Samsung's Galaxy range of products grows by the day it seems, they have the market wrapped up nicely with its Galaxy S II, S III, Note and Note II smartphones among countless other variants. The tablet market is a little bit different, where they don't really have a market-leading tablet apart from a few nice tries with the Galaxy Tab in various sizes.
I reviewed the Galaxy Tab 8.9 a little while ago, and while I was happy with it, it didn't blow me away. I never personally used a Galaxy Tab 10.1, but now I have the pleasure of reviewing Samsung's Galaxy Note 10.1.
Samsung married the smartphone, tablet and threw in some of the PC's kitchen sink when it comes to the Note 10.1. The Note 10.1 gives us split-screen abilities as well as floating applications on the software side of things, and on the hardware side of things we have a quad-core processor, 10.1-inch screen and the S-Pen.
Samsung showed the Galaxy Note 10.1 off earlier in the year at Mobile World Congress in an unfinished state. They used the event to see how the public would react to it, and then went back and tweaked a bunch of the tablet to help it blast onto the market.
At MWC, the Note 10.1 didn't sport an S-Pen - why they did this and called it a Note 10.1, I truly have no idea. At the time it didn't have much of the software we see on it today, the quad-core processor, or extra storage options. One would look at this and think there's no way Samsung can fail - the Note is a great phone, the Galaxy range of products is doing well, but there are issues with the Note 10.1.
Samsung really concentrated on wanting to impress on paper, but do they impress when this device is in your hands? You'll want to read on to find out.
Specifications, Pricing and Availability
Specifications are something that Samsung really took care of with the Galaxy Note 10.1. Samsung opted for its Exynos quad-core processor clocking in at 1.4GHz - somewhat of the gem in the Note 10.1 tablet. Filling it out we find 2GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage (with 32GB and 64GB options) as well as expandable storage through a microSD card slot.
The display itself being a 10.1-inch screen with a resolution of 1280x800, 7000mAh non-removable battery, an 8-megapixel rear-camera, and 1.9-megapixel front-shooting camera, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.0, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich with Samsung's TouchWiz UI on top, a pressure sensitive pen (S-Pen) and Wacom Digitizer.
All of this comes in a tablet that weighs just 597 grams (Wi-Fi) model, and the 3G model adds just 3 grams more to fill it out at 600 grams. Included with the Note 10.1 is an IR blaster, USB 2.0 host support and some great front-facing stereo speakers.
As you can see, the Note 10.1 is specced unbelievably well for a tablet - a quad-core processor, 2GB of RAM and the S-Pen make it one of the ultimate note-taking tablets on the market.
Price-wise, it is priced quite competitively given its internal strength, with Newegg selling the Galaxy Note 10.1 Wi-Fi-only model for just $499.99, the 3G model ramps the price up quite a bit to $719.99. At that price, it's simply ridiculous and I don't recommend it. If you are the type of person looking to buy the Note 10.1, you've most likely got a capable smartphone that you could tether to the Note 10.1 as a modem - do this instead of paying too much for the 3G model.