Samsung Galaxy Tab Coming to Best Buy for $499

Samsung's Galaxy Tab is coming to Best Buy in November, starting at $499 for WiFi, $599 for WiFi/3G units from Verizon Wireless and Sprint.

Best Buy is preparing to launch Samsung's Galaxy Tab in the United States in November, offering WiFi-only and WiFi/3G combinations beginning at $499.

Gadget blog Pocketables found these Best Buy signs advertising the Galaxy Tab silver WiFi-only variety and WiFi + 3G versions from Verizon Wireless (in black) and Sprint (in silver).

Best Buy said the WiFi/3G versions are available from Verizon and Sprint with a contract or a month-to-month plan. Pocketables did not mention whether or not the WiFi/3G versions would cost $599.

However, eWEEK received additional information from a Best Buy customer service agent in Trumbull, Conn.

Matt, the agent, told eWEEK that Best Buy is taking preorders for the device today for $50, but that the device would cost $599, with the WiFi/3G versions available from Verizon and Sprint next month.

No other information was available. eWEEK reached out to Best Buy's media relations for more information but has yet to hear a response.

The Galaxy Tab runs Google's Android 2.2 operating system, which is not optimized for tablets, and sports a 7-inch screen.

Unlike Apple's smash-hit iPad, the Tab has dual cameras for video calling and supports Adobe's Flash multimedia software.

The Best Buy news follows Verizon's pledge to sell the WiFi/3G model of the Tab Nov. 11 for $599 with no contract. Verizon Wireless customers can add a monthly access plan for the Galaxy Tab for $20 a month for 1GB.

This pricing surprised some analysts who were convinced the Tab would have to cost less than the iPad, which starts at $499 for the WiFi-only version and $629 for its WiFi/3G model.

Sprint may have taken this discontent into account Oct. 25 when it said that it would sell the Tab for $399 on Nov. 14. However, while Verizon is selling its Tab sans contract, Sprint is offering its machine with a two-year service contract on a 3G Tablet Mobile Broadband plan.

Apple shipped 4.19 million iPads in the recently closed fourth quarter, below analysts' expectations, but certainly enough to bolster Apple's lead in a market where Android tablets are just beginning to emerge in force.