When it comes to cranking out new Android tablets, few, if any, manufacturers are more prolific than Samsung. Over the past couple of years, the Korean electronics giant has made (and we’ve reviewed) top-notch slates in several different sizes, at prices ranging from entry-level to very high-end. In addition, Samsung is one of the few tablet makers that consistently releases 3G- and 4G-ready models—most of the tablets we see come with only Wi-Fi connectivity.
The benefit of cellular-network connectivity is, of course, that you can access the Internet from anywhere your provider delivers a signal, a feature that some business users find invaluable. (Many casual users—consumers—with a need to stay connected wherever they go find this always-on connectivity convenient, too.) On the Android side of the tablet spectrum, Samsung slates are among the most popular 3G- and 4G-network-ready devices available.
After our close look at the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 LTE, we deemed it one of the more attractive models in the company’s stable of 4G-ready tablets. However, Verizon charges $549.99 for the Galaxy Tab 7.7 itself, which is no small investment for a tablet this small. (It wouldn’t be cheap even if this were a full-size slate with a 10-inch screen.) Plus, you’ll need to factor in a costly monthly data plan, which we discuss in the Features & Apps section a little later on.
Aside from its too-lofty price, we found little to dislike about this tablet. However, even though it turned in impressive showings on our suite of benchmark tests—especially our battery-rundown trial—the Galaxy Tab 7.7 runs on an older dual-core processor, rather than the Tegra 3 quad-core CPU we’re seeing in most high-end slates nowadays. In addition, our review unit’s Android 3.2 operating system (also known as the “Honeycomb” version of Android) was a little dated. Nearly every premium tablet we’ve reviewed over the past several months uses Android 4.x (also known as “Ice Cream Sandwich” or, in its newest 4.1 version, “Jellybean”).
Still, this is an impressive tablet. It’s highly stylish, thin and light, and very well-built. The high-resolution screen—for a slate this small, that is—displays images, videos, and graphics beautifully, and it has the best battery life of any Android tablet we’ve tested so far. Again, our main concerns are its 2011-vintage operating system and CPU, as well as its high price, but, then again, 4G-ready tablets typically come at a premium price. As high-end tablets go, this one has a lot going for it.
Read full review at Computer Shopper.