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Samsung Tab 2 10.1 WiFi - Very Detailed Review On The Many Excellent Features Of This Tablet.
on November 12, 2012
Updated Review: April 23, 2014 - For getting close to 1 3/4 years now, I have been totally enjoying this excellent Tab 2 10.1 WiFi tablet and I continue use this very dependable tablet for hours each day---it has never failed me and still runs like a champ! Since I am a techie, I tested this tablet thoroughly and I have found it to be excellent for my everyday basic computer functions at home and on the road. And it is much easier to travel with than my heavy laptop. For you the reader, my goal here is to give you everyday and practical uses regarding the Tab 2 10.1 WiFi model. Last August, 2013, I updated to 4.2.2 as it has many improvements and my tablet is running perfectly and it is up to date. The update did remove the screenshot, however, I use the Power Key and Volume key and this takes a screenshot when needed.
* Update sent by Samsung today December 14, 2013 - Just updated today my Tab 2 10.1 via the OTA (Over the Air) directly on the Tab itself. The update is not that large at 65MB and just took about 15 minutes from the downloading of the update to the re-booting and installing the updates into the tablet. Samsung is rolling out this update now to improve stability and improve the features on the Tab as it updates the 4.2.2 original update.
Result I found after this update 12.14.13: WiFi working great, Amazon Videos loading and playing wonderfully. (I just double click the center of the Amazon Video for full screen). Also tried the camera and several apps and so happy to report that the Tab 2 is running smoother and faster since this update.
- EXTERNAL SLOT FOR MICRO SD CARD - What a great feature! It is set to accept up to 32g SD, however, you can add a 64gb SD card, however, you will have to format it inside the Tab 2 and it will then be ready to add files. For me, I placed a 32g in mine for music, files etc. Note that this was one of the deciding factors that sold me on this tablet. *Keep in mind where External SD cards are concerned: They are JUST for your personal files: music, videos, photos, and other files. When you install apps from the Playstore or other sources, they store either in INTERNAL SD Card area or the main internal area.
- WiFi Connecting/Speed of WiFi - This I tested using my home router and on the go at many hotspots with WiFi. What I discovered: The Tab 2 connected very quickly to my home router and has a high rate of speed no matter where I am located in my home (of course the closer to the router, the faster). Other hotspots: No problems at all connecting and staying connected on these. And I found the speed still high at home with several devices connected to the router, no loss in speed. **Note that I had other tablets before this one and for me, none gave me the quick connect and overall speed over WiFi as the Tab 2. **Newest observation--Today, I tested ALL my WiFi devices (phones and Tablets) and discovered this: Using my home router I noticed that the Tab 2's that I own (7 inch and 10.1 ones), connected faster and have far greater distance to my router than even my Android phone did as it seems to have the HIGHEST signal strength and longest WiFi distance). Then I took the Tab 2 outside and even in my back yard (furthest from router), still got a signal, moved in to back porch and got a very good signal. The same holds true when I travel, I am able to connect to many free WiFi hotspots, easily with great signal strength.
- Internet & Webpage & Video Viewing - The stock browser does a great job, however, I use Maxthon Browser and installed archived flash so I have great internet flash video viewing results and it renders webpages quite fast for me. And I suggest the free app called Pocket from the Playstore so you can read internet articles later offline. Even TODAY after almost ten months of ownership, I still enjoy using this tablet for viewing internet pages, videos and more.
- Reading/Creating/Editing Word, Excel, Text Files and much more on this tablet: This comes with a OK app for reading Office documents, however, I prefer Kingsoft Office which is a free app from Playstore. It is the best I have ever tried and I am very picky about so called Office programs. It is very compatible with MS Office as it reads, edits and creates Office files and reads PDF files, and it has more features of any other Android Office program that I tried. This app is a MUST have for tablet owners in my opinion.
- Printing Using the Tab 2 - Yes, even with my older home printer, I print documents, photos, etc that are on my Tab 2 using the app Cloud Print and PrinterShare Mobile (both free from Playstore. In addition, there are many apps in the Playstore that will allow you to print using the Tab 2. (If you have questions about printing using the Tab 2 or any question, please ask in the comment section and I will answer).
- Watching Online Flash Videos Directly From Maxthon Browser (regular one not the tablet one is best) - If archived flash is installed and Maxthon Browser or other good browsers, I can play videos online. All videos I have tried have played just fine. ***Please ask me in the comments if you need more details regarding watching online videos of any kind on the Tab 2 and also instructions on archived flash,etc...
- Home Videos - The stock video player is OK and plays MOST home videos, however, may I suggest QQ Player (Free App from Playstore and the ONLY one I recommend as it plays every home video I tried).
- Music Player/Sound Quality - Stock player has clear sound through the outside "speakers" and very clear using headphones. To sync easily with Windows Media Player may I suggest the Playstore app free) WinAmp for the tablet as it is very highly rated and the sound is SUPERB!
**** SUGGESTION: If love watching videos and listening to music, may I suggest that you invest in a Bluetooth Speaker. There are many out there on Amazon most are OK and many low it cost. However, for me I use the EasyAcc Second Gen Bluetooth that Amazon sells and the sound is SUPERB! Also, it plays stand alone SD card music and Flash Drive music as it has the ports for that (the Flash drive and LARGE STANDARD SD cards play directly from the ports the music as stored on the Flash drive of SD CARD).
- Battery Life- Excellent! This is what I have found: When I am on WiFi, I go to the websites I need and then as soon as I am done (reasonable time), I exit the browser (or YouTube, etc) and TURN OFF WiFi. However, I run my brightness at 100%. So on an average day, I get at least 8-12 hours using the tablet before I charge it (depending on how long my WiFi is connected).
- OTG USB Compatible - You can add an optional OTG (On the Go adapter cable to the Micro port for copying files to your flash drive and from your flash drive to the Tab 2). You can also plug in a mouse, I tried it and it worked. *Note that portable external hard drives and portable DVD/CD drives will not work using OTG in the Tab 2 because these both require a lot of power to be compatible with the Tab 2 and most tablets that have the OTG. However, it is still good to know that you can easily plug in your flash drive and copy files to the Tab 2 and from Tab 2 to PC--what a time-saver.
- On-Screen Keyboard - For me, I prefer to use the large keys on the on-screen keyboard so this one is PERFECT for me to type on. However, there are many great Bluetooth keyboards out there for the Tab2.
- The tablet is very well constructed, however, to secure it better, I bought from Amazon a MoKo adjustable stand/case that I set it up in landscape mode and it has 3 positions.
- Bluetooth Speed and Performance - The Bluetooth paired quickly with several devices and copied files at a great rate of speed. Speaking of Bluetooth: Also there are many great Bluetooth keyboards out for the Tab2. (Just make sure you purchase one for JUST THE TAB2 10.1).
- SPECIAL FREE OUTSTANDING APPS I SUGGEST FROM THE PLAYSTORE:
* Pocket App (This is a must app you can "save to" Pocket and read text later when offline so you can read text articles (you must be online to watch videos or view pictures however).
* Cloud Print and PrinterShare Mobile (both free lets you print right from your tablet).
* TV SHOW APP (free) is US TV & Radio Free and also get TV Guide app to go with this. This is an app that lets you watch many TV shows (but they are live so you will need TV Guide app to see what is on). These apps I have tried and the tablet plays the shows wonderfully in full screen. This app also has great radio stations on it. (Note that this app is HUGE almost 33MB but you can watch most cable TV shows on it LIVE).
* Netflix (free in Playstore), You really need this app if you plan on watching Netflix using this tablet. * Hulu Plus, I recommend for movies and more.
* TV.COM - gets SOME TV shows and some networks, but you can watch pre-recorded shows.
Also great FREE apps: WiFi Analyzer (lets you know how strong your WiFi is), QQ Player, QuickPic (better than the Gallery), Maxthon Browser, AVG Antivirus Free, and I list more in comment section.
- Wonderful Kindle Android App is pre-installed, and I downloaded several Kindle books with no problems. Kindle loads fast and this Tablet is a joy to read a book on either Kindle or any eBook or PDF booklet.
CONS: (Just one con I found, however, this con is NOT the fault of Samsung)
- New Adobe Flash is not supported, however, I found that archived flash gets the online videos to play. So I downloaded the older archived flash which gives me the ability to view many internet videos.
*****Update August 30, 2013 ***** There is an AUTO UPDATE for the new OS that will be starting up the next time you turn on WiFi or very soon. It is best that you are aware that you MUST has at least 60% battery, or better yet 100% battery as this update takes up LOTS of space and take a long time to complete. (You can also turn off the auto update to prevent this from happening). Note that the update removes your soft key for the Screenshot and moves the soft keys into the center and lots of other changes. So you may want to take a look at the comment section as there is quite a bit posted these on this)...
Bottom line: Would I buy this WiFi only model over again? Yes I certainly would, in a heartbeat! So if you are looking for a superb Samsung 10.1 inch tablet and you have great access to WiFi, this is the one to buy. Also, since I am somewhat of a techie person, I will be happy to answer any questions you may have through the comment section.
Hope this review has assisted you and thank you for reading it.
And also, we have a great discussion going in the comments. Should you have any questions, ask anytime and I will answer right away.