When the first Samsung Galaxy Tab saw release in September 2010, the slate running Android 2.3 Gingerbread OS merely had to face one major competitor out in the market and that tablet wasn't even in the same midrange price category and was on a different platform altogether -- the first generation Apple iPad.
The initial 7-inch Tab went on to become the best-selling Android tablet of Q4 2010 and the whole of 2011 prompting Samsung to release follow-up variants with 7.7-inch, 8.9-inch and 10.1-inch display sizes.
The same success story was enjoyed by Samsung Galaxy Tab 2, introduced in February 2012. While - at that point - other manufacturers like LG, HTC, and Sony had started churning out their own renditions of the Android tablet, Samsung pretty much still reigned supreme in that category. To be specific, in 2012, Samsung sold more than 2 million units of SGTab2 -- despite its rather hefty Php 13,000 (WiFi Only) to Php 17,000 (3G) price tag.
Fast forward to May 2013, the Korean company formally announces the third iteration to its highly successful affordable Android tablet line - the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7.0. But this time, the slate will be entering a far different market landscape that what was seen by its predecessors.
Whereas all previous Tabs had practically no true competitors running the same OS, Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7.0 will have to contend with the likes of Google Nexus 7 by Asus, the Amazon Kindle Fire HD, and several slates by Chinese OEMs, which have taken the world by storm by combining decent set of technical specifications with an irresistibly low price tag. For instance, the most affordable Nexus 7 variant sells for only $199 or around Php 8,500 with current conversion and before taxes and already comes replete with a 7-inch 800 x 1280 pixels display, a Quad-core 1.3 GHz Nvidia Tegra 3 chipset, the latest version of Android OS, 1 GB of RAM, and 8 GB of internal storage. In the Philippines, local electronics giant Cherry Mobile recently released Fusion Bolt - a rebranded Android slate with quad core CPU - priced at only Php 3,999.
I will probably have to dedicate a whole separate TP post to figuring out how and why other companies were able to catch up with Samsung that quickly in the entry level to midrange tablet category. Is it because of economies of scale? Are consumers starting to feel the urge to try out something new? A lot of questions are waiting to be answered.
But right now, looking at Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7.0's specs sheet, I'm inclined to believe that if Samsung decides to price both variants exactly like how it did with Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 WiFi Only and 3G, a lot of consumers wouldn't find it awfully hard to give it a pass. Now, if rumors of SGTab3 7.0 WiFi having an SRP of just $150 would turn out accurate (enough to make it the most affordable tablet from Samsung to date), then the Korean giant could very well have another winner in its hands.
|Name||Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 (WiFi Only and 3G Variants)|
|Dimensions and Weight||188 x 111.1 x 9.9 mm, 306 grams|
|Operating System||Android 4.1 Jelly Bean|
|Display||7.0 inches (~170 ppi pixel density) 600 x 1024 pixels pixels resolution, TFT capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors|
|Processor||Dual-core 1.2 GHz (TBA)|
|Internal Storage||8GB and 16GB options, expandable via microSD card slot|
|Camera||3.15 MegaPixels, 2048 x 1536 pixels, autofocus, Front-facing 1.3 MegaPixels|
|Audio and Video Playback||MP4, DivX, Xvid, H.264, H.263, WMV, MP3, WAV, eAAC+, WMA, AC3, Flac player|
|Ports||3.5 mm audio jack, TV Out, microUSB v2.0|
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct, DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspot, Bluetooth v3.0 with A2DP, 3G Variant: HSDPA, 21 Mbps; HSUPA, 5.76 Mbps|
|Sensors||Digital Compass, Accelerometer, Gyroscope, Proximity|
|Battery||Non-removable Li-Ion 4000 mAh battery|
|Availability||TP Guesstimate: Q3, 2013|
|Price||TP Guesstimate: (Based on price of Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 variants) |
3G Variant: Php 17,000
WiFi Only Variant: Php 13,000
(Based on price of direct competitors and perhaps more accurate) $150 to $199