Galaxy Note 10.1 review - A tablet for creative people

Galaxy Note 10.1

I have been an iPhone user for many years. I have embraced the iPad wholeheartedly, since it was the best tablet the market offered. Both products have introduced me to the quality of Apple’s products, which have displaced most of my laptops and PC’s at home. I am typing this review on a Macbook Air.

I have been a Wacom Tablet user as well. I got my Wacom before the iPad and I would not miss editing a picture without it. Holding a pen is more natural and gives me much better precision than working with a mouse.

Ever since I held my first iPad in my hands, I have fantasized that a stylus would be the ideal accessory. It would allow for a level of creativity that a finger cannot achieve, especially if the stylus is pressure sensitive, like my Wacom tablet’s pen.

Right around the time I got my first iPad, I spoke to a couple of Apple engineers involved with the touch interface and we discussed touch technologies. At this time, there was a certain understandable pride among the engineers. The prevalent thought was that Apple had been the company who figured out how to do tablets right. A big part of doing it right, meant to eliminate the need for a stylus.

Understandably, when I brought up the idea of wanting a stylus, the engineers ignored my pleas. Nobody would want this and touch was the way of the future. I was beginning to wonder if any of them ever had used a Wacom tablet before. A touch sensitive display that would also respond to a pressure sensitive stylus would certainly not be a step back. After all, it wouldn’t NEED a stylus, but rather benefit from it.

Every year Apple introduced a new iPad, I was secretly hoping to find support for a pressure sensitive stylus, but no such luck. Eventually, Samsung was the company that built the iPad I always longed for, the Galaxy Note 10.1.

I bought one of these babies the day they hit the shelves at Best Buy and have spent quite a bit of time with it.


A tablet for creative people

Watercolor Pencil Drawing app
Watercolor Pencil app (free in Samsung's appstore) supports a large variety of styles

The Galaxy Note 10.1 does not have a display technology that rivals the iPad’s retina display. In most day-to-day use, this does not matter, but in direct comparison the differences are visible. If you only use your tablet to watch HD (1080) movies, browse the web and read email, the iPad is perfect for you.

Unfortunately for Samsung, this describes the majority of all tablet users today. Furthermore, not many people are even aware of the capabilities of the Galaxy Note 10.1. It withers at its showcase at my local Best Buy store, with no special mention of the stylus hidden inside the tablet. Most shoppers pass by and do not even notice what kind of revolution they just passed. Everyone knows about the iPad. Everyone has an opinion about he iPad. Tech savvy people know other products as well.

Once people at my workplace noticed what I did with the tablet, they were fascinated and wanted to learn more. Clearly, Samsung’s marketing is inferior. 

The stylus has a tiny tip, unlike the fat finger styli required for capacitive touch screens. This means you actually see what you draw; you can follow a thin line and have precise control. The stylus has a button on the side, that allows you to perform additional functions without having to go through menus and it has 1024 levels (10-bit) of pressure sensitivity. The benefits of pressure sensitivity are difficult to describe, you simply need to try it. Just imagine any kind of calligraphy, without being able to vary the thickness of your lines. Imagine how a painter varies his/her strokes by gently or forcefully using the brush. 

The tablet offers palm rejection, which means you can rest your hand comfortably on the surface, with the stylus in your hand. No other tablet offers that at this point, but the software needs to support this feature. 

Samsung includes a free office package and Photoshop touch with their tablet, making it even more appealing. Between the fantastic S-Note application, Polaris Office, the Browser and Photoshop, most creative needs are indeed covered.

I bought a pdf reader/editor with palm rejection. This allows me to make annotations on technical documents, highlight books, and add side-notes to whatever I read.


Blazingly fast, well thought out hardware

Galaxy Note 10.1 Multitasking
Multitasking on the Galaxy Note 10.1 supports some applications in side-by-side mode and several mini apps (calculator shown) on top

The tablet features a quad core processor and 2GB of RAM, far outpacing any other tablet on the market. In the world of Tablet OS, 2GB is enormous. It means you can multitask and work with big files.

This powerful hardware allowed Samsung to take multimedia to a new level for a tablet. The Note 10.1 can run some applications side by side, offering superior multitasking. This is great for research projects, as you can copy web content into a document without having to toggle back and fourth between two applications. 

Additionally, you can bring up some mini-apps, such as the calculator, on top of any other application. It will simply appear as a floating window, without affecting the main application. You can also quickly check your email without having to leave your main application. The video player also knows a detach mode, which lets you float a video on top of any other application.

The tablet’s front facing stereo speakers are perfect for video. The Note 10.1 furthermore features the usual headphone jack, power button and volume control buttons. It also has an infrared port, although I do not care much about the included universal remote control software.

The Galaxy Note 10.1 features a micro-SD card slot that can accept up to 64GB of additional storage. With an optional adapter, you can even turn the tablet into a USB host and plug in a hard drive (FAT32), USB stick, memory card reader, mouse or game controller, making it the most versatile tablet currently on the market.


S-Note Formula recognition
S-Note formula recognition

I use this application every day. The S-Note application is easily the most useful app on this tablet.

What looks like a simple scribbling app at first blush, turned out to be the most versatile and appealing application of the entire package.

This application can turn written text into characters, via a sophisticated character recognition engine. It can straighten shapes and even recognize formulas.

It brings up wolfram alpha (in a browser) on command to find additional information to your input. You can insert pictures and draw annotations on them.

The drawing tools are fantastic, with different types of pens, brushes and pencils and you can even record what you draw, as you draw it.

The recording also records your voice and crates a video of it all. Think about remote time-shifted teaching, where you explain changes to a document, or make changes to a white board.

Synchronize several devices, and you can suddenly all draw on the same sketch. Now your white-board has become digital.

My Daughter's first Drawing on the Note
My 1 year old daughter loves this app too

Things to improve

  • I wish I could simply connect this tablet to my PC via USB and use it as a Wacom tablet. There is some interest in the hacker community, and I hope they make some progress tricking a computer into thinking this is simply a Wacom digitizer. Using a full-blown version of Photoshop with this kind of input is certainly attractive.
  • This brings me to my biggest complaint with Photoshop Touch that comes with the tablet. It limits the picture size to 2048 pixels in the largest dimension, rendering it unusable for professional photo work.DONE! - The latest version of PS Touch (free in the Samsung Appstore for Galaxy Note 10.1 users) supports up to 12MP (4000x3000) files.!!!!
    It supports layers, an amazing amount of effects and tools and even can save files in PSD format, yet all of these features are useless if you need to work with high-resolution pictures. The tablet’s hardware would easily support more, and I would be willing to pay for such an upgrade. (got it free),. It is sufficient for pictures you ONLY want to email, or publish online, but if I would even remotely consider a professional use of those pictures, I would have to use Photoshop on my computer to avoid duplicate work.
  • By default, the pressure sensitivity in Photoshop is turned off. Here is how to turn it on:
    Photoshop Pressure sensitivity setting
    Photoshop setting pressure sensitivity
  • Only S-Note can read S-Note files. You can export PDF and JPG files, but the application downsamples the images too much, losing some information in the progress. It won’t be a big deal, if you are aware of this and plan your documents accordingly. Secondly, the S-Note app has one standard size document that you cannot change.
    S-Note Sample
    Snote Sample and PDF exported from S-Note. Click the image file for a larger view and compare the quality to the pdf
  • The tablet has a plastic feel. I normally use all my tablets in a case, so it does not matter to me, but some people don’t like the cheaper plastic feel of thois tablet.



The Galaxy Note 10.1 is a very appealing package. Its features are unique and it is currently the most powerful tablet on the market.

Its most striking features are the pressure sensitive pen (s-pen) and the improved multitasking capabilities, allowing the side-by-side use of some applications.

Some applications that make use of the pen already exist in Samsung’s store and in the Google play store. I am looking forward to more.

The Note 10.1 is easily the most appealing tablet for creative people. People who see what I can do with this little tablet are stunned, giving me hope styli will become vogue again.


Support this website, buy here:

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1

More screenshots

Click on any image above or below to open a larger version.


Photoshop some adjustments
Some Photoshop adjustments. I was positively surprised to find curves here, among a large variety of tools. On the right you can see that I am working with layers.


Photoshop some adjustments
Filters galore (showing just one tab)


Crayon Physics
Crayon physics: A fun little game included with the device. Draw objects to move the ball to its destination.


ezPDF annotations
ezPDF: Bought this app to draw annotations and highlights on pdf. Even supports the palm rejection


Andre Gunther Photography | Fine Art Travel Photography

Thank you a bunch for sharing this with all people you really know what you are talking
about! Bookmarked. Please additionally talk over with my web site =).
We can have a hyperlink exchange contract
between us

thank you very much, this is

thank you very much, this is the information I need. I hope this website always give the information quality. Happy to see your blog as it is just what I've looking for and excited to read all the posts.I am very much interested on the topic.I want to visit the site for other interesting topics.

this is what I really

this is what I really looking for!! thanks dude!!

very useful for me

I knew a lot of things, but I also used your advices and now use even more features of my device on the go. Encontros discretos

I want to have this

Nice review, I really want to have this one. But, How about the battery? is it enough?


I am not sure if everything now makes it one of the best and yes this is what i always wanted too. thanks much for all the help. Bountiful Dentist

This is what I was looking

This is what I was looking for. Thanks for sharing this great article! This is very interesting smile I love reading this informative information I was looking for!
writing phd research proposal

it would under a finger;

it would under a finger; however, the screen may be a bit too heavily calibrated toward accepting precise touches from the pen. Attempting to scrub through videos using just my finger didn't always work.
writing a phd thesis

Apple Suxx

I am very happy to read about this tablet for real works, not only for consuming things. And the fact, that it is not from apple means: I can buy it too ;)

Cool blog you got here. I'd

Cool blog you got here. I'd like to read a bit more concerning hcg diet this topic. Thanks for giving this info.

Excellent and decent post. I

Excellent and decent post. I found this much informative, as to what I was exactly searching for advanced college essay. Thanks for such post and please keep it up.

This blog has amazed me for

This blog has amazed me for quite some time. I have just started researching on it the Internet and found your post to be informative. Thanks

Technology is Imprving

Technology is improving day by day and new gadgets are coming. These all things creating easy.

The educational fair that

The educational fair that they offer here is so good. So much that the students are able to get so much from it. So much to learn from cover letter edit it all here.

I am

I am just now realizing that all my “go-to” desserts have chocolate in them….now why could that be?!? Oh yes, that is because Find Anyone at chocolate is amazing and nobody can ever get enough.

The center

The center of Cheers — at least in the first five seasons — was Sam, played Find Anyone at by Ted Danson, and Diane, played by Shelley Long. Their relationship was the best, wittiest, Tracy-Hepburniest example of sexual tension in TV history. Diane is hard to like but even.


This is definitely one of the best articles I have read in this website! Thanks Mate

this tablet is not only

this tablet is not only applicable for creative people but also people that always in multitasking method

Professional German

Professional German Translation
Okay, me personally was looking for English to German Translation not a software one I need for my legal documents. It toke me whole day

to drive around the city and call my friends if anyone has ever came across and finally one of my friend just told me, "Dude, what is

internet for". So I went on Google and started to look their for some services, and you can't even imagine the websites with ads on Google

were not just expensive but also very bad quality and you might be thinking how did I know about the quality? because I did sent my

documents with the same translation and I received a very unpleasant reply. So I started my research online and BAM!! found what I need it

absolutely amazing on prices, quality and customer support that I even referred one my friends who is dealing most often with European

clients specially Germans and I did got some free beer :P he is was happy to find such a professional service online.

Need help with Medical

Need help with Medical Personal Statement visit the site for affordable and quality writing service

I love to read this type of

I love to read this type of good articleoda al tomate. I have got a lot of info for your article..

computer virus repair

I am satisfied to go through about this tablet .Good write up keep it up, i will be one of your regular readers.
computer virus repair

Free Web Hosting

I really like your wordpress template, wherever did you down load it from?

The Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet

The Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet is quite outstanding...
very nice review by the way

we are accustomed to in the

we are accustomed to in the composition Comment emphasis on stylistic rules and layout, condemned the words to make sentences such as these form factors, while ignoring the ideological content especially manifested decent evaluation

best iphone repair toronto

wow, i think samsung is just willing to touch the summit. tab 10.1 is really the best product of Samsung but, Apple will not run it fast. this is a non stoppable race between these two contenders.

best iphone repair

Have a nice read here.

Have a nice read here. I’ve found out this post is very interesting, therefore I read the full post and enjoyed the stories. Particularly the last part is very amazing. Nice put!! Thanks

best iphone repair

It feels mess when your iPhone does not work and you get worried...But dude its not the time to get worried.Just follow the link and get your buddy repaired in just 1 day.

I am in love with this one

I am in love with this one :P