In spite delaying the unveiling, launch, and release of its highly anticipated new flagship, the Galaxy S8, Korean powerhouse Samsung still held a strong presence at the 2017 Mobile World Congress as it several new products including the much awaited new major iteration of its new high-end Android tablet line, the Galaxy Tab S3, as well as a completely new Windows-based tablet for professionals, the Galaxy Book. The company also unveiled the new version of its Gear VR virtual reality headset, which now comes with a controller.
“At Samsung, we are committed to expanding the boundaries of the mobile and computing experience by providing best-in-class products that satisfy mobile users’ diverse needs and demands,” said DJ Koh, President of Mobile Communications Business, Samsung Electronics. “Our new tablet portfolio is built with premium technology that delivers a productive and versatile experience to consumers, designed for users at home, work or on the go.”
Galaxy Tab S3
The new Galaxy Tab S3 is the company’s latest foray into high-end Android tablets. And with this latest iteration, the company is focusing on providing its customers a quality entertainment and gaming experience as it has equipped the Tab S3 with a 9.7-inch QXGA (2048×1536) resolution AMOLED display, a quad-stereo speaker system in partnership with AKG by HARMAN, HDR video support, Vulkan API support for superior graphics, the powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 quad-core processor, 4GB of RAM, and a large 6,000mAh battery.
The Tab S3 is also equipped with a fingerprint sensor with support for Samsung Flow, 32GB of internal storage, expandable storage support up to 256GB via microSD, a 13-megapixel rear camera, and a 5-megapixel front-facing camera. Connectivity-wise, it features a USB 3.1 Type-C port, support for LTE Cat.6, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth 4.2. The Tab S3 will have Android 7.0 Nougat pre-installed and will come with the company’s refined S-Pen that features a finer tip at 0.7mm as well as increased pressure sensitivity.
Last year, Samsung released its first Windows-based tablet with the Galaxy TabPro S. And it looks like things went well for it as this year, the company is taking things a step further by giving its Windows-based tablets its own brand with the unveiling of the new Galaxy Book. The new tablet, which is targeted at “on-the-go professionals” and is available in two versions, is powered by Windows 10 and comes with a keyboard and trackpad case as well as the aforementioned new S Pen.
The smaller of the two variants features a body measuring only 8.9mm thin, a 10.6-inch Full HD 1080p TFT display, a 7th generation Intel Core m3 dual-core processor which runs at 2.6GHz, 4GB of RAM, either 64GB or 128GB of internal storage, expandable storage up to 256GB via microSD, a 5-megapixel front-facing camera, and a 30.4W battery for up to 10 hours of battery life. It also features a USB 3.1 Type-C port, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.1, and support for LTE Cat.6.
The larger, high-end variant come with a 12-inch 2K resolution (2160×1440) Super AMOLED display, a thinner body measuring only 7.4mm, a 7th generation Intel Core i5 3.1GHz dual-core processor, expandable storage up to 256GB via microSD, a 13-megapixel rear camera, a 5-megapixel front-facing camera, and a 39.04W battery which also provides up to 10 hours of battery life. It also features 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.1, and comes with two USB 3.1 Type-C ports.
The 12-inch Galaxy Book will be available in two RAM and storage variants – one with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage and a super high-end variant with a whopping 8GB of RAM and 256GB of internal storage which, when coupled with a 256GB microSD card, gives you half a terabyte of storage.
Gear VR with Controller
Samsung also unveiled a refreshed version of its Oculus-powered Gear VR headset, which now comes with a new VR controller. The new headset comes with 24mm lenses which give a 101-degree FOV (field of view) as well as “advanced distortion correction technology” to help minimize motion sickness during use. The Gear VR with Controller also comes with a converter in-box that allows support for both micro USB and USB Type-C connections.
“At Samsung, we are focused on setting and exceeding the standard for VR experiences, making them even more accessible and delivering the highest in quality,” said Younghee Lee, Executive Vice President of Mobile Communications Business, Samsung Electronics. “The Gear VR with Controller expands our VR ecosystem to help consumers get more engaged and immersed in VR content – whether it’s games or videos.”
While not much has changed with the headset itself, the inclusion of a controller adds a significant level of interaction to Samsung’s mobile VR hardware. The new Gear VR controller features a small, curved design for one-hand use and features a touchpad as well as Hoe, Volume, and Back keys. It comes with a wrist strap for both safety and security during use and the Gear VR headset now features a strap where the controller can be secured to when not in use.
The new Gear VR with Controller is compatible with the Galaxy S7, S7 Edge, Note 5, S6 Edge+, S6, and S6 Edge.