Jan 27 AT 11:32 AM Taylor Wimberly 50 Comments

Rumor: Samsung to announce 2 GHz Galaxy Tab at Mobile World Congress


Samsung might be holding their Galaxy S III from next month’s Mobile World Congress show, but that doesn’t mean this will be a quiet show for them. Thanks to a little digging around I did during CES and some other recent news, I now believe I know what Samsung will introduce in its place. Read on for the full rumor report.

The Rumor

Samsung will announce the next-generation of the Galaxy Tab at Mobile World Congress. It will feature a dual-core 2 GHz Exynos 5250 processor and feature a display larger than 10 inches with a WXQGA (2560×1600) resolution. The device will run the latest Android 4.0.x.

The Source

For once, I am the source of my own rumor report. I visited with Samsung System LSI during CES to discuss their upcoming Exynos processors and I saw one of their prototype tablets which was powered by Exynos 5250 and already running Android 4.0. I actually took pictures of the device (not really knowing what it was), but I was politely asked to delete them from my camera after the briefing was over.

One Android Insider’s take on the rumor

Last year at Mobile World Congress, Samsung unpacked the Galaxy S II and Galaxy Tab 10.1. Many of us were focused on the Galaxy S III for this year’s show, but Samsung is still weighing their options and it’s not likely to be announced. However, that leaves open the possibility of them showing the next-generation Galaxy Tab.

Samsung already announced their dual-core 2 GHz Exynos 5250 processor last November, which is their first mobile processor to feature ARM’s latest Cortex-A15 CPU core. The chip is built on Samsung’s new 32nm High-K Metal Gate (HK/MG) low-power process and it also includes ARM’s next GPU, the Mali-T604.

Many competitors are also working on Cortex-A15 parts, but they were not expected to be widely available in products until late 2012 or early 2013 (see TI’s OMAP5). However, Samsung has been sampling their A15 part for quite some time and they just announced it will go into mass production in Q2.

I can’t say for sure how Samsung was able to deliver their A15 part so far ahead of the competition, but it could be because they chose the more mature 32nm process while others are using a 28nm process that is rumored to be having yield issues.

For those of you just joining us, I suggest heading over to ARM’s site and reading up on Cortex-A15 and Mali-T604 if you want to know why this is such a big deal. Basically we should see twice the compute power, insane memory bandwidth(12.8 GB/s), 5x the graphics horsepower, and all day battery life.

Even though Samsung’s Exynos 5250 will not hit mass production till next quarter, they still have enough of the chips laying around to pop them into some demo devices and put them on display at Mobile World Congress. The fact that Samsung already has Android 4.0 up and running on the Exynos 5250 shows me how serious they are about being first to market with an A15 part.

I realize there’s a chance I could be wrong about this rumor, but if Samsung was showing off this next-generation tablet behind closed doors at CES, then it should definitely be ready for show time at MWC. Given the fact that the Galaxy S III will be absent, it makes perfect sense that this tablet will be the star of the show for Samsung.

Update: As someone pointed out, my description is very similar to a device that Jonathan Geller of BGR reported on back in December. I guess this is confirmation that he was correct, since I saw a similar product with my own eyes.

Update 2: German site TabTech.de is reporting that Samsung will introduce the Galaxy Tab 11.6 at MWC. Their mockup is included below.

Update 3: Samsung Electronics demonstrated the industry’s first 10.1-inch WQXGA (2560 x 1600) format PenTile  RGBW tablet display back in May 2011.

Taylor is the founder of Android and Me. He resides in Dallas and carries the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and HTC One as his daily devices. Ask him a question on Twitter or Google+ and he is likely to respond. | Ethics statement

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  • spazby

    I love it…

  • Nate B.

    Rumors. I love them in the mobile world :)

  • Meister_Li

    Throw in a pressure-sensing stylus (for drawing) and a ASUS-Esque Keyboard dock and I know what I’ll save money for next. :P

    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      Yep Samsung is rumored to bring their S-Pen technology to tablets. I expect it would be part of this tablet, but I am not able to confirm that so I left it out.

      • Meister_Li

        It’s what I’ve been hoping for ever since the Note first came out. The S-Pen tech looks really handy, but the Note is a bit too small to replace a proper drawing tablet. This however might do! I’ve been itching to replace that old Windows XP Flip-Display-Notebook I currently use with something more portable. ;)

        • http://muddypa.ws/blog nportelli

          Go get a HTC Flyer, I have Sprint’s version, The Evo View and love it. There are more apps getting true digitizer support. I’m hoping more with ICS.

          • Meister_Li

            It’s unfortunately sold at pretty ridonkolous prices here in Germany still. I’m not really willing to pay that much for a pretty weak (Hardware-wise) offering. Aside from that, it’s not sure it’ll be updated to ICS yet, which actually has the proper Pen-Support build in.

          • Hue Three of Five

            My Girl has been looking for a Flyer for the past 2 weeks. Best Buy and Staples have discontinued them. Can only find a couple place online that want $450 for them. No where I can get one?

    • fc1032

      That’s the first thing I though of too!

      Also, being a little greedy here… but could we also throw in AMOLED? That would be a really really hot tablet :3 Looks like my aging tablet needs replacing

  • http://muddypa.ws/blog nportelli

    Yes a pen and ICS = win. Oh not to mention the insanely high resolution. I hope tablets shame the laptops into offering high resolution again. Not sure why consumers accepted 1366×768 as an acceptable resolution for a 14in laptop.

  • Lastest

    I believe ARM’s latest GPU is Mali-T658 not T604 like you mentioned above


    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      Yes we have covered the T658 before. That is not expected till 2013. When I said latest, I really meant next.

      • Latest

        hehe, I kinda had a feeling that’s what you meant, but I couldn’t resist to post :P

  • Alex Fischer

    See this is why Google+ instant upload comes in handy.

    “Please delete the photos”

    shows the rep the phone as photos are deleted

    Meanwhile the photos have already been uploaded and spread to Google+


    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      Haha I have auto upload turned on now, but it was not during CES :( I will remember that next time!

  • Fayez

    Y U Delete Pic

  • Fayez

    any tablet on the market will fail if it is not able to be priced sub $500 no matter how high its on specs

    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      Ever hear of the iPad?

      • Fayez

        any android tablet

        Apple can sell their product at premium price , other manufacturers cannot do this. Competition in Android products is to stiff to sell products at premium price.

        • Darkseider

          Not necessarily true. The masses have been conditioned to the $499 price point thanks to Apple. So using that as an introductory price or anything lower is pretty damned good. Especially considering that as of right now the most powerful tablet on the market, the Asus Transformer Prime, starts at $499 for the 32 Gig model and is selling like hot cakes. I absolutely love both my Transformer and Transformer Prime and the price paid for them was well worth the cost of entry.

          • honourbound68

            yes, the prime is selling like hotcakes but nowhere near what the kf did. i hate to say it but i do agree with fayez.. the public needs a really COMPELLING reason to buy android tabs. if it’s not going to be price then it better be specs.

        • John in Brisbane

          Yep – I keep looking at what you get in a 1kg netbook (eg asus h101h) for $300 compared to what you get in a $500 tablet… it doesn’t make sense. OK, the form factor of the tablet is awesome. But once they’ve done the R&D and got the packaging right, the tablet is waaaaay cheaper to make and distribute. Mark my words: Within 18 months to 2 years there’ll be a convergence of netbooks, “ultrabooks” and tablets that will look like ultra-books with a rotating touch screen and within a year of that they’ll be cheaper than these tablets are now! *They* will be worth owning. I’ll look at those cheap viewsonics when they come out in the next month or two but for now I’m sticking with a netbook, smart phone and desktop.

          • lilmoe

            convergence? yes, i absolutely agree. but i don’t think iOS nor Android cut the chase in what’s needed for REAL WORLD productivity, which is what tablets are for in the first place.

            IMO, currently, tablets are either toys or browsers/terminals, nothing more, nothing less. however, what’s really needed in a “converged” solution is a full fledged OS that can run such a hybrid device and run real world solutions. If you ask me, i’d give my vote to windows 8.

  • Darkseider

    From everything I have read the A15 is pretty damned impressive. Essentially offering 2x the computing power clock for clock. The faster bus for RAM and faster GPU will also be an excellent addition. Although I am wondering if the Exynos 5250 will be using BIG.Little with a Cortex A7 or low power Cortex A9?

    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      No, Exynos 5250 is not using the big.Little setup with A15/A7. Look for a future Exynos part to implement that, maybe as early as end of 2012.

  • Sam

    Awesome! I have been waiting for some info on the new Galaxy Tab for a while now.
    Btw, Taylor, the aforementioned photo that you had to delete of the Exynos 5250 tablet, did it have a 11.6 screen with a small bezel as the rumors have indicated?

    Thanks for the info also

    • http://androidandme.com Taylor Wimberly

      I didn’t exactly have a tape measure with me, but it looked larger than the standard 10.1 inch. I think 11.6 inches is definitely possible.

      • Andy_jr

        Wow, that size & resolution of screen with that processor would get my attention! A pen might make it too good to resist.

        I wonder what the price point might be.

  • tarwinia

    Where does Otto say it offers 2x the computing power? From what I’ve read the cortex A9 has a performance of 2.5dmips/Mhz while the A15 is rumored to have one of 3.5dmips/Mhz.

    Don’t get me wrong, that coupled with higher clock speeds should definitely provide around 2x the computing power. I just want people to keep it in perspective.

    That said it’ll be interesting yo see how the other chip providers react, especially Qualcomm. If this rumor turns out to be true then the only other company with an A15 class part would be Qualcomm but theirs are planned at a lower clock speed, meaning that the Samsung part would beat them, especially with Krait performing at 3.3dmips/Mhz.

    It’ll definitely be interesting to see how the first next-gen chips stack up against each other.

    If they include a dock qndo pen functionality I might just have to save up for one. I don’t like Samsung products all that much but functionality wins over brand preference for me (as long as there are no glaring problemsvand the reviews are good). With HTC pulling back one their tablet plans (what does that mean? One tablet instead of two?) This might be my best option for stylus support (I currently have the flyer).

    • Darkseider

      Otto didn’t say anything about 2x. It was stated in an interview with ARM or TI (can’t remember which) that the A15 gives 2x the computing power clock for clock compared to the A9. Personally on the A15 front I will bide my time on that one until Big.Little w/ the Cortex A7 makes an appearance at there are 4x A15 cores to go along with it. That will be a worthy upgrade to the Tegra3.

    • http://www.jeffkibuule.com Jeff

      DIMPS is not the be-all end-all of benchmarking tests. Let’s keep that into perspective as well.

      Besides, Qualcomm has little to worry about, as they have a level of integration that won’t be surpassed by anyone (integrated base bands on newest manufacturing process helps a LOT).

  • lplp

    I am looking to buy a tablet before summer vacation time, was planning on the Asus transformer prime, but will propably wait to see what Samsung brings to the table.

    One thing i cant stand though is these paper launches where we drool over new fantastic products, but wont be able to buy them for several months (when is the updated Prime for sale ?)

    Hope Samsung is already producing the rumoured new tablets, so we wont have to wait forever (it seems)


    • murgo

      If you care about using the tablet in not-so-good Wifi environments, then I suggest you wait. I have a TFP here, my third one, and the Wifi performance is just BAD. My SGS2 outperforms the Prime in that department at every location that I’ve tested. Since I need the tab not only at home but also at university, where Wifi isn’t ideal at every location on campus, the Prime is almost useless for me.

      I’ll send it back and wait for this mysterious new Galaxy Tab. I hope no one will ever get this stupid idea of a full aluminum backplate ever again..

  • htowngtr

    I like it… Can’t wait to see how this puppy performs.

  • Chris Thomas

    How confident are you about the WXQGA (2560×1600) resolution? I’d love to have it, but it seems like a crazy high number of pixels. My 25″ desktop monitor is only 1080P, and I love it the way it is!

    • http://www.jeffkibuule.com Jeff

      It has less to do with the actual resolution and more about how the operating system is going to support high DPI displays. A few years ago the thinking was resolution independence (Apple has been working in that direction since OS X 10.4 Tiger in 2005), but I think as soon as they came up with the pixel doubling idea with the Retina display in the iPhone 4, they found a much easier and far more practical solution.

      Heck, if you glue 4 5.3″ 1280×800 Galaxy Note screens together, you get a 10.6″ screen that has a resolution of 2560×1600. It’s less about theory and more about yields at this point. But don’t be surprised if those tablets are in more limited supply.

      • Gilghemesh

        Now there’s a tablet I would buy… 10.6 inches of 2560×1600 SAMOLED goodness.

    • http://www.jeffkibuule.com Jeff

      I should also add that even when the original Galaxy Tab launched in September 2010, it wasn’t exactly clear when we’d be seeing a Super AMOLED tablet, but we’ve already gotten that promise fulfilled in a shipping product.

  • cb2000a

    This thing will be a beast! Gotta love Sammy and their Exynos cpu’s.

  • Dillon Brantner

    I’m pretty happy I’ve been waiting on getting a galaxy tab 10.1, now I’m just gonna wait til this beast comes out.

  • Slith

    Straight to the source!

  • Samir Shah

    S Pen? Free form handwriting recognition?

  • http://www.jimtravis.com jimtravis

    Have a Samsung Series 7 Slate, and EXOPC Slate both with 11.6″ screens. Great screen size for tablet use, and comfortable to hold as well.

  • lokidokie

    I. Want. This.

  • Eddy

    Did you use your phone or camera to take pics?? chances are that the pics were saved on a memory card, and when deleted they wernt really* deleted, you could try and run data recovery software on the mcard and possibly recover the pics, I guess even if device internal memory were used recovery is possible and likely.

  • Fofo

    Taylor for your info it’s so easy to recuperate erase files or formated memory cards, just google it


    Pentile display? Isn’t that supposed to suck? Just bought a 7.7 on ebay for 465$ can’t wait

  • aranea

    I’m very excited about an 11.6 tablet but when is it going to be on the shelves? If they are going to tease us and then make wait for 3 months I’d rather they don’t show it at all.