A funny thing happens when there's a bigger and better Android tablet on the market - the one that previously had a stranglehold on the entire industry gets dropped radically in price. The Samsung Galaxy Tab, which originally launched at $600 after a mobile service contract subsidy, is now only $300 at Verizon. The timing comes immediately after Motorola's Xoom tablet came out at nearly the same price as the Galaxy Tab's initial cost.
The Xoom has Android's newest operating system, Gingerbread version 3.0. The Galaxy Tab will likely not be able to upgrade to that version. Additionally, the Xoom has an opportunity to jump up to 4G compatibility. The Tab doesn't.
Interestingly enough, the price drop is only in effect for Galaxy Tabs sold through Verizon. That's the only mobile carrier that offers the Xoom. All other mobile providers, where the Xoom isn't a competitor, will still sell the Tab at its launch price.
When the Galaxy Tab launched last year, many gasped at the seemingly restrictive price. After all, $600 could buy an iPad, and the whole point of Android is that it's cheaper and more accessible than Apple's products.
Nevertheless, the Tab managed to sell fairly well, exceeding Samsung's million-unit target by Christmas. But you know how the electronics industry works - something else will come along and leave everything behind in the dust. The Xoom is doing that to the Galaxy Tab.
The Galaxy Tab is now systematically outdated because it doesn't have Android 3.0, the software designed specifically for tablets. In a few months, $300 may even seem too pricey. But Samsung has other products on the way, so it planned for this all along.