by CIO Staff

ITU: Samsung Ultra Video Handset to Support DivX

Dec 04, 20062 mins
MobileSmall and Medium Business

Samsung Electronics plans to release a mobile handset next month designed for watching video that supports the DivX video codec.

The Ultra Video is a candy bar-shaped handset with a thin film transistor liquid crystal display (LCD) screen that offers 262,000 colors and resolution of 240 by 320 pixels. The screen can also swivel, allowing users to find the optimal screen angle for watching video in one of several formats: DivX, MPEG4, H.264 and Windows Media Video.

Samsung claims the phone, which goes on sale in January for US$350, is the first to support DivX, a video codec based on MPEG4 that allows a DVD to be compressed to a much smaller size, allowing longer videos to be easily downloaded over the Internet.

Along with video, the Ultra Video handset supports several digital music formats: MP3, Advanced Audio Coding (AAC), AAC+, e-AAC+ and Windows Media Audio (WMA). AAC is the file format used with Apple Computer’s iTunes music download service.

In addition to playing a range of music file formats, the Ultra Video can be used with music download services that support WMA digital rights management and Microsoft’s Media Transfer Protocol. Other features include a microSD (Secure Digital) slot for a removable memory card, support for Bluetooth version 2.0 and a 2-megapixel digital camera.

The handset was on display at the International Telecommunication Union’s (ITU’s) Telecom World 2006 exhibition and conference in Hong Kong. However, the phone was not switched on, and visitors were not able to test its features.

Samsung also showed off its upcoming Ultra Audio handset, which will hit the market in January, priced at $250. Shaped like a candy bar, the Ultra Audio does not support third-generation networks and has a slightly smaller screen than the Ultra Video. The Ultra Audio’s screen measures 2.1 inches across the diagonal.

Ultra Audio supports the same audio file formats as the Ultra Video. It also supports playback of MPEG4 and H.263 video files.

Information on where Samsung will sell the handsets was not immediately available.

Telecom World runs through Friday, Dec. 8.

-Sumner Lemon, IDG News Service (Singapore Bureau)

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