Samsung Galaxy Tab - Oh, That Screen

Really, I have to commend Samsung here. There’s no AMOLED, no IPS, and no S-LCD, but they managed to put a very high quality LED-backlit LCD panel into the Galaxy Tab. The contrast ratio is a devilish 666:1, neatly splitting the difference between the EVO 4G and the Dell Streak, but well short of the iPad’s stellar 934:1 number. But the best thing about the screen is that even without any of the more advanced display technologies, viewing angles are still excellent. As we’ve mentioned before, viewing angles are significantly more important for tablets than netbooks or notebooks, so it’s reassuring to see that Samsung recognizes this.

Display Contrast

The 7” display packs the same WSVGA resolution as most 10” widescreen tablets, so the pixel density is relatively high at 170ppi (versus 138 for the iPad and 116 for most 10” WSVGA tablets). Current rumors put some of the upcoming 10” tablets at 1366x768 or 1280x800, so we’ll see pixel density rise for the industry as a whole, but overall the Galaxy Tab has a pleasantly crisp screen.

The end user experience of any tablet really begins with the screen, and it’s probably one of the most overlooked components in any given device. The display can really make or break any tablet, so it’s important to note that the Galaxy Tab has a very good one.

Samsung Galaxy Tab - The Hardware Samsung Galaxy Tab - Size Really Does Matter
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  • SuperFly03 - Thursday, December 23, 2010 - link

    As a preface my phone has been 4 or 5 different Android devices and I have had an iPhone before.

    I used to say the same thing and I still believe the iPad is a glorified iPhone. Let's face it, it is. It is an iPhone with a huge battery, huge screen, and way more built in storage. That's about it.

    Having said that, I asked for one for Christmas and I got it early. I love it.

    I have a hugely powerful desktop I use for gaming and I have a corporate issued laptop. The corporate issued laptop uses live encryption on a 5400RPM laptop drive and with all the other software running it is a disaster. Absolute disaster. Start up is 20 minutes, browsing the internet is a joke and it all around adds a great deal of frustration and stress to my day. It's sad.

    So when I am at home at night or on the weekends and I am watching football or a movie and I want to play on the internet and I pull out the laptop it ruins my night. It really does.

    Instead of whining like a little girl, I got an iPad. I didn't want a netbook because that's a full laptop which I didn't need and it's larger and bulkier. All I needed it for was couch browsing and simple tasks (email, youtube, etc). The iPad fit my needs very well and has been a pleasure to use. The CPu could be a bit faster and I'd like to revise the auto correct... but all in all it is much faster and better at the simple tasks I needed it to accomplish. Add to that I can play Angry Birds or Cut the Rope on the couch while watching the Texans figure out a new way to lose a game... it's money. It has a decent price tag if you stay at entry level but escalates to a pretty penny real fast.

    The other thing I use it for a great deal is when I'm traveling. Just last week I was in Victoria, TX with nothing to do after work for a full week. I had to stay in a hotel that had a 20yr old curved glass tube TV and WiFi so slow I couldn't check my email. So what did I do? Busted out the 3G connection and streamed South Park and kept my sanity in check.

    My Android smartphone is used while out and about but when I'm home and not gaming, I'm on my iPad.

    netbooks have always been a step child to a functional instrument... the iPad and Galaxy tab present you with functionality and apps geared for the reduced power of the devices unlike netbooks which require using full windows software.
  • cwebersd - Monday, December 27, 2010 - link

    My wife's iPad lives on our dinner table. Whenever someone needs quick web access it is there, instantly. It has totally changed when and how she gets her business-related computing done (email, notes, looking up info on the web). It's small enough to be unobtrusive, but large enough to the clumsiness and cramped screen of a phone. No case to open, no wakeup time to speak of, nothing getting between user and the task at hand. Simply a joy to use!
    From a technical standpoint I love the fact that iOS and Android have done away with the notion of files and directories. Let the apps worry about that and focus on the task at hand. Tablets take this "new" OS concept back up the food chain to devices which can in many cases replace full fledged PCs.
  • blueboy_10 - Thursday, December 23, 2010 - link

    It is safe to say to say that the Galaxy Tab failed miserably in comparison to Apple's iPad. Come on, WTH? Wait until Honeycomb comes out with hopefully some full tablet integration for tablets, then we'll start seeing some real competition! Correct me if I'm wrong, but 2011/2012 will spell out the years for tablets era. - BLUEBOY
  • tekzor - Friday, December 24, 2010 - link

    you are absolutely correct

    I got the tab from tmobile(contract less thank god)

    And it is simply an oversized phone with very little catering to the tablet form factor.
    Regardless of what benchmarks say, my ipad has the best UI performance I have seen and completely crushes the tab.

    Potential tab owners, the flash performance of the tab is abysmal, seriously.
    If you are getting it for the flash built into the browser experience, you will be sorely disappointed!

    froyo alone is just not ready for tablet prime time and I dont think gingerbread will be either. The best bet right now is to get an ipad1/2 or wait for honeycomb.

    at the least you have 30 days to return the tab and get off contract, use that time to play with it.
  • ltcommanderdata - Thursday, December 23, 2010 - link

    How come there's no iPad performance comparisons? Seeing that's the Galaxy Tab's main competition it's important to know. Hopefully you'll also be able to update the iPad to iOS 4.2.1 along with your iPhone 4 results.
  • melgross - Thursday, December 23, 2010 - link

    Yeah. This is the second time they've done these comparisons without the iPad.

    Really guys, is it too much to ask? It's not like it hasn't been out since early April! The iPhone 4 is 20% slower, so it's not a good test when comparing tablets, and since the iPad is the gorilla in the room, it's required to have it on the charts.

    This is irrespective of whether people love or hate Apple.
  • tipoo - Thursday, December 23, 2010 - link

    Agreed, it should be in there. Vivek, pretty please?
  • VivekGowri - Thursday, December 23, 2010 - link

    Done. The pretty please pushed me over the edge. :)

    As a bonus, the results also got updated in the Tegra 2 performance preview.
  • tipoo - Thursday, December 23, 2010 - link

    Muahaha, no one can resist my implied puppy face!
  • synaesthetic - Thursday, December 23, 2010 - link

    I still think tablets are a solution searching for a problem, an answer looking for a question.

    I've used the iPad. While it is definitely an impressive piece of hardware, I do not see how it is better than a netbook. It's slightly lighter and significantly thinner, but it really isn't that much more portable. And trying to do any serious work on a tablet is very difficult... even worse than on my Galaxy S, because it's just too large to thumb type on.

    tl;dr version: Tablets are too big to be smartphone replacements, too unwieldy to be netbook replacements.

    What I'd rather see are smartbooks... netbooks with actual keyboards, touchpads, ARM processors, real netbook Linuxdistros like MeeGo or Aurora (NOT Android, mind you) with big batteries and 15+ hour runtime. Not just smartphones made bigger.

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