Microsoft first wowed us with Surface, years that we've been looking at cool applications for the smart tables, but still Microsoft thinks you aren't ready. Or aren't rich enough, anyway. Samsung has unveiled the "SUR40 with Microsoft Surface," a third-party implementation and what's being called the "2.0 Experience." On the outside things look a bit different, with a variety of pedestals that the thing can be mounted to, including one with two wood panels that flow up to cradle the display. But, if you like, the 40-inch, 1080p screen and the 2.9GHz AMD Athlon II X2 processor and Radeon HD 6700M behind it is now wall-mountable, meaning it really isn't technically a smart table at all. Up top the interface looks more polished and refined, and naturally Windows Phone 7 support has been added, as you can see in the video below. It all looks rather good, we think, but it's all rather focused on businesses as ever.
Microsoft and Samsung Unveil the Next Generation of Surface
Samsung SUR40 for Microsoft Surface uses new technology that gives large displays the power to see.
LAS VEGAS - Jan. 6, 2011 - At the 2011 International CES in Las Vegas, Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. and Microsoft Corp. unveiled the next generation of the Microsoft Surface experience featuring PixelSense technology, which gives LCD panels the power to see without the use of cameras. Building from the innovation of the first version of Microsoft Surface and Samsung's leading display technology, it is now possible for people to share, collaborate and explore together using a large, thin display that recognizes fingers, hands and other objects placed on the screen. This experience will come to life in the Samsung SUR40 for Microsoft Surface for business customers later in 2011 in 23 countries. Dassault Aviation, Fujifilm Corp., Red Bull GmbH, Royal Bank of Canada and Sheraton Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc. announced that they will deploy the new product.
"Microsoft continues to innovate in vision-based interaction and software designed for touch. With the introduction of the next generation of Surface, using PixelSense technology, we'll bring more tables and walls to life with amazing natural experiences for people to enjoy together," said Panos Panay, general manager, Microsoft Surface. "We partnered with Samsung because of its strengths in LCD technology, hardware design and manufacturing, and worldwide marketing and sales of large-format displays. The companies have built an incredibly successful collaboration that moved from invention to development to manufacturing and sales of a high-quality, industrialized commercial product."
"Samsung collaborated with Microsoft to bring the Surface experience to a new, thin design with powerful vision-based capabilities in the LCD market. The Samsung SUR40 for Microsoft Surface delivers an interactive experience not available anywhere else and will change the way companies engage with their customers," said Jeong-Hwan Kim, senior vice president of Display Sales & Marketing team at Samsung Electronics.
Microsoft and Samsung worked closely to develop the LCD panel and the new hardware product, which is being manufactured by Samsung and will be sold to business customers through its broad distribution and reseller network.
"With Samsung's cutting-edge interactive LCD technology and Microsoft's innovation in vision-based systems, together we were able to define a new LCD architecture," said HyungGuel Kim, senior vice president of Samsung Electronics LCD Business. "This brand-new concept of LCD provides image-sensing technology along with massive multitouch capability and enhanced horizontal durability, which are specialized for the Microsoft Surface experience."
Samsung SUR40 will bring companies around the world new ways to help drive sales, showcase their brand, and increase customer satisfaction and loyalty. The product features include these:
PixelSense. PixelSense gives an LCD display the power to recognize fingers, hands and objects placed on the screen, including more than 50 simultaneous touch points. With PixelSense, pixels in the display see what's touching the screen and that information is immediately processed and interpreted.
Microsoft Surface software. Microsoft Surface software provides business customers with a premier touch-first experience for their end users, built on the principles of direct interaction and together computing, with a new look and feel. It also allows commercial application developers to use a new version of the Microsoft Surface SDK and familiar Microsoft development tools to take full advantage of the massive multitouch and object recognition capabilities of PixelSense and deliver experiences not possible on any other platform.
Designed for commercial environments. The product is designed to meet the challenges of active usage in demanding locations such as retail, hospitality and education.
Thin form factor with multiple configuration options. The product is four inches thin, which makes it easy to use horizontally, hang vertically with the VESA mount, or embed in walls or custom enclosures. Standard legs are available or customers can design and attach their own.
Forty-inch full high-definition (HD) 1080p screen. The 40-inch screen enables unparalleled multi-user experiences in full HD 1080p, with a 16:9 aspect ratio and 1920x1080 resolution.
Powerful embedded system. The product uses the embedded AMD Athlon™ II X2 Dual-Core Processor 2.9GHz paired with the AMD Radeon HD 6700M Series GPU featuring DirectX 11 support to deliver significant processing horsepower and outstanding graphics capability.
Today, the following customers are announcing that they will purchase and deploy Samsung SUR40 to offer unique experiences to their customers:
Dassault Aviation, a French company that designs, manufactures and sells aircraft, will build on its first-version internal deployments and move to using Samsung SUR40 to serve as a marketing tool for the company's Falcon line of aircraft. The Falcon application will enable sales associates to deliver datasheets, customized videos and an interactive flight range map. In addition, Dassault will use Samsung SUR40 to deliver a customized HR application for employees to use to manage certificates, training, vacation and other personnel functions.
Fujifilm, one of the world's largest photographic and imaging companies, is planning an initial Samsung SUR40 deployment of 40 units starting in the Australian market with plans for eventual worldwide deployments. Fujifilm's Surface application will deliver a photo-booth-of-the-future experience, allowing groups of people to come together and to create their individual photo books or other individual photo products in a matter of minutes at point of sale and in a variety of retail locations.
Red Bull, a producer of energy drinks, and Red Bull Media House, provider of media content from Red Bull extreme sports events, have selected T-Systems Multimedia Solutions, a Surface Strategic Partner, to develop a Surface application in an innovative project for use in bars and clubs. Red Bull is investing in Surface for its ability to enhance the brand experience in a variety of locations, as well as its presence at worldwide extreme sports events. Using the Microsoft Surface application, fans of Red Bull will be able to interact with the product and multimedia content at the same time. When guests place their tagged Red Bull cans on the display, video content of Red Bull events and current news is shown on the display and can be saved for viewing later by snapping a photo of a QR tag with a smartphone.
Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), one of North America's leading diversified financial services companies and Canada's largest bank, currently uses Surface in its newly designed "retail store" branches. The new "retail store" brings to life a dramatically new retail banking environment, combining best-in-class retail shopping with financial services. Surface is a key part of the Discovery Zone, which offers a unique and interactive way to engage clients to explore the ways RBC can help them and increase their financial literacy. RBC intends to expand its "retail store" model and deploy Samsung SUR40 over the next year in RBC branches across Canada. RBC worked with Surface Strategic Partner Infusion to create five applications for clients: The Big Picture, which allows customers to explore all the ways RBC can help them meet their financial needs; the Drop a Coin application, which allows users to slide coins across the screen to display the value of regular investing; Meet our Experts, which profiles the local branch staff; the Instant Win application, which allows customers to drop a direct-mail letter on the Surface screen to see if they have won a prize; and the Kids Corner, which offers a fun, interactive puzzle for children to explore while their parents do their banking.
Sheraton Hotels & Resorts Worldwide helps guests make connections at more than 400 hotels in 70 countries around the world. Sheraton plans to expand its Surface footprint globally and deploy Samsung SUR40 as part of The Link@Sheraton to further enhance the guest experience. The Surface applications on the units will provide interactive fun for guests, as well as local mapping information allowing them to stay connected during their travels.
In addition, Microsoft will showcase Samsung SUR40 in Microsoft Stores. Microsoft Surface is an important part of the store experience today, and the new product will further enhance that experience, providing customers with games, maps, music and applications to allow for product comparisons. Microsoft intends to deploy two to four Samsung SUR40 units per Microsoft Store location.
Pricing and Availability
The manufacturer's suggested price for Samsung SUR40 starts at $7,600 (U.S.). Samsung SUR40 will be available later in 2011 in 23 countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Italy, Korea, the Netherlands, Norway, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the United States.
About Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. is a global leader in semiconductor, telecommunication, digital media and digital convergence technologies with 2009 consolidated sales of US$116.8 billion. Employing approximately 174,000 people in 193 offices across 66 countries, the company consists of eight independently operated business units: Visual Display, Mobile Communications, Telecommunication Systems, Digital Appliances, IT Solutions, Digital Imaging, Semiconductor and LCD. Recognized as one of the fastest growing global brands, Samsung Electronics is a leading producer of digital TVs, memory chips, mobile phones and TFT-LCDs. For more information, please visit www.samsung.com.
About Microsoft Surface
Microsoft Surface provides a new way to experience and use information and digital content, engaging the senses, improving collaboration and empowering people to interact. Microsoft Surface is at the forefront of developing software and hardware that uses vision-based technology to fundamentally change the way people use computing devices. More information can be found at http://www.surface.com.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
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