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Samsung Galaxy Tab: Netbook 2.0

Samsung's Galaxy Tab is taking a distinctly smartphone route to the market.

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Fitting somewhere between the 5-inch Dell (DELL) - Get Dell Technologies Inc Class C Report Streak and the 10-inch Apple (AAPL) - Get Apple Inc. Report iPad, Samsung tossed its sleek new 7-inch Galaxy Tab into the its tablet arena.

Samsung unveiled the


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Android-powered Galaxy Tab at a press show Thursday in New York. It features front- and back-facing cameras for video calling and a 1-gigahertz Samsung Hummingbird processor (notably, it's not


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Samsung said the device will be available this fall through telcos


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, but left the exact prices and availability dates up to the phone companies.

>>The Apple iPad's Top Challengers

If there's one troubling thing beyond the fact that its size doesn't exactly make it pocketable and it's not really a phone, the Galaxy Tab hopes to make its big retail splash in phone stores.

>>Samsung Galaxy Tab Launch

Though its Android apps and media-playing features aim directly at the popular Apple iPad, the Galaxy Tab is taking a distinctly smartphone route to the market. Samsung's hope is that phone companies will offer consumers the Tab at a cheaper subsidized price in exchange for monthly or yearly data service plans.

This has been a very challenging route for non-phone devices.

The most recent example might be the netbook invasion that never really gained much ground through phone stores, in part because the cheap, initial price of the devices were more than outweighed by the hefty costs of one- and two-year data plans.

Asked about its WiFi-only Tab plans, Samsung remained mum. Presumably the company wants to let the telcos push the Galaxy Tab a bit before putting out a cheaper, WiFi-only offering.

--Written by Scott Moritz in New York.

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