Samsung's new Galaxy Note 9 smartphone will be sold in Australia as a dual-SIM card model while the Galaxy Watch's embedded eSIM will allow international roaming under new plans from Optus, Telstra and Vodafone.
The twin travel-friendly moves show the South Korean tech colossus plans to not only takes the fight to Apple but shift that battle onto a global stage.
How to buy a dual-SIM Galaxy Note 9
At a media briefing in Sydney to launch the company's 2018 Galaxy portfolio, Samsung Australia's mobile chief Garry McGregor revealed to Australian Business Traveller that the Galaxy Note 9, which goes on sale on August 24 from $1,499, will be available in both single-SIM and dual-SIM models.
McGregor told Australian Business Traveller that while the conventional single-SIM Galaxy Note 9 would be supplied to telco partners such as Optus, Telstra and Vodafone, a dual-SIM version would be available through the 'open retail' channel where phones are sold outright to consumers.
Those Note 9s would see a 'hybrid slot' capable of holding either a microSD memory card (at up to 512GB capacity) or a standard nanoSIM card.
This will allow business travellers to keep their Australian number active while overseas in order to take incoming calls and text messages, while at the same time using a prepaid local SIM card for use by local contacts along with generous data allowances.
In the dual-SIM Galaxy Note 9, both SIM cards will be able to connect at 4G speeds rather than one being hobbled to 3G – indeed, the Note 9 can tap into turbo-charged '4G LTE' networks such as Telstra's 4GX and Optus' 4G Plus, to deliver download speeds as high as 1.2Gbps and upload channels of 200-300Mbps.
The Galaxy Note 9 also packs a 20% larger battery (at 4,000mAh) than the Note 8 without significantly adding to its heft, and connects directly to the HDMI port of desktop or wall-mounted monitors– without needing the seperate docking station of the Galaxy 8 series devices – to run Android productivity apps, present a slideshow presentation or watch a video.
The digital S-Pen also doubles as a low-power Bluetooth remote controller for slideshow presentations, in addition to its conventional role as a stylus the Galaxy Note 9's 6.4-inch display.
Galaxy Watch eSIM set for global roaming
Samsung's Galaxy Watch, due for local release on October 4 from $549, will sport an embedded SIM module, or eSIM, for international roaming.
McGregor confirmed to Australian Business Traveller that the company is working with Optus, Telstra and Vodafone on the launch of dedicated eSIM global roaming plans.
These will not only allow the Galaxy Watch to share the same mobile number as the user's smartphone while working independently to that device, but will permit overseas roaming as part of the monthly plan.
While the competing Apple Watch also features an eSIM, global roaming is not available under of the Australian carriers.
Other improvements to Samsung's sixth-generation smartwatch include 80 to 120 hours of battery life between charges, and the debut of a smaller model with a 42mm face and 30mm screen, compared to the standard 46mm dial and 33mm display.