Based strictly on its pricing and specs, there's very little about the 7-inch Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 to get excited about.
The 7-inch tablet will debut on July 7 for $199. Preorders start June 25. While $199 is the going acceptable rate for 7-inch tablets these days, from particularly a specs perspective, this one fails to match key 7-inch tablets from last year.
With the Galaxy Tab 3, $199 nets you a paltry 8GB of storage and a tablet screen with an unfortunately low 1,024x600-pixel resolution. That's a few hundred thousand pixels behind the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HD, which each also start at 16GB of storage for $199.
Thankfully, Samsung has infused the Galaxy Tab 3 with plenty of other features, including a 64GB-compatible microSD card slot and an IR blaster you can use to control your TV and other entertainment-centric devices in your living room. The Tab 3 will also make use of Samsung's kind-of-successful streaming video aggregator, Watch On, first seen on the Note 8.
The Tab 3 will ship with a Marvell PXA 986 1.2GHz CPU, 1GB of RAM, Android 4.2, a 3-megapixel rear camera, and a 1.3-megapixel front camera. The tablet will ship in a Wi-Fi-only model in the U.S. (sorry, U.S. phablet fans; all both of you).
I'm more than a bit disappointed by the Tab 3's screen resolution and initial storage amount. While microSD is a nice compromise, it won't help my eyes see things more clearly. At this point, 7-inch tablets with screen resolutions lower than 1,280x800 pixels stick out to me like a sore thumb, and with rumors of a 1,920x1,080-pixel Nexus 7 coming in July, that pain may soon be ratcheted up a notch.
Look for a full review of the Galaxy Tab 3 closer to its early July release date.