Just over a year ago, I posted about my very unhappy time with the Samsung Nexus S. It was plagued with wifi and cellular connection issues and had about as much build quality as a dollar store Barbie doll knockoff. Because of that unpleasant experience with the Nexus and two Samsung phones I had owned previously (the Sync and the Eternity), I forswore buying another Sammy product, lest I should live through that aggravation again.
Then I went a little crazy and bought the Galaxy Tab 10.1. Cheap plastic parts aside (I know it LOOKS like metal, but trust me, it ain’t), I didn’t have that much buyer’s remorse afterward. Hell, I would say it was the first Samsung product I actually liked. That is, until Samsung decided to be tight-assed about updating the damn thing.
By now, you may be aware of the bevy of Android tablets on the market. ASUS is already on the 3rd generation of the Transformer and the Motorola Xoom (already a dinosaur by tech standards) is still on store shelves along with a few lesser known devices like the Acer Iconia. But what do they have that the Tab 10.1 doesn’t? Android 4.0.
It’s been just under a year since the release of the Tab 10.1 and around 7 months since Android 4.0, a.k.a. Ice Cream Sandwich, got into the hands of developers. Since then, the update has found its way on to a number of devices, mostly tablets. The entire Transformer line now runs on the latest version of the OS, the Iconia series began the ICS rollout in April, and the Xoom is getting the 4.0 treatment as of this week. But what about the Tab 10.1? Your guess is as good as mine. And don’t bother asking Samsung. They’re too busy hocking their line of Tab 2 series products, all running 4.0 out of the box, rather than taking care of their existing users.
Seriously, Samsung, what the fuck? Do you really think it’s smarter to concentrate on a new series of Tab products, all of which seem to fall into the budget category, rather than, hell I dunno, keeping your current customers happy by updating the devices some people shelled out upwards of $600 for? Let’s just ignore the fact that, for the most part, your new Tab series is practically identical to your existing tablets or that they’re running under-powered specs in some instances. Have your software teams really been so busy that they haven’t found the opportunity to vacillate a few lines of code to be compatible with the Tab 7.0, 8.9 and 10.1? Not only do I find that hard to believe, but mostly I find it irritating.
Against my better judgement, I dropped the cash on this thing over the original ASUS Transformer because, for once, I thought Samsung was beginning to get the right idea when it came to hardware design. It was light, super thin, looked sturdy and was fairly aesthetically pleasing. And yes, maybe I do only use it for Google Currents and reading digital comics, but the point is, us O.G. Tab owners are getting the shaft here (and not the good kind).
And the sad thing is that it isn’t the first time. Samsung was also painfully slow in updating the Tab 10.1 from Android 3.1 to 3.2, meaning users couldn’t even have the privilege of running the Netflix app for several months. Yes, I know that isn’t a deal breaker, but the point is, when you practically empty your bank account for a piece of technology, you have a reasonable expectation for the manufacturer to support and update the device in a timely manner. At least within the first year, anyway.
So come on, Sammy. Get with it. Give us a concrete release date for when you plan to update these damn things or give me my money back. There’s a pretty Transformer TF300 out there with my name on it and a toilet with yours spray painted on the bowl.