AUSTRALIA’S second biggest tablet seller will take aim at Apple and Microsoft this year, launching a big-screen tablet designed to steal tech-savvy customers from its rivals.
Samsung unveiled the TabPro S at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas today, showing off a 12 inch (30cm) screen, a slender 693g body, and a slick magnetic keyboard that will come with the device.
But while analysts predict Australians will spend big on hybrid computers over the next two years, Samsung will have to win over upwardly mobile computer users already committed to Microsoft’s Surface tablets and Apple’s new iPad Pro.
Samsung’s first professional Windows-based tablet features a 12 inch (30cm) Super AMOLED screen, a 6.3mm profile, two five-megapixel cameras, an Intel Core M chip with 4GB RAM, and a storage capacity up to 256GB.
Though it runs Windows 10 software, the tablet can be used with Samsung’s four latest flagship phones, allowing the phone to act as its fingerprint scanner or to deliver text messages and Skype calls to the tablet’s big screen.
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Samsung Australia IT and mobile vice-president Prasad Gokhale said a 4G version of the tablet would go on sale in Australia which, along with an included keyboard and annual Microsoft Office subscription, would give its professional tablet an advantage over its competition.
“This goes right into both Microsoft and Apple lands,” Mr Gokhale said.
“With regards to the Apple tablet, from a productivity standpoint ours is better. Just try to use the other one and carry it around in your bag.”
Mr Gokhale said the TabPro S was designed for travellers and those who needed to work on the go, and consumers who may have chosen to invest in Microsoft’s own Surface tablets in the past.
“We worked closely with Microsoft and we identified the pain points of people who bought the Surface computers,” he said. “We are not fighting with them. We will offer customers a choice.”
Australian research firm Telsyte predicts Australians will buy more hybrid tablet computers in the next year, with sales jumping from half a million last year to more than 1.5 million next year.
Telsyte managing director Foad Fadaghi said the “professional” tablets would grow to represent one in every three tablet computers sold in Australia by 2017, and will be more popular than Google Android tablets.