While everyone keeps talking about Apple (AAPL)’s billion-dollar patent victory over Samsung, Reuters reports that the South Korean-based firm has just made a surprise announcement at an electronics show in downtown Berlin. According to the report, Samsung has launched the ATIV S – the world’s first smartphone using Microsoft (MSFT)’s latest mobile software.
The surprise announcement comes a week before Nokia (NOK), which is in a broad strategic partnership with Microsoft as it desperately tries to regain market share from the iPhone and Android-based devices, is due to unveil its new Lumia Windows Phone-powered smartphones in New York.
“This is just the first in a big lineup of new hardware that’s coming with Windows Phone 8, but it’s a seriously impressive opening salvo,” wrote Microsoft executive Ben Rudolph on a company blog showing off the new phone.
Samsung, who built the ATIV S with the latest technology, did not have the phone on display at the large media event in Berlin, where it showed off tablets using Windows 8 software and also unveiled the second generation of its popular Galaxy Note phone-cum-tablet, setting high hopes for its success, the report says.
“I am pretty confident it will even outsell its predecessor,” said JK Shin, Samsung’s chief of mobile business.
Samsung hopes the launch of the new device, which according to windowsteamblog’s Ben Rudolph has a 4.8” display, which “makes the ATIV S one of the bigger phones on the market”, will take some attention away from its loss of the court case.
Apple is seeking from a U.S. judge eight Samsung smartphones pulled from shelves and banned from the U.S. market.
The move, if successful, will rapidly turn Apple’s $1.05 billion court victory into a tangible business gain over a key rival.