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Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 Takes Down iPad2 as the Best Tablet Display

When we got our hands on the Galaxy Tab 10.1 at Google I/O, the first thing we noticed almost immediately was that its display was far superior to that of the Motorola XOOM.  It was bright, vibrant, and left us constantly wanting more.  Those claims of ours (which mean nothing by the way) have now been backed by one of the most recognized display aficionados of our time, Dr. Raymond Soneira.

You may remember one of his first tablet comparisons (XOOM, iPad2, Iconia, and Transformer) that included some choice words for Motorola’s offering?  Well, he’s back to round out his report which at the time, was missing the Galaxy Tab 10.1 (since it had not been released yet).  The results peg Samsung’s newest tablet as the top display in all the land – yes, even topping the iPad2…

…As things stand, based on all of the display tests, the iPad 2 and Galaxy Tab 10.1 are reasonably close in performance in most categories, so it’s almost a tie, but the Galaxy Tab is ahead more often than the iPad 2, so the Galaxy Tab is the Winner, by a nose… But should Samsung or Android add a color picture control to the Galaxy Tab with a software update as we describe below, then the Galaxy Tab would be the decisive Winner, by a lot.

So if you are still contemplating a tablet purchase, this should definitely be at the top of your list alongside the Asus Transformer.  Both are considered by most to be the top Android offerings, but this news of the Tab 10.1’s impressive display should have you leaning a certain direction.  The 4G LTE version of Verizon launches this week and WiFi versions are already available at a variety of retailers.

To read the full report, you’ll want to head over to DisplayMate.

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  • Anonymous

    I’m sorry but I played with a Xoom, an iPad 2 and a Galaxy Tab 10 in a Best Buy one after the other and the difference in screen quality was barely noticeable.  Of course, you really get to see an LCD’s performance in low light levels which I was obviously not able to do.

  • Kierra

    Will I even notice?

  • Emi

    Galaxy tab is an awesome tablet. I do more reading on mine, and agree with the article that it is more of a pain to hold in portrait. Read rumor somewhere that next version will ditch the 16:9 aspect for 4:3, which I personally am all for.

    Oh, and here is the rest of that paragraph:”… But should Samsung or Android add a color picture control to the Galaxy Tab with a software update as we describe below, then the Galaxy Tab would be the decisive Winner, by a lot. Of course, Apple could do the same… What is also impressive is that the iPad 2 is still delivering top display performance close to what many predict is the end of its product cycle, with lots of interesting predictions for the Next Generation, which we discuss and analyze below.”

  • trevorsalienarms

    Love my SGT 10.1. It’s perfect for what I use it for, mindless gaming and web surfing/e-mailing. All the complaints about Honeycomb being “buggy”…I’m just not seeing it at all. (In the six weeks or so of daily use since I’ve owned it anyway.) I do wish there were more tablet-specific apps, but the ones I have are nice and keep me entertained.

    Also, it makes my hard-core Apple uber-alles friends absolutely mental with rage that I didn’t get an iPad. Man, nothing riles them up faster than mentioning anything about Android. They really seem to have a hard time understanding that I honestly don’t feel like I’m “missing out” on anything not having gone the Apple route. Someone asked me if I bought an Android tablet, I simply stated yes, I had and it kicked off an hour-long tirade about how the iPhone/Pad was clearly the best choice. Amazing devices these things…they can start a virtual riot simply by a mention.

    I will avoid the “TouchWiz” update though…doesn’t even sound good and I’m not feeling like I need anything beyond bone stock Honeycomb.

    • Anonymous

      Sounds like you need to dump your iDiot friends.

  • I agree with this article, i liked the Transformer but the Galaxy Tab is so much better in all ways around and back twice. It might not have all the fancy ports like the Transformer but its sleek, slim, light, and bright. The screen is by far my favorite part of the tab. and lets face it, you want a good screen on a device your looking at all the time to use it.  I sold my Transformer and got the Galaxy Tab after it received better reviews and screen contrast comparisons online. Not to mention the excellent assortment of accessories that Samsung will introduce after the upcoming Bluetooth keyboard folio. the media dock is glitchy since it doesn’t let you directly go back to the home screen but there’s a trick to it thats easily figured out.  I love it.

    It gets a 9 out of 10 in my book, right now a 9 since it has some issues with honeycomb once those are fixed i think it will rank 10 out of 10, personally.

  • RW-1

    Samsung clearly has taken it’s display tech lessons learned in smaller mobile devices and tossed it onto their pad…

    Unlike Moto, who started it off with the Droid, and went south from there.
    (Now, as an aside, I can live with hearing that pentile is ok, and likely decreases batt consumption, however, let’s face it, Samsung has really shone here, Moto, take notes …..)

  • daniel walsh

    this is the best tablet period. end of story

  • Anonymous

    I knew this when I first saw my Google I/O Tab and confirmed later when comparing to my iPad2.  Didn’t need some expert to support what my eyes see.  Samsung has done amazing the last year on all products and certainly make a dent in Apple and Moto armor.

    • LOL yeah Apple agrees with you, thats why there suing them.  Hopefully Samsung comes out on top and can still release there products without Apple crying to momma.

  • I posted this article on Facebook to taunt my Apple friends. Got a pretty lively debate going. But in the end, the Tab 10.1 (which I have) is thinner, lighter, has a significantly better screen, and from a hardware perspective kicks the iPad 2’s ass. 

    The drawbacks are all with Honeycomb and the dearth of tablet apps. Personally, the lack of extra ports doesn’t bother me at all – I think this is the one type of device where that makes sense: one that you need to hold up with your hand almost all the time you’re using it. I’d gladly trade ports that I’d rarely use for a few ounces of weight and svelte design. Samsung made the right choice, imho.

    • Not entirely right: the iPad 2 has been benchmarked faster, and a lot of the features are closer than they look (Samsung’s cameras aren’t really that great).

      Also, remember this: Samsung very explicitly redesigned the Galaxy Tab 10.1 to copy Apple.  I was at the launches of the original Galaxy Tab 10.1 design in February and the redesigned one in March — the difference was night and day, and Samsung spokespeople even said “we’ll improve the parts that are inadequate” virtually days after the iPad 2 was unveiled.  I like the Galaxy Tab 10.1 as it is (buggy, app-less Honeycomb aside), but you very literally have Apple to thank for knocking Samsung out of its complacency.

      • Well, what they did was make it thinner. That was the response to the iPad 2, which clearly upped the stakes on thinness. Unless you’re an Apple lawyer, that’s not copying Apple any more than AMD is copying Intel when they make their CPUs faster. It’s a self-evident benefit.

        Saying other features are “closer than they look” seems like an admission of inferiority to me, though I’m surprised you didn’t mention battery life, where the iPad clearly beats all competition by a significant margin. In any event, like most people here I dislike Apple mostly for their business philosophy, and can admit that they make great designs and that their hardware is usually quite good. But frankly, I’d take a somewhat stuttery Honeycomb, with its excellent multitasking, customizability, and extremely useful widget architecture over a smooth but locked down and low-utility iOS any day.

        • hate to break it to ya, but even as an android afficionado, i’d prefer a smooth o.s.. why cant gingerbread be smooth? why cant we have the ‘openness’ and still have iOS’ smoothness? android is about not compromising, so i dont see why we are forced to deal with a stuttery architecture.

          • Yeah, I’m with you. It bothers me a lot. Especially when 3D gaming and processor benchmarks are right up there. It doesn’t make sense to me. I’ve heard various rumors about Android not using hardware acceleration for the GUI, though I’m not sure why.

            I will say, though (and this is what I tell Apple people) that if you get rid of all widgets, live wallpapers, and clear background processes (which I think Apple doesn’t allow in the same way), it’s pretty smooth. In other words, if you limit yourself to what Apple allows (icons and nothing else) you’re competitive again. Adding widgets, though it’s the point of using Android, creates a lot more judder. Even on a Tegra2 like the Tab 10.1’s.

      • Anonymous

        iPad2’s cameras are stunningly bad. my g/f was trying to take some pictures of our dog. the back one is like 1MP. her iPhone3GS camera is vastly superior.

    • Anonymous

      The screen is the only thing better on the Tab 10 than the Xoom, the Xoom has more ports, memory expandability, better cameras, an LED notification light, barometer and better build quality.  Thinness is already at the point of diminishing returns when you’re counting millimeters.

      • Better build quality my ass, that thing’s a freaking brick, and ugly too. Weight and thickness are hugely important for tablets, which are all measured in millimeters. Like I said, I’m happy to trade a few ports to be able to hold the thing more easily for extended periods. But, to each his own – enjoy that barometer.

        • Anonymous

          Ugly?  Yeah right.  Brick?  Yeah that means it’s built better, the Tab feels like cheap plastic (and it is) which is why it’s lighter (the xoom is also smaller because it doesn’t have as big a bezel).  If you’re honestly arguing over 4 millimeters difference you don’t have a leg to stand on.

          • Good point – thinner and lighter are real negatives for the 10.1. In other news, day is night and the moon is the sun. I’d continue arguing, but it sounds like your head is as thick as that cast iron XOOM casing you love so much!

        • Anonymous

          Your opinion, YOUR opinion 🙂  You have been too iPadized, gotta think out side the anorexia 😀

      • screen: something you use every time you use the device

        ports: would probably never use
        memory expandability: doesn’t matter if you don’t need that much memory
        better cameras: who uses a tablet to take pictures? completely awkward and I always have my phone on me anyway
        LED notification light: If I had a tablet I’d still be paying more attention to my phone for notifications anyway

        so I’d take a better screen over all those things combined

        • Anonymous

          screen: something you use every time you use the device
          ports: I do use
          memory expandability: Matters a lot to me, who wants a device without expandability?
          LED notification light: Excellent idea, I’m glad my Toshiba Thrive has them.

          I actually had a Asus Transformer, but I sold it for a Thrive and haven’t looked back.  Expandable memory (and a Full sized SD Card to boot!), great screen, changeable rubberized backs (AWESOME for grip!), full sized USB and HDMI slots, user replaceable battery, it’s the device for me 🙂

  • lol true to a certain extent.

  • lunahgeckoh

    Great! Now I’ll have the best view of touchwhiz. >.>

    • It uses stock Honeycomb. When touchwiz is released for the 10.1, it will be an optional update.

  • Drastik651

    Got my transformer from best buy for 299 dollars a price match day trip to the store.

    • James DeLeon

      How did you get it that low?

  • samsung know’s their screens. i dont necessarily think that it makes it an overall better tablet than the ipad2, but it certainly is a worthy competitor and at the very least on par.

  • FortitudineVincimus

    Still holding our for the rumored Amazon “Hollywood” quad-core

    These Tabs have no mem expandability, a proprietary port, no HDMI.. correct?

    • T Hall

      Well Samsung wanted to be like Apple…

      Just kidding, all in all I am extremely jealous when comparing the Galaxy Tab too my Xoom…

    • The Amazon will use a touch screen which can only except two fingers at a time. Have fun with 2 year old tech.

      • Anonymous

        Yeah, because using more than two fingers at a time is soooooooo common.

      • yeah, a quad core tablet is two year ol tech

  • Samsung is really stepping it up.  If they just get their updates under control they just might replace HTC as the best Android vendor.

  • I actually just took my Asus Eee Pad back for a Galaxy Tab 10.1…. The galaxy tab is definitely the best option! 😀

  • Anonymous

    Reading this story on my XOOM makes me want to choke the living sh!t out of Sanjay Jha…

    • I can’t imagine Sanjay will be around for long.  Quite literally everything Motorola has done in 2011 has been a failure so far.

      • You are correct that he shouldn’t be around much longer. However, Moto Mobility is nearly out of business and firing your CEO is a sure way to tank your stock especially when no big name CEOs would touch that position with a stick. 

    • Yeah, I saw the XOOM’s screen in a Best Buy and immediately said “I’ll wait for the Samsung.”

  • Interstellarmind

    until i can make calls from android tab’s i’m not buyin’!

    • ugh why would you want to? use skype if you feel the need to call someone. aside from that, i’ll abstain from holding a tablet up to my ear.

    • Anonymous

      Never heard of Google Voice?

  • Itsyourboyerik

    Apple will sue. 

    • Jbb


    • Anonymous

      I just paid $22.87 for an iPad2-64GB and my girlfriend loves her Panasonic Lumix GF 1 Camera that we got for $38.76 there arriving tomorrow by UPS. I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch LED TV to my boss for $675 which only cost me $62.81 to buy. Here is the website we use to get it all from, to.ly/aPXP

      • Oh look! What a great deal! How exciting!

        Spammers actually think they’re getting more clever, don’t they?

        • Adam Elghor

          i like how your picture makes it look like ur lookin at the comment above u

    • Anonymous

      because that’s all they have.

  • Anonymous

    Still waiting for the ******.