We received word that Samsung Mobile is planning a big unveiling of a new Android device on November 8, 2010 at 6PM (EST). Short and to the point, we have no idea what it is.
Will it be another smartphone? Perhaps. How about another tablet? For all we know, Samsung is gearing up to launch a sports car that runs on Android and rainbows -- the company simply isn't saying, and so far there haven't been any leaks.
Samsung semi-recently launched its line of Galaxy S smartphones, which are available through every major wireless carrier. In November, wireless carriers will also begin selling Samsung's Galaxy Tab slate. We suppose there's a chance that's what all the hoopla is about with this big unveiling, though if that turns out to be the case, that's pretty weaksauce on Samsung's part.
Samsung isn't playing favorites with its Galaxy Tab, just as the company didn't do with its line of Galaxy S smartphones. The latest wireless carrier to officially announce plans to carry the Galaxy Tab is Sprint, which as previously rumored will start selling the device on November 14.
"Samsung Galaxy Tab is another Android innovation for Sprint, adding a new category of wireless devices to the Sprint portfolio," said Fared Adib, vice president – Product Development, Sprint. "Samsung Galaxy Tab is a powerful entertainment device and business tool that offers our customers high-end features, including a blazing-fast processor, beautiful touchscreen for watching videos and Web browsing, two cameras, video chat capabilities and access to the Sprint 3G network with affordable rate plans that let customers take advantage of the advanced data capabilities their device offers."
November 14 is still over two weeks away, but if you're already itching to get in line, Sprint has begun accepting preorders at any participating Sprint Store, albeit with the purchase of a $50 Sprint gift card.
Sprint is charging $400 for the Galaxy Tab, provided you open a new line or are eligible for an upgrade and agree to stick around for two years with a 3G Tablet Mobile Broadband plan. A 2GB/month plan runs $30, or $60 for 5GB/month.
Verizon raised a few eyebrows this week when it announced it would sell Samsung's Galaxy Tab for $600 on November 11, 2010. Days earlier, Verizon said it would start selling Apple's iPad (Wi-Fi) version for $630 bundled with Verizon's MiFi Mobile Hotspot device. Math majors can check our numbers, but that's just a $30 price difference. Is it enough?
"Competitors coming into the market have to offer something better, different, or cheaper," said Avi Greengart, an analyst with Current Analysis.
Point blank, Greengart says Verizon's pricing of the Galaxy Tab is simply too high and should have been tagged at under $400. Even with the Tab's advantages over the iPad -- integrated camera, USB, Flash support -- Apple's strong brand name is just too much to contend with at similar price points, especially considering the larger selection of apps.
"Tab feels solid in your hand but without the App Store behind it and with a smaller screen they can't charge the same amount as the iPad," Greengart said.
Do your friends point and call you "six eyes" when you invite them over for a 3D movie on your new 3DTV and slip on a pair of 3D specs over your corrective lenses? Sounds like you need new friends. Otherwise, Samsung's prescription 3D glasses might be just what you've been waiting for.
So far they're only available in Korea, though we imagine it won't be long before you see all kinds of 3D prescription options stateside. The special glasses are custom made by an optometrist and take about 7 days to make.
For those of you who wear glasses, would you find 3D technology more appealing if you could order prescription 3D specs?
In a joint press release today, Verizon and Samsung announced that the former will carry the latter's Galaxy Tab starting November 11, 2010 for $600.
"This is an incredible time in mobile technology, and as a company we're excited to add the Samsung Galaxy Tab to our portfolio," said Marni Walden, vice president and chief marketing officer for Verizon Wireless. "The Samsung Galaxy Tab brings together the reliability of Verizon Wireless' 3G network and the power of Android 2.2 to deliver on our promise of providing consumers and business customers with a host of options to help manager their lives."
In addition to running Froyo, the Galaxy Tab will feature a 7-inch touchscreen, though no sandpaper to file down those nubby digits. Other features include a 1GHz Cortex A8 Hummingbird processor, native Flash 10.1 support, 3MP camera, GPS, 3.5mm headphone jack, and 16GB of storage (upgradeable to 32GB).
Boy Genius Report said one of its Sprint sources just let it be known that the Sprint version of the Galaxy Tab will ship on or around November 14, 2010. Obviously this one qualifies as rumor status, but we don't care, we're tickled pink to hear any kind of release date associated with upcoming slates beyond the typical "before the end of 2010" or "sometime in 2011" that we normally hear.
As for pricing, BGR's same source said it will run $399, provided you sign up for a two-year service agreement. That's $100 less than Apple's iPad, but if you don't want to get locked down to a wireless plan, the cost jumps to $599, which is $100 more than Apple's entry-level (16GB w/ Wi-Fi) tablet.
Take these price points with a fist full of salt. Like the Galaxy S smartphone, the Galaxy Tab will also be available from AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon, each with their own pricing and availability.
LED backlit displays still command a premium over typical LCD panels, but things are steadily improving. Enter Samsung, which just announced its new line of affordable 31 series LED monitors.
"The 31 series LED monitors fit the needs of consumers looking to upgrade to an LED monitor on a budget, especially this holiday season," said young Bae, director of display marketing, Samsung Enterprise Business Division. "This line of monitors, designed with students and small and home office users in mind, stays true to Samsung's legacy of sleek design and superior LED performance."
So far the 31 series consists of four models, including the 20-inch BX2031, 21.5-inch BX2231, 23-inch BX2331, and 24-inch BX2431. Save for the BX2031, each one sports an ultra-slim 19mm design, Full HD 1920x1080, 2ms response time, 5,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio, and 2 HDMI inputs. The BX2031 differs in that it carries a 1600x900 resolution, 5ms response time, and VGA and DVI-D inputs (no HDMI).
The 31 series will ship later this month for $169 (BX2031), $199 (BX2231), $239 (BX2331), and $279 (BX2431).
Samsung's P2770FH came to market just a tad late to lay claim as the world's first LCD to sport a 1ms response time (that distinction belongs to Viewsonic's VX2739wm), but it is one of only two computer monitors we're aware of that comes marketed as such.
"The P2770FH's groundbreaking 1ms response time offers an unbeatable experience for users looking to immerse themselves in computer gaming or movies," Samsung said. "Video editors will especially appreciate the lightning-quick response time, which eliminates motion blur and ghosting effects that hinder accuracy during the editing process. Additionally, computer gamers will benefit from the quick response, allowing them to fully enjoy game play and engage in a more fulfilling experience."
The 27-inch panel features a Full HD 1920x1080 resolution, 17,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio (1,000:1 static), HDMI, DVI-I, audio- and optical-out, and Samsung's "Touch of Color" accents.
Look for the P2770FH to ship later this month for $400.
WiMAX Release 2 solutions based on the IEEE 802.16m standard are expected to make their debut in late 2011, but Samsung is already all set to showcase a WiMAX Release 2 implementation at the CEATEC Japan 2010 electronics, which begins in Tokyo on Tuesday. Built in collaboration with UQ Communications, Samsung's WiMAX 2 network can hit speeds up to 330Mbps, which is enough to simultaneously transmit 16 full HD videos (including full HD 3D movies), and that is exactly what Samsung intends to demonstrate with its trial system. The WiMAX 2 standard is scheduled for final approval in November.
Samsung is reportedly prepping memory cards based on the Universal Flash Storage (UFS) standard for launch in the first half of 2011. According to Digitimes, the Korean electronics major is working closely with fellow members of the JEDEC Solid State Technology Association, including Nokia and Texas Instruments, on standardization efforts for the next-generation spec expected to supplant current flash memory card formats. The JEDEC Solid State Technology Association is scheduled to publish the UFS specification before the end of this year. The first crop of UFS cards will boast data transfer rates of up to 300Mbps.