Samsung ATIV S is world’s first Windows 8 smartphone

Microsoft’s next version of the OS — Windows 8 is due for launch on 26 October. But yesterday, Samsung became the first company to launch a new smartphone with the Windows 8 OS at the IFA in Berlin. The device is called ATIV S, a rather dull name, but still the smartphone might be a new choice for consumers stuck between Android and iPhone.

For Microsoft, there’s a lot riding on Windows 8 which is expected to be a significant upgrade from Windows 7. The software giant hopes that the launch of Windows 8 tablets and smartphones will help it make some inroads into the market for which it has been a relative late-comer.

So what are the key features of the new Samsung smartphone with Windows 8? First, the device is quite thin with a great aluminium finish and is only 8.7mm thick. The screen is the same size as its popular Galaxy S III device, measuring almost 4.8 inches with an HD Super AMOLED display made from Corning Gorilla Glass 2.

Taking advantage of the fact that Windows 8 supports both dual-core and multi-core processors, the new phone comes with a 1.5Ghz dual-core processor and 1GB of onboard RAM thus ensuring it will be faster than all previous versions of Windows 7 smartphones.

It also a 8MP autofocus rear camera (same as the Note II and S III, thus putting it in the same level of smartphones as those on top) and a 1.9MP front-facing camera. The device comes with two storage capacities – 16GB or 32GB – and both models have a MicroSD slot for expanded storage. The smartphone also comes with a 2300mAh battery.

As far as technical specs go, the Windows 8 smartphone is on par with a lot of other high-end devices. The big factor will be how Windows 8 fares for users. Currently Microsoft needs to ensure that app developers start taking the OS seriously.

Without apps, Windows 8 has very little chance of competing with Android or iOS. Analysts are speculating however, that the Apple-Samsung verdict will be beneficial to Windows, whose OS bears no similarities to either Android or iPhone, thus encouraging more app developers to start paying more attention to it. For key features of Windows 8 click here.