Samsung's Galaxy Tabs Aren't iPad 2 Killers: 10 Reasons Why

News Analysis: Samsung now has a full slate of Galaxy Tab units ready to take on Apple's iPad 2. While the new Samsung models are fine tablets, they won't be able to beat Apple's alternative.

Samsung used its Unpacked event at CTIA March 22 to discuss the upcoming Galaxy Tab 8.9 and the Galaxy Tab 10.1. As one might expect, the former features an 8.9-inch display, while the latter comes with a 10.1-inch screen.

Aside from that, both tablets are quite similar, running a dual-core processor, Android 3.0 Honeycomb and coming with what Samsung said are the thinnest bodies in the business.

As with other tablet releases as of late, some have already said that the new Galaxy Tabs Samsung unveiled could be "iPad 2 killers." They say that the devices feature a nice operating system, similar specifications as the iPad 2 along with a price tag that consumers can live with. All in all, they say, they have a real shot at taking down Apple's tablet.

However, those folks are wrong. The Galaxy Tabs Samsung showed off certainly are nice. And they might be compelling options for Android seekers. But for everyone else, they fall short against the iPad 2. There is no chance that those devices will be able to supplant Apple's tablet as the dominant force in that market.

Here's why:

1. Android 3.0 -Honeycomb' is a problem

Google's Android 3.0 "Honeycomb" platform offers more potential than any other platform in the mobile market. It has fully tabbed browsing and vastly improved multitasking, among several other important features that make it ideal on paper. But when people actually try out Honeycomb, they're left disappointed. As a Global Equities Research spokesperson said of Honeycomb recently, it's "unstable and poorly designed." Others have said it was released before it's ready. All that combines to make the operating system a disappointment. The worst part is that it's running on Samsung's 8.9-inch and 10.1-inch Galaxy Tab units. That doesn't bode well for Samsung's tablets.

2. The apps issue

As Apple CEO Steve Jobs pointed out at his March 2 event unveiling the iPad 2, his company's tablet has more than 65,000 applications available to it. Tablets running Android 3.0 Honeycomb at the time, however, had just 100 applications available to them. That's a major discrepancy and it could be one of the main reasons Samsung's tablets won't be able to keep up with the iPad 2. Apps are integral to the experience of using tablets. Once consumers find out that there are so few available applications on Android tablets, it's likely that few will choose those devices over the iPad 2.

3. It's coming off a disappointment

One of the biggest obstacles standing in the way of the Galaxy Tab is that the 7-inch version has not performed well at retail. Earlier this year, reports surfaced claiming the company shipped 2 million 7-inch Tab units to store shelves since the device's launch late last year. But out of that, a much smaller number were actually sold. Meanwhile, Apple sold 15 million iPad units last year. In other words, Samsung has a long way to go to catch up to Apple.

4. It doesn't have FaceTime

Samsung's Galaxy Tab units come with the ability for users to engage in video conferencing. However, they won't support the key technology that's making the iPad 2 all the more appealing: FaceTime. Apple's video-conferencing service is available to the iPhone, Macs and iPod Touch, in addition to the iPad 2. It's a full-fledged video-streaming service that's gaining popularity extremely quickly. The Galaxy Tab and the iPad 2 might both have video conferencing, but Apple's software sets its device apart.

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger is a longtime freelance contributor to several technology and business publications. Over his career, Don has written about everything from geek-friendly gadgetry to issues of privacy...