We just sat down at Samsung's Galaxy Note 10.1 US launch event. First announced at Mobile World Congress earlier this year, the Galaxy Note 10.1 brings Samsung's Note brand to a 10.1-inch tablet. The final version uses Samsung's 32nm Exynos 4 quad-core A9 SoC, combined with 2GB of RAM and all driving a 10.1-inch 1280 x 800 display.

Samsung got Moulin Rouge director Baz Luhrmann on stage to talk about his experience with the Galaxy Note 10.1. Ultimately Samsung is touching on a major issue with tablets today: the inability to enjoy the same level of productive multitasking we have on traditional PCs and notebooks.

The Note 10.1 brings multi-window support to Android courtesy of Samsung's own software customizations. The bundled S Pen helps on the creation side as well.

I do feel that Windows 8/RT based tablets will ultimately address a lot of what Samsung has been trying to do with Android over the past couple of years. The real question is whether or not Samsung will bring a lot of its Android experiments to Windows RT  later this year.

The Galaxy Note 10.1 will be available for purchase starting tomorrow, priced at $499 for the 16GB WiFi model and $549 for the 32GB WiFi model (white and dark gray colors available). The tablet comes preloaded with Adobe's Photoshop Touch software that's optimized for use with the bundled S Pen.

Android Tablet Specification Comparison
  ASUS Eee Pad Transformer Prime ASUS Transformer Pad Infinity Google Nexus 7 Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1
Dimensions 263 x 180.8 x 8.3mm 263 x 180.6 x 8.4mm 198.5 x 120 x 10.45mm 262 x 180 x 8.9mm
Chassis Aluminum Aluminum + Plastic RF Strip Plastic Plastic
Display 10.1-inch 1280 x 800 Super IPS+ 10.1-inch 1920 x 1200 Super IPS+ 7-inch 1280 x 800 IPS 10.1-inch 1280 x 800
Weight 586g 594g 340g 597g
Processor 1.3GHz NVIDIA Tegra 3 (T30 - 4 x Cortex A9)

1.6GHz NVIDIA Tegra 3 (T33 - 4 x Cortex A9)

1.3GHz NVIDIA Tegra 3 (T30L - 4 x Cortex A9)

1.4GHz Exynos 4 (4 x Cortex A9)

Memory 1GB 1GB DDR3-1600 1GB 2GB
Storage 32GB/64GB + microSD slot 32/64GB + microSD slot 8/16GB 16/32GB + microSD slot
Battery 25Whr 25Whr 16Whr 26Whr
OS Android 4.0 Android 4.0 Android 4.1 Android 4.0
Pricing $499/$599 $499/$599 $199/$249 $499/$549

The Galaxy Note 10.1 ships with Ice Cream Sandwich, but a Jelly Bean (Android 4.1) upgrade is coming later this year.

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  • jwcalla - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    "The real question is whether or not Samsung will bring a lot of its Android experiments to Windows RT later this year."

    I'm wondering what this is referring to. Has MS relaxed its restriction on OEM customizations?
  • Moizy - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    Hope you have some time to spend in NY to make it worth your while, Anand. Would hate to hear you had to go up and back in a day...for this.

    Seriously, if they were priced the same, I would still be more interested in Surface than in the Note 10.1. But if the reports going around yesterday are true, that Surface will start at $199, I couldn't see anyone going for this over Surface, Nexus 7, or the equally priced Transformer Pad Infinity. Would have to be a Sammy fan, I think. The S-Pen doesn't make enough of a difference to compensate for better priced, or better paneled, competitors. I don't mind hype if the product can live up to it, but I dislike over-hyped, under-whelming products.
  • vision33r - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    Samsung needs to realize the smartphone market is not the same as the tablet one.

    While Samsung can sell many S2 and S3 phones, their tablets won't sell anywhere close.

    The problem with their tablet is the whole Android experience is just unpolished. I can use an Android phone with stock apps without too much problems. With the tablet I have to use both stock and non-stock apps and that's where the problem starts.

    The S-pen is nothing new, it's like the PalmPilot. The software I've seen so far that uses the S-pen are not impressive which can be accomplished on any tablet with a decent stylus. The senstivity level they're touting can be emulated through software easily on iOS or Android.

    They are trying to price this at Apple new iPad price is a huge mistake. This thing can't be more than $399 new or else it's fail.
  • seecoolguy - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    "The Galaxy Note 10.1 ships with Ice Cream Sandwich, but a Jelly Bean (Android 4.1) upgrade is coming later this year."

    Samsung has done a fantastic job copying Apple all except on the software upgrade cycle. There are far too many Samsung phones, tablets that still don't have ICS, I'm sure this version of the Note will not have it either.

    I'm guessing JB will arrive on a new Note 10.1 model (to further confuse us) which will probably also sport the higher res screen.
  • abhaxus - Thursday, August 16, 2012 - link

    Agreed. I would not be shocked AT ALL to see a 1200p Note 10.1 this Christmas with a JB update coming for the 800p model sometime after the first of the year.
  • medi01 - Monday, August 20, 2012 - link

    Yeah. They've copied iOS and called it... Android.
    Or was it google?
  • joebrooks - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    Why can't I reply to any comments? I've tried Firefox (for Linux and under Wine) and Chrome (for Linux and Android), but all I get is the spinning blue flower thing, forever.
  • EnzoFX - Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - link

    I just can't get over how plastic-y their stuff is. It looks cheap to me. Can't bring myself to buy any of their current products.
  • Wizzdo - Thursday, August 16, 2012 - link

    Faster CPU/GPUs does not an iPad make. Apple is still in a league of its own. A slick class-leading OS with loads of great software that works well with the beautifully designed class-leading hardware and is upgraded with great new features regularly and easily all the while integrating tightly with the whole Apple eco system.

    Good luck waiting on the ICS upgrade. And if miraculously it ever happens you can bet it will be the last.

    With Samsung, like so many other iPad wannabes, you feel outdated within months of owning it and it won't be long before it finds its way to the trash heap along with the rest.
  • Impulses - Saturday, August 18, 2012 - link

    Um, it comes with ICS, guess you meant JB?

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