Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1) Review

Interface and Functionality:

TouchWiz over Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich is the name of the game on the Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1), and to tell you the truth, it hasn’t changed much from the prototype unit we checked out not too long ago. Peering over the interface, it isn’t a dramatic change from the TouchWiz UX experience found on the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 from last year. Specifically, we can tap on the arrow icon on the bottom center of the UI to access the Mini Apps Tray from before – where we’re able to layer apps like the Calculator, Task Manager, World Clock, Calendar, and much more. Certainly, it’s nice having access to them at any time, but not all of the apps are practical. Aside from that, it boasts the same amount of lovable personalization found with any other Android device out there.

Normally, 10.1-inch tablets tend to provide a suitable typing experience for us, but with Samsung’s updated layout, it’s not the most optimal thing due to its cramped layout. To tell you the truth, the landscape option requires more caution, but with the portrait one, it’s easier to handle because our thumbs easily encompass the layout. Alternatively, there’s a handwriting recognition option for those who prefer writing things out by hand – or in this case, by finger.

Not surprisingly, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1) coughs up that all too great email experience that we’re so used to seeing on other devices. Both the standard Email and Gmail apps function the same, as they rely on a two-panel interface to provide us with easy organization. With setup, it’s effortless and simply requires our email address and password.

Surprisingly enough, there aren’t as many third party apps preloaded with the tablet when compared to other things, but nevertheless, the few on here include AllShare, Amazon Kindle, ChatON, Next Issue, Polaris Office, and the Peel Smart Remote app. With the latter, we’ve seen it already on other Samsung Tabs, as we find it especially rewarding in turning it into a fully immersive universal remote.

Processor and Memory:

Gone is the dual-core NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor, and instead, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1) is powered by a 1GHz dual-core TI OMAP 4430 CPU with 1GB of RAM. In an age where quad-cores show their finesse, the dual-core in this one simply goes to show off its age. In fact, it exhibits some noticeable bouts of slowdown, lag, and delays with some of its operations – and it’s evident with processor intensive tasks such as activating a live wallpaper. Heck, our keen eyes are also able to recognize a slower rate of performance with a static wallpaper even. Of course, the benchmark results confirm our experience, as they’re clearly lagging from the big contenders in the market.

Quadrant Standard AnTuTu NenaMark 2
Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1) 2711 4995 18.7
Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 2341 5167 20.6
Asus Trasnsformer Pad 300 3872 9551 47.1
Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (7.0) 2750 5144 30.2

With the base $450 priced model of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1), you get 16GB of storage, which actually breaks down to 11.87GB out of the box. Luckily, it can be supplemented thanks to the microSD card that it’s boasting.

Internet and Connectivity:

Surfing the web is such a pleasure on the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (10.1), mainly because it’s able to handle all operations without much fluff. Even with Flash heavy sites, it’s able to readily maintain a high level of performance with its navigational controls – such as smooth kinetic scrolling and pinch zooming. And with our Wi-Fi connection, it’s able to quickly and properly render our site to its entirety.

Although this particular model lacks cellular connectivity, we’ll most certainly see it available with other variants. Specifically, this version features aGPS, Bluetooth 3.0, and 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi.

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