More Samsung devices will be compatible with Galaxy Gear, the company's companion device that makes mobile communication easier.
Galaxy Gear will be available for use with Galaxy S4, S III, and Note II through the Android 4.3 (Jelly Bean) update. The update came first to Galaxy S4 devices in Germany in October. Samsung will also extend Galaxy Gear compatibility to other GALAXY devices - including Galaxy S4 mini, S4 Active, Mega 5.8, Mega 6.3, and S4 zoom ? through a separate software update beginning at the end of October.
Galaxy Gear will enable Galaxy S4, S III, and Note II users to make and answer calls and view incoming messages and notifications with just a glance. For a closer look at more important messages, users can pick up their master device and the Smart Relay feature reveals the full content. Users can also find major social apps on Samsung Apps to maintain connections to their social networks via Galaxy Gear.
With a 1.9 Megapixel camera, users can snap a visual memo by simply tapping Galaxy Gear's screen. Photos are then automatically saved in the master device's gallery. Users can enjoy a built-in Pedometer app and use Galaxy Gear to control the music played on their master devices. Of course the device also functions like a watch, with the option to change the face with 10 different clock options and even more options available via Samsung Apps.
Samsung Galaxy S4, S III, and Note II will get the Android 4.3 (Jelly Bean) update. For Galaxy S III and Note II, new capabilities provide easier text input, and updated graphics and multimedia, as well as new updates to Samsung features and applications, including:
- Smsung KNOX, a secure mobile solution for enterprises and consumers. (Galaxy S III 3G version will get Samsung KNOX with a platform security only in select countries.)
- Smart Switch to transfer content from other smartphones to Samsung devices
- HomeSync to store, share and enjoy content securely wherever you are
- Group Play 2.5 with shared video support
In related news, Samsung's smartphone accessories will reportedly not work if they are not authentic.
Citing industry sources, etnews.com reported that generic accessories for Samsung Electronics' smartphones will not be able to use such functions as wireless charging and terminating or originating calls with the cover closed.
An authenticity recognition chip found in the accessories for Galaxy Note 3 will block some functions if the accessories are inauthentic. Samsung Electronics has reportedly distributed the authenticity recognition chip to its accessory business division and suppliers, and made it mandatory to install the chip.
Apple also changed the charging cable for iPhone and iPad from 30 pins to 8 pins last year, and embedded the recognition chip in the cable to induce users to buy authentic products.
Last but not least, Samsung is making the Galaxy S4 Mini, a smaller version of its flagship Galaxy S4 phone, available in the United States next month.
The smartphone will be sold on AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and US Cellular. Prices weren't announced, but they are likely to be about $100 with a two-year agreement.
It is a distinctly lower-end smartphone though, having an older processor and a qHD resolution display.
The phone has a 4.3-inch HD resolution display compared with 5 inches for the regular S4.
A software update will also make the Mini compatible with its new Galaxy Gear smartwatch.