We have just returned from an event in New York City at which Samsung showed off a major software update, that’s coming to the popular Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet. The update incorporates a new, fully customizable TouchWiz UX interface, with some new features like LivePanel and Mini Apps. The update also incorporates a new Samsung Media Hub user interface and Amazon Music Cloud Player, Kindle, and Words with Friends applications. A handful of enterprise-targeted features like VPN support, Wi-Fi printing, and others are also slated to arrive with the update, which will be delivered OTA shortly.
Instead of blabbering on about what we saw, we thought it would be better to just show you what went down at the event.
The video above shows the bulk of the demo that took place at the Samsung press conference. As you’ll see, the new UI elements are seemingly easier to navigate and, at least to us, they have a much more elegant and refined look. Samsung claims the goal with this update was to make the Galaxy Tab 10.1 more intuitive to use, the UI easier on the eyes, and to a minimize the number of ‘clicks’ necessary to access some commonly used features.
As you’ll see in the video, the Mini App tray at the bottom makes multitasking on this Android based tablet far more useful. And the LivePanel home screen is much more attractive than the older stock experience. Performance all around seemed good as well. While at the event, we had our sample Tab 10.1 updated and have been using it for a little while with the new software installed and so far the experience has been very good. It’s only been a short time since the update was installed (think hours), however, so we’ll refrain from making any broad claims about it just yet.
Samsung also used the event to unveil a handful of very cool accessories for the Galaxy Tab 10.1. Scattered throughout the images above you’ll see a new dock with HDMI output shown ($49.99), a new keyboard dock ($79.99), a combo Bluetooth Keyboard / Case ($149.99), an HDMI output dongle ($39), an SD card reader ($29), a USB dongle which will allow for keyboards and mice to be connected to the Tab 10.1, and a stylus ($19).
Although the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 has been praised for its aesthetics and sleek design, to this point, it has lacked some of the useful accessories that were available for some competing tablets, like the Asus Transformer, for example. The Samsung accessories shown off today though open up a whole new world of possibilities for the Galaxy Tab 10.1 and make what was already one of the more attractive Android-based tablets on the market even more desirable.
If you’ve got a Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and the software update is delivered to your tablet, we’d love some feedback. Let us know your thoughts and opinion in the comments below.