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The second device in Samsung’s pen-enabled Note family of Android devices, the Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet, is now available at Future Shop, and I have had a chance to spend some quality-time with one over the past few weeks.
When the Samsung Galaxy Note was announced in 2011 it was at first considered a curiosity. What Samsung had created was an Android smartphone with a HUGE 5.3” screen, and what many scoffed was a throwback to an earlier time of smartphone technology - a stylus! If you’ve been using smartphones for as long as I have (my first was an HP iPAQ h6300 way back in 2004), you’ll fondly remember that the stylus was the de facto method of input on these early devices that used resistive screen technology. The stylus was a lot more accurate than fat fingers on those screens. However, with the advent of the iPhone (which uses capacitive screen technology), everyone thought the special dialing wand was extinct. Surprisingly, the Galaxy Note (quickly dubbed the world’s first ‘phablet’) proved to be quite a popular device. Styli are making a comeback!
One of the main uses demoed for the stylus on the Galaxy Note, now dubbed the S Pen by Samsung, was drawing. While the S Pen is pressure-sensitive (it uses the same Wacom tech found in graphics tablets), and works very well for this purpose on the Note, I did think that its 5.3” screen was quite a small canvas to work on. When the Note was launched in Canada earlier this year, I asked if Samsung was planning on putting their S Pen technology in something larger, perhaps a full-sized Android tablet, and I was rewarded soon after when Samsung announced the Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet at MWC in late February.
The Note 10.1 isn’t all just about the S Pen, though. While externally it might look quite similar to the less expensive Galaxy Tab 2 10.1” tablet, under the hood it is quite a bit more powerful. Samsung has blessed it with their own quad-core Exynos processor (which is also found in the international variants of the Galaxy S3), making it an incredibly fast Android tablet. There is an IR port too, which allows the Note 10.1 to act as a smart remote for your home theatre set-up. Lastly, there are a number of software enhancements that Samsung has added to the Note 10.1’s Ice Cream Sandwich OS, that take advantage of the power of its quad-core CPU – with selected apps you can run them side-by-side, in what Samsung calls Multiscreen mode.
Now, after quite a long wait, the Galaxy Note 10.1 is finally available in Canada. Check out some pictures of the Note 10.1 below, along with my hands-on video of Samsung’s latest tablet.
Operating System: Android 4.0 (ICS) + Samsung TouchWiz overlay (An upgrade to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean is expected soon)
Processor: 1.4GHz Quad-Core Exynos 4412 Processor
Memory RAM: 2 GB DDR2
Memory Storage: 32 GB onboard storage, microSD slot for up 64GB of additional storage & 50GB of storage in Dropbox
Display: 10.1" HD PLS LCD, 1280 x 800, 149 ppi
Input: Capacitive touch screen, pressure sensitive S Pen
Connections: Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi, USB2.0 HS, A-GPS, DLNA, Samsung AllShare Play, infrared, HDMI-out with optional adaptor
Wi-Fi: 802.11 a/b/g/n, Wi-Fi Direct
Battery: 7000 mAh, Embedded for up to 10 hours of use
Camera (Main): 5 MP
Camera (Front): 1.9 MP
Dimensions: 180.3 x 261.6 x 8.9mm (7.1" x 10.3" x 0.35")
Weight: 595g (1.31 lbs)
You can also read more about the Galaxy Note 10.1 on Samsung's website.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 is available from Future Shop now:
The Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 is more than just a tablet, it's a productivity machine designed to improve the ways you work and play. Multi-screen functionality allows you to do things like watch a video, build a presentation, and write an email at the same time. The S Pen makes it easier than ever to draw sketches or jot down notes with the included handwriting-to-text function.
Gallery of images of the Galaxy Note 10.1 Tablet