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iPad 4 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 vs iPad 3 vs ASUS Vivo Tab RT

A couple of days ago, Apple presented a refreshed iPad tablet in San Jose. As you probably know Apple dominates the tablets market thanks to the huge popularity of the iPad, but there are some other interesting alternatives for the 10-inch tablet market, therefore it’s time for the iPad 4 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 vs iPad 3 vs ASUS Vivo Tab RT battle.

All four aforementioned products are pretty interesting options when it comes to choosing a 10-inch tablet. As you probably know iPad 3 and iPad 4 are running on Apple’s iOS, while Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 and ASUS Vivo Tab RT are based on Android and Windows RT, respectively.

Returning to iPad 4, you should know that we are not dealing with a completely new tablet, but rather a minor upgrade for iPad 3: a new processor, Lightning connector, and HD front-facing camera. The prices of the iPad 4 are the same as for the iPad 3: starting at $499 for iPad 4 WiFi-only with 16 GB of internal storage, climbing to $829 for iPad 4 WiFi + 4G and 64 GB of storage.

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 failed to impress when it came to the display resolution. In a comparison to ASUS TF700 (also running on Android) which brings a 1,920 x 1,200 pixels display, Samsung is stuck to an older 1,280 x 800 pixels resolution. Still, it integrates the famous S-Pen borrowed from Galaxy Note and Note 2, now it more pressure sensors.

ASUS Vivo Tab RT is now available for purchase and it is underpinned by the already-famous Windows RT operating system, based on Windows 8 and optimized for ARM processors.

First of all let’s have a look at the technical specifications of the four tablets, then try to draw some conclusions about the iPad 4 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 vs iPad 3 vs ASUS Vivo Tab RT fight.

iPad 4

The latest Apple tablet comes with a 9.7-inch LED-backlit IPS display with a resolution of 2,048 x 1,536 pixels, oleophobic coating and scratch-resistant surface and it is powered by a dual-core Apple A6X processor at 1 GHz. iPad 4 comes with 1 GB of RAM and 16, 32, or 64 GB of internal storage, depending on the model you choose for.

The graphic processing tasks are handled by a PowerVR SGX543MP4 GPU and the tablet comes pre-loaded with iOS 6. iPad 4 also comes with a 5 megapixel camera with autofocus, touch focus, face detection, full HD video recording and a front-facing 1.2 megapixel camera with support for HD FaceTime calls.

iPad 4 has a 11,560 mAh battery, weighs in 652 grams and is 9.4 mm thick. In terms of connectivity it comes with 4G, WiFi, Bluetooth, 3.5 mm jack, GPS and GLONASS.

iPad 3

iPad 3 shares the same 9.7-inch Retina Display as the iPad 4, but it has a dual-core Apple A5X processor clocked at 1 GHz. It comes with 16/32/64 GB of internal storage, 1 GB of RAM, the same primary camera s the iPad 4 (the 5 MP iSight camera), while the front-facing camera only records VGA videos.

The connectivity features are the same as the ones of iPad 4: WiFi (the one installed on the iPad 4 is faster according to Apple), 4G LTE, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS, GLONASS and 3.5 mm jack. The iPad 4 borrowed the case and the battery of the iPad 3, thus, the New iPad as Apple called it at debut, is 9.4 mm thick, weighs in 652 grams and has a 11,560 mAh battery.

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1

The Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 comes pre-loaded with Android 4.0.4 Ice Cream Sandwich but it is upgradable to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean which brings split screen multitasking and other treats. Note 10.1 features a 10.1-inch display with PLS TFT technology and 1280×800 pixels, plus a quad-core Exynos 4 Quad CPU at 1.4 GHz and Mali-400MP GPU, plus 2 GB of RAM and 16/32/64 GB of internal storage.

The memory can be extended via microSD cards and the Galaxy Note 10.1 packs WiFi, WiFi Direct, WiFi hotspot, 3G, Bluetooth 4, microUSB, 3.5 mm jack and GPS. It has a 7,000 mAh battery weighs in 600 grams and is 8.9 mm thick.

ASUS Vivo Tab RT

The ASUS Vivo Tab RT comes pre-loaded with Windows RT and Microsoft Office 2013 out of the box and is powered by a Tegra 3 chipset based on four Cortex A9 cores clocked at 1.3 GHz and an ULP GeForce GPU. The ASUS table sports 2 GB of RAM, 32 or 64 GB of internal storage and it has a 10.1-inch Super IPS+ display with a resolution of 1,366 x 768 pixels protected against scratches by a Corning Fit Glass coating.

ASUS Vivo Tab RT has an 8 megapixel camera on the back and a 2 megapixel sensor placed on the front panel for video calls and self-shots. It has a 22 Wh battery, while weighing in 525 grams and having a profile of only 8.3 mm. The Windows RT-powered tablet packs WiFi, Bluetooth, NFC and 3.5 mm audio jack.

iPad Over the Competition

Retina Display is indeed amazing and it has a resolution that makes the high-quality photos look excellent on the iPad’s display. There are also some applications in App Store for 2,048 x 1,536 pixels.

Another pro for the iPad are the optimized applications available in Apple App Store. It’s a known fact that the iPad owners are spending more on apps than the average Android owner. Therefore the developers are using the easiest way to generate profit, therefore you will find more tablet apps in the Apple Store.

The each time Apple releases an update for the iOS it will quickly become available for all the upgradable devices. On the other hand, even though Android evolved a lot since it debuted in 2008, you will not receive the software updates right away because of the fragmentation.

The camera abilities of the iPad are quite impressive. Even though it sports a 5 megapixel camera the quality of the photos outmatches the one offered by Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1. I haven’t took any pictures with the ASUS VIVO Tab RT, but if the Taiwan-based company has fitted the same camera available on the TF700, I can say it will not impress anyone. I know, you will say that the camera is not so important. I won’t use a tablet to take pictures either, but after I’ve seen so many owners using their tablets to take photos or record videos, both on the street and at certain events, I can only guess that this aspect matters for some of the users.

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 and ASUS Vivo Tab RT Over iPad

Both the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 and ASUS Vivo Tab RT come with very bright displays, with a lot of settings that will automatically adjust the brightness and color saturation depending on the environment. ASUS Vivo Tab RT is also more versatile because of the dock-in keyboard that brings an extra battery that doubles it’s autonomy.

The Android and Windows RT tablets are betting on a new design language. Apple kept the same shape for the iPad since the first generation and it became boring. I also don’t like iPad’s back, which is very prone to scratches. There are some customers that can’t even tell the iPad from the iPad 2 the New iPad or the next iPad.

Both the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 and ASUS Vivo Tab RT are thinner and lighter than the iPad, with designs that go under the 9 mm thickness threshold.

Another strength of Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 and ASUS Vivo Tab RT are the user interfaces, which are not simplistic and boring like the iOS. You have a lot of customization options both for Android and Windows RT. Moreover, ASUS Vivo Tab RT will amaze with the fluidity and smoothness of the Windows RT Modern UI.

Summing up, all four tablets have their ups and downs. Therefore I will let you judge which one is the winner of the iPad 4 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 vs iPad 3 vs ASUS Vivo Tab RT battle. Let us know in the comments section below.

  • alex

    honestly..the note 10.1…the s pen and the multitasking…like the split screen..popup apps and the customization..everything makes it a useful device …one can easily use it for office work(thanx to polaris office) and you have an ar blaster…be serious guys…its far more productive and creative…and blazing fast with android 4.1…im sorry but im not the type of person that has time to daily watch movies..pics in reatina display..i mean who does that..dont they have a life….i feel its much more useful…my opinion….


      yeah but its half as powerful as has such a horrible low res display cmon guys..this isnt 2010. try and catch up

      • Justin McNairy

        The reason Galaxy Note use low res display (1280×800) was because of the S-Pen capability. The S-Pen have 1022 level of pressure and can handwrite naturally. The handwrite to text is flawless which I think is the reason why it use low res and also to save battery. I went from Transformer Prime with higher resolution to a Galaxy Note. I can tell the different in display but it still does not let me down anyway. It look so colorful and bright which is nice.

      • Justintime

        honestly I think the note is a niche device. I chose it over the other tablets Solely for the s- pen. Being a student who is constantly taking notes it makes sense. That plus the fact that it can do everything else that most other tablets can do (granted not in HD ) easy choice for me personally. on a more defensive note (no pun intended) what the hell kind of backwards spec sheet did you read that Said the note 10.1 was half as fast? its processor is the fastest in the lineup


          I was talking about the gpu which decimates any other tablet

  • Mike

    I completely agree with Alex on that…

  • formgenie

    Last year I bought my wife the Ipad 2 for an anniversary gift and this hear she bought me the Samsung note 10.1. Having used both I can say that the Ipad is good for lightweight computing (games, pics, videos, reading) and the note is a more versatile device and has things like a universal remote and a great pen that I have found useful for taking notes at work and drawing (something I haven’t done in years).

  • I ve got an ipad2 16G 3G and it works great, barely used 3 Gigs of the storage. I wouldn’t mind a retina display, but don’t really need it. I get better cell reception on it than my cell phone does. Google maps works well on the road, in the woods, on my little sailboat, As someone said “it’s a big iPhone” I even got a phone app on it, that works. All with the minimal data plan that costs less than half an iPhone data/voice plan. Yeah, so I can’t put it into my hip pocket, so what, and 4g, 3G works pretty well, I’m an info junky, not a movie buff, movies? I’ll use my blue ray and tv for that!

    • lllbenjolll

      Hi sir alex. Basing on your comment, i had the feeling that u were old. The use of your ipad is so limited. Anyway, since i can barely see your face on your profile pic, i had to click it and i even had to click your fb account. So i was right afterall. You are kinda old. 55 yrs old up? Anyway, yes ipad is really for the oldies so are iphones since they are simple to use. Non techie people prefer apple products. The techie apple fans jailbreak them. 🙂

  • v900

    Nah, I’ll take an ipad 4 please. not only does it have an awesome Retina display that just blows the other tablets in the lineup put of the water. It’s also much more powerful and futureproof. It got the A6 Swift CPU from the iPhone 5, so speedwise its way faster than both Tegra 4 quad-core or Snapdragon Krait. (performance vise its about as fast as the ARM A15 that hasn’t been released in a tabloid yet!)

    Oh, there’s alittle error in the article btw. The GPU in the iPad 4 is twice as fast as the quad-core SG543 in the ipad3, so some people think its the SG series 6 Rogue GPU that’s also brand new… Told you the ipad4 is a beast speedvise 😉

    And the apps are much better too, of course. I have an Android Transformer 700 tablet, but never use it because of the sucky phone apps…



  • juan

    i dont know who wrote this?wrong comments on Asus. Asus transform prime has Android 4. window8, 3G, if detached from computer keyboard, it is ipad, put back to keyboard, it is a smart computer. window word, excel and powerpoint. longest battery and slimest.

  • bryan

    After using a note 10.1 for 10 days now for college, I personally don’t get it. The multitasking is little more than samsung showing you 2 apps at once; you still can only really do one useful thing at once. Then, for the classes I’m taking the apps that do offer the multi tasking are useless. I need to use the apps for my classes, too bad they don’t work because this is a samsung hack.

    The mini apps at the bottom are also useless in quality and content to me and they are one more thing that gets pressed and opens when I hand my tablet to someone else.

    Personally, the customization of minute things in the OS are just not interesting to me and I’ve noticed that many of the settings that my HTC phone offers are just missing all together. However, androids always felt almost done, but not quite done to me any way but then samsung come along and really don’t help the cause.

    I’ve tried implementing the stylus pen into my math class note taking, but really, it just costs me time. if I need to grab a graph of some sort to move in my notes, forget it, it’s only grabbing pieces of the drawing at a time.

    The hardware sounded great on paper, and for the most part I had no issues with lag or connections. In the end, I think it was samsung that ruined it for me. I need a few apps that work, not 20 where half are crap and the other half half work with one or two stand outs. 18 credit hours this semester and this tablets cost me so much in wasted time I feel like billing samsung.

    • justintime505

      Try lecture notes…. blows s-note out of the water. I use it for my vector calculus class every day.

      • bryan

        getting ready to try it out again now jelly bean is close hopefully. I’ll try lecture notes. If you made a mistake in snote it could put you back and time is a premium in those calc classes 🙂 Not to mention is crashed 3 times losing the notes: 2 in one lecture, 1 time in another. I haven’t heard too much about that so that was another anomaly that I got hit with that may not happen to others. I need note taking and PDF annotating. Sounds like you do this too, what do you recommend?

    • jvs

      I agree samsung note 10.1 is much better than than any tablets in terms of functonality. The retina display is about all that ipad can boast of… the worst part of ipad is NO MEMORY Expansion haha. Note 10.1 can read usb flash drive (64 gb)…have a couple of 64G,, ipad sorry not capable:/
      The spen i love???·multitasking i love even more hahah
      I hardly even use my ipad anymore… haven’t felt this free and unrestricted when i was using ipad. Its not perfect but its better way better than ipad….wake up ipad users !,,

      • jvs

        When my classmates see the functions of the note 10.1, they regretted that they had just bought an ipad hhahaha

        • bryan

          I also don’t get the iPad. It could be so much more, but isn’t. Just don’t get apple on this. I’m getting ready to try this out again now that jelly bean is close. I played with a nexus 10 today and it was fast and smooth but would bump me into capacitive stylus country again, which I don’t know if I can really switch over from paper anyway, but it would be nice. Would you still do the note over the nexus if you were looking to buy now?

    • lllbenjolll

      What is the OS of your samsung note 10.1?
      So if you can’t do what you wanted to do with it and regretted for buying it, will the ipad do these things that you wanted to do? Just get pen and graphing paper.
      You sound like an apple fan who tried a new product and just because you don’t know how to use a more advance technology, u consider the gadget bad?

  • Carmen September

    Looking to buy the note 10.1. ..how can a tablet be future proof, if all it gained was a shiny display 🙂 please enough of the ipad bias!
    Quad core, 2 gig ram, limitless memory expansion… now we’re talking!

  • Justin McNairy

    I have a Galaxy Note 10.1 and been using it since Monday (October 22, 2012). I used it mainly for school work. I been getting more experience trying to get to used to it.

    I use the OfficeSuite Pro app which I bought for 25 cent off Play Store a few week ago. With that app along with the handwrite to text feature, it awesome and work flawless! I used that for History course to take Note. Same goes for Polaris app which came pre-installed.

    Also for math, I’m taking College Algebra and use the S-Note app with handwrite to formula and it work great! Although it kind of wasting a little more time at first, but once you get more experience using it with math problem figure out what to do and how you will perform on this tablet, you will save a lot of time with no problem! It better to go Note than fill my dorm with pencil, textbook, paper, etc.

    It also better to use eBook for class than carry a big physical textbook on your back. Think about it…4 textbook on your back (which is a pain in the arse) vs 4 digital eBook inside your Note (space saving!)…which do you prefer? smh

    Once you go Note, you never go back! I also own original Galaxy Note for 8 month month (and will going for Note 2) and it a perfect combination of Galaxy Note smartphone and Note 10.1, just like iPhone and an iPad

    • Justintime

      3 words… Buy Lecture Notes! It blows S-notes out of the water for note taking, You’re welcome. 🙂

    • bryan

      I’m looking to try the note 10.1 out again. You stuck with it so I’d like to ask, how was reading your text books, and note taking long term work out for you? Did the lack of finer resolution bother you after a lot of reading? Did it even come up as an issue? What kind of system did you iron out for note taking?

  • Raymond

    Hello I’m a musician and i’m intrested about the Samsung galaxy 10.1, specially for the s pen feature… Please can anyone tell me if i can add remarks, with the pen of coarse, on a music sheet (PDF File) . Thanks

    • Kobby

      Yes you can add remarks and even sign your own song sheets

  • John

    If you can’t make a decision you should get out of the reviewing business. What a waste of my time!

  • lauren s.

    everyone is so happy with samsung. please just buy them all. i share the same opinion as many people here. i definitely prefer apple. i´ve been using all their products for so long that i couldn´t get used to other os. even when they say that samsung is better http://versusio.com/en/apple-ipad-4-vs-samsung-galaxy-note-10-1-n8000-32gb. this is just outrageous.

  • Trudy

    I’m looking for a Christmas present for my 8 year old daughter. She has and iPod touch and I love my iPhone. but I just decide between the Samsung galaxy 10.1 $339or the iPad
    2 $398… Help please

  • Cilmeron

    Let’s not forget that no iPad (nor most other tablets) can be used as a phone while the Galaxy Note 10.1 in its 3G version can. While the other tablets also have 3G you can only use it for webbrowsing not to substitute your phone. And now if anyone is coming with the “way too big to use as a phone” argument – that’s why god invented bluetoot headsets 😛

    • lllbenjolll

      Yep and you can watch online movies too. If you have jelly bean, then u need to install flash player manually though since there is no flash support on jelly bean.

  • rohan

    Well apple has made the worl?s first tablet (the ipad)and all the other company just copyed it and make it look and feel better.but the ipad is still the best because it did not copyed anything and its own features are enough to broke down features of any other tablet so i would say the i pad is the winner and will be always untill apple stop making it