Cape Town - The Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 is a step up from the previous
version and offers a real tablet alternative - even to other Samsung
The upgraded Note sports a similar 26cm high definition
display than its predecessor that makes the tablet experience on the
device far more user friendly and shoots down the "phablet" format.
Quad core 1.4GHz processor and 2GB of RAM keeps the Android-powered
device running smoothly despite using high drain video and gaming apps.
main difference between this device and the other tablets is the
inclusion of the S-pen stylus which is neatly built into the chassis of
It augments many of the tablet functions, and includes
bonuses like handwriting recognition and pressure sensitivity for
drawing images in Samsung's S Note application.
cool because the pen is responsive," a graphic designer told News24
when using the Note, but he wasn't as impressed with the PS Touch application.
"I wish they had included more of the original PhotoShop instead of this thing that I have to relearn," he said.
the Note does try to be a Jack-of-all-trades, offering hardware touches
matched with software that should give developers more options in
building apps dedicated to the device.
Like recent products from
Apple, the Note 10.1 supports both GPS and Glonass, and one can do
screen captures from a software button on the screen.
It runs the
Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) operating system which is refreshing
and more refined than previous versions of the now dominant mobile OS.
life was a pleasant surprise on the device, with the 700mAh battery
running for two days before needing to be charged, despite the powerful
The main camera on the Note is only a 5 megapixel, but
some would argue that it is still quite clumsy to use tablets primarily
camera records HD video and the secondary camera has a resolution of 1.9
megapixels, effectively banishing VGA to history.
unit had 32GB of memory on board and it's still a bonus that
Android-powered devices offer a micro-SD card slot to expand memory.
is working hard to create a hardware ecosystem and has included a TV
remote on the Note, hoping that users will choose to buy more Samsung
products for greater compatibility of devices.
Despite the Note's
obvious wins, there are some concerns with the device: It works so well
that one can easily forget to use the included stylus.
though it is neatly stowed in the case, there is always a risk that it
could be lost, and a replacement could be a costly exercise.
While the S Note
application works well for editing, there is no direct application on
computers that is able to read the SNB files that it generates, and this
limits some of the sharing functionality Samsung is trying to promote.
Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 is a well-built, well-designed machine that
offers more than standards tablets, but the hardware doesn't stand out
too much from other Samsung products, and the price may give you