Samsung Phone Senses 3-D Movements

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Samsung Electronics has developed a cell phone that can sense movement in three dimensions and respond to those movements by performing actions such as dialing numbers or ending a call, the company says.

The SCH-S310's motion sensing system allows users to, for example, draw a number three in the air to dial a three, says Samsung. Shaking the phone twice will end a call or delete a message. Other movement functions programmed into the handset include a sharp move to the right or left to tell the built-in MP3 music player to skip forward or back a track, while drawing a "O" or "X" in the air makes the phone say "Yes" or "No" out loud, the company says.

The phone is compatible with the CDMA2000 1x cellular system and also includes an electronic compass, a 1.3 megapixel camera, and a 262,000-color display. It measures 3.9 inches by 1.9 inches by .9 inches and weighs 3.9 ounces, says Suyeon Chae, a spokesperson for Samsung in Seoul.

Available in the U.S.?

It will go on sale in South Korea in March, says Chae. The company has yet to decide the price. Its overseas launch is also yet to be decided and will depend partly on how the phone does in the South Korean market.

Samsung has applied for 22 domestic and foreign patents for the motion sensing functions.

Looking ahead, the company says it has developed a number of other functions that may be included on future handsets, including using the sensor to help reduce blurring caused by camera shake. Changes in body movement might even be able to trigger the telephone to deliver health advice, the company says.

Samsung is one of the world's largest manufacturers of cell phones. It is scheduled to announce its full year business results on Friday.

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