Steve Jobs may not see a market for a 7-inch tablet, but Samsung is banking heavily on one with its Galaxy Tab Android slate hitting the four major U. S. phone carriers and at least one third party retailer starting in November. The Galaxy Tab is a full-featured tablet running the latest version of Android, 2.2, and has optimized apps for the display which is bigger than those found on smartphones. The multiple outlets for the Galaxy Tab are creating a price war of sorts, indicated by pricing information now appearing. Let’s take a look at the price roundup for the Samsung Galaxy Tab.
In addition to the four U. S. carriers handling the Tab, it’s been spotted in Best Buy. It will be sold in various outlets outside the U. S., but this roundup is restricted to the U.S. outlets.
Best Buy. Signs spotted in the giant retailer indicate a Wi-Fi version of the Galaxy Tab will be sold for $499.99. Best Buy will also sell 3G-enabled versions for Sprint and Verizon requiring data contracts or month-to-month service.
Sprint. Sprint has the best confirmed price for the Tab, with pre-orders for $399.99 now available. This price requires a two-year “3G Tablet Mobile Broadband” plan. This special tablet plan comes in two flavors: 2 GB data for $29.99 monthly and 5 GB data for $59.99 monthly. Both plans include unlimited messaging. It is being reported that Sprint will offer the Tab with no contract for $600.
Verizon. The Galaxy Tab will set you back $599.99 from Big Red, with no contract required nor offered. A month-to-month data plan will be available for the Tab starting at $20 monthly for 1 GB of data.
AT&T . Pricing for the Galaxy Tab has not been revealed by the carrier, but data plan pricing has leaked to the web. This indicates an a la carte system for data plans for the Tab, starting at $15 for a measly 100 MB per day, to a whopping $50 monthly with a 1 GB data cap.
T-Mobile. The carrier hasn’t confirmed pricing for the Galaxy Tab, but rumors show T-Mobile will offer it starting at $399.99 with a two-year contract. The same rumors indicate pricing without a contract will be $649, with no details on data plan pricing.
The Galaxy Tab is a compelling device with the highly portable 7-inch form factor. Early reviews of it have been positive, and access to the Android Market is a big plus. The Android tablet space is shaping up like the smartphone space as the carrier involvement creates confusing data plan pricing and device pricing. I’m thinking the Wi-Fi only model at Best Buy might be the best way to go, especially given how LTE tablets will start appearing next year. I hear one calling my name, how about you?