Winner: LG Optimus Pad
If you’re looking for small, the Optimus Pad has everyone beat. It has a similar resolution to the Xoom and Galaxy Tab, but clocks in a good 1.2-inches smaller in screen size. As far as weight goes, the Galaxy Tab has beaten it ever so slightly, weighing only 599 grams, 55 grams shy of the Optimus Pad’s 654 gram weight. The Xoom is the heaviest of the bunch at 730 grams.
Winner: Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1
All three devices can connect via Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and 3G.
In addition, the Galaxy Tab and Optimus Pad can connect to HSPA+ networks (T-Mobile, AT&T) for faster 4G-like connections. In this respect, the Samsung edges out LG because while the Optimus can attain connections up to 10.2 Mb/s, the Galaxy can take advantage of AT&T’s HSPA+ 21 network, which can attain theoretical speeds of up to 21 Mb/s.
The Xoom is currently locked in as a Verizon-only device. At CES, representatives told us that an LTE 4G enhancement would be offered at some point, but could not give specifics as to how such an enhancement would work, or when the Xoom would be able to take advantage of Verizon’s 4G LTE network.
Winner: We don’t know
Motorola claims the Xoom has a battery that can sustain “up t0 10 hours of video playback” on a single charge while LG will only own up to the fact that its tablet is indeed powered by a lithium ion battery. Way to be vague, guys. Samsung’s battery is 6860 mAh and should be fairly comparable to the iPad, which Apple also claims can sustain 10 hours of video playback.
Winner: LG Optimus Pad
While the Galaxy Tab has the best regular rear camera and the Xoom has a nice dual LED flash, the Optimus Pad can record full 3D video, like the Optimus 3D and Nintendo 3DS. We admit that 3D may be a gimmick, but with YouTube jumping in, it might be fun to try and record a few 3D videos now and then. The Optimus Pad has a solid 5-megapixel rear camera for 2D shooting. All three tablets have 2-megapixel front-facing cameras, can record 1080p video, have LED flash, can auto focus, and have some form of digital zoom.
It’s good and fun to look at these new tablets, but when it comes to price, all three may lag behind Apple. By locking down its supply chain and buying out a good portion of the supplies necessary to make tablets, Apple’s iPad will likely remain the most affordable tablet on the market, which means few of these devices have a shot at beat it sales-wise.
Rumors point to excessively high prices for all three of these tablets. The price of the Xoom may land somewhere between $700 and $800, but a leaked Best Buy page showed a pre-order price of $1199. The page has since been taken down, however. It’s possible that Samsung will match the iPad’s price, but we wouldn’t bet on it judging by how expensive the Galaxy Tab 7-inch tablet was. LG has priced its Optimus Pad at 999 euros, which means it could sell for more than $1300 here in the U.S. We’re hoping that all of these prices are exaggerated, but none seem to be able to match Apple’s $499 basic iPad.
Overall Winner: Motorola Xoom
All three of these tablets are excessively similar, but Motorola’s Xoom has more potential storage and memory packed into it than the competition and a larger screen than even the iPad. If Motorola lives up to its promise and delivers a 4G upgrade to the device, it will also be the fastest tablet on the market.
Honestly though, all three of these tablets are fantastic alternatives to the iPad if you can get a good deal. if you want a tablet with 3G access, LG has aligned tightly with T-Mobile (the Optimus Pad is T-Mobile’s G-Slate) and Motorola has an exclusive agreement with Verizon wireless, so whatever carrier you align with may determine your tablet choice. Again, you can’t really go wrong with any of these.