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Seoul (AFP) Nov 29, 2012
Samsung Electronics Thursday launched a new Internet-connected camera in South Korea, as the electronics giant intensifies efforts to expand its dominance in the mobile phone market to other sectors.
The "Galaxy" camera, named after the Korean firm's signature smartphone and tablet PC series, enables users to upload photos and videos directly to the Internet without having to hook it up to a computer.
The camera, launched earlier this year in countries in Europe, North America and elsewhere in Asia, is not Samsung's first Internet-connected camera.
But the latest device -- powered by Google's Android software like many key Samsung gadgets including Galaxy S smartphones or Galaxy Tab tablets -- operates more like a smartphone, the company said.
It allows users to download apps aimed at polishing photos or videos, automatically share images stored in the camera with certain mobile devices located nearby, or to have the images automatically stored in a cloud-computing server.
Users have to subscribe to wireless plans to use the gadget, featuring a 4.8-inch LCD touchscreen, a 21x optical lens and priced at about 750,000 won ($691) on the domestic market.
"The Galaxy Camera will open a new chapter of communications -- visual communications," JK Shin, chief of Samsung's mobile unit, said in a statement.
Samsung -- the world's top maker of smartphones and memory chips -- has recently been trying to strengthen its relatively small presence in the global digital camera industry dominated by Japanese giants like Nikon and Canon.
Microsoft Surface Pro to start at $899
The Surface Pro will be powered by an Intel processor and have a full version of the new Windows 8 operating system, which is designed with both PCs and tablets in mind.
"It's a full PC AND a tablet," said a blog post from Microsoft's Panos Panay.
"And all this in a PC that will weigh less than two pounds and be less than 14 millimeters thick. We are excited about both Surface with Windows RT and Surface with Windows 8 Pro."
Microsoft started selling the surface last month in a version aimed at consumers with a mobile-style processor and a tweaked version of its new operating system called Windows RT. It pricing was roughly in line the the iPad, the top-selling tablet.
The Surface Pro will be more expensive, and is apparently aimed at corporate users and those seeking a laptop replacement. The least expensive version with 64 gigabytes of memory will sell for $899, not including the touch cover with keyboard. A 128 GB version will start at $999.
"Surface with Windows 8 Pro uses the same familiar elegant design principles as Surface with Windows RT," Panay said.
Chief executive Steve Ballmer has described the iPad challenger -- complete with a built-in stand and ultra thin covers which double as keyboards in a range of colors -- as a tablet that "works and plays."
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