How the Samsung Galaxy Tablet Works

Samsung Galazy Tablet box.
The 10.1-inch Samsung Galaxy Tablet, on display at the Union Square Best Buy in New York City in June 2011.
Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images

The Samsung Galaxy Tablet is a tablet computer that runs on Google's Android operating system. The original Galaxy had a seven-inch (17.8-centimeter) screen; the newer Galaxy 10.1 features a 10.1-inch (25.7-centimeter) screen. Some see it as the primary competitor to the Apple iPad in the tablet market. In fact, the company has sued Samsung in Europe to prevent sales of the Galaxy, claiming that it infringes on several of Apple's patents. At the moment, an injunction against sales of the Galaxy in Europe has been lifted (except in Germany), but the lawsuit itself has yet to be decided [source: Albanesius].

The Galaxy is essentially one large touchscreen, and the user interacts with it almost entirely by touching the screen itself, though it can dock to a keyboard or other peripherals. It's available in a WiFi only version, which can only connect to the Internet when an open wireless signal is in range. The Galaxy is also available in a 3G version that takes advantage of a cell phone service provider's broadband wireless data transmission network, though this comes with monthly data costs.


As of January 2011, Samsung had shipped 2 million Galaxy Tabs to retailers, though they did not release consumer sales figures [source: Ramstadl]. Android-based operating systems enjoyed 34 percent of the tablet market share after the first quarter of 2011, an increase of more than eight percent from the previous quarter [source: IDC]. While this increase doesn't reflect specific Galaxy sales numbers, it certainly shows that the Android tablet market has a strong future.