Samsung's U.S. plans for new Galaxy Note and Tab 7.7 remain unclear

Rep at IFA event reportedly says Samsung has 'no plans' to sell devices in U.S.; spokesman says plans are unannounced

Samsung has "no plans" to bring its new, stylish Galaxy Note and Galaxy Tab 7.7 mobile devices to the U.S. market, according to a blogger reporting from the IFA event in Berlin.

However, Samsung later told Computerworld that it hasn't yet announced its plans for both devices in the U.S. market.

Xavier Lanier, a blogger for GottaBeMobile, described the new Tab 7.7 , a replacement for last year's original Galaxy Tab, as having a "slim design and gorgeous display [which] put it at the top of my shopping list."

In the post, Lanier said that a Samsung rep told him that there are "no plans" to bring the Tab 7.7 or the new concept Galaxy Note device (which allows digital pen input on a 5.3-in display) to the U.S. market.

Asked to clarify, a U.S.-based Samsung spokesman told Computerworld via email that "Samsung has not made any announcements about bringing the Galaxy Tab 7.7 or Galaxy Note to the U.S., but if that changes, we'll make sure to let you know."

Analysts said that it's unlikely that Samsung will ignore the U.S. with the two new products, given the size and importance of the market and Samsung's expressed interest in bringing products to the U.S.

Samsung faces more serious questions, however, over whether Americans would be willing to pay the projected price for the the Galaxy Tab 7.7.

At the IFA conference, Samsung indicated that the unsubsidized price for the Galaxy Tab 7.7 could be less than $800, but well above the $499 starting price for the iPad 2, the market leader, and certainly above the expected $299 price an Amazon tablet expected to launch in October.

Some analysts are predicting an onslaught of $200 to $300 tablets this fall, including some from well-known makers like Amazon and Lenovo.

Samsung could be working with U.S. retailers or wireless carriers to sell the Galaxy Tab 7.7 for a cut-rate price (subsidized with carrier wireless contracts, for example), as all the major tablet manufacturers are undoubtedly awaiting Amazon's formal announcement, analysts said.

Samsung could also hold onto a high-end cachet -- and price -- for the Galaxy Tab 7.7, which has a high-clarity Super Amoled Plus display and is only 0.31 inches thick (7.89 mm). It also runs Android 3.2 and provides a dual-core 1.4 GHz processor, putting it in line with the latest technologies.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen , or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed . His e-mail address is mhamblen@computerworld.com .

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