Samsung develops 7-megapixel camera phone

Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. has developed a cell phone with a 7-megapixel camera and will show the device for the first time later this week at the Cebit show in Hanover, Germany, the company said Wednesday.

The SCH-V770 is similar to a 3-megapixel model released last year by Samsung and is distinctive because at first glance it resembles a digital still camera. Its camera-like looks are thanks in a large part to a 3X optical zoom lens, just like that found on conventional digital still cameras, and a camera-style flash. On the rear of the phone there's a 2-inch color TFT (thin film transistor) display and a keypad for operating the phone and camera functions.

Compared to the earlier model and phone with a 5-megapixel camera that Samsung also announced last year, the new handset offers several additional photography functions. These include functions typically found on digital still cameras, such as manual focus, user-controllable focal length, shutter speed and shutter priority, aperture priority and fully manual shooting modes. Such features are unusual in camera phones.

Users can also clip a wide-angle convertor and tele-convertor to the front of the lens on the SCH-V770.

The 2-inch display on the rear offers 320 pixel by 240 pixel (QVGA) resolution. Other features include an MP3 player, video capture mode and business card reader, said Samsung. The phone measures 127 millimeters (mm) by 52 mm by 27 mm and weighs 180 grams.

Alas, for visitors to Cebit attracted to the new phone, it isn't compatible with GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications), the mobile phone system used in most of the world. The phone works on the CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) standard that is used in South Korea, the U.S. and parts of South Americn and Asia.

Samsung doesn't have a sales schedule or price for the handset, said Erin Lee, a spokeswoman for the company in Seoul.

The new phone represents the latest in a string of firsts in the cellular handset market for Samsung, which is battling with Motorola Inc. for second place in the world cell phone market. Last year, Samsung was first with a 5-megapixel camera phone and was also the first to put on sale a handset with integrated hard-disk drive and a phone that can receive satellite radio and television broadcasts.

Cebit runs from March 10 through March 16 at the fairground in Hanover, Germany.

This story, "Samsung develops 7-megapixel camera phone" was originally published by PCWorld.

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