Android fan, passionate tech blogger, obsessive-compulsive editor, bug hunting programmer, and the founder of Android Police.
Most of the time, you will find Artem either hacking away at code or thinking of the next 15 blog posts.

  • Gogol

    Can you ask Samsung there if the regular retail version will have microSD card slot?

    Like it was announced back then, the new thin tabs suppose to have it. I am a bit surprised it does not have one.

    • http://iandouglas.com Ian Douglas

      Considering that they told us the retail version would be available in about a month, I doubt they're making any hardware changes.

    • McStagger

      Can i tell you for fact that it will not include a microSD slot.

  • http://Facebook.com/DarknesSx.LDS DarknesSx

    make a video please!!

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      I'll do a video when I'm doing the full review.

  • Xcom923

    >_< I wanna go next year.

  • Dy4me

    Where is the simcard slot if its LTE enabled and you are supposed to put in a sim card. also where is the micro sd card slot?

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Sorry, you're right. I realized that later and updated the post. Samsung and Verizon were giving out the sim promise papers together with the Tab, which gave me the impression that one would go inside the other.

      • Dy4me

        Artem, How come samsung has once again chosen to exclude a simcard slot?

        • http://iandouglas.com Ian Douglas

          Yeah, Artem is right. There's no SIM slot anywhere visible. They must have a way to peel off the back of these things and install it inside the unit for us.

          And it's SOOOO nice. This thing quickly became my favorite gadget.

        • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

          Well, the simcard slot is not needed on a Wi-Fi device - I misunderstood it as being a 3G/4G device at first, but this model is just Wi-Fi.

  • Tyler

    Is the screen BETTER than the Xooms? i really hated the Xooms screen color dullness. That was a factor on returning the device, even on full contrast settings it looks OKAY but rather color dull. This to me is a deal breaker..

    or ill wait for the Quad cores or anyone that delvers a nice screen color. If i can find a duel core good screen, ill take it instead waiting for the Quads.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Looked the same to me, but I'll check. They're both plain LCDs.

      • Tyler

        If its possible.. max the contrast settings. The Xoom on Max was decent, but rather dull.. hope a software update fixes it like the Nexus S update did for the screen

        • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

          The Tab's display seems a bit brighter and not as dull, but still nothing to write home about. Still, it's definitely better. Reflectivity is about the same - both suck balls in sunlight - there's tons of glare.

  • Amfyr

    I am interested in knowing how it works as a phone. Its always mentioned in reviews as a feature, but no one says if and how well it works as a phone.

    I consider this to be a major reason why you would purchase a Galaxy Tab over other tablets . . . its a PHONE AND a TABLET!!

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Do you mean Google Talk or some other VOIP? It doesn't work as a phone at all otherwise, as it doesn't have any phone capabilities built-in.

      • http://iandouglas.com Ian Douglas

        Video over Google Talk works great.

  • Henning

    Is it 16GB or 32GB? With no MicroSD-Slot, that's kinda important...

    • Artem Russakovskii

      It's the 32GB version.

  • John J

    I don't see any reason to pick up this instead of an Asus Transformer (when they are back in stock).

  • http://lol.com TheDangerousOne

    PLEASE SAMSUNG NO TOUCHWIZ !!!

    • Artem Russakovskii

      It is a given that it will come. Just later on.

  • David

    Hey you should try quake3droid and see what FPS it gets compared to the Xoom to verify if it's a Tegra2. I'm a sad panda if this is a Tegra2 :(

    • Artem Russakovskii

      It's like $5, I don't really feel like buying it.

      • David

        I can give you an APK privately.. you got an XDA account? Or I can refund you right away I'm the dev

    • http://iandouglas.com Ian Douglas

      An app called "Phone Tester" reports the following hardware:

      DEVICE
      BRAND: Samsung
      MODEL: GT-P7510
      CPU: ARMv7 Processor rev0 (v71)
      CPU-ABI: armeabi-v7a
      RAM: 725MB

      OS
      VERSION: HRI83
      RELEASE: 3.0.1
      SDK: 11
      FIRMWARE: 313

      DISPLAY
      Dimensions: 1280x800
      DENSITY: Medium (160dpi)
      LOGICAL DENSITY: 1.0
      DPI X: 160.15764
      DPI Y: 160.0

      MOBILE
      DEVICE ID: null

      Running "Root Explorer" and long-pressing on /proc/cpuinfo and selecting "view as text" reports the same ARMv7 Processor rev 0 (v71) and shows two cores at 1998.84 BogoMIPS.

      • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

        Quadrant actually reports this and much more data.

  • MHL

    Samsung have been putting a new standard called MHL (Mobile HD Link) in their newer Android phones. The standard USB micro socket does double duty and either an MHL compliant TV charges and displays via one cable or you get a backwards compatible one that splits into two and has both HDMI out and USB power connectors. Maybe that's why it doesn't have HDMI on the tablet.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      I've seen the MHL port on the S2 and the EVO 3D, and the Tab's port looks nothing like it, otherwise I would have spotted it right away. I'm not sure what the standard Samsung is using here, but it's not MHL from the looks of it.

  • Urhm

    No HDMI? No USB? Then, what's the point?

  • Tometaster

    How does this compare to ASUS eee Pad Transformer? Does Samsung have an IPS display as well?

  • No matter

    +1 I'd like to see a full compare with eee Pad.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Don't have an Eee Pad, and not many others do at the moment. I only have the XOOM and the Tab.

      • Tometaster

        ASUS should be giving one to you for free :)

        Is the Samsung display IPS or plain LCD? I know Asus is an IPS display similar to iPad so trying to understand if Samsung display relatively is better or worse

        • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

          Heh, wouldn't say no to that, but with the demand, I have my doubts.

  • A person

    Your a moron. Of course it's not AMOLED. It would cost a TON. And the screen is SO much better than the Xoom.

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      Thanks, I appreciate the compliment. Indeed, pointing out that the screen was a mere LCD was moronic of me, so that those who are wondering what type of screen it has and who have no idea whether AMOLED is feasible on a tablet at this time would get their answer. I shouldn't have mentioned it the screen at all and I apologize for doing so. I'm just a singleton and you're a whole person.

      On that note, having the 2 tablets side-by-side later at my house, the Tab's screen is indeed more vibrant, and I prefer it to the XOOM's.

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