Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 and Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 9.7 Officially Announced

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., today announced the global launch of the Galaxy Tab S2, the most immersive Samsung tablet to-date. Samsung’s newest Galaxy tablet continuously delivers a stunning Super AMOLED display perfectly optimized for reading and viewing any type of digital content. The Galaxy Tab S2 is stylishly designed with the thinnest and lightest metal frame of its size on the market and packs powerful performance features to offer enhanced usability, empowering users with new and improved choices in productivity and multitasking.

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“The Galaxy Tab S2 is not only our thinnest and lightest tablet of its size ever, it also gives users quick, easy access to a wealth of superior viewing and productivity features,” said JK Shin, CEO and President of IT & Mobile Division at Samsung Electronics. “We believe the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 is the most complete personal visual device designed for consumers to carry and use anywhere.”

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Newly Optimized Super AMOLED Display for the Best Content Viewing

At just 5.6mm thin and only 389g (9.7 -inch) and 265g (8.0 -inch) weight*, the Galaxy Tab S2 is perfectly designed for reading and consuming content due to its stunning Super AMOLED Display. By recreating the same viewing experience of browsing through traditional print media, the Galaxy Tab S2 also makes it comfortable to read digital content, including e-books, magazines, webpages and newsfeeds. This reading-optimized ratio allows the user to enjoy a seamless reading experience without unnecessary scrolling.
00_SM-T815_Black_black_Standard_Online_SThe tablet also presents deeper contrast and more precise detail to provide a best-in-class reading experience with the Super AMOLED display delivering 94% of natural tones to show true-to-life colors (Adobe RGB color standard). Users can now enjoy galleries of vividly detailed photos and effortlessly shop online while viewing the most accurate images on the Galaxy Tab S2.

In addition, the Galaxy Tab S2 continually offers its advanced screen technology to display bright and natural content for a more comfortable visual experience. Adaptive Displayintelligently adjusts gamma, saturation, and sharpness based on the application, the color temperature of the viewing environment and ambient lighting. Also, Reading Mode modifies the screen’s brightness level to help users to read content for longer periods of time without straining their eyes.

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Packaged within the world thinnest and lightest metal tablet frame of its size, the Galaxy Tab S2 is portable enough to easily carry around all day. Also, the fashionable and stylish design is suitable for any purpose or setting, so user can enjoy the best viewing experience anywhere, anytime.

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Asia calling for Apple iPhablets?

iPhone 6 mockup (Martin Hajek 004)

Flurry data told us that so-called phablets comprise only a minuscule portion of smart devices compared to mid-size phones and large tablets, such as the iPhone and iPad, but there’s no doubt that devices with five-inch or larger screens are gaining acceptance, largely thanks to Samsung’s willingness to experiment with a bunch of different form factors. Even Apple acknowledged the trend by making the iPhone 5′s four-inch screen the new gold standard for iPhones.

But with Samsung launching a five-inch Galaxy S4 soon and rumors of an upcoming Galaxy Mega line with 5.8 and 6.2-inch handsets making rounds, Asian suppliers are advising Apple to follow suit and blow up the upcoming iPhone’s display if it wants to capture the next phase of smartphone growth…

Business Insider relays a note by Topeka Capital Markets analyst Brian White has been on a tour of Asian suppliers earlier this week.

In a note issued to clients today, White wrote:

Our discussions this week in Taipei and China continue to highlight the need for Apple to launch a larger-sized iPhone to cater to the Asian market.

Essentially, we are being told that the minimum size needed by Apple is a 4.5-inch display on the iPhone; however, a five-inch to 5.5-inch would be optimal.

Before you discredit the report, remember that pundits used to be adamant that no, Apple will never bow to trends and increase the iPhone’s display.

larger iphone 6 mockup

Then the iPhone 5 came along with and Apple even aired a television commercial aiming to make the case for its four-inch display.

Interestingly enough, the commercial has been pulled recently from Apple’s YouTube channel, perhaps ahead of larger form-factor announcements?

A recent Samsung profile by Bloomberg Businessweek let us in on the company’s thinking, which basically boils down to throwing a bunch of form factors against a wall and see what sticks.

Apple’s approach is fewer models, each of them exquisitely designed. Samsung’s is try everything, and fast.

“When we released the Galaxy S III, our research showed that, for some people in some markets, the handset was too big,” says DJ Lee. “So we were able to create the same phone with a 4-inch screen, and we called it the Galaxy S III mini.”

Getting the smaller device into production took about four to six months, says DJ Lee. “We watch the market, and we immediately respond,” he says. The new Galaxy S 4 is coming out only nine months after the GS3.

“Samsung has taken differentiation to a new art,” says Michael Gartenberg, an analyst at Gartner (IT). “If I want something in between an iPad and an iPad mini, I can’t get that from Apple.”

Samsung, of course, can afford experimenting with different form factors that may not necessarily turn profit because it also produces display, memory, processors and other, giving it “a flexibility competitors can’t touch.”

Sometimes, the results are just plain funny.

Here’s Samsung’s eight-inch Galaxy Note phablet.

Making phone call on Samsung Galaxy Note 8

Various analysts are approving of phablets now.

Here’s IDC’s Francisco Jeronimo, via Bloomberg:

This is a trend that can’t be missed. People are using smartphones in different ways now, consuming media by streaming over faster mobile networks. A five-inch screen for a smartphone just feels right in the hand.

Though analytics firm Flurry Monday reported that phablets with screens between five and 6.9 inches diagonally account for only two percent of devices it saw during February, IDC said sales of handsets five inches or bigger soared to 29.7 million units last year from 1.2 million a year earlier.

A model poses with Galaxy Note of Samsung Electronics during a local launch event for Samsung's mobile devices at the company's headquarters in Seoul

One could indeed argue that more screen is better given today’s smartphones are basically computers.

As for Apple, it’s definitely worth remembering that the pretty accurate Japanese blogMacotakara reported back in March 2012 that Apple was working on a five-inch iOS gizmo with a Retina screen of either 1,600-by-960 or 1,280-by-960 pixel resolution.

The blog claimed Apple was shooting for a 2013 release.

Recent leaks from China suggest this five-inch devices is actually the iPhone 6 , with DigiTimes (I know, don’t start), China Times and iLounge all claiming that a near five-inch iPhone actually is in the works.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 photos leak ahead of the official announcement!

The Galaxy Note 8.0 slate was already confirmed by JK Shin – the head of Samsung Mobile Communications. The official announcement is expected to happen at MWC 2013 next month in Barcelona.

We already know the specs of the device – it will be powered by the same quad-core platforms as the Note 10.1, but will come with an 8.0″ display of 1280 x 800 pixel resolution. Now we also got to see the first real world images of the tablet.

If the slate on the picture is indeed the Galaxy Note 8.0, then you can expected hardware Android controls and an earpiece. This means the Note 8.0 will be intended mostly to be used in portrait orientation.

There is one thing bothering me though, I can’t see a slot for the S-Pen and with the recent rumors about a Galaxy Tab 3 lineup in the pipeline, this device might as well turn out to be the Galaxy Tab 3 7.x or similar. After all it just doesn’t make sense for a Note device to be intended for mostly portrait handling.

The Galaxy Note 8.0 should be announced at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona next month, probably followed by a few Galaxy Tab 3 devices if rumors turn out to be truth.

Android grabs 41 percent of tablet market as Apple’s share falls!

Can the iPad mini save Apple’s slipping lead in tablet sales? The could be the question of the day as researchers announce Apple’s share of the tablet market dropped to 56.7 percent while Android tablets now account for 41 percent of the worldwide market.

According to Strategy Analytics, the iPad’s lead eroded from the 64.5 percent it held during the third quarter of 2011. Meanwhile, an army of Android tablets, helped by Apple losses, rose to 41.3 percent of the market, up from 29.2 percent during the same period last year…

Strategy Analytics Executive Director Neil Mawston said:

No single Android vendor comes close to Apple in volume terms at the moment, but the collective weight of dozens of hardware partners, such as Asus, Samsung and Nook, is helping Google’s Android platform to register a growing presence in tablets.

Thursday, Apple announced it sold 14 million iPads during the fiscal fourth quarter of 2012.

Although the company said iPad sales were up 26 percent compared to a year ago, observers felt sales were softened by a number of factors, including consumers delaying purchases until Apple’s announcement this week.

Analysts revised their earnings estimates downward after Apple’s chief executive Tim Cook Monday announced 100 million iPads were sold as of two weeks ago. But some sleuthing revealed a slowdown compared to previous periods.

However, it appears there is a global slowdown in tablet demand. Worldwide tablet shipments rose by just 43 percent in the fiscal third quarter, down dramatically from the nitro-fueled 289 percent growth reported in the second quarter of 2011.

“This was the weakest growth rate since the modern tablet industry began in the second quarter of 2010″, writes Strategy Analytics.

So, can the less-expensive iPad mini reignite the demand for tablets – especially those made by Apple?

The new tablet is expected to begin shipping November 2. Apple began taking pre-orders today and two hours later sold out of white iPad mini stock.

Will this be enough time to boost Apple’s flagging market lead?

Sterne Agee analyst Shaw Wu has described the iPad mini as a potential nightmare for Apple’s rivals, but can it counter Android’s momentum? The answer’s will likely have to wait until holiday shoppers vote with their wallets.