Bigger tab from Samsung on the way

Sep 23, 2010
Tech

With the 7-inch Galaxy tab set to debut very soon, word of a 10-inch version is hitting the Web. Also in today’s App Industry Roundup, the HP Slate makes its YouTube debut and Amazon (AMZN) updates the Kindle app for Android. Samsung’s second tab The recent tablet news has all been about going smaller than the […]

With the 7-inch Galaxy tab set to debut very soon, word of a 10-inch version is hitting the Web. Also in today’s App Industry Roundup, the HP Slate makes its YouTube debut and Amazon (AMZN) updates the Kindle app for Android.

Samsung’s second tab

The recent tablet news has all been about going smaller than the iPad, with a stream of 7-inch models getting ready for launch. There’s the BlackPad, the Galaxy tab and even a smaller iPad being discussed.

Now there appears to be a new tab that is the same size as the iPad and it could be available early next year. According to a report this morning from Engadget, an Ireland-based Samsung executive said a 10-inch tab will be introduced in the first quarter of 2011. Why not earlier? Vlad Savov, writing for the tech blog, believes that Samsung is waiting for a significant update to the Android operating system.

“If we had to bet our Led Zep record collection, we’d probably say this 10-incher will be holding out for Android 3.x — either Gingerbread or Honeycomb — for an experience better optimized to run on larger screens,” he writes. “In fact, that may be the likeliest reason why this new tablet didn’t debut with its 7-inch sibling: waiting on a better OS.”

The 7-inch Samsung Galaxy tab is due to arrive at the four major U.S. wireless carriers very soon.

HP tab on video

Meanwhile, Hewlett Packard is also getting into the tablet market. A 4-minute YouTube video of the long-rumored HP Slate provides a decent look at the hardware the touch-screen controls on the Windows 7-controlled device.

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Writing for CrunchGear, Matt Burns isn’t impressed and doesn’t think anyone will be rushing out to buy an HP Slate, which he says is designed for business users. “This demo is a laughable mess when it gets to the UI demonstration even though the person recording says the Slate is ‘pretty responsive, pretty quick’,” Burns writes. “Yeah, alright. At least the hardware looks solid.”

My take: it looks like a computer running Windows. The tab loaded efficiently and the reviewer didn’t have any difficulty navigating the tab. Clearly missing, however, was navigating between apps. As you’ve read often, Windows-based touch-screen products, be it smartphones or tabs, will face a difficult road competing against Apple and Android for users without a full suite of compelling apps.

Update to Kindle Android app

Amazon continues to aggressively update its suite of apps, even though it now offers the Kindle for $139.

The latest upgrade, released today, is a new version of the Android app. According to a press release, “the Kindle for Android now enables customers to search the full text of Kindle books by voice or text, seamlessly look up words and phrases in Wikipedia, lock screen orientation in portrait or landscape mode, and view details about a book on Shelfari, the books-focused social networking site — all without leaving the app.”

If you own a Kindle, this app (either Android or iPhone version) is a great companion, allowing readers to sync between devices so when you “bookmark” your place on your phone, you can start reading from that same spot on the Kindle. If you don’t have a Kindle, this free book-reading app is a must-have if you’re the type of person who can read a novel on your phone.

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Eric Benderoff

Eric Benderoff is the principal of BendableMedia.com, an editorial services firm, and a founding member of the Appolicious content strategy team. His personal technology column for the Chicago Tribune has appeared in newspapers and websites nationwide. He is a regular guest on Chicago's WGN Radio and is a frequent commentator about consumer technology on national TV news programs.

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