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Galaxy Tab 8.9, PMPs, Mango On Way From Samsung

10/03/2011 12:01:00 AM Eastern
NEW YORK – Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 8.9 tablet and two Android-based Galaxy portable media players (PMPs) will arrive in stores in October, having missed previously announced ship dates.

In a separate mobile-device announcement, Samsung unveiled its first smartphone with Microsoft’s updated OS, called Windows Phone 7.5, or Mango. The company didn’t say when or if a version of the Omnia W would come to the U.S.

In tablets, the Wi-Fi-only Galaxy Tab 8.9 joined the currently available 7- and 10.1-inch Galaxy Tabs in stores on Oct. 2. The 16GB version retails at the previously announced price of $469, and the 32 GB version retails for $569, though its price had previously been announced at $599.

The Tab 8.9 had been unveiled in March and at the time was targeted to ship in early summer.

The Galaxy Player 5.0 and 4.0 PMPs will be available Oct. 16, with the Player 5.0 featuring 5-inch touchscreen at $269 and the 4.0 Player featuring 4-inch screen at $229. The portable media players were announced in March by Samsung, which at the time said it expected May availability at pricing that wasn’t announced.

By expanding the Galaxy franchise from tablets and smartphones to PMPs, Galaxy will tap new user segments, Samsung said in March. For example, kids who don’t need a smartphone with an expensive data plan will choose a Player to complement a basic cellphone, the company said. The players are also targeted to consumers who will mainly consume media, browse the web, play games, and participate in video or VoIP chats, while the larger screens of the Galaxy tablets will appeal to users who want to consume media but whose priorities are email and other productivity applications, the company said at the time.

The Galaxy Player 5.0 and 4.0 feature Android 2.3.5 Gingerbread OS, though they were originally announced with Android 2.2 (Froyo). Other features common to both are Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, 8GB of embedded memory, 32GB MicroSD slot, Adobe Flash 10.1, and through a future software update, the Samsung Media Hub content service. With Media Hub, users can download more than 5,000 movie and TV titles for purchase or rent.

Both players also access the Android Market and feature Google Mobile services, 720p playback and recording, Samsung’s Allshare (DLNA technology) to stream content to and from a DLNA PC and to DLNA TVs, and dual cameras.

As for the Tab 8.9, Samsung promotes it and the Tab 10.1 as the thinnest mobile tablets currently available in the U.S. market at 8.6mm in depth. Both models share many of the same features, including Android 3.1 Honeycomb OS, Samsung’s TouchWiz user interface, dual-core 1GHz processor, and WXGA TFT display.

Like the 10.1, the 8.9 accesses the Samsung Media Hub, the Samsung Music Hub to download songs from a library of more than 13 million songs, and the Samsung Readers Hub to download more than 2.2 million books and thousands of newspapers and magazines.

The tablet also features Google Mobile Services, Samsung AllShare (DLNA capability), rearfacing 3-megapixel camera, frontfacing 2-megapixel camera with flash and autofocus, 1080p video playback, and 720p video capture.

In smartphones, Samsung in Korea unveiled its first model based on the Windows Phone 7.5 OS. It features 3.7-inch Super AMOLED display, 1.4GHz processor, and 14.4Mbps HSPA data technology for use on foreign 900/2100MHz networks.
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