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Samsung unveils Galaxy S5 in India, available from April 11




NEW DELHI: Samsung on Thursday announced its plans for India launch of Galaxy S5, the company's flagship Android phone. Samsung said the price of Galaxy S5 will be between Rs 51,000 and Rs 53,000. It will be available in the market from April 11, though consumers can already pre-order it through the Samsung India online store or select retailers in eight cities by paying Rs 1500.

Samsung said that more information on pre-ordering of Galaxy S5 will be made available to consumers through Galaxy 5 advertisements which will start appearing soon.

In India, the Galaxy S5 will be available in four colours - black, white, blue and gold.

"The Galaxy S5 is yet another great proof point of people-inspired innovation. Designed to be both effortlessly smart and intuitively simple, the Galaxy S5 has been created to maximize consumer benefits by integrating superior hardware with enhanced smartphone usability and an iconic design," said Vineet Taneja, country head, IT & mobile division at Samsung India.

Just like the earlier versions of the top Galaxy phones, Samsung is selling the Galaxy 5 with an 8-core Exynos processor in India whereas the international version is powered by a 4-core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. In terms of theoretical processing power, both processors are quite close and hence users are not likely to notice any difference in performance.

Galaxy S5 is a high-end phone and as such packs in the premium hardware. Its Exynos processor runs four high-performance cores at 1.9GHz while the low-power cores run at 1.3GHz. The device has 16/32GB internal storage with support for an up to 64GB microSD card. The phone has a 5.1-inch SuperAMOLED screen with a resolution of 1080 x 1920 pixels, 16MP primary camera, 2MP front camera and 2GB RAM. It is powered by Android 4.4.2, which is the latest version of the OS. The device has a 2800mAh battery.

The three key features in Galaxy S5 are finger-print scanner, a heart-rate sensor and the new body that is water and dust proof. In the market, Galaxy S5 will go against the next generation of top end smartphones from Sony, LG, HTC and Apple. HTC has announced HTC One M8, which is likely to launch in April in India. LG will come out with G3 in the coming months while Sony will launch Xperia Z2.

While Samsung has done well in Indian market - it is the number one smartphone vendor with 38% market share - in the high-end market it is suffering for the last few quarters.

"We are seeing that for the last two three quarters Samsung's numbers are mostly coming from lower end of the market. In the high-end market they are relatively weaker. This has happened in the last one year. Before that Galaxy S2, Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 did really well in the Indian market but Note 3 and Galaxy S4 haven't. May be Galaxy S5 can help them here," said Manasi Yadav, senior market analyst with IDC India.

Manasi added that while Galaxy S5 looks like a nice high-end phone, it may not appeal to people who want to upgrade because the improvements seem incremental.

"Galaxy S5 seems to have good build quality and design but it doesn't push the feature set by much. New buyers looking for an high-end phone will definitely consider it but Samsung may suffer because people who already have a high-end Galaxy device like Note 3 or Galaxy S3 may not upgrade to Galaxy S5," she said.



Samsung also said that Galaxy Gear Fit, a fitness band that doubles up as a smartwatch will also be available in India from April 11. It has been priced at Rs 15,900.

Galaxy Gear Fit has a curved AMOLED screen measuring 1.8 inches. It also has a heart rate monitor. It will work with the S Health app on select Galaxy phones to record the fitness activity of a user. It can record steps taken in a day as well as has a heart rate sensor that will show the intensity of a workout while a user is in gym.

Gear Fit can also send notifications for emails, calls or messages received on the paired smartphone. It is also water and dust proof.

Samsung is also launching Galaxy Gear 2, which will cost Rs 21,900 and Galaxy Gear 2 Neo that will cost over Rs 15,900.
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