Mobility

Samsung boosts portfolio with new efforts in connected cars, VR, and Galaxy Note7

Along with the launch of the Galaxy Note7, Samsung launched a new connected car product called Connect auto, as well as new wireless headphones that could be great for business travelers.

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Image: Samsung

ALERT: The Samsung Galaxy Note7 has been recalled and discontinued. If you own a Note7, you should return it to Samsung immediately for a refund.

The Samsung Galaxy Note7 officially hit the US market on Friday, but on the same day Samsung also quietly released a new connected car system and mobile accessories that will be great tools for business commuters and travelers.

The Samsung Connect auto is Samsung's newest connected car solution. Originally announced in February 2016, the Connect auto is a small box that plugs into a vehicle's OBD II port underneath the steering wheel, creating an AT&T 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot for the car that can support up to 10 devices.

The Connect auto is built on the Tizen OS and is secured using the Samsung KNOX system. According to a Samsung press release, the tool also "sends real-time alerts to the driver, improving efficiency and safety on the road." Users can also opt-in to sharing that data with their insurance provider for a usage-based insurance (UBI) model.

Based on its potential to support many devices, and its security features, the Connect auto could be a welcome addition in the cars of business commuters who carpool, or road warriors who travel regionally. Imagine being able to tackle some email on your way to the office.

SEE: Samsung Galaxy Note7: The smart person's guide (TechRepublic)

At the same time, Samsung also launched two sets of headphones that could prove useful for fitness fans and business travelers. First up is the Gear IconX, a set of $199.99 wireless earbuds that are cable-free. They have a built-in fitness tracker and heart rate monitor, and they sync with the S Health app. These earbuds also feature a built-in music player that can hold roughly 1,000 songs.

The Level Active are in-ear headphones that also wrap around the ear, and feature the more traditional form factor for wireless headphones, being connected in the middle by a cable that sits behind the wearer's neck. These headphones are sweat-resistant, and also sync to the S Health app. The Level Active costs $99.99. Both options would make it much easier to run through the airport, or grab luggage down from an overhead bin, without a user getting their headphones yanked off of their head.

The company's efforts in VR also got a boost with the new Gear VR, Samsung's headset that uses a Galaxy Note7 or S7 to give users a VR experience. The updated version is lighter in weight, has new controls, and brings an expanded field of view for $99.99.

The Gear 360 is Samsung's tripod-mounted 360-degree camera that shoots photos and video. Available for $349.99, it can shoot in high resolution (3840 X 1920) and share content directly to a user's Galaxy phone or to social media.

These five products are all a part of Samsung's mobile portfolio, centered around the Galaxy Note7. The phone's giant curved 5.7-inch display is sleek, and its premium features including an iris scanner and Knox integration make it a serious contender in the enterprise and a strong competitor for Samsung against rival Apple.

For more information on the Galaxy Note7, check out our Smart Person's guide here.

The 3 big takeaways for TechRepublic readers

  1. Samsung recently launched the Galaxy Note7, along with new mobile accessories, VR products, and a connected car initiative.
  2. The Connect auto could allow carpooling business commuters, or road warriors, to be able to get more work done as a passenger in the car, because it supports 10 users with 4G LTE Wi-Fi.
  3. The new Galaxy Note7, with its premium features and ecosystem of supporting products, make it a strong competitor against Apple in the enterprise.

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About Conner Forrest

Conner Forrest is a Senior Editor for TechRepublic. He covers enterprise technology and is interested in the convergence of tech and culture.

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