Samsung has confirmed that all the mobile operators in Ireland, as well as Carphone Warehouse, will be selling the forthcoming Galaxy Tab tablet computer. It is understood that thousands of the devices have been ordered ahead of Christmas.
The country manager for Samsung Mobile, Gary Twohig, told Siliconrepublic that the device will hit stores towards the end of October.
“We think there’s great space in the market for a product like this, especially an appetite for products built on the Android platform. The Samsung Galaxy Tab is an opportunity for this company to bring our heritage in terms of high-definition screen technology and multimedia devices,” Twohig said.
The fact that the Galaxy Tab can also be used as a mobile phone makes it a compelling offering.
Asked if the device will feature the same super AMOLED display technology in the Samsung Wave, Twohig said the Galaxy Tab will feature a different display but will definitely be high definition.
“The feedback we’ve been getting is really about the size of the device. Because it has a 7-inch screen it fits in one hand, which is a natural way to read a book or read online. We don’t envisage it being mass market in term of a mobile phone, but in terms of the tablet space, yes, we believe it will be a major rival to the iPad.”
In recent weeks, Samsung predicted it will sell 10 million units of its new Galaxy Tab Android-based tablet by the third quarter of 2011.
“We have received orders into the thousands for this side of Christmas,” Twohig said.
According to a recent report in the Wall Street Journal, Samsung product executive Hankil Yoon said the device will sell just between €200 and €300, significantly undercutting the iPad which varies in price from €500 for the basic Wi-Fi model up to €800 for the 64MB 3G/Wi-Fi model.
Twohig said he could not confirm whether the device would cost between €300 and €400 in Ireland. “It is up to the operators and they need to see what return they get in terms of usage of the device in order to decide the price points.
“We think one of the unique selling points will be video calling. Competitors’ devices can’t make phone calls or send text messages. We think people will use the Galaxy Tab mainly to surf content and make video and conference calls.”
Twohig added the device will come embedded with Sky News and a number of games, including a game called Nova which he says demonstrates the video and audio capacity of the new device.
“The Galaxy Tab will come with 16GB of built-in storage and users can add another 32GB or 64GB with a data card.”
There has been much speculation doing the rounds on the web that Samsung will launch a 10” version, but Twohig said he was not in a position to confirm this.