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Gadgets: A look at Galaxy Tab 10.1, covers and a deal of an app

By : :mohit sexena
It's only taken tablets a short time to dominate the electronic market and now Samsung's website advertising the new Android-based Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 says "It's Time for a Better Tablet."
It's impossible for me to review any portable tablet these days and not compare it to an iPad, especially since I have an iPad and I've been a very dedicated Apple product user for some time.
Despite that, I must admit the Galaxy is a close second to the iPad and in some ways it's even better.
Physically, the tablets look similar side by side but the number one difference, to me, is that Galaxy is equipped with Flash, which obviously is not in the iPad.
Working everything on the Galaxy is simple: a home button gets you to the home screen where apps are lined up and ready to use on the very responsive touch screen.
Without a stopwatch or any scientific devices, I placed the Galaxy side by side with my iPad 1 on the same network and downloading apps was a lot easier on the Galaxy.
There is no competition as far as the quantity of apps available between the two devices; the Apple iTunes App Store wins easily but the Galaxy's Market Store has a great selection and is growing every day.
Using the Galaxy on a Wi-Fi network, I was very pleased with all my web browsing, email, gaming and shopping never was there an issue.
But since I have a history with Apple products I loaned the Galaxy to a few others to learn their thoughts.
First off was my 10 1/2-year-old niece, who has an addiction to her iPod iTouch and has played with my iPad at times.
Her thoughts surprised me, as she preferred the Galaxy to the iPad because she found their app store much easier to work to find free games.
She liked that after downloading games, "The Galaxy placed the shortcuts in a very easy location to find once you hit the home button."
In addition, she felt the Galaxy touch screen was much more responsive and worked faster in general.
She also added that when choosing a game to play on the iPad, "it takes a long time to load but on the Galaxy it takes a lot less time and takes you right to the game."
I also loaned the Galaxy to friends (mid-30s) who are power users, especially when it comes to gaming.
They are probably in the group of about 100 people alive who have not used an iPad, but they are iPhone users and said the Galaxy's ease of use compares to the iPhone.
Some of their other thoughts included that it had a brilliant, crystal-clear display and navigating was easy and intuitive. They didn't like the keyboard, as it seemed hard to type, causing them to make numerous typos.
They didn't download any apps but looked at what was available in the Market and found a lot of the popular apps they liked for the iPhone are available for the Galaxy.
This was a big concern to them since they are big iTunes users.
Just as I felt the presence of Flash on the Galaxy was a big advantage, they thought the same and felt Web browsing was so much easier with Flash included.
Details:; available in metallic gray or white with 16GB ($499) or 32GB ($599) capacities.
For storage of the Galaxy Tab, iLuv's X-tra Padded Neoprene Sleeve has more padding than just about any other tablet sleeve I've seen.
The sleeve is made with memory foam and can be carried on its own or fits easily inside most any computer bag.
Details:; available in black or pink for $13 at, and also available for the iPad.
KB Covers are a nice concept since they protect Apple laptop and desktop computer keyboards but also provide instant access to shortcuts for many software applications for photography and graphic designing.
I tried the covers for Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom and couldn't believe how much they helped my workflow.
After using them for just a few minutes you don't even know they are there and they do a great job of keeping dirt and dust from inside the keyboard, especially if it's a laptop.
The covers have shortcuts for the specific programs written onto the keys that are needed to press to access that specific shortcut.
The silicone covers are super thin and made to custom fit each specific keyboard. They also come in a clear model if you want one without shortcuts.
Keyboard covers are also available for composer/musician enthusiasts for software including Logic, ProTools, Sibelius and Traktor.
Details:; the clear models come in several colors ($24.95 - $29.95) and application specific covers vary in price depending on the application and keyboard, starting at $29.95
I'm sure I am not the only one consumed with all the deals of the day.
An application, which has now become a regular of mine on my iPad along with checking email and local news every morning with my morning coffee, is Deal Drop.
The free app is available in the iTunes store for Apple products and is also available for Android devices.
Depending on where you are, the app sorts more than 80 national deals from a choice of more than 100 cites/locations and includes the never ending list of local deals - all compiled conveniently in once place.
Basically, once your location is entered, Deal Drop puts all your deals of the day in one place. Then in minutes you can scroll through all your deals without having to read about each one independently or having to hunt down the websites.
Companies such as Woot, Groupon, LivingSocial and Tanga are among the dozens you get each day.
Push notifications are available and sites you are not interested in can easily be turned off.

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