Samsung announces new low-cost smartphones, targets emerging markets

In a further sign that smartphone manufacturers are looking to emerging markets for future growth, Samsung revealed late Tuesday that it plans to launch four low-cost smartphone devices.

Samsung’s news comes just hours after more sources backed up continuing rumors that Apple is preparing to release a less-expensive iPhone 4 next month, alongside its much-anticipated iPhone 5 model.

A Reuters report said Samsung’s new phones, which will be unveiled to consumers at an annual electronics fair in Germany at the start of next month, will be part of its flagship Galaxy range of phones.

The cheapest of the four new devices is the entry-level Galaxy Y model. Slightly more sophisticated devices come in the form of the Galaxy M Pro and Galaxy Y Pro, both featuring qwerty keyboards. At the mid-to-high end will be the Galaxy W, sporting a 3.7-inch screen.

Samsung’s high-end Galaxy S and S II phones, launched just over a year ago, have sold more than five million units.

Quoting an executive from Samsung Electronics’ mobile division, a Samsung spokeswoman said, “Samsung seeks to expand market share in the emerging market with models costing around $200, as those markets have lower smartphone penetration rates compared with advanced markets.”

According to Reuters, the Korean electronics giant believes low-cost smartphones will make up more than 50 percent of the entire smartphone market by 2015. Last year the figure was just 16 percent.

[Image courtesy of Reno Martin / Shutterstock]


Here are some more details and images of the phones, via AndroidOS.

Samsung Galaxy W: Sports Android 2.3, 1.4GHz processor, 3.7-inch display with 800×480 pixels resolution, 5MP camera, Bluetooth 2.1, Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n and 1500mAh battery.

Samsung Galaxy M Pro: Features a 2.66-inch display with 480×320 pixels resolution, Android 2.3, 1GHz processor, 5MP rear-facing camera, front-facing VGA camera, Bluetooth 3.0, Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n and 1350mAh battery. 

Samsung Galaxy Y: Comes with Android 2.3, 832MHz processor, 3-inch display with 320×240 pixels resolution, 2MP camera, Bluetooth 3.0, Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n, 7.2Mbps HSDPA and 1200mAh battery.

Samsung Galaxy Y Pro: Sports a 2.6 inch display, Android 2.3, 2MP camera, Bluetooth 3.0, Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n, and 7.2Mbps HSDPA. Possibly with an 800 MHz processor.

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