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10-inch tablet, period

S-Pen, improved

Old S-Pen versus new

Better software

Adobe apps

Slim build

The Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 doesn't have to pretend to be anything other than what it plainly is. The Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich tablet has a 1.4GHz dual-core Samsung Exynos processor, a 3-megapixel rear-facing camera, 2-megapixel front-facing camera, and an S-Pen stylus that larger and more advanced on both the hardware and software sides than the skinny wand that came with the Samsung Galaxy Note smartphone.
Caption by / Photo by Stephen Shankland/CNET
Not only is the Galaxy Note 10.1's S-Pen larger and more comfortable than that of the original Note, it also has a pen clip and an "eraser" up top. It still isn't going to rival your Montblanc, but at least it's more comfortable to hold--though not as comfortable as the S-Pen holder kit accessory for the original S-Pen. The trade-off for a sensible pen size? No tunnel for carrying the stylus with the device. You'll need a case if you want to bundle both slate and stylus.
Caption by / Photo by Stephen Shankland/CNET
The Galaxy Note 10.1's S-Pen (left) is visibly larger and thicker than that of the Samsung Galaxy Note, though both will technically work on the same devices. It's also more sensitive to pressure.
Caption by / Photo by Stephen Shankland/CNET
More advanced, S-Pen compatible software on the Note 10.1 helps make a clear case for the Note's stylus, a technology licensed from Wacom, a leader in tablet and stylus technology mostly used by graphic artists. Let's start with S-Note, which offers templates for magazines, greeting cards, professional memos, travel, recipes, and sketching. There's a split-screen mode for working on two projects at once and some great logic that converts handwritten formulas to text and common drawn shapes to a standard design.
Caption by / Photo by Stephen Shankland/CNET
Samsung and Adobe teamed up to add Photoshop Touch and Adobe Ideas, two apps to make the most of the stylus, and to offer more creative control with layers, effects, and drawing tools. The Note 10.1 also has a handful of compatible apps, like Catch Notes, Omni Sketch, and Slice It. In addition, it harbors Samsung's hubs for video playback, games, e-reading, music, and learning.
Caption by / Photo by Stephen Shankland/CNET
The Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 has a slim profile, just 0.35 inches, or 8.9 millimeters.
Caption by / Photo by Stephen Shankland/CNET
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