Samsung’s new Galaxy S8 phone has a dock, Gear VR and 360 camera

Alex Kidman 30 March 2017

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Alongside the Samsung Galaxy S8, Samsung has also announced a raft of new accessories.

While the primary focus of Samsung’s launch event in New York City today was the reveal of the Samsung Galaxy S8 and Samsung Galaxy S8+ smartphones, the South Korean company also revealed a bevy of companion devices to expand the functionality of the new phones.

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The key new accessory is the Samsung DeX, a phone dock on steroids that not only charges the phone and places it in a portrait orientation, but also provides a range of connectivity features as well as a desktop-style experience that should really push the capabilities of the Snapdragon 835 or Exynos 8995 processors that power the two variants of Samsung’s latest smartphone. The DeX will feature wired 100Mbps Ethernet, 2 USB ports and an HDMI output port. The DeX dock will cost $199 when it launches in Australia on 28 April 2017.

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Samsung had already announced an updated Gear VR headset at Mobile World Congress that comes with a dedicated controller. While you can use third-party controllers with the existing Gear VR headsets, the forced bundling of an updated controller should give Samsung’s VR ambitions a shot in the arm, especially given the improved processing power of the Galaxy S8 smartphones.

The new Gear VR will be sold in Australia at an RRP of $199 on 28 April. It's also bundled as a free extra with the Galaxy S8 or Galaxy S8+ if you pre-order early enough.

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Samsung launched the first generation of its Gear 360 camera at Mobile World Congress 2016, although it took some time before it released it in the local market. At its launch event it showed off a new 4K model of the Gear 360 camera that sports improved recording capabilities, as well as faster transfer of files from the camera itself to compatible devices.

Samsung Galaxy S8: Everything you need to know

Samsung Galaxy S8: Everything you need to know

That compatible device list expands considerably, including the new Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+, but also Apple's iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus and iPhone SE. Live streaming of VR content to YouTube or Facebook is also supported. There has been a huge upswing in the quantity and quality of available 360 degree video in the past 12 months, so Samsung has its work cut out making the new Gear 360 a must-have item. It will retail for $399 when it launches on 28 April.

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