Apple iPad 2's challenger Samsung's sleek 10.1-inch Galaxy Tab, which is now available with US retailers, is probably the best Android tablet in the market.

The thinner and lighter Galaxy Tab 10.1 has a display, slightly bigger than the iPad 2 touch screen. Apple surprised many in the tablet market in March when it unveiled its slimmer rendition of iPad, the iPad 2, and Samsung replied by launching two ultra-thin tablets Galaxy Tab 10.1 and 8.9.

The WiFi-only Honeycomb tablet comes at a starting price of $499 for 16 GB model and $599 for the 32GB, and Samsung said in a statement that it will be available through Sprint in mid-summer, this year.

Both the tablets of Samsung beat the iPad 2 in terms of the camera specs, with a 3-megapixel rear camera and a 2-megapixel front-facing camera. It offers 1080p video capture capability. In what could be the clincher for many users, the Samsung tablets boast another capability lacking in the iPad 2, that is Adobe Flash playback.

The Galaxy Tab 10.1 is powered by Android™ 3.1 Honeycomb and sports a dual-core Tegra 2 processor, which makes transition between different applications smoother and faster.

The latest updates in the Honeycomb interface, make Galaxy Tab 10.1 more stable than its competitor, the Motorola Xoom. Samsung will add some more elements of its TouchWiz user interface to the tablet later, but right now the Tab is running almost a pure version of Honeycomb.

The tablet also has a gyroscope and accelerometer, which will give a decent motion gaming experience.

The Samsung Galaxy 10.1 weighs just 595g (1.31 pounds) which is even lighter than the iPad 2, 601g (1.32 pounds) and flaunts a screen resolution of 1280x800 compared to iPad 2's 1024x768.

Shipment of the 10.1-inch display panels grew by 37 percent to 986,000 units on the back of Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1's demand.

Currently, Samsung is the only competitor which has been able to corner 10 percent share in the global tablet market.