It may look like Samsung is dipping a toe in unknown waters but its long-time partnership with Microsoft is a wet suit of sorts. The Ativ Tab may be the company's first Windows RT tablet but not its first Windows slate.
You may be familiar with the Samsung Series 7, a handful of tablet PCs running the desktop version of Windows 7. These Intel-powered devices are essentially laptops proper (give or take a keyboard) and have understandably been off our radar.
The Ativ Tab on the other hand is a tablet that we would be interested in - a tablet like them Google and Apple slates. Running the lighter Windows RT, the Ativ Tab is powered by an ARM chipset, like millions of phones and other handheld devices. All prim and proper, just not quite sure about the name. Ativ as in "Vita" read backwards. Yeah, right.
Anyway, it will be up to the Ativ Tab, the Microsoft Surface and probably more Windows-powered slates from the likes of Acer and Asus (why not Nokia) to bring the professed three-horse race over to tablets.
But let's not get carried away fantasizing about a double-edged attack on the iPad - an idea, which Samsung of all makers would most certainly savor - and take a look at the Ativ Tab's highlights instead.
Specs-wise there's nothing particularly impressive about the Samsung Ativ Tab. It's less powerful than even some of the smartphones out there, we've seen better screens, more apps, voice call support, and probably superior media capabilities elsewhere.
But the Ativ Tab has other strengths, the Office package and seamless compatibility with your home or office PC being one of the highlights. It has expandable storage too, which not all tablets guarantee. An optional keyboard and a stylus are other points in favor. Now, let's start exploring the Samsung Ativ Tab.