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IDG News Service - Samsung Electronics took the wraps off new Android and Windows devices here at IFA in Berlin on Wednesday, showing off a bigger, faster Note tablet, a new Galaxy Camera, and smartphones and tablets running Windows 8.
Samsung is getting behind Microsoft's next-gen Windows with the ATIV family, which includes the ATIV S smartphone and the ARM-based ATIV Tab, plus the Intel-based ATIV Smart PC and Smart PC Pro.
The ATIV S smartphone runs Windows Phone 8, which has a revised start screen, and also allows smartphones based on the OS to be equipped with HD screens, multi-core processors, NFC and microSD card slots.
Samsung has taken advantage of those improvements and the ATIV S has a 4.8-inch Super AMOLED display. The phone is 8.7 millimeters thick with NFC integrated, a 1.5GHz dual-core processor and HSPA+ at 42M bps. It weighs 135 grams.
More Windows Phone 8-based devices are expected to be announced next week, as Microsoft joins Nokia for an event in New York where the Finnish phone maker is expected to announce its first phones based on the new OS.
Tablets are equally important, and Windows 8 and RT have been developed with tablets in mind.
The ATIV Tab uses Windows RT, the Windows 8 version for devices with ARM processors, in this case a 1.5GHz dual-core processor. The device has a 10.1-inch LCD screen with a 1366-by-768-pixel resolution, weighs 570 grams and is 8.9 millimeters thick. That compares to the new iPad, which weighs from 652 grams and is 9.4 millimeters thick.
Users can attach a keyboard and other peripherals using the included USB and HDMI ports. Just like the ATIV S, the Tab has NFC integrated.
For users who prefer Intel-based processors and Windows 8, the ATIV Smart PC and Smart PC Pro both have keyboards that can be attached magnetically to the screen. They have also inherited the S Pen from the Galaxy Note family, which allows users to write directly on the screen.
The ATIV Smart PC Pro is powered by an Intel Core i5 processor and has an 11.6-inch screen. The ATIV Smart PC is the simpler of the two, and has a new Atom processor.
The fact that Samsung can offer Windows products in all categories will help differentiate it from the competition, according to Samsung, which has high hopes for both Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8, the company said at the launch event.
Meanwhile, on the Android side, the Galaxy Note II has a bigger screen and a faster processor than its predecessor tablet, while the Galaxy Camera has 16-megapixel resolution and an optical zoom.
For Samsung, the IFA trade show seems to have become the place where the company launches new concepts. At last year's show it premiered the first Note, and this year it has launched the Galaxy Camera.
The camera is the first in the world to combine Android 4.1 with 3G and a quad-core processor, according to Samsung. It also has a 4.8-inch HD display and an f2.8/23 millimeter lens with a 21x optical zoom. It is voice-controlled and users can store images on Dropbox; 50GB is included.