Samsung squeezes the skinny Galaxy Tab 8.9 into its tablet line-up

Samsung breaks out two new slabs of tablet hardware as it intros the 8.9 and updates the 10.1

Samsung has unveiled a pair of new tablets in the hope of taking some of the wind out of Apple’s iPad 2 sails (and sales). Oddly, it’s updated the Galaxy Tab 10.1 – launched last month and as yet unreleased – to superfast 21Mbps HSPA + and dual-band Wi-Fi connectivity, while trimming its girth down to an 8.6mm, 595g slither. The fatter, 10.9mm, Galaxy Tab 10.1 will also be available.

But the main event is the expected Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9, jointly taking the prize for world’s thinnest tablet with its new dieting partner at 8.6mm, though with a diagonal measurement of 8.9in.

Unsurprisingly, both are running Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) and both are motoring on dual-core 1GHz engines. And Samsung has added to its suite of hubs (books, music, social, gaming) TouchWiz 4.0, a tablet version of its custom mobile Android skin that brings customisable Live Panel home screens and a mini apps tray that looks a lot like the iOS dock.

1080p video playback and stereo are fitted as standard, as is Flash 10.2 support, while docks, cases and adapters will cost extra. Pricing for the US runs to US$469 (16GB) or US$569 (32GB) for the 8.9 and US$499 (16GB) or US$599 (32GB) for the 10.1. They’ll be on shelves Stateside on the 8th of June.


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