Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 review: Best and worst features

The 10.1in Android tablet comes with a stylus, true-multitasking, a quad-core processor and the option of voice calling.

3. Bundled software

The device ships with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Samsung's TouchWiz has been sprinkled over the top, but we didn't find it to be too intrusive.

Highlights include the screenshot button located onscreen as well as the ability to place widgets on the homescreens and the enhanced multi-tasking capabilities which are discussed over the page.

As well as the regular Google apps and stylus specific features, Samsung has also included Polaris Office so the device can be used to view and edit documents, spreadsheets and presentations out-of-the-box.

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1

Adobe Photoshop Touch is bundled too, allowing users to edit photos and pictures on the move and then upload them directly to social networks such as Facebook. This will make the device appealing to artists and architects who will be using the stylus primarily for drawing or designing. There are a number of tutorials available guiding users through everything from replacing colours to creating camera layers.

The Note 10.1 also comes with a rudimentary video editing feature, which allows users to add a border to the edge of a video to give it a bit of a professional polish without having to hook it up to a computer. The ability to add Conference, Birthday, Cinema and Stage themes are included.

2. Battery

As with all other major tablets, the battery is non-removable. The 7,000mah battery isn't quite as big as the 11,666mAh pack included in the iPad 3. However, the battery in the Galaxy Note doesn't have to power a Retina Display screen so it is capable of producing reasonable uptime.

We pegged charging time at five hours when using the mains, and found we were unable to charge when connecting a PC via USB.

In our intensive battery test we looped a video on the Note 10.1 with the brightness set to maximum. With the power saving mode and Wi-Fi turned off, the device managed a reasonable time of 6 hours and 22 minutes. This was 30 minutes short of the 6 hours and 50 minutes provided by the latest iPad.

With brightness set to half and power saving turned on; we stretched the Note 10.1 to more than hours. However, this was someway sort of the maximum achieved by the iPad 3, which ran for over 12 hours from a single charge, when we tinkered with the settings.

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