The Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 10.1 is the largest tablet in Samsung's third generation line of mainstream Android tablets. It's the perhaps too gradual evolution of the Galaxy Tab line rather than a leap forward that would place Samsung as the leader among Android tablets. Though we have the feeling that Samsung sees the Galaxy Tab line as their bread and butter mid-range offering, we can't help but feel that they're resting on their laurels since the Tab 3 10.1 lacks a single new flashy feature that would sell you on the Tab 3 10.1 rather than the much higher resolution Nexus 10, sexy full HD Sony Xperia Tablet Z or aging products like the Asus Transformer Prime TF700. The $399 tablet offers solid specs and a brand you can trust more than a must-have feature.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 is available in white or brown with gold highlights, and either way you'll get a super-thin 0.31" shiny tablet that adores fingerprints. Yes, it's Samsung so it's made of plastic but it's actually a nice looking piece that I find more attractive than the drab Galaxy Tab 2 10.1. It runs on a 1.6GHz Intel Atom dual core Clovertrail CPU more often found on low end Windows 8 tabets, and it has a gig of RAM and 16 gigs of internal storage. It benchmarks similarly to higher end dual core Snapdragon CPUs.
The Tab 3 has a micro SDXC card slot and it currently sold as a WiFi-only tablet, though I wouldn't be surprised if carriers picked it up as a WiFi + 3G/4G LTE product. The tablet has a 1280 x 800 TFT display that's bright and has wide viewing angles, but the resolution is pedestrian compared to the full HD models on the market. The cameras aren't impressive at 1.3MP up front and 3.2MP at the rear. It has an IR AV remote and it comes with both Peel and Samsung WatchOn to control your AV gear and peruse programming. Samsung's fond of doubling up on apps for a single task: there are also two music players and two video players.
You get the latest version of Android (4.2.2) with Samsung's TouchWiz UI and software, though you won't find all the features of the higher end Galaxy Note line or Samsung Galaxy S4 here. Multi-Window is gone but you do get Smart Stay, Buddy Photo Share and Samsung's music and video players in addition to the standard Android players. Unlike the Galaxy Note 10.1, the Tab 10.1 does not work with a digital pen, but Samsung still includes their notes app, that works fine with the on-screen keyboard and Bluetooth keyboards.
As with the Galaxy Note 8.0, Samsung has moved to a standard micro USB port rather than their proprietary port. That means older accessories made for the 30 pin Samsung port won't work, but the good news is that the tablet works with older Samsung tablet chargers (just use the included micro USB cable with your old wall charger) as well as the Galaxy S4 charger. In addition, it supports USB Host OTG, and with a host adapter you can use flash drives and some game controllers (the Tab 3 is more picky about controllers than most).