First impressions on my Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0

Screenshot taken from www.samsung.com
Screenshot taken from http://www.samsung.com
I recently read an interesting article that talked about how the 7-in tablets are changing the landscape of technology. I agree with the writer’s proposition that these mini tablets “will become the most important tablets for consumers in the future”. In his experience, after purchasing an iPad mini, he ended up using it 90% of the time for his consumption requirements, with the remaining 10% for heavy lifting tasks on the laptop. I have seen the same happening to me. In fact, I am using one right now to write this entry.

I am currently using a Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0″. It was given to me as an early Christmas present. Of course I prefer the iPad mini over this one, because I love Apple. (I was converted when I started using an iMac for work for   almost 3 years. “Once you go Mac you’ll never go back”). And I’ve never been a fan of Samsung. While the ‘consumer’ in me has lots of preferences, as a Christian I am reminded to be content and be grateful for what I have. Of course, that doesn’t mean we can’t point out observations and impressions. So I thought I’d write a brief entry on what I’m liking and not loving so far with this tablet. I’ve only been using this for a month so maybe in several months I’d be able to come up with a more comprehensive review. In the meantime, these are just some of my first impressions:

What I like:

1. I like the size of this tablet more than anything because it’s far easier to carry and use than the regular tablets. It’s thin, very portable, and can do basically the same tasks as the regular-sized tablets. Because of its size, it passes of as a book, hence it doesn’t attract as much attention as an iPad would. I can carry it around in my bag, through LRT stations, through school guards and they wont notice I’m carrying a tablet.

2. Android OS. It’s my first time to use an android gadget so I must say the ability to multi-task with this OS is impressive. Except for some crashes with some apps every now and then, I am so far pleased with the performance of my tablet.

What I don’t like:

1. Hands down, the camera is my biggest pet peeve in my tablet. (According to various reviews in the internet, this has probably the worst camera in the 7-in tablets choices). Even at outdoors, image quality is grainy at best. Photos are not sharp, crisp, and they lack fine detail. It is terribly unreliable at low light and it also doesn’t have auto-focus and flash so night time pictures are pretty much a no-no. I was looking forward to good quality photos for my Instagram but with this tablet, you might be disappointed. Here’s a photo I took at broad daylight:

Here's a photo at broad daylight taken by my tablet, no zoom.
Here’s a photo at broad daylight taken by my tablet, no zoom.

2. Keypad. You will not go 10 words without making an error typing. I say this in comparison with the Apple keypad (*Darn you Apple, you set the standard too high :). Somehow my keypad lacks the “intelligence” you would find in an Apple keypad. (It took me several backspaces to write this very short paragraph). For example, in the iPad, after punctuating with a comma, period or hyphen, the keypad returns to the letters. With this one, you have to click “Sym” first to type the punctuation, then click “Sym” again to return to the letters. I actually think it’s in those small little details, those nuances that spell the difference between a good and a great product.

3. Touchscreen response and sensitivity. I’ve had numerous instances where the screen does not respond, or takes a long time to respond to the touch. Maybe that’s why the keypad is also crappy.

I’ve used an iPad before so I pretty much have an idea of how the Samsung Galaxy tab 2 7.0 fares in comparison. Again, if you want to know, I’d trade this one for an iPad mini or even Google Nexus (which was very impressive) any day of the week, but good thing for me, I didn’t pay for this so I’m not complaining. It’s not a perfect product, for sure, but it’s been helpful to me and I was actually pretty surprised when I received it. Again, the Bible teaches about contentment so I will lay aside my consumer preferences and just be thankful :)

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