updated 08:30 am EST, Mon March 5, 2012
Samsung one of first with dual-core media player
Samsung claimed an uncommon frontrunner position for itself in MP3 players on Monday by unveiling the Galaxy Player 70 Plus. An upgrade to the original 70 (known also as the Galaxy S Wi-Fi 5.0 and Galaxy Player 5), the five-inch device is one of the few to carry a dual-core processor. Although 1GHz, it should let the device handle 1080p video and otherwise outperform the iPod touch it's meant to challenge.
A round of extra improvements make it more functional. The rear camera has been upgraded to five megapixels. It likewise claims a larger 2,500mAh battery and, in Korea, a DMB over-the-air TV tuner. Android 2.3 still ships with Samsung's TouchWiz interface layer on top.
Versions of the 70 Plus are expected to ship to South Korea in 16GB and 32GB capacities for the equivalents of $357 and $419. Samsung hasn't said if or when the new device would reach other countries, although the lineup has usually exported to the US and other areas. A US launch would likely have to drop the conspicuously iPod-like center button.
Samsung is one of the few top-tier companies to continue making MP3 players and aggressively targeting the high end. Microsoft had tried that route with the Zune and eventually dropped its plans five years later. SanDisk had likewise targeted the high end, but it lost momentum after a few years and eventually switched to the safer lower end.