Samsung was the first manufacturer to provide a credible iPad competitor with its original Samsung Galaxy Tab and now the company is back with a bigger and better tablet — the powerful Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1v.
Read our Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1v hands-on, and check out our guide to the best upcoming tablets in 2011.
Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1v: Design and display
Like the Samsung Galaxy S II Android phone, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1v is made from sturdy feeling plastic and has a carbon-like finish on the rear. This adds style, and makes the tablet easy to grip. The Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1v feels well built despite its plastic body, and manages to remain lightweight at 599g. However, it does lack the premium feel of the iPad 2 and the rear casing creaks when pressed near the charging port.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1v's power button and volume control are the only physical buttons on the tablet. A side-mounted headphone jack, a bottom-mounted proprietary charging/synchronising port and a SIM card slot keep the Galaxy Tab 10.1v's shell relatively clean looking. Like the iPad 2, the Galaxy Tab 10.1v doesn't have a memory card slot for extra storage, so the 16GB of internal memory will quickly fill up if you store a lot of videos and photos on the device.
As its name suggests, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1v has a 10.1in capacitive touchscreen with a resolution of 1280x800. The original Galaxy Tab had a 7in display, and the new model competes directly with the 9.7in iPad 2. The screen is crisp and clear and has excellent brightness. However, it shares two flaws with the iPad 2 — the Galaxy Tab 10.1v is almost impossible to see in direct sunlight, and the display quickly becomes a grubby mess after limited use.
One advantage the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1v Android tablet definitely holds over the iPad 2 is its cameras. It has a rear 8-megapixel rear camera that doubles as a 1080p HD video recorder, and a 2-megapixel front camera for video calls — both take significantly better quality photos and video than the iPad 2. The interface of the camera app is also superb, but it is a shame you can't use the physical volume buttons to zoom in and out. Unfortunately, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1v lacks HDMI connectivity, so you can't hook it up to a television or monitor.