Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1

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An image of the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 and S-Pen

The new Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 Android tablet

I have just added this new tablet to my collection of gadgets so that means it is time to put a review together. I will cover the tablet itself, the bundled applications and some choice applications from the Google Play store.

The Specifications

  • 1.40GHz Samsung Exynos 4412 (ARM Cortex A9 + Mali 400MP) (Quad Core)
  • 5 Mega Pixel front camera
  • 7000mAh battery
  • Android 4.0.3 (ICS)
  • 2Gb Ram (memory)
  • Upto 64Gb Storage (I have the 16Gb Model)
  • WiFI up to N+
  • S-Pen (Pressure Sensitive Pen)
  • Some Models – 3G/4G

The Basics

This is first and foremost one of the first large tablets to include a digitizer  under the normal capacitive input. This means that it can detect the pen even while it is not physically touching the device. It also allows it to have several levels of sensitivity. This is very useful when making use of the bundled Photoshop Touch application or the notes apps. It also enables handwriting recognition so you can write a note and still end up with a printed document.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 also features stereo speakers on the front of the device. Using this to listen to YouTube, BBC’s iPlayer and various MP3’s gave excellent quality and were loud without being distorted. So this would be an excellent device to pack with you on your holidays or long journeys. The 7000mAh battery gives around 8 hours of usage, but this extends if you turn off the WiFi, Bluetooth and turn the brightness down. In the few days we have had it we have been able to use it throughout the day with little issue or worry about the battery running out.

Digging Deeper

Once you have finished setting up and testing out the headline features you will start to find the hidden talent Samsung have put into the Galaxy Note 10.1.

Split Screen

When you have the default browser open you can switch to split-screen mode and have two of the selected applications open at the same time. This can be a good way of copying information from an email to a note, or from the web into an email.

Developers over on xda-developers.com have already created a Windows application that will enable more applications to open in Split-screen (or Multi Window) mode. It also won’t be long until other developers add this feature to their own programs.

Infra red Remote Control

Since Samsung make more then phones and tablets they have turned some of that knowledge into a quiet feature on all their generation 2 Notes, including the Galaxy Note 10.2. This feature allows you to control the majority of Televisions, Stereos, DVD players, Blu-Ray Players and Set Top Boxes (Sky, Virgin, tivo) etc.

They bundle a basic remote app with the device and I will go into this feature in more detail in a later post as I feel there is a better one available so will review them both. But out of the box you will be controlling your front room in no time!

Lets wrap this up

OK I have gone on for a while now so I will finish with a TL;DR Pros and cons:

Pros:

  • Fantastic Screen size
  • Excellent Sound Quality
  • Responsive Screen
  • Excellent Battery Life
  • WiFi and Mobile versions available
  • Multiple Colours

Cons:

  • Could be seen as a luxury at the price (as of writing lots of stores in the UK are selling the WIFI 16Gb model for £318 with Samsung offering £50 cash back after 15 days)
  • Without a case the device will feel heavy after a long period of holding it
  • You need an adaptor to use a normal USB cable!
  • You need an adaptor to use a full-size SD Card
  • You need an adaptor to use a HDMI cable

That’s all folks!

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