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Samsung Officially Launches Galaxy S Smartphone

Although the cat was mostly out of the bag earlier this week, Samsung has officially launched its marketing blitz for its Galaxy S smartphone series at a press event in New York City. The South Korean electronics giant hopes to make a splash on the U.S. smartphone scene with the devices, which feature a smart 4-inch AMOLED display that Samsung says offers up to a 50,000:1 contrast ratio, a 1 GHz Samsung Hummingbird processor, Android 2.1—Samsung says Android 2.2 will be available post haste—and a bevy of services and software that will make this particular smartphone “brilliant.” And Samsung isn’t taking any chances with carrier exclusivity: each of the U.S.’s four major carriers will get its own Galaxy S smartphone.

“This is a groundbreaking opportunity for Samsung to bring the Galaxy S portfolio to multiple carriers this year,” said Samsung Mobile’s chief strategy officer Omar Khan, in a statement. “The best-in-class feature set found on the Galaxy S will truly change the way consumers engage with their device. The brilliant screen and powerful processor will enhance the way they interact with their social networks and keep them entertained with rich content and fast-paced games.”

On Verizon Wireless, the Samsung Galaxy S will be known as the Samsung Fascinate; AT&T will offer the Samsung Captivate, T-Mobile gets the Samsung Vibrant, and Sprint gets the Samsung Epic 4G—which also happens to be the only significant variation on the phone, sporting 4G WiMax capability and a slide-out QWERTY keyboard. Availability and pricing will be determined by each carrier individually: Sprint, Verizon, and AT&T haven’t announced plans yet, but T-Mobile plans to start selling the Vibrant on July 21 (with a $50 gift card purchase good toward the phone required to pre-order starting July 1.)

Samsung clearly thinks it has a winner on its hands, and the phone does stack up well against other high-end Android-running smartphones on the market. And Samsung’s all-carriers blitz might help the Samsung Galaxy S gain ground on the Apple iPhone, which—for better and worse—is still setting the bar for smartphone quality and success.

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