We've been able to speak so highly of Samsung lately, considering its timely source code releases and recent device updates, but now this happens. Rumor has it that Sammy has duped owners of the Galaxy Tab WiFi by replacing the CPU with an older version, which in turn required a downgraded graphics processor, too. This is, of course, in comparison to the 3G Galaxy Tab, which was released several months prior to the WiFi version.
It looks like at least one Android tablet manufacturer has finally realized that $700-800 slates just won't cut it against the (starting at) $500 iPad 2 in the eyes of most customers. In case you missed our Live Blog, Samsung has finally announced its upcoming Galaxy Tab 8.9 and Galaxy Tab 10.1, both of which will launch with Wi-Fi-only versions - and we finally have an Android tablet that can compete with Apple's slate in one of the most important categories: price.
It looks like some juicy info is already coming out of CTIA, as Pocketnow managed to snap some photos of a promotional display that Samsung already has set up. The display shows many details for the yet-to-be-announced Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9, answering many questions that have been buzzing around the tech blogs for weeks - and showing us the first custom UI to be laid on top of Honeycomb.
The tab will, of course, sport an 8.9" (diagonally-measured) display, attempting to strike a happy balance between the 7" and 10" slates.
Samsung is doing all they can to release just enough information about the upcoming 8.9" Galaxy Tab to create some buzz ahead of its announcement next week at CTIA. After several promo images surfaced on their Facebook page, they have now released a short video.
As you can see below, the video consists mostly of people (I'm guessing Samsung employees), in micro-edited sound bites, talking about how great something is. Then for the last few seconds you get some nano-edited images flashed across the screen of the upcoming mid-sized slate:
After the last Facebook teaser, an overachieving tipster analyzed the image and estimated the measurements based on the headphone jack.
Off topic? Sure. Amusing? Quite. ChipWorks has cracked open a Samsung Galaxy Tab and Samsung Captivate (a Galaxy S device) to take a look at the chips inside, and found a surprising number of visual goodies packed within. Using some scanning electronic microscopy, they saw a message that reads "If you can read this, you are much too close." Much too close, indeed: the letter "o" in the message is less than 1/10th the thickness of a human hair.
Take it as you wish, but a flyer that (according to Droid Life) was passed out by Samsung representatives at a technology fair today clearly shows that a Wifi-only version of the original 7" Galaxy Tab is set to hit store shelves on April 4 at $399.
If this turns out to be legit, it may be viewed as a mixed bag by Android users. On the one hand, it's a quality tablet from a major manufacturer offered for $100 less than the iPad, but on the other hand, this isn't November and the original Tab's specs are easily dwarfed by the current generation of Tegra 2 slates that are becoming available.
If you saw our post the other day about Samsung's teaser image for their rumored 8.9" Galaxy Tab (expected to be announced at CTIA later this month), you may have seen what appeared to be an extremely thin tablet. At a casual glance, it looks svelte enough to give the .34" thick iPad 2 a run for its money in its lack of girth. Then a diligent tipster shared his homework with us and, well, it looks like Samsung has been using some Photoshop lighting effects to create a bit of an illusion.
If you caught our review of Thumb Keyboard last month, you'll know the gist of this clever keyboard app that aims to make two-thumbed typing a breeze. It's a novel (and potentially very useful) tool for a phone, but with recent updates that have accentuated the tablet layouts, this has now become my keyboard of choice on large tablet screens, and is a potential game-changer in the new slate arena.
On phones, trace keyboards like Swype and SlideIt are extremely hard to beat in the speed department (world texting records seem to be broken on a regular basis with Swype), but on the wider tablet screen, tracing suddenly becomes much less convenient.
Early this morning (or late last night if you want to get technical), Samsung made its quarterly earnings call, and the company's mobile division is doing quite well - profits are up 38%, thanks in large part to the Galaxy S line of phones.
Samsung managed to sell over 10 million Galaxy S handsets in 2010, comprising roughly a third of all the manufacturer's smartphone sales. Given the Galaxy S's global launch along with its premium hardware and fair pricing, it's no surprise that device has been a big hit.
TmoNews posted an image last night confirming that tomorrow, the price of the Galaxy Tab with a new T-Mobile 2-year contract will be cut to just $250 after mail-in rebate - $50 less than the current mark. Price cuts for the Galaxy Tab have been popping up all over it seems, and after Verizon announced that it'll be getting a new-and-improved 4G Galaxy Tab with a faster 1.2GHz processor, it makes sense.