Samsung unveils Android and Windows devices at IFA

Ativ Tab The Ativ Tab will be Samsung's first tablet computer based on the Windows RT system

Related Stories

Samsung has unveiled new Android and Windows-powered touchscreen devices at the IFA trade show in Berlin.

The new models include several firsts for the company: a Windows RT tablet; a Windows Phone 8 smartphone; and an Android-powered camera.

It also revealed an update to its Galaxy Note model - a so-called "phablet" that is larger than most phones, but smaller than most tablets.

The products are its first since losing a patent lawsuit to Apple in the US.

The South Korean firm faces paying its rival over $1bn (£663m) in damages related to several of its Android models, but has signalled it will challenge the ruling.

Wide range

Samsung's new line-up includes a 10.1in (25.7cm) touchscreen tablet which uses an ARM-based chip and the RT version of Windows 8.

It also revealed Intel-based models that are more powerful and run the full version of the system. The devices, which are branded as Slate or Ativ Smart PCs depending on where they are sold, function as hybrids - working either as standalone tablets or as laptops when added to keyboard docks.

They update its 2011 Slate models and follow a similar format to Asus's Transformer hybrids.

In addition Samsung showed off the Ativ S - its first smartphone to run Microsoft's upcoming Windows 8 Phone system. It features a 4.8in (12.2cm) display, making it one of the bigger models on the market.

Ativ S Samsung beat Nokia to news of a Windows Phone 8 handset

There was only one Android-tablet announcement - the Galaxy Note 2. The device features a 5.5in (14cm) screen and is narrower and taller than its predecessor.

It also features a new Air View function. When a stylus is held about 1cm above its display, previews are triggered of on-screen objects such as the contents of a photo album or an email.

The news follows on from a recent announcement of another, larger Android tablet - the Galaxy Note 10.1.

One analyst said it was no surprise to see the firm covering so many bases.

"Samsung's strategy is to make whatever the market needs," said Ken Dulaney, vice president at the tech consultancy Gartner.

"They make a lot of products in a lot of categories rather than carrying out tons of market research.

"Their greatest strengths are engineering and manufacturing, and they use those strengths to sort out what the market wants. In contrast, American companies typically spend more time on pre-development research, and then rely more on marketing."

Android camera

Samsung's other announcement was the Galaxy Camera.

The device is the second mainstream compact camera powered by Android to be announced in a week, following on from a release by Nikon.

It marks a new category of devices to use Google's system, offering the opportunity to install photo editing apps and other third-party software on the machines.

Samsung's model includes the option of using 3G or 4G data connectivity in addition to wi-fi, making it easier to upload pictures to social networks.

Samsung Galaxy camera The Galaxy camera is the firm's first to be powered by Android and features a voice-control option

It can send live images to a smartphone - allowing the handset to be used as a viewfinder if the person taking the shot also wants to appear in it - and can also be controlled by voice.

"One of the big reasons the compact camera market is struggling is that people value sharing their images and doing things to them, more than they do having a picture with better picture quality," Stuart Miles, founder of the Pocket-lint gadget site, told the BBC.

"Devices like Samsung and Nikon's models capitalise on this and offer people the best of both worlds - apps and a better lens - in a device they will probably not mind being bulkier than a smartphone."

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Technology stories

RSS

Features

  • Spanner CrabEdible images

    Are these the best food photographs of the past year?


  • Beckford's TowerFolly or fact?

    The unlikely debt capital of Britain


  • European starlingBird-brained

    How 60 starlings multiplied into a nightmare flock of 200 million


  • Observatory in Chile with sun in the backgroundStar struck

    Why tourists are flocking to Chile's observatories


  • Two people using sign language Signing out

    The decline of regional dialects for the deaf


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.