ISB Techknow Presents: Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 Impressions
by S. Finley, 9/16/2012
ISB Techknowledgies is back with our first impressions of the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet. It has been several weeks since we first received it, and we have to say that we are pleased with most of its features. However, we are sad to say that the Galaxy Note 10.1 does suffer from a lackluster display and slightly underpowered speakers.
What We Like
The S-Pen: We’ve said it before and we will say it again, the S-Pen is a delight to use. However, we have come to realized that the fun factor does tend to decrease dramatically with time. Unfortunately, while we are techies, we are not pure artists at heart; therefore this optional accessory may not be as endearing to us as some of our more artistic counterparts. Overall though, we admit that the S-Pen is a unique and innovative feature that cannot be easily duplicated by other tablets in this price range ($500).
Overall style: We have to say that the Galaxy Note 10.1 definitely has unique styling all its own. At first, the styling appeared to be a bit of an oddity to us; but over time, we have come to like it more and more. The speaker placement is spot-on, and furthermore we really adore the look of the two-toned gray model (the white model is also classy, but appears slightly less sophisticated to us). We also feel that the “deep gray” version of this tablet appears to significantly soften the overall lines of the tablet (as compared to the stark harshness that we see with many other tablets that have the standard black bezel). The gray bezel is softer and adds a touch of elegance to the overall look of the Galaxy Note 10.1 that we can appreciate.
Overall quality/feel: When you pick up the Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet for the first time you will notice two things; it is weighty and feels substantial in your hands. It also looks and feels like a quality piece of hardware. Yes, we have made some comments about its appearance in the past (i.e. the extensive use of plastic); however we have to admit that our initial impressions have changed somewhat since that time. While this tablet does sport a fair amount of plastic, the material is finished nicely and does give the impression of metal in some areas (outer edge). Overall, it feels like a solid tablet. We have not noticed any squeaks, lumps or bumps since our tablet arrived, and we are very happy about that.
TouchWiz Interface: Surprised? We guessed as much. This interface is one that everyone loves to hate; however from our standpoint it is a welcomed change from the drab “stock Android” look and feel. We truly like the soft, muted colors that Samsung chose to overlay its stock applications with, and can appreciate the styling cues that Samsung chose to incorporate in other areas (for instance, we luv the color blue on the standard background that ships with the device). O.K. O.K. That is enough talk about all of the pretty colors! You get it. We likey…
Multi-tasking abilities:This is truly where the Galaxy Note 10.1 shines. It has taken multi-tasking to a new level with its ability to have multiple active applications on the display simultaneously (split-screen feature), as well as other keen features such as pop-up windows for videos. In today’s technical environment, it is nearly impossible to be truly productive without features such as these. Hooray for listening to the voice of the customer Samsung! Now, about your display…