Samsung's Galaxy Note is a curious device. It's too large to be a smartphone, too small to be a tablet, and there's an old-school stylus to complement the capacitive touchscreen. Now, the supersized handset has a bigger brother, the Galaxy Note 10.1. Formally introduced today, the new Samsung tablet has a number of interesting tricks up its sleeve, including the ability to multitask with side-by-side applications. You can see that, plus a flurry of stylus activity, in the following promo video.
All those software enhancements are built on top of Android 4.0, otherwise known as Ice Cream Sandwich. Unfortunately, there's no word on when or if the Galaxy Note 10.1 will be upgraded to Jelly Bean, the latest version of the OS.
On the hardware side, the new Note has a quad-core processor, 2GB of RAM, up to 64GB of internal storage, and a microSD slot that can take an additional 64GB. The device is just 8.9 mm thick and is claimed to weigh a scant 1.3 lbs. Unfortunately, the screen is a bit of a disappointment. Although it can accept input from both fingers and the pressure-sensitive stylus, the 10-incher has a maximum resolution of 1280x800. All that multitasking mojo would have been much more impressive on a high-PPI display.
Unlike a number of Android tablets, the Galaxy Note 10.1 will be available in 3G and 4G flavors in addition to the base Wi-Fi model. 802.11n wireless will be standard on all variants, as will Bluetooth 4.0. Naturally, the device has GPS functionality and dual cameras. Pricing hasn't been announed, but we'll know soon enough. The Galaxy Note 10.1 is set to be available this month.
Cyril wasn't impressed with the lag associated with stylus input on the original original Galaxy Note, which doesn't leave me terribly optimistic about the larger version. Stylus support would be a great addition to modern tablets, but only if the kinks can be worked out.
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