After a bunch of teasing, we may finally be able to buy a portable Android device not connected to a carrier.
SamsungHub today reports that CES will be the US coming out party for the Samsung Galaxy Player PMP. In other words, you can get a popular Galaxy S smartphone without the 3G radio internals or a contract with a carrier for significantly less than, say the $530 Nexus S. I covered this development in August and again in October.
What's interesting about this category of device is that if you are within range of Wifi or even a Mifi-device or phone you can still make calls on VoIP. Skype and even Google (GOOG) are building their VoIP offerings for these types of devices.
Apple's (AAPL) iPods in general have been slightly declining in sales overall due largely to the move to the iPhone for PMP services. However, the iPod touch is Apple's most popular iPod device, outpacing sales of the Nano, Classic and budget-minded Shuffle.
So why should Samsung enter this declining market? There are still a lot of iPod touches sold and, at the moment, there aren't any viable Android alternatives.
Samsung also creates many of the parts, including the A4 processor, for Apple's iOS products creating a bit of a sticky situation.
Specs of Samsung's new Galaxy Player device below:
• 1GHz ARM Cortex A8 Processor
• 9.9mm thick
• 4-inch SuperAMOLED display at 800x480 pixels
• 8GB, 16GB and 32GB storage capacities (with possible 32GB micro-SD card option)
• Front-facing VGA camera and 3.2MP rear camera (better for stills than the iPod touch's 1 megapixel rear camera).
• 1200mAh removable battery
• Android 2.2 Froyo OS
Samsung is also expected to show other Android PMPs like YP-G50 and hopefully the recently certified YP-GB70.
I'm glad to see quality Android PMPs entering the US Market. This might be a great device for anyone considering an iPod but who wants an Android device, or their children.