phone

In terms of day-to-day use, the Galaxy Tab is a handy device to have around. In some ways it surpasses the iPad in terms of usability, although it falls behind in others.

The onscreen keyboard is functional, and the device does a pretty good job of working out what you meant to type if your fingers are slightly off target, and it autocorrects.

keyboard

The Tab gives you haptic feedback as you type, too, which means you get a small vibration with every keypress. Because the screen is smaller than that on the iPad, the virtual keys are also smaller and thus haptic feedback is a helpful feature - it helps you guide your fingers more accurately.

Having said that, the keyboard is not exactly what you'd call 'comfortable' to use. Typing quickly is not easy at all - and this leads us to the belief that 7-inches is probably a little bit too small.

Flash support

Anyone who abstains from buying an iPad on the grounds of Apple's refusal to include Flash support, will find the Galaxy Tab a heavenly joy to use.

youtube

Flash is supported from the off, which means you can watch pretty much any web video content from within a browser.

It's all quite painless too, with YouTube clips loading and playing without any teething problems. There's no noticeable performance issues here, it just works.

Multi-tasking

Android 2.2 supports multitasking, and thus so does the Samsung Galaxy Tab. If you hit the Home button while you're in an app, you'll be taken back to your homescreen while the App stays running in the background.

This means you can play music while browsing the web and checking your emails. It also means you can have frequently used Apps all open at the same time without having to repeatedly load and close them.

On the homescreen there's a very useful 'Active applications' button which, when pressed, gives you information about all the apps which are currently running on the device.

apps

You can view how much memory they're using, the percentage of CPU usage and you can even close Apps from here if you decide they're probably using too much battery juice.

There are also tabs at the top of this screen which enable you to monitor how much storage you have left, how much RAM you're using, and all the apps you've been downloading.

more info

It's an excellent management tool which enables you to see with crystal clarity exactly what your Samsung Galaxy Tab is doing at any time.

Copy and paste

Copy and paste features are included, so for those who consider this feature an absolute must-have, there are no problems. Just like other Android 2.2 devices, you need only tap a word and you're able to select and copy text from there.

Email and extras

We heart Android here at TechRadar. It's got so many features, and they're all here to play with on the Galaxy Tab. Whether that be excellent email integration, free satellite navigation using Google Maps, or the ability to make and receive telephone calls. It's all there.

phone

If you want to use the Galaxy Tab as a phone, you can. But unless you want to look a bit silly, we absolutely recommend sticking with your current phone for telephoney purposes. It's just too big to hold up to your face - you'd look like an idiot, and an uncomfortable idiot at that. Unless you've got the world's biggest head and hands to match, obviously.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Reviews Editor

James (Twitter, ) oversees the reviews we publish on the site and also edits the TV, AV, Gaming, Car Tech and Gadgets channels. He's been in the field for 13 years, and travels all over the world to attend tech shows, product launches and cult gatherings. James' opinions have been inflicted on audiences of BBC TV, Radio 5 Live, The Guardian, local radio and various magazines and he's a grizzled veteran of most tech shows but will never again to return to CeBIT (no means no).