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A Samsung smartwatch and smartphones with bigger screens expected in Berlin

Mikael Ricknäs | Sept. 3, 2013
4K video is also expected to make an appearance on smartphones and TVs.

Acer's Liquid S2 can shoot 4K videos.

A smartwatch from Samsung Electronics, an Acer smartphone that can shoot 4K video and a Sony one with a 20-megapixel sensor, plus a plethora of tablets and TVs are all expected at this year's IFA consumer electronics show.

Consumer electronics manufacturers from all over the world are once again heading to Berlin for the show, which doesn't open its doors to the public until Friday. By then, though, most of the new products will have already been announced at news conferences on Wednesday and Thursday.

Samsung is expected to launch a smartwatch, the voice-controlled Galaxy Gear, rumoredto allow users to keep track of calls, messages and social networks. The device will also have calorie and pulse monitors, and apps that take advantage of those features, according to media reports. The smartwatch segment is being increasingly hyped, but expectations should in this case be tempered by the fact that the Galaxy Gear is a first generation device, and few vendors get everything right the first time.

The Korean company is expected to launch a new Galaxy Note too. When it launched the first phone-and-stylus combination back at IFA in 2011, the form factor had its detractors. But Samsung has managed to create a new product category, in which it now faces stiff competition from the likes of Sony and LG Electronics.

The Note's screen size has increased from 5.3 inches to 5.5 inches and is expected to be 5.7 inches on the Galaxy Note 3, with a 1,920 x 1,080 pixel resolution. The Note 3 will have a 13-megapixel camera and Samsung is also expected to stick with a MicroSD card slot, in addition to the 32GB or 64GB of integrated storage.

The device will be powered by either a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 or Samsung's own Exynos 5 Octa processor. The company demonstrated a new model of the latter in July. The Exynos 5420 has four Cortex-A15 processors running at 1.8GHz and four additional Cortex-A7 cores at 1.3 GHz. It also has a six-core Mali-T628 GPU for improved graphics performance. Compared to its predecessor, the Exynos 5420 will also be more power efficient, according to Samsung. At the time, Samsung said the processor was scheduled for mass production in August.

Any large-screened new Samsung smartphone will probably have to duke it out with the Xperia Z1 Sony is expected to launch at IFA. In an effort to differentiate its new flagship from the competition it looks like Sony is taking a note from Nokia's play book by focusing on the camera, which will have a 20-megapixel sensor. The smartphone's specification is also rumored to include a 5-inch full HD screen and a quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor.


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