Sprint will sell Samsung’s Galaxy Tab computer for $399 with a two-year contract, or $599 without one beginning Nov. 14, according to gadget blog Boy Genius Report.
Asked for confirmation of these details, a Sprint spokesman did not illuminate the mystery, telling eWEEK Oct. 8: “Sprint has not announced pricing or availability for Samsung Galaxy Tab.”
Samsung unveiled the Galaxy Tab, equipped with a 7-inch screen and based on Android 2.2, Sept. 16 in a show in New York City. The device is intended as the Android-based alternative to Apple’s popular iPad, which has sold as many as 10 million iPads.
The device’s touch screen offers 1,024-by-600 resolution, is powered by a 1 GHz processor and comes with 16GB of internal memory, expandable to 32GB of external memory. The Wall Street Journal said Oct. 8 it, along with The New York Times and Gannett, are building apps to showcase their news content on the Galaxy Tab.
Verizon Wireless, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile all pledged to support the tablet computer, which seems par for the course given that each carrier makes its own iteration of the Samsung Galaxy S Android smartphone.
However, none of the carriers announced availability and pricing for the Galaxy Tab. Speculation has reigned that the Galaxy Tab would cost $200 to $300 in the United States; the tablet sells for $1,000 to $1,250 in the U.K. and Europe.
While a starting U.S. price point of $399 is higher than Samsung led people to expect, it may be a bit more attractive for users’ considering an iPad, which starts at $499 for the WiFi-only model and scales to more than $1,000 for 3G/WiFi capability with 64GB of memory from AT&T.
Some users who have a psychological barrier to shelling out $500 for a newfangled computer for Web surfing may pick the Galaxy Tab over the iPad.
Of course, it also may just come down to whether the user likes the look and feel of the Galaxy Tab, which is smaller than the iPad, as well as how they feel about the Android platform versus Apple’s iOS.
Android OS has been gobbling market share at the expense of Research In Motion, Windows Mobile, and to a lesser degree, iOS, according to the latest August numbers from comScore.
Meanwhile, Android tablet makers are amassing. In addition to Samsung, Archos, LG, Dell and Lenovo all either offer or will offer Android machines. RIM is bringing its Playbook to market with an enterprise focus.