Most people would agree that the 7in Samsung Galaxy Tab was the best alternative to the iPad for most of the latter part of last year. And even when those dual-core Honeycomb slates started appearing around CES, there was the 10.1in Galaxy Tab to keep Samsung right in the thick of it.
But with Apple having revealed a new slimmer, lighter iPad 2 suddenly Samsung seems less than happy with things, with one executive bluntly calling parts of the Samsung slab “inadequate”.
Thanks to having the tablet market largely to itself for the best part of a year, there's little doubt that Apple sets the tone when it comes to slates. And with the iPad 2, that tone is affordability and slimness – the new iPad is more powerful than before yet costs the same, and boasts a thinner profile than even the iPhone 4.
Impressive stuff, and it seems to have made an impression even on Samsung. With the Galaxy Tab 10.1 still to hit the market, Sammy vice-president Lee Don-Joo has admitted the company will be rethinking its pricing strategy for its 10.1in tablet.
He also adds – without going into any detail – that Samsung also needed to “improve the parts that are inadequate”, noting that “Apple made [the iPad 2] very thin”.
His comments come courtesy of Korea's Yonhap News Agency – the very same that hinted correctly a week ago that an 8.9in Galaxy Tab was in the works. So we're fairly sure the agency has an inside line into the inner workings of the electronics colossus.
However, it's not exactly clear how Samsung can respond in terms of either cost or size with its current generation of Galaxy Tabs. Simply dropping the 10.1in slate's price will cut profits too, but given the plethora of high-tech components inside the latest Galaxy Tab there's only so far the price can be cut.
And there's surely no chance of an 11th hour change to the physical appearance of the Galaxy Tab to make it more slender in an effort to combat Apple's wafer-thin new slate.
Once again, it seems Apple is one step ahead of the pack.