March 31, 1999 in Social Responsibility News

SAMSUNG Electronics Develops Wireless Internet Phone

Wireless Phone Functions as "Mobile Office". Seoul, South Korea - March 31, 1999 - A multi-function wireless phone has been developed that will allow you to attend Christian or Buddhist services without the need to carry a prayer book. Or you can transmit e-mail messages from atop the highest peaks and engage in internet chatting.
Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.'s latest offering is a novel concept that combines internet access and PDA functions with a cellular phone. The new product was developed to stimulate slumping sales in Korea due to market saturation. It is scheduled for release in April.

A team of 110 Samsung Electronics researchers spent three years and W5.5 billion to develop this "internet phone." Ericsson displayed a similar product at this year's CeBIT show in Hanover, Germany and has announced plans to commercialize it early next year, meaning that Samsung is about one year ahead in the race to market.

Samsung plans to sell a total of 1 million internet phones at home and abroad this year.

Product Introduction
The internet phone can access the internet without the use of a personal computer. It comes with a large (30mm x 70mm) touch screen and features an electronic notebook, PC data interface, sound/character recognition, and wireless fax.

In addition to the conventional function of mobile voice transmission, the internet phone has a large-capacity PDA capability that can transmit written data. The memory can handle a total of 2,000 stored addresses, schedules for up to one year, and as many as 100 memos at a time. Moreover, there's an 80,000-word English-Korean dictionary, a 50,000-word Korean-English dictionary and an engineering calculator that does trigonometry, exponential functions and statistics.

A Bible/Christian hymnal and Buddhist Canon/Buddhist songbook are built in, as are electronic games such as crossword puzzles. The unit can also exchange data with a PC and verify the number of incoming calls.

New Technology Development
Through the development of the internet phone, Samsung Electronics gained the technology to convert text data to sound data inside a wireless handset and developed a function that alerts the user of an incoming call while the electronic notebook is in use. In fact, Samsung has applied for 52 patents related to technology and functions for the internet phone.

Samsung's exclusive character recognition technology is 98% accurate with Korean and 95% accurate with English. A standard internet protocol is built in so the internet phone can access the internet without having to first be connected with a notebook PC. The user can press the E-mail or Web Browser icon on the startup screen to gain immediate internet access.

A hypertext function connects the search function to both the English-Korean and Korean-English dictionaries. Then, if the user does not understand the meaning of an English word that he/she is looking up, he/she can simply touch it to get the equivalent in Korean. The Short Message Service allows the user to write and send messages or drawings.

About Samsung
In 1998, Samsung Electronics sold a total of 7.4 million wireless mobile phones at home and abroad, for a 3.7% share of the world market. This performance placed Samsung seventh, behind such players as Nokia, Motorola, Ericsson and Panasonic. This year, however, Samsung plans to move up in the rankings to fifth place through efforts to improve R&D, increased emphasis on marketing and offshore production.

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., with 1998 sales revenue of about 16.6 billion dollars (US), is a world leader in the electronics industry. The Korea-based firm has operations in more than 50 countries with 60,000 employees worldwide. The company consists of three main business units: Multimedia & Home Appliances, Semiconductors and Information & Telecommunications. For more information, please visit our website, http://www.samsungelectronics.com.

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