BERLIN, GERMANY: South Korean company Samsung unveiled the next generation of its "phablet" and "smartwatch" gadgets at the IFA consumer electronics fair along with a virtual reality headset the Samsung VR.
Samsung's new VR headset that said to give gamers an immersive 3-D experience while playing games. Image: Inavit News
As media hype builds over the Apple's launch next week, Samsung pulled out all the stops to push its own new Galaxy Note 4 at a special event held two days before the IFA officially opens its doors.
Berlin was the launch pad three years ago for Samsung's first-ever "phablet" - a cross between a smartphone and tablet computer - the original Galaxy Note. And the new devices are taking the markets by storm, particularly among mobile gamers in Asia.
"The Galaxy Note 4 is more enjoyable and more efficient" than its predecessors," said Sales and Marketing Chief DJ Lee.
The new phone has been given a new design with a metal casing, a more resistant screen with better resolution. Its built-in camera and microphone and its battery have also been optimised.
The Galaxy Note 4 comes with an electronic pen with which the user can multi-task between different applications and move pictures and deposit them where they want on the screen.
Virtual reality headset for 3-D gaming
Simultaneously, Samsung unveiled the Galaxy Note Edge, which is another new version of its iconic device with a curved screen.
Samsung's new Galaxy Note 4 that comes with a stylus to make navigation on the device easy and quick. Image: Galaxy Note 4 Update
"Because the mainstream flagship smartphones have grown bigger, it is becoming harder for Samsung to differentiate the Note," said IHS Analyst Ian Fogg.
Another exciting new move by Samsung was its VR virtual reality headset, developed in collaboration with the Californian start-up Oculus Rift.
"The headset acts as an add-on to the Galaxy Note 4, turning the image on the phone onto an immersive 3-D display and is targeted primarily at the video game market," said IHS Analyst Piers Harding-Rolls.
The shadow of Apple is looming large over this year's IFA - which opens on Friday (5 September). Apple traditionally snubs the five-day event in Europe.
Analysts believe that Apple, which has sent out invitations to a mystery unveiling of its own scheduled for 9 September, will upstage any of the announcements made by its rivals at the Berlin show.
Rumours about Apple's plans have been swirling for months, with many observers expecting it to unveil an iPhone 6, marking a move into the "phablet" sector.
But Apple might also unveil an "iWatch", a wrist-worn device that links wirelessly to its iPhones or iPads.
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