At CES 2017, Samsung announced two new Chromebooks, renewing its commitment to Google’s proprietary operating system. However, an app that has just hit the Windows Store might suggest that Samsung has other irons in the fire, as well.
Last weekend, a Samsung app called Book Settings was discovered on the Windows Store, according to a report from MS Power User. The app’s listing states that the software is intended for use with the “Galaxy Book,” and may not function normally when installed on other hardware.
At present, there’s no such product as the Samsung Galaxy Book, but given the appearance of this app, it seems that an announcement can’t be far off. From the lone screenshot on the Windows Store page, we can infer that the system features an AMOLED display and supports pen input.
The fact that the system is named the Galaxy Book might suggest that Samsung is fielding a product intended to compete with the Surface Book and the MacBook. With tablets increasingly being usurped by 2-in-1 devices, it’s not surprising to see Samsung attempt to get in on this category of hardware while the going is good.
There’s also the possibility that the Galaxy Book could be designed to run Windows 10 Cloud, the new variant of Microsoft’s OS that was exposed by a leaked build earlier this month. When Microsoft decides to go public with Cloud, we’re likely to see hardware announcements to accompany the big reveal — and a 2-in-1 from Samsung would certainly be attention-grabbing.
MSPU further reports on some additional information pulled from the Samsung app that provides hints of other features and technology apparently supported on the upcoming device. First is confirmation of Samsung S Pen support, along with the Air Command feature, which provides a pop-up menu that appears when the pen is hovered close enough to the screen. The Air Command menu reveals actions such as Smart Select, Screen Write, and Samsung Notes. The pen will also have an eraser, similar to that of Microsoft’s Surface Pen.
Another feature that could come with the Samsung Galaxy Book is a Smart Dimming function that dims the display when the user isn’t looking at the screen, as determined by the tablet’s front camera. As with Samsung smartphones and some other devices, display modes such as Photo and Cinema will be supported to optimize the display for the task at hand.
Samsung has launched an array of phones and tablets under the Galaxy moniker since initiating the line in 2009, but up until now, the company has never used this branding on one of its PCs. Given that the Samsung Galaxy Book does carry this name, it’s reasonable to expect that the system will be differentiated in some way from the company’s other laptops.
Updated on 2-24-2017 by Mark Coppock: Added additional information on possible features to be included with the Samsung Galaxy Book device.