Samsung already showed off its Series 5 Hybrid back at Computex, but what we didn't know was that Sammy had yet another tablet / laptop mash-up in the works. The company just formally announced the Series 5 and it turns out it's going to be joined by the next-gen Series 7 Slate as well. (Also known as the ATIV tabs in regions outside the US.) The two 11-inch tablets more or less look alike, except the Series 5 is powered by an Atom-based Clover Trail processor, while the Series 7 packs Core i5 guts. Both support pen input, and will come with the same S Pen apps found on the Galaxy Note 10.1. As for that optional keyboard dock, Samsung previously touted its magnetic hinge, but the dock has since been retooled with a sturdier latch-based mechanism. (Check out the video below to see it in action -- the tablet really does seem incapable of falling out.)
As you can imagine, that difference in processor entails more than just different clock speeds. The two-watt Atom chip inside the Series 5 is rated for about nine hours of battery life, whereas the Core i5-powered Series 7 is expected to last between four and five hours on a charge. (The Series 5 is lighter, too, at 1.65 pounds, compared with 1.89 for the Series 7.) And, being a lower-powered device, the Series 5 has no vents. Last major difference: the Series 7 has a 1080p screen, while the Series 5's resolution tops out at 1,366 x 768.
On the software side, Samsung is loading all of its Win 8 systems with its various Media Hubs -- yes, just like the ones you'll find on the company's Android devices. You'll also find AllShare, a DLNA media-sharing app; S-Launcher, a widget that replicates the missing Start Menu in Windows 8; and eSettings, a centralized options menu for folks who maybe haven't learned where all the settings are in Win 8. As for those S Pen applications, you've got S Note, among other carry-overs from the Android side. As with the Note 10.1, the pen itself can recognize 1,024 degrees of pressure sensitivity.
Both tablets will arrive October 26th, the day Windows 8 starts shipping. The Series 7 will be available in one $1,119 configuration with 4GB of RAM, a 128GB SSD and the keyboard. The Series 5, meanwhile, will cost $649, and will include 2GB of RAM and a 64GB solid-state drive. If you like, you can purchase the keyboard for $100, or you can buy the two as a bundle for $749. We'll be back with reviews in October but until then, check out our walk-through below. (Note: we didn't get a chance to play with AllShare, the S Pen apps or the Hubs, but hopefully we can give you a more detailed demo of the software soon.)
Samsung Series 7 Slate hands-on (2012)
Samsung Series 5 and Series 7 Slate
Sarah Silbert contributed to this report.
SAMSUNG INTRODUCES NEW SLATE PCS FEATURING WINDOWS 8 AND DETACHABLE KEYBOARD
New PC Offers Users the Best of Both Worlds – an Easily Portable Slate and a Fully Equipped Laptop – In One Stylish Product
BERLIN, Germany – August 29, 2012 – Samsung Electronics America Inc., a subsidiary of Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd, today announced its new Series 5 and Series 7 Slate PCs. The new products can easily transform from a traditional clamshell PC to a Slate device with just the click of a button, maximizing both productivity and mobility. Designed for Windows 8 with Samsung's advanced engineering and a ten-point touchscreen, users can easily stay connected and productive from everywhere. Additionally, Samsung today announced a new touchscreen version of its popular 13-inch Series 5 ULTRA laptop.
"With the introduction of our new Slate PCs, we are providing customers with greater choice while maintaining the power of a traditional PC," said Todd Bouman, vice president of marketing at Samsung's Enterprise Business Division. "We created our Slate PCs with a focus on beautiful design, powerful performance and ease of use, attributes that our customers have come to expect in their Samsung computing experience. Our mobile PC business has grown significantly over the past year, which is a testament to our ability to meet customer needs in this space, and we expect strong growth to continue with our new Slate PCs."
Enhanced Creation and Consumption Experience
Both the Series 5 and Series 7 Slate PCs have a Samsung S Pen conveniently embedded in a slot on the device. With 1,024 levels of sensitivity, the S Pen is designed for natural and intuitive content creation, and offers features including handwriting to text conversion and varying thickness when drawing or writing, depending on the pressure applied. Slate PC users can also take advantage of preloaded Samsung services such as MediaHub, which make it even easier to access entertainment and apps on your device.
Convenient Convertible Design
Weighing less than two pounds, the new Samsung Slate PC is designed to go anywhere. The keyboard dock attaches with a mechanical hinge so that users can pick up the device with one hand without fear of the pieces separating. The keyboard and display were designed as one device and the components fit seamlessly when connected. This design also makes the device easier to use, carry and store. Samsung's renowned design inspiration is evident through the device's curved edges and smooth lines.
Both the Series 5 and Series 7 Slates feature an 11.6-inch display. The Series 7 display is 1920x1080 resolution; the Series 5 has a 1366 x 768 resolution. The Series 5 ULTRA features a 1366x768 resolution display with Samsung's SuperBrightTM Technology (300 nits).
Powerful Performance Tailored to Meet Varied Demands
The Samsung Series 7 Slate was designed with power users in mind. With an Intel Core i5 processor, 4 GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD, it satisfies the needs of even the most demanding users. Whether you're building a presentation while multitasking on email and the web or editing photos while listening to music, the Series 7 Slate has the power to get the job done.
The Series 5 Slate is also a powerful device, designed with the everyday user in mind. With an Intel two- watt processor, 2GB of RAM and a 64GB SSD, this device keeps you connected to work and play from everywhere.
For users looking for a traditional clamshell laptop, the touchscreen Series 5 ULTRA laptop offers powerful components including a third generation Intel® CoreTM i3 or i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and a 500 GB hard drive with 24 GB of ExpressCache. ExpressCache results in faster boot-up and start times for frequently used programs.
The Series 5 and Series 7 Slates, as well as the touchscreen Series 5 ULTRA, will be available beginning on October 26, 2012. The MSRP for the Series 7 Slate is $1,199. The Series 5 Slate will be available both with the keyboard dock, for an MSRP of $749, or without, for an MSRP of $649. The MSRP of the new Series 5 ULTRA will range from $799-$849.