The Droid Guy has discovered that many local online retailers plan to offer Samsung's shapely Galaxy Round smartphone, including Negri Electronics. The company began taking pre-purchase payments a week ago for a hefty $1,129.50, an insane price even if the shape is somewhat unique. The curvy unlocked phone is expected to ship in Black starting this week.
The Galaxy Round features a 5.7 inch 1080p Super AMOLED display powered by a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 (MSM 8974) SoC clocked at 2.3 GHz, 3 GB of RAM and a 2800 mAh battery. The device also provides 32 GB of internal storage and a microSD card slot for up to 64 GB of additional storage.
Additional specs include Wireless N, WiFi Direct and Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity, NFC, USB 3.0, GPS+GLONAS, and Samsung KNOX, making this device Enterprise-ready. The device is 7.9 mm thick, weighs 0.34 pounds, and includes a 13MP camera on the leather-and-stitch designed back. Google's Android 4.3 "Jelly Bean" is the OS of choice.
The device launched in South Korea via SK Telecom on October 10 in "Luxury Brown" for 1.09 million won, or roughly $1,000 USD. At the time, a Samsung insider claimed that the company was merely testing the curved display, that the device was a prototype, so only a limited number of the Galaxy Round will be made, even in South Korea. That should explain the interestingly high $1,000 asking price.
Samsung pulled a similar stunt with the SCH-W850 and the Samsung Galaxy S II HD LTE (SHV-E120S). These were reportedly produced in limited numbers in order to test the AMOLED display in the former device and the HD AMOLED display in the latter model. Thus, if the Galaxy Round is merely a prototype, chances are the phone will not be made available outside South Korea.
The point of the prototype is likely to see if a device with a curved display can handle the same wear and tear that a typical smartphone with a flat glass display endures over its lifespan. The Galaxy Round screen is reportedly based on a plastic substrate, so it won't crack into several pieces if the phone is dropped. The screen will also be light, thin and very durable.
Negri Electronics currently has the phone on backorder, while over in Australia MobiCity has the phone listed as "out of stock, backorder or contact us for ETA." While these may be unofficial means of acquiring the phone, for a hefty price, you could be one of a limited number of individuals owning this unique "special edition" device that was originally sold in South Korea.