Hands on with the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1

We look at the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet, which runs the Android 3.0 ('Honeycomb') OS

At this week's Samsung Forum 2011 in Singapore, we got the chance to get some hands-on time with the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1, the successor to the original Galaxy Tab Android tablet. The new Tab 10.1 runs version 3.0 of Google's Android operating system, dubbed 'Honeycomb'. Unlike previous versions of Android, Honeycomb has been designed for use with tablets. The Galaxy Tab 10.1 has a fancy new 10.1in TFT screen and an 8-megapixel camera.

Read our Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 preview.

Check out our guide to the best upcoming tablets in 2011.

We spent a little time with the original Galaxy Tab when it was first released in late 2010, and decided it was a quality piece of technology. It has dated quickly though — browsing is definitely slower than on newer smartphones, and the inbuilt camera is only roughly equivalent to the one in the Apple iPhone 3GS. The newer Galaxy Tab 10.1 promises to address those concerns; and in our impression is that it will deliver.

The most noticeable difference between the Galaxy Tab 10.1 and the original Samsung tablet is the larger screen — it's got an extra three-and-a-bit inches of real estate and uses an excellent TFT LCD panel, which is bright, crisp and very colourful. We've consistently been impressed with the Super AMOLED screens on Samsung's smartphones like the Galaxy S, and we thought the slightly older HTC Legend had a quality AMOLED display as well. While it's not an AMOLED unit like the aforementioned smartphones, the Galaxy Tab 10.1's screen is far better than the Apple iPad's in our opinion. We also got a chance to play with the Samsung Galaxy S II at the event and while its Super AMOLED Plus screen did look smoother, we weren't disappointed with the Tab 10.1's display.

The touchscreen interface never felt like an impediment while we were playing around with the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 — it was smooth, well laid-out and provided easy and intuitive access to all the features we were hoping for. The interface on the Galaxy Tab 10.1 is modern and slick with a few glowing edges and dark grey pop-up boxes. It looks like it'll take well to customising and tweaking, too.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1's 8-megapixel camera is a definite upgrade from the 3.2-megapixel setup of the original Galaxy Tab. We took a few snapshots of the booth we were testing the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in, in both low light and bright halogen lighting. Apart from a slightly yellowish tinge — probably a result of dodgy automatic white balance, which is easily adjusted using a touchscreen menu — the Galaxy Tab 10.1's camera delivered good picture quality. It's nice to see a high quality camera sensor on a tablet. The Galaxy Tab 10.1's camera isn't as good as a dedicated compact camera or digital SLR, but it's among the best we've seen on a tablet or smartphone.

The Galaxy Tab 10.1 didn't feel especially unwieldy, but with a cover we can see it becoming excessively thick — it's definitely going to be thicker than the iPad 2 plus its Smart Cover. Whether this is a big deal, you'll have to decide for yourself.

We'd say that, in comparison to the tablets currently on the market, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 is a strong contender with superior performance. When it's launched (whenever that is), it'll be up against the iPad 2 and other tablets like the Blackberry Playbook and Motorola Xoom.

Campbell Simpson travelled to Singapore as a guest of Samsung.

Become a fan of GoodGearGuide on Facebook

Follow GoodGearGuide on Twitter: @GoodGearGuide

Stay up to date with the latest reviews. Sign up to GoodGearGuide’s Gear Daily newsletters

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags samsung galaxysamsunggalaxy tab 10.1tabletstablet PCsSamsung Galaxy Tab

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Campbell Simpson

Campbell Simpson

PC World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?