November 08, 2010, 1:31 PM — Samsung said it will likely sell one million Galaxy Tabs by the end of the year, but what do theoretical sales really mean, especially when Apple has already sold 7 million iPads this year? For Samsung, one million units would mean a tidy profit and the establishment of the company as a solid competitor in the tablet and wireless market.
Samsung's announcement means that it would sell a million units between Nov. 10, when the Galaxy Tab goes on sale for $400 with a two-year contract with T-Mobile, and Dec. 31.
Verizon will sell the tablet computer starting Nov. 11 for $200 more, followed by Sprint on Nov. 14. That gives the Galaxy Tab about 50 days, selling around 143,000 a week, to hit the million mark. That's ambitious, but it's still at a slower rate than Apple's first million iPad sales.
While the Galaxy Tab may or may not win the title of "iPad killer," the 7-inch computer gets attention as the first serious rival for Apple's signature tablet. Both machines have their advantages and disadvantages, but the Galaxy Tab is mostly criticized for its Android 2.2 operating system, which is best-suited for smartphones rather than tablet computers. Along with an overtaxed OS, most Android applications designed for smartphones may not run as well on a 7-inch screen.
The Galaxy Tab is a decent machine, but it lacks the capability to eclipse the iPad. Nor does it motivate some like me, a non-tablet user, to buy one. At best, the Tab is equal to an iPad, and at worst, it's a disappointing Android tablet.
However, the Tab is also one of the latest 7-inch tablets creating a niche between smartphone and laptop. While there's no proof that business consumers want tiny tablets, especially when its main competition has a display almost three inches larger, tablets are still getting smaller. Small size is one of the reasons why the Galaxy Tab will make money, because cost for materials is only $205.