Samsung to announce Android tablets with Windows 8-style home screen

Samsung has finally come clean about its next generation Android tablets, the Galaxy NotePro and TabPro. The Note Pro is a 12.2-inch tablet sporting the usual Note-series stylus, and like the rumors said, the TabPro comes in a whole range of sizes: 12.2, 10.1, and 8.4 inches.

The Galaxy NotePro 12.2

Samsung now announces full range of Android tablets with Windows 8-style home screen

Samsung now announces full range of Android tablets with Windows 8-style home screen

Samsung now announces full range of Android tablets with Windows 8-style home screen

Despite running Android, the devices come with a Windows 8-style tile interface called “Magazine UX,” which Samsung says is better optimized for large screens. The usual Samsung accoutrements like split-screen apps and floating windows are present, which should be even more useful on such a huge screen. It looks like the “Pro” moniker here is all about the bundled software (and marketing), as Samsung is pre-loading a remote desktop app, Cisco WebEx Meetings (a video conferencing app), Samsung e-Meeting (a content sharing service), and “approximately $700 worth of the premium pre-paid, long-term subscription offers from best-selling news, social media, and cloud storage providers,” like a subscription to The New York Times and Dropbox storage. Samsung’s Knox security software will also no doubt be a selling point, as Samsung looks to push into the enterprise and fill the hole left by the cratering BlackBerry.

The Galaxy TabPro 10.1

The Galaxy TabPro 10-1 - 03 The Galaxy TabPro 10-1 - 01 The Galaxy TabPro 10-1 - 02

The 12.2 and 10.1 inch devices are meant to be used horizontally, with Samsung’s hardware buttons located on the horizontal edge. The 8.4-inch version has the buttons and branding in a vertical orientation. It looks like Samsung is sticking to its traditional motto of “bigger is better” as, for now, a new 7-inch tablet is out of the question.

The Galaxy TabPro 8.4

The Galaxy TabPro 8-4 - 03 The Galaxy TabPro 8-4 - 01 The Galaxy TabPro 8-4 - 02

The Wi-Fi versions of the devices use the Samsung 1.9GHz Exynos 5 Octa CPU (four 1.9 Ghz cores and four low-power 1.3Ghz cores), and the LTE versions use a 2.3Ghz Snapdragon 800. Everything runs Android 4.4 KitKat on a 2560×1600 LCD (even the 8.4-inch model) and has 16 or 32 GB of RAM, an 8MP rear camera, a 2MP front camera, Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.0, and a microSD Slot. The big internal differences between devices are the battery and RAM. The 12.2-inch device has 3GB of RAM and a 9500 mAh battery. The 10.1-inch TabPro has 2GB of RAM and an 8220 mAh battery, and the 8.4-inch version has 2GB of RAM and a 4800 mAh battery.

The software is the real star of the show here, which unfortunately doesn’t come across in a press release very well. We will do our best to play with this at some point tomorrow and grab some video when the CES show floor opens.

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