LTE double-edged sword for Galaxy Camera users

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LTE double-edged sword for Galaxy Camera users


Galaxy Camera has a 16.3-megapixel lens and 4.8-inch screen. Provided by the company

Samsung Electronics launched a new camera yesterday equipped with super-fast LTE connectivity, marking a new first in the world.

Running on the latest Android OS, the Galaxy Camera draws on the latest communications technologies, the company said at a launch event at its Seocho headquarters in central Seoul.

Although the Galaxy Camera can work with Wi-Fi and align with either 3G or 4G LTE networks, Samsung has limited the choices as users must subscribe to LTE data plans.

This has triggered concern about high usage costs as owners of the device must subscribe to a data plan via one of the three domestic mobile carriers, SK Telecom, KT or LG U+, in order to use the smart camera.

Users of 3G networks can keep their costs down by connecting other devices to the network they use for their smartphone, in line with their data plan. But such data-sharing is not yet available for the LTE network.

KT urged users who want to save money to wait until it releases LTE data-sharing at the end of this year, or until the Korea Communications Commission approves USIM cards for LTE devices. The commission is now discussing the issue with the three mobile carriers.

“As is the case in other countries, we expect there will be one data plan that can be used with multiple mobile devices so people can use the Galaxy Camera without feeling a financial burden,” J.K. Shin, president of Samsung Electronics’ IT and mobile communications division.

The 16.3-megapixel camera is equipped with a 23-millimeter wide-angle lens with a 21-times zoom and a 4.8-inch screen. It will retail for 750,000 won ($692) in Korea and $499 overseas. Samsung explained the price difference by referring to the inclusion of the 4G LTE service at home.

By Kim Jung-yoon []

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