Samsung on Wednesday announced new devices and a deepening of its relationship with Microsoft at Samsung Unpacked, which showcased innovative new mobile experiences that work seamlessly and continuously anywhere and anywhen.
“The line between work and play has pretty much disappeared, and that means we need technology that can seamlessly flow between the two,” said Samsung Head of U.S. Product Management Mobile Drew Blackard.
“These devices we’re unveiling today are built for the new area of mobile productivity,” he added.
Among the new products unveiled:
- The Galaxy Note10 smartphone family, which includes a 5G device and has new capabilities including augmented reality and 3D;
- An upgraded Samsung S Pen;
- The Galaxy Watch Active 2; and
- The Galaxy Book S, a super slim, ultralight Windows 10 notebook that uses the Note10 charger and provides as much as 23 hours of battery life.
Samsung also showed off the Galaxy Tab S6, which was unveiled July 31.
The company’s DeX desktop software package now works on both the PC and the Mac, Samsung Director of U.S. Product Strategy and Marketing Hassan Anjun announced.
Microsoft’s key services are being integrated into the Note10 family, he also said.
It’s All About the Experience
“Six months ago in San Francisco … I shared Samsung’s vision to be the innovator of new mobile experiences that flow seamlessly with us wherever we go — experiences that flow seamlessly across every device and brand,” said Samsung CEO of IT & Mobile Communications DJ Koh at the event in New York.
“Today I’m here to show how we’re translating this vision into new innovation by creating new categories … and forging new partnerships,” he added.
Samsung is taking a new approach to technological progress that it calls “experience innovation,” Koh said.
Experience innovation as “an integration of devices, services and capabilities across a universe of Galaxy devices and our vast network of partners,” he continued. It “is the heart of a generation that sits, lives and works on their phones.”
Game-changing new technologies like 5G have created the perfect conditions for experience innovation, Koh said, and Samsung aims to build it into every device it creates and every service it delivers.
The Microsoft Connection
Samsung has deepened its years-long partnership with Microsoft.
“We worked with Samsung to integrate Work with Windows in the control panel to seamlessly link Note 10 to the Windows PC,” said Microsoft Corporate Vice President Shilpa Ranganathan.
This integration will let users get instant messages, notifications, photographs and text from their desktops directly on Note 10 smartphones, and mirror their phone screens onto their desktops, she noted.
Later this year, users will be able to make and receive calls on their PC, Ranganathan said. Also, Samsung Gallery soon will have an option to sync directly to Microsoft OneDrive.
The Note 10’s biometric information will open Microsoft’s OneDrive Personal Vault from the OneDrive app, Ranganathan said. Note10 users can access Microsoft Outlook through the S Pen.
“For years, applications have been built for single devices, but, in a world of 5G we get to rethink it all and reimagine it,” said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella in a brief appearance at Unpacked.
“Every device will be multiexperience,” Nadella remarked. “Together with Samsung, we’re making this a reality.”
The Note Family
The Note has “historically been the focus of innovation,” said Ramon Llamas, research director at IDC.
Samsung sees the Note family as the key to its vision of the future. It introduced the Note10, the Note10+ and the Note10+ 5G.
All of them use fingerprint recognition and include machine learning to distinguish between real and fake fingerprints.
“This is the first time Samsung has launched two Note models with different display sizes and hardware features,” remarked Linda Sui, research director at Strategy Analytics.
For example, the Note10+ comes with a time-of-flight sensor for 3D depth and enhanced portraits, but the Note10 does not.
As 5G connects more and more devices, security becomes more important than ever and more complicated, Samsung’s Koh said. Samsung is building its Knox security solution into every device.
Verizon, which is rolling out 5G service to about 30 cities in the United States this year, will be the first carrier to offer the 5G phone.
The Galaxy Note10 has 8 GB of RAM and 256 GB of internal storage. The Note10+ and Note 10+ 5G each have 12 GB of RAM, and up to 512 GB of internal storage; and they can accept a microSD card of up to 1 TB.
The Note10 has a 6.3-inch screen and the Note10+ a 6.8-inch screen.
The Note10 is “the narrowest note we’ve ever made,” said Samsung’s Blackard. Meanwhile, the Note10+ “comes with the biggest screen ever on a Note.”
Both devices are less than 8mm thick and the front of their screens “has virtually no bezels,” he pointed out.
The Note10 has four cameras — one front and three rear. The two Note10+ models have five cameras, one front and four rear.
The Note10+ “is the first Samsung flagship model featuring quad cameras,” Sui told TechNewsWorld.
Prices for the Note10 family range from US$950 to $1,400. The devices will be available on Sept. 13.
Preorders open Thursday. Consumers can get up to $150 in Samsung credit when they preorder a device from Samsung. They can save up to $600 on an unlocked Galaxy Note10 by trading in an eligible Samsung device.
Consumers also preorder at the Microsoft Store online and at Best Buy.
“Trade-in options would help consumers to address the affordability issue to some degree,” Strategy Analytics’ Sui said.
Note users generally are power users, Llamas told TechNewsWorld.
The new features in the Note 10 family will “make their life easier and lets them get to tasks much faster,” he said. “Samsung’s hitting all the right marks.”