Thursday, June 2, 2011

Samsung Android Tablet With LTE - You Can Order June 8th - But Not Cheap

Finally, Samsung has joined the Android 3 Honeycomb parade with its own 10" tablet that is worth buying.  Sorry, but the 7" version running standard Android OS for the smartphones just doesn't do it for me.  Now, Googledom has another weapon against the iPad 2.  Is it worth buying?  

One of the things about the iPad that has made it so successful is the price point and on the 3G models, you aren't required to sign a standard two-year contract with a carrier.  However, with Android tablets, I cannot for the life of me understand why some buyers of certain tablets are still being asked to sign up for LTE service with two-year agreement.

The kicker is that the subsidy isn't all that much.  Compared to the iPad 3G of the same storage capacity, the new Galaxy Tab 10.1 is about $100 cheaper than the iPad 2.  The Tab 10.1 comes in at $530 and $630 for the 16 GB and 32 GB models respectively.  By comparison, the iPad 2 is priced at $630 and $730 for the 16 GB and 32 GB respectively.  However, the iPad does not require us to be locked up for two years in order to get the data service.

I know we can eventually buy the 10.1" Tab without signing up for a contract but those prices aren't advertised yet.  If Samsung wants to compete, it cannot make the same mistake that Motorola did with Xoom and price it out of competition at $800.  Af the very least, Samsung needs to match Apple's price.  And to effectively compete, it probably needs to undercut Apple at every price point.

There's a signup page up at Verizon now for them to e-mail you information about the Tab.  Knowing Samsung, you're going to get a quality device.  I reckon the specs are going to be similar to the Xoom and given the intense competition in the marketplace, I think the build could be better.

But two-year contract, I don't know.  I think waiting for a WiFi version makes more sense.  

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