The Samsung Galaxy Tab is touted as an iPad rival. Many wonder whether this 7-inch tablet really has the potential to take on the iconic 9.7-inch Apple iPad. And now that the price of this Samsung tablet has been announced, many are unhappy that it is costlier than the Apple tablet. However, here are a few reasons why the Galaxy Tab is a better tablet than the iPad, and why its price is justified.
The Apple iPad, which runs the iOS, cannot truly multi-task. No applications can run in the background, when the user is at work on another application in the foreground. Even if the iPad gets an update to iOS 4, which supports multi-tasking, this will be limited to native apps only. Third party apps (like Facebook, Twitter, or music apps like Pandora) cannot run at the same time when another app is being run. On the other hand, the Galaxy Tab, which runs Android 2.2 or Froyo, is capable of multi-tasking. This includes running 3rd party apps in the background too.
The Apple tablet does not support Adobe Flash. Instead, it uses HTML 5, to play certain online videos. The Samsung tablet is compliant with both Flash (10.1) as well as HTML 5.
The iPad lacks a camera. In case the user requires camera functionality, then a separate camera dock has to be purchased, which allows connecting to an external camera. The Galaxy Tab, on the other hand, has 2 cameras. A 3MP one on the rear for capturing videos and photographs; and a 1.3MP one in the front, for video calls.
The Apple gear cannot make calls. The Samsung gear allows making calls, both voice and video. For voice calls, the integrated loudspeaker or Bluetooth headsets can be used.
MicroSD card storage
The iPad is available in 3 internal storage configurations – 16GB, 32GB and 64GB. They do not have microSD card storage. Whereas, the Galaxy Tab, offers just 2 internal memory configurations – 16GB and 32GB. There is however a microSD card slot which can hold cards of up to 32GB capacity.
The Samsung tablet weighs just 380g, when compared to the 730g of the iPad. Plus, it is smaller in size, which makes it more travel friendly, than the iPad.
Finally, coming to something that is not very obvious at first sight. When it comes to entertainment, the iPad definitely does a brilliant job. But, when it comes to doing work, it is quite uncomfortable. If the user needs to prepare documents, presentations, or work on spreadsheets and more on the iPad, he would find it quite inconvenient to use. Consider the following ways of holding and working on the iPad:-
• Putting the device on a desk, flat on its back – The user will not be able to rest his hands comfortably, as he will need to continually keep lifting them to work-with or touch something present on the top of the screen. So he’ll have to keep his wrist suspended in the air, in-order to use the entire screen. And this is not ergonomic when working for long hours. Another thing to be noted is that, the iPad has a curvature on its back. Hence, the user will have to hold it steady as well, when working on it.
• Holding the tablet in both hands, while resting them on the desk, and using the thumbs to work on it – In this case, the hands are more relaxed, but since the tablet is too large in size, the thumbs might not be able to cover the entire surface of the touchscreen.
• Keeping the tablet on the lap – This might seem comfortable, but only for a short duration. The user might not be able to rest his elbows comfortably when working in this manner.
On the other hand, the Samsung gadget, can be put on the desk, flat on its back, to work upon. It has a flat back, that can rest stably on the table. The screen is smaller in size, and hence, it will be more convenient to touch any point, without having to continually lift the hands. Plus, when it is held in both hands, while resting them on the desk, the thumbs can be used to operate it, more easily, than the rival.
The Galaxy Tab can do almost everything that the iPad can
• The Samsung tablet is suitable for entertainment. It can play 1080p videos. It is as well compatible with a large variety of music file formats.
• It can also double as an eBook reader, like the iPad. Samsung is developing a new eBook store for this tablet too.
• One can even play games on this device. There’s support for augmented reality.
• Speed-wise as well, the Galaxy Tab is expected to match the iPad, as it is driven by a 1GHz processor, just like the latter.
• Multi-touch ability is offered by the smaller tablet too.
• Apps and games can be downloaded from the Android Market. The Apple App Store is definitely much bigger in size, but the Android Market does have a great collection of apps and games too.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab price has been published in some online stores. It costs £620 approximately, which is lesser than the £699 of the WiFi+3G+64GB Apple iPad. This iPad configuration is the one that comes closest to offering all features that are available in the Galaxy Tab. Then again, with this Apple tablet, you’ll need to pay an extra £25 for the camera kit.
Considering that you get WiFi, 3G ability, Bluetooth 3.0, camera functionality, voice and video calling, multitasking, better ergonomics and more for £620, the deal seems worth it.
Arvid from Flickr