Samsung Gives Away 5000 Galaxy Tab 10.1 Tablets At Google I/O

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Those attending the Google I/O conference yesterday each received a free Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet, worth around £500 each.

Hugo Barra, the director of Android product management at Google, thanked the Korean electronics giant for the gifts, which will not only provide an Android platform for developers at the conference but also show that the 10.1-inch Tab is ready to take on Apple and its iPad 2.

It was also a powerful sign that Samsung appears to have taken over from Motorola & HTC as the preferred partner for the web giant, as neither the HTC Flyer nor the Motorola XOOM were anywhere to be seen.

Google I/O saw the launch of Google Android 3.1 yesterday, which will bring new user interface functionality as well as the ability to connect USB devices such as printers, keyboards and webcams.

Most tablets currently running on Android 3.0 Gingerbread will get the update either immediately or within a few weeks. Others, like the popular Advent Vega, are likely to be left in the dark.

The new Galaxy Tab is one of the better Android tablets on the market. The tablet that was given away at Google I/O was actually the successor to the one that was released at MWC in February but never made it to the market.