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Samsung unveils Oculus-powered ‘Gear VR Innovator Edition’

During its developer conference in San Francisco, Samsung today announced the Oculus-powered ‘Gear VR Innovator Edition’. The new VR headset is compatible with the Galaxy Note 4’s 5.7-inch display for developers to create a 360-degree immersive experience.

Developers can access the Oculus Mobile SDK for Gear VR, now available at develper.oculus.com. Once users download the Oculus software to their Note 4 devices, they will receive special applications such as Cinema, Home, Store, and 360 Videos and Photos to work with.

Some of the content partners that Samsung has tied up with include Harmonix, DreamWorks, Vevo, and Temple Run.

The Gear VR features a touchpad, back button, and a focus adjustment wheel. The Gear VR Innovator Edition is currently available only in the US, and starts shipping in ‘early December’. However, Samsung is yet to announce the pricing.

 

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Samsung announces Gear Circle for instant hands-free communication

Samsung has announced a new gadget that lets you enjoy instant hands-free communication. The new device called the Gear Circle happens to be both lightweight and sweat resistant.

The device’s design allows for the wireless stereo headphone to sit around your neck, which vibrates when you have an incoming call. Besides, it also supports other Bluetooth-enabled devices and features touch controls that make it easy to receive calls when you’re on the go.

The Gear Circle boasts nine hours of playtime and 11 hours of talk time. The earphones can also be detached. Besides, users can receive voice notifications using Text-to-Speech through S Voice.

The Gear Circle is now available for purchase in several T-Mobile stores. It will also be available at AT&T, Samsung, BestBuy, and Amazon. The device will be offered in black, blue, and white color options. However, the white color variant will be exclusively available at BestBuy.

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Galaxy Note Edge will be available in the US starting Nov.14

Samsung has been rather quiet about the launch of the Galaxy Note Edge apart from a handful of select markets. Though soon enough, interested buyers will be able to get their hands on the device, as the company has now unveiled the US release date of the Galaxy Note Edge.

In a press release, Samsung stated that the Galaxy Note Edge will be available starting November 14, 2014 via AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, and US Cellular. Besides, customers can also buy the handset through Samsung experience stores within Best Buy locations. The Galaxy Note Edge will be available in Charcoal Black and Frost White color options.

However, apart from T-Mobile, specific pricing and availability have not been announced at this point. That said, it’s safe to assume that customers will be able to get their hands on the Note Edge on some type of contract, as well as off-contract. T-Mobile has also confirmed that it will begin selling the Galaxy Note Edge starting November 14th for $0 down (and $36.25/month for 24 months) online and in participating stores nationwide.

Key specs on the Galaxy Note Edge include a 5.6-inch Quad HD Super AMOLED display. The company claims that the handset is designed to deliver a unique smartphone experience with a side display that is housed on the right edge of the device. The Edge display gives users access to email, Internet, apps, notifications, news, and more, without interrupting with the contents of the primary display.

Elsewhere, the handset features a 16MP rear camera with autofocus and Smart OIS. For selfies, there’s a 3.7MP front-facing shooter with an f/1.9 lens. Juicing up the handset is 3000mAh battery.

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Gear S smartwatch to arrive in the US this November

Samsung unveiled the Gear S smartwatch back in September during the IFA show in Berlin. Now, after many delays, the company has confirmed that buyers in the US will soon be able to get their hands on the standalone super watch. According to Samsung, the Gear S smartwatch will be available in the US starting November 7 from AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon. Besides, the smartwatch will also be available for purchase through BestBuy and other retailers.

The smartwatch will be available at AT&T for $200 on a two-year contract. Sprint will also offer the Gear S on November 7 for $0 down and 24 monthly payments of $16.

Meanwhile, T-Mobile has started accepting pre-orders for the smartwatch. The carrier has also introduced a special plan that gives Gear S buyers unlimited data and text, with up to 500MB of data for only $5 a month.

The Gear S is the company’s largest smartwatch, which packs a 2-inch AMOLED screen with a resolution of 360 x 480 pixels. Under the hood, the watch gets powered by dual-core 1GHz processor paired with 512MB of RAM and 4GB of storage. The Gear S gets fueled by a 300mAh battery. The smartwatch runs Samsung’s Tizen OS which offers a plethora of apps.

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Samsung launches the Level Box Mini

Samsung has launched a new wireless speaker dubbed as the Level box mini. As the name suggests, it’s a compact version of the Level Box launched earlier this year. The Lorean manufacturer claims that the Mini is 30 percent slimmer than the Levvel Box.

The Samsung Level Box Mini features a large 55mm stereo speaker and a passive radiator to deliver a powerful well-balanced sound. Besides, it also offers several add-on features such as support for S Voice, text-to-speech, along with NFC for mobile connectivity with a mobile device. It also comes with built-in buttons that allow users to play or pause a track, adjusts volume, and even answer/reject calls. The wireless speaker also has a microphone and even offers support for noise reduction and echo cancellation.

The Level Box Mini also supports Samsung’s SoundAlive technology which intelligently adjusts sound quality by analyzing the source to deliver the best sound. The speaker also utilizes the aptX code to provide users uninterrupted, and high quality streaming. In terms of battery, the Level Box Mini comes with a 1600mAh battery which according to Samsung, will be able to deliver 25 hours of playback.

The new Level Box Mini will be available at BestBuy starting November 16th. Besides, it’ll be offered in a variety of color options. These include Blue, Black, Silver, and Red.

 

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Samsung rolls out Premium Suite update for select Galaxy devices

Samsung has officially announced the Premium Suite software package for the US variants of the Galaxy S3, Galaxy S4, and the Galaxy Note II. Interestingly, the announcement comes shortly after a leaked Android 4.3 update roadmap for the aforementioned devices in North America.

The Premium Suite will update these devices to Android 4.3, and bring features such as updated Easy Mode, Multi Window, advanced camera options, KNOW, as well as additional features with new functionality. Besides, the latest update will also bring support for the Galaxy Gear.

The Premium Suite update will begin rolling out today, and the process will continue over the next few weeks. Besides, Samsung also confirmed that the Galaxy S4 Mini and both Galaxy Mega phones will receive Gear support, though didn’t mention an exact timeline for these devices.

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Samsung Gear S packs a large, curved Super AMOLED display

The curved display found on the Gear S smartwatch may not be first we’ve seen in Samsung’s line of wearable products. That said, it’s certainly the largest we’ve seen so far thanks to its 2-inch OLED display. Not to mention, with 3G capability on-board, the Gear S one of the few smartwatches that lets you get online without a smartphone.

The Gear S standalone smartwatch will be available via AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless. Besides, AT&T has confirmed that you can get a preview of the smartwatch in 125 of its retail stores.

Apart from its large curved Super AMOLED display, the smartwatch’s other key highlight would be its connectivity. The Gear S can use 3G and WiFi, making it one of the few smartwatches to do so. It also gets Bluetooth capability which links the smartwatch with a compatible smartphone even when the phone is not in range.

“The Samsung Gear S redefines the idea of the smart wearable device and the culture of mobile communication. It will let consumers live a truly connected life anywhere, anytime,” said J.K Shin, CEO and head of IT and mobile communication, Samsung Electronics.

The Gear S gets powered by a 1GHz processor with 512MB of RAM and a 3000mAh battery. According to Samsung, the Gear S battery can last up to 48 hours. It’s also worth noting that unlike other wearable devices, the Gear S does not run Android Wear operating system. Instead, the device comes pre-loaded with Samsung’s in-house Tizen OS which offers a wide array of apps. As for pricing, Samsung isn’t spilling all the details for now.

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Gear S smartwatch to officially hit US shores this fall

Samsung has officially confirmed that its Gear S standalone smartwatch is all set to launch in the US this fall. The smartwatch will be available in black and white color options. That said, the Korean manufacturer isn’t revealing any pricing details, nor are they being specific with dates.

In a brief press release, Samsung stated that the Gear S, which happens to be its first smartwatch that doesn’t need pairing with a smartphone or tablet, will be available via AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon, as well as unlocked.

The smartwatch comes with integrated cellular connectivity, making the Gear S much more independent compared to other smartwatches currently on the market. It does not depend on your phone to pull down social media updates or email notifications. Besides, you can even make phone calls with the Gear S, though it won’t use the same number as your primary smartphone.

Just like the Galaxy Note 4, Samsung hasn’t revealed all the details about the Gear S for now, which will hit the US market long before the Apple Watch – due until next year.

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Samsung Power Sharing cable charges microUSB devices with Galaxy phone or tab

Samsung has launched a new Power Sharing cable that lets you use select Galaxy phones and tablets to charge your other devices that have a microUSB port. Priced at $19.99, the cable can be used to share power with any device that has a microUSB port, including wearables and Bluetooth headsets.

That said, Samsung also suggests that the cable won’t let you fully charge your device. Though, it’ll come in real handy when there’s no power source around. You’ll need to download Samsung’s Power sharing app from Samsung Apps or via the Play Store, and then select the amount of power-sharing with another device.

Samsung has listed the following devices capable of sharing power using the new cable: Galaxy S5, Galaxy Tab S 10.5, Galaxy Tab S 8.4, Galaxy Alpha, Galaxy Avant, and Galaxy Note 4.