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Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review

Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9

Posted: , by John V.



Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Review
Setting it to automatic brightness during our testing, we’re able to get close to two days of moderate usage that consists mostly of web browsing and emailing. In our books, that’s a pretty good mark to hit with its 6,000 mAh battery – thus, easily providing power users with a solid day’s worth of usage. Naturally, light users will benefit the most as they’ll dearly enjoy its longevity.


If you find the original 7” Samsung GALAXY Tab too small and the GALAXY Tab 10.1 too big for you to handle, then it’s a no-brainer conclusion that the GALAXY Tab 8.9 offers that tangible solution in bridging the gap. Although it’s almost hard to not like this offering, especially when it’s fashioned after its bigger brother, there are some things that diminish its overall appeal in drastically establishing its own identity.

Standing out like a sore thumb, it’s simply plagued by too many instances of unresponsiveness that tarnish its pristine aura. From playing high definition videos to navigating around its homescreen, we’re just turned off a little bit by its sluggishness. However, its biggest detractor has to be its $469 pricing, which doesn’t seem to be justifiable based on its offerings and performance. Obviously, it’s pricey when it’s only separated by only $30 from its bigger brother.

On the other hand, if it were priced somewhere around the lower $400 mark or less, it could potentially gain some credibility, but as of right now, it’s very hard to accept altogether when you look at the big picture.

Software version of the reviewed unit:
Android version:  3.1
Kernel version:
Build number: HMJ37.UEKHA P7310UEKHA

Samsung GALAXY Tab 8.9 Video Review:


  • Brilliant and colorful display
  • Razor thin profile construction
  • Good battery life


  • Sluggish performance
  • Kinda expensive
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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: 309; 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: 309; 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: 99; 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: 3117; 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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PhoneArena rating:
Display8.9 inches, 1280 x 800 pixels (170 ppi) TFT
Camera3 megapixels
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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