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Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review

Posted: , by John V.

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Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
Introduction:

When we think about Samsung, one of the first things that tend to come to mind is the fanatical rate on how quickly they’re able to develop, produce, and bring devices to market – and it shows just by looking at their smartphone portfolio. Concurrently, we’re beginning to see the same thing happening over in the tablet world as they quickly established themselves with the original 7-inch Samsung GALAXY Tab.

Early in the year, they abruptly rocked the boat by introducing the Samsung GALAXY Tab 10.1, which then received a huge overhaul recently with its design so that they wouldn’t be outdone by another rival. However, things don’t end there as they’re able to fill in the gap between the two models with the Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9. Employing the same design characteristics and hardware under the hood, it’s going to be intriguing to see how this $469 priced tablet will be able to secure its own identity.

Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
The package contains:

  • Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9
  • Wall Charger
  • USB cable
  • Stereo Headphone
  • 4 ear bud replacements
  • Quick Start Guide
  • Health & Safety and Warranty Guide


Design:

Besides its discernible size difference, the Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 looks and feels much like its bigger brother. Visually, it utilizes the cookie-cutter tablet design approach that we’re all familiar with by now, but it’s still able to stand out thanks to its razor thin construction at 0.34” thick uniformly all around. At first glance, it seems as though it’s sporting a brushed metallic back cover of some sort, but in fact, it’s nothing more than a tough plastic material that emulates the look of a metal exterior. Despite the less premium material in use, we’re actually impressed that it does a superb job in repelling dirt and debris from sticking on – thus, keeping it looking clean at all times. Overall, it’s not something new that excites us,  but it still works and comes together very well.

The Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 looks and feels much like its bigger brother - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
The Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 looks and feels much like its bigger brother - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review

The Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 looks and feels much like its bigger brother


Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review

As its name implies, the tablet is sporting an 8.9” PLS (Plane to Line Switching) LCD display with a sizable 1280 x 800 resolution – the same resolution as the GALAXY Tab 10.1. Combining its screen size and resolution, it obviously produces some hard crunching high pixel density, which makes it so detailed looking. Adding to its lovely appearance, its high brightness output, great viewing angles, and piercingly warm color production, all combine together to give us one gorgeous looking display that looks fantastic in all conditions.

The Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 is sporting an 8.9” PLS LCD display - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
The Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 is sporting an 8.9” PLS LCD display - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
The Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 is sporting an 8.9” PLS LCD display - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
The Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 is sporting an 8.9” PLS LCD display - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
The Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 is sporting an 8.9” PLS LCD display - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
The Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 is sporting an 8.9” PLS LCD display - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
The Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 is sporting an 8.9” PLS LCD display - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
The Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 is sporting an 8.9” PLS LCD display - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review

The Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 is sporting an 8.9” PLS LCD display


Literally, everything else regarding the Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 is absolutely identical to its bigger brother as it features the same propriety charging/dock port, left & right speakers, microphone, volume rocker, and dedicated power button around its sides.

The sides of the Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
The sides of the Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
The sides of the Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
The sides of the Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review

The sides of the Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9


Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
3.5mm jack, volume and power keys on top - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
Charging port and speakers on the bottom edge - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
  

3.5mm jack, volume and power keys on top

Charging port and speakers on the bottom edge


When it comes to cameras, it’s also unchanged as it flaunts a 2-megapixel front-facing one above the display and a 3.2-megapixel auto-focus snapper in the rear with an LED flash. However, it’s still sorely lacking a built-in microSD card slot to increase its internal storage – though, you can purchase an optional adapter that plugs into its charging port to get that functionality.

Front facing camera - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
3.2-megapixel rear camera - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
Back - Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review

Front facing camera

3.2-megapixel rear camera

Back



17 Comments
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posted on 30 Sep 2011, 08:48 3

1. bobfreking55 (Posts: 866; Member since: 15 Jul 2011)


A smaller galaxy tab 10.1
7.7 = a smaller 8.9
7 plus = smaller 7.7
note = smaller 7 plus
sgs2 = smaller note

then there's the galaxy players. GALAXY TABLETS EVERYWHERE IN ALL SIZES WTF.

posted on 30 Sep 2011, 08:49

2. superguy (Posts: 271; Member since: 15 Jul 2011)


$30 price difference from the 10.1 and lack of microSD card = FAIL.

One of these days, Android tablet makers will actually put something out that people will want to buy.

posted on 30 Sep 2011, 08:53 2

3. bobfreking55 (Posts: 866; Member since: 15 Jul 2011)


The transformer for me is still the best tablet that has an innovative feature you'd actually want to buy.

posted on 30 Sep 2011, 09:19

4. superguy (Posts: 271; Member since: 15 Jul 2011)


I like the looks of the Transformer and the Xoom. But with updates announced for the Xoom and I'm sure a new Transformer on the horizon, I'm going to wait this out. Most have been out nearly a year anyway at this point.

posted on 30 Sep 2011, 09:30 1

5. varsas (Posts: 11; Member since: 30 Sep 2011)


I am sure that I am not the only one that doesn't want a 10 inch tablet so that is not a FAIL factor. Additionally the iPad is doing just fine without expandable memory so clearly there are people who will still want to buy such devices.

posted on 30 Sep 2011, 10:00 1

6. jacko (unregistered)


One of these days, Apple might actually put something out that people will want to buy.

posted on 05 Oct 2011, 10:25

12. dave (unregistered)


Yeah, because no one wants to buy anything apple!?!

posted on 05 Oct 2011, 17:16

13. Fletch (unregistered)


Well no onewith a brain who has to work hard for their money and actually values what they get for their dollar. The ipad is a giant paper weight that does nothing, costs way too much and comes with the dork apple stigma all apple products carry lol

posted on 01 Nov 2011, 11:23 2

17. hitdog042 (Posts: 5; Member since: 09 Apr 2011)


Wow. Well let me know when honeycomb has good apps. My iPad watches directv. My watchespn is full screen. I can read full electronic newspapers. My old xoom doesn't do any of that. Troll. Android tablets are close to worthless for the price tags.

Heck honeycomb doesn't even do MLB live games.

No thanks. I don't need a geek machine just to say I can hack it. I'd rather have function and apps that actually work in today's world.

I like android. But the tablets are worthless.

posted on 30 Sep 2011, 19:27 1

7. kmrdeva (unregistered)


The review mentioned that the 8.9 does not have a microSD slot for memory expansion, just like its 10.1 cousin. However, I saw the specs for the 8.9 on gsmarena.com, there was mention of the microSD slot. What gives?

posted on 30 Sep 2011, 21:10

8. John.V (Posts: 92; Member since: 27 May 2011)


Definitely no built-in microSD card slot. You can buy an optional adapter that connects through the dock port though.

posted on 01 Oct 2011, 09:19

10. varsas (Posts: 11; Member since: 30 Sep 2011)


The original prototype, like the 10.1, had a microSD card slot; the final production models do not.

posted on 30 Sep 2011, 22:29

9. RORYREVOLUTION (Posts: 3033; Member since: 12 Jan 2010)


Bring it down to 250 and we got a deal. Otherwise, No thanks.

posted on 06 Oct 2011, 06:06

14. CeeDee (Posts: 2; Member since: 30 Sep 2011)


What does the 8.9 have? The 3G version can act like a phone: attach a bluetooth headset and away you go. The 10.1 -- not so much.

posted on 11 Oct 2011, 15:48

15. TimB (unregistered)


I have a 10.1 which runs about the same as a 8.9 and if you turn on live screens it does slow it down, but then its doing a lot in the back ground. Put a static image as the wall-paper and its really smooth.

I agree that $469 is a bit to much, I was going to buy the 8.9 but then for the extra $30 I went for the 10.1.

Any one who says it should cost $250 is talking out of their a***s. In reality the screen will only be a bit cheaper to make and then you will save a few $ on the smaller battery. So were is the rest of the savings going to come from? Profits?

posted on 21 Oct 2011, 13:00

16. Kev.C.Orme (Posts: 1; Member since: 21 Oct 2011)


Where can I get an Unlocked Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 online ??

posted on 27 Jul 2012, 20:54

19. gregdaniels (Posts: 3; Member since: 27 Jul 2012)


Words cannot express how great this tablet is. I use the GTab for graphic design here in NY, and i've never been more productive. Android allows for all kinds of tweaks to improve functionality, and AT&T's 4g lte is unbelievably fast.

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Display8.9 inches, 1280 x 800 pixels (170 ppi) TFT
Camera3 megapixels
Hardware
Dual core, 1000 MHz
Size9.09 x 6.21 x 0.34 inches
(230.9 x 157.8 x 8.6 mm)
15.98 oz  (453 g)

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