Galaxy Note is better, but not the best

Samsung.com

Samsung.com

In the ongoing battle for the tablet market, Samsung has introduced the Galaxy Note 10.1 — 2014 edition, which includes features such as the ability to run multiple apps at once, a stylus with integrated software and a microSD card slot for expanding your memory.

The Note's screen has super-saturated colors and a brighter view for video watching or running multiple apps at once. And while that screen surely eats up a lot of juice, the battery life on this tablet lasts a day of regular use, if not more.

In terms of speed, this Note tablet is probably at or near the top of the market right now.

The real differentiating factor here, of course, is the S-Pen stylus, which fits snugly into the body of the device and lets users take screenshots, search, write notes and pull up tools such as the calculator. The handwriting pickup is fast, nearly as responsive as a real pen, and handwriting recognition allows users to search through their notes quickly. It's not a bad replacement for writing quick reminders and to-dos, though it still isn't quite good enough for more intense note-taking.

There's little to say against the tablet. But there's not much to say for it, either, when it comes to the competition. The tablet market is a game of content, and Samsung just doesn't have as much to offer as its main rivals have. The firm does try to sweeten the deal with included subscriptions to a number of online services, including Hulu Plus, SiriusXM, Boingo Hotspot and Dropbox. The tablet also comes with a one-year subscription to Bloomberg Businessweek and a 12-week subscription to the New York Times. But even with access to the Google Play store, the Note tablet still doesn't hook as seamlessly into content caches as Amazon's Kindle Fire or even Apple's iPad. Nor does it integrate with Google services enough to make it as easy to use as, say, Google's own Nexus tablets.

With that in mind, the price is a big drawback for the Galaxy Note 10.1 — 2014 edition. The 16 GB version of the tablet is $549.99, while the 32 GB will set you back $599.99.

Galaxy Note is better, but not the best 10/05/13 [Last modified: Sunday, October 6, 2013 7:09pm]

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