Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1
The eagerly-anticipated Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 is kind of an odd duck for the graphics tablet segment (though it's definitely not an ugly duckling). On the surface, it's a pretty standard, though upscale, tablet that offers all the usual trimmings. But, according to industry wonks' early reviews, it was designed specifically to reel in the artists' crowd. Tech blog Gizmodo even suggested it was intended to be a solid competitor to Wacom's various graphics tablet options.
On the surface, this claim is a bit confusing: the Galaxy Note certainly doesn't look like an art tablet (though, like most Samsung electronics, it's got good, crisp visuals and competitive display specs). It's also easy to get the new Galaxy Note tablet mixed up with Samsung's established Galaxy Note smartphone, because they share a lot of the same characteristics, as well as the moniker. (Stop doing that, guys. Seriously.) But Samsung's pushing the "fashionable" line with gusto, so it's worth seeing if the Galaxy Note 10.1 lives up to the hype.
It takes a little exploration to really understand the tablet's potential, but the effort is worth it. Like its smartphone predecessor, the Galaxy Note 10.1 includes a slender, nubby-tipped stylus, which has enough functionality to achieve the artist's potential -- no need to spend the extra cash to upgrade to an aftermarket option. (Cool feature: the tablet can reportedly detect the angle at which the tip of the stylus is making contact with the screen, and the art apps translate that data into determining the user's intended amount of shading -- in real-world terms, it's akin to gently tilting your charcoal stick against the paper to achieve a slightly different texture.)
So grab that stylus and start poking around -- the Galaxy Note has a solid portfolio of creative apps, right out of the box. Even though Android users often complain that new apps and upgrades are often delayed because developers tend to focus on the Apple market, Galaxy Note 10.1 has plenty of tools to keep an artist inspired.