While Sony created a new product line with its QX100 and QX10 attachable Lenses, Samsung stole the limelight on first day of IFA with the launch of the Samsung Galaxy Gear Smartwatch and the unveiling of the Note 3.
Samsung Galaxy Gear
Samsung took a plunge into the smartwatch market by announcing the Galaxy Gear, which will go on sale in 140 countries beginning on September 25. The watch is a bit costly at $299 and will be compatible only with the Galaxy Note 3 at launch. It will be compatible with other Galaxy phones like the Note 2, Galaxy S3 and Galaxy S4 later on.
The Galaxy Gear has a 1.63-inch Super AMOLED display. The front is made of metal and sapphire glass. It is powered by an 800MHz processor and comes with 512MB of RAM and 4GB of internal storage. It comes with a built-in speaker, which can be used to make hands-free calls directly from the watch. There is a 1.9MP camera, which can be used to take images or record videos. Battery life is expected at just a day.
The smartwatch can be connected to the smartphone using Bluetooth to get notifications for incoming calls, texts, emails and alerts and also offers a preview of messages to allow users to accept or ignore these using the smartwatch itself.
The touchscreen controls place a heavy emphasis on gesture interactions, swiping from edge-to-edge to navigate through the watch’s UI. Samsung says that it will have 70 third party apps at launch including Evernote and Path.
It will be available in six colors – Jet Black, Mocha Gray, Wild Orange, Oatmeal Beige, Rose Gold, and Lime Green.
Samsung Galaxy Note 3
Samsung also announced the Samsung Galaxy Note 3, a refresh to the Galaxy Note 2, which was highly successful especially in countries like India. The new note gets a bigger screen and also a lot of new features. The Samsung Galaxy Note 3 will feature a wider 5.7 inch full HD Super AMOLED display, but still be slimmer (8.3mm) and lighter (168g) than the Note 2. It runs on a Octa Core processor with 3GB RAM. It will have a 13 megapixel camera with Smart Stabilization and high CRI LED flash and come with three storage options – 16, 32 and 64 GB internal storage. It has a 3,200mAh battery. It will come with Android 4.3 out of the box.
On the design front, the company has kept the front of the phone similar to its other devices but the back of the phone, which is still plastic, is covered with a faux-leather finish It will come in three colors – black, white and pink. There is a whole lot of custom software, gestures and apps pre-installed like Action Memo, Scrapbook, Screen Write, S Finder, Pen Window, S Note, Multi Window and Group Play. It will be the first Samsung device to come with Samsung Knox, a enterprise and consumer security service from Samsung.
The Galaxy Note 3 will go on sale from September 25 in more than 140 countries, but there is no word on pricing.
Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 (2014 Edition)
The company has also announced a refresh to its Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet. The 2014 edition will feature a 10.1 inch WQXGA (2560×1600 pixels) Super Clear LCD display and will be powered by a 1.9GHz Octa core processor for the 3G and WiFi version and a 2.3GHz quad-core processor for the LTE version. It will come with the new S Pen, like the Galaxy Note 3 that will have new features.
The Galaxy Note 10.1 (2014 Edition) will have 3GB of RAM, a 8 megapixel rear camera with a BSI sensor and LED Flash, a 2-megapixel front camera, 16/32/64GB of internal memory that can be expanded to up to 64GB using a microSD card and a huge 8,220mAh battery. The tablet will run Android 4.3 and also include Samsung’s Knox mobile security feature. The tablet will go on sale later this month.