Now this is most certainly one of the sweetest promotions I’ve seen in some time … or at least it was at first sight. Best Buy has announced that customers who purchase select Samsung HDTVs between August 21 and August 27 will get a free Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1.The free tablet is, of course, the base model — that’s the 16GB Wi-Fi only device, which Best Buy normally sells for $499.99. Only two Samsung TV sets qualify for the deal — the 46-inch 3D HDTV for $1,499.99, and the 55-inch 3D set at $1,999.99.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Best Buy says this promotion is “part of a campaign dedicated to selling big-screen TVs, not tablets.” However, you have to wonder whether the struggle to sell Android tablets — or, in fact, anything that isn’t an iPad — has something to do with it.

Sarah Rotman Epps, a Forrester analyst who covers the tablet market, says that promotions like this one are the only way Android tablets can compete with Apple’s iPad:

“This [bundling] is what they should have been doing from the beginning. Other than the iPad there is no convincing standalone tablet. The only way anyone else can compete is by bundling.”

However, this isn’t one of the best bundles, according to Epps. Samsung’s 46-inch 3D set is already overpriced, with a similar LG set selling for just $999 on Best Buy’s website. “It’s like bundling two losing products together,” Epps said.

That takes a bit of the excitement out of this promotion. What looks like an awesome deal at first sight is actually a little disappointing when you realize that a similar LG set can be purchased for just $999 — $500 less than Samsung’s model.

So, if you’re looking for a TV and a tablet, but you’re not so keen on Android devices, you can pick up the LG set and a 16GB Wi-Fi only iPad for the same price you’d pay for the Samsung deal.

Which bundle would you be more interested in?

[via The Wall Street Journal]