Excerpt from one of my many blog posts on this device:
The Best Tablet Is the One You Have With You
The Tab is roughly the same size as, but thicker than Amazonâ€™s Kindle, which ironically I sold when I got my iPad. Prior to iPad ownership, my Kindle would go everywhere with me because of its small size, light weight, stellar battery life and integrated connectivity. And I do mean everywhere: the device would fit in my jacket pocket or could be thrown â€” figuratively, not literally â€” in the car or in a gear bag. The Galaxy Tab offers me that same level of portability, while the iPad doesnâ€™t.
Hereâ€™s a perfect example: I purchased the Tab on a weekend at the local T-Mobile store and my family wanted to hit the mall afterwards. I either carried the device in hand or placed it in my back jeans pocket while cruising the mall for hours. As my wife or daughter stopped to browse for clothes, I quickly whipped out the small tablet to manage email, web-surf, and watch YouTube videos. I wouldnâ€™t have been able to do that with the iPad for one simple reason: the iPad wouldnâ€™t have come with me on a trip to the mall in the first place.
If you look at the Tab and compare the screen size to the iPad, itâ€™s easy to think thereâ€™s little difference between the two: one has a 7-inch display and one has a 9.7-inch display, right? But in actuality, the Galaxy Tab is half the size of an iPad, making it far easier to tote around and use while standing or walking. As an aside: the difference in icon size is negligible and icons on my iPod touch are actually smaller than those of the Tab, so Appleâ€™s â€œsandpaper down your fingersâ€ to use a 7-inch tablet argument is a fallacy in my opinion.
Compromises Must Be Made
The iPad surely wins out on the breadth of application choices, media content availability and overall polish of the user interface. But itâ€™s difficult to quantify that advantage. Is the iPad twice as good as the Tab or is it just a little better? Obviously, the answer will vary for each person, but after a month with the Tab, I find that what it lacks in functionality or ease-of-use is more than offset by the portability for me. And in some cases, the Tab has more functionality than the current iPad; it acts as a mobile hotspot to share the 3G data connection and can accept the microSD card filled with music from my smartphone, for example.
For my needs, both devices work perfectly fine for email, web surfing, occasional gaming, using social networks and other bite-sized activities that donâ€™t require a full-blown desktop operating system. Yes, there are more apps for iOS and even when an app is available on both platforms, I often like the iOS version slightly more than its Android equivalent. But to think the Tab is unusable as compared to an iOS device is overstating the difference.
Iâ€™m willing to give up a smidge of usability or a wider array of software to gain the ability to easily use the device everywhere I go. Itâ€™s this very concept that makes the smartphone so enabling, regardless of make, model or platform: the ability to be connected everywhere is whatâ€™s driving the mobile revolution forward. In fact, Iâ€™m actually using my Android smartphone less as well. The Tab does all of the same things as my Nexus One, but on a larger, higher-resolution screen, making for a better overall experience.