While some app makers are taking a unified approach to Android, Norton has decided to split its security apps into a phone version and a tablet version.
Norton Tablet Security is an updated version of Symantec's Android app, Norton Mobile Security. The Tablet Security version comes with an interface optimized for Android tablets. This means that instead of presenting its features in a narrow column, its interface is in a widescreen format.
Like its smartphone counterpart, Tablet Security offers anti-malware for scanning apps; Web protection, which uses Norton's Safe Web technology for protecting against malicious and fraudulent sites loaded in the default Android browser; and Web-based anti-theft measures, which allows users to protect their device after it's been lost.
The anti-theft options involve logging into a Web site, from which you can then lock the device, add a custom "device lost" message to the lockscreen, and track the device on a map. A clever "sneak peek" feature lets you take a photo using the device's front-facing camera, which then uploads it to an anti-theft site that stores and displays the picture.
The updated Norton Mobile Security app for phones now comes with a "scream" option, which forces the phone to emit a high-decibel siren. Good for irritating thieves, it's also not a bad way to find your phone when it's slipped under the couch cushions.
A one-year license to Norton Tablet Security comes at the steep price of $39.99 for one year, while a one-year Norton Mobile Security license costs $29.99, much closer to what other publishers with Android security apps charge. Symantec stressed that the pricing falls in with their product line, which continues at $39.99 for Norton Anti-Virus, $59.99 for Norton Internet Security, and $79.99 for Norton 360.
Still, $40 a year a tablet security app strikes me as more than most people will be willing to spend to protect a tablet when competitors rarely break the $30 per year mark.