Armani to launch TV, mobile with Samsung

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Milan, Sep 23: Italian designer Giorgio Armani has joined forces with Samsung Electronics to design a television and a mobile phone, along with other consumer electronics, the companies said on Sunday.

Armani, one of Italy's leading fashion designers, will unveil a mobile phone model on Sept. 24 at his show for Giorgio Armani womenswear for spring and summer 2008, joining several other designers who have already tapped this market.

The Armani-Samsung phone will be the size of a credit card and 10.5 millimetres thick, the companies said in a statement.

Designers Dolce&Gabbana have teamed up with Motorola for a gold-coloured version of the RAZR mobile phone model and Prada has developed a phone with South Korea's LG Electronics.

Armani said the liquid crystal display (LCD) television that it develops with Samsung will be unveiled in January 2008. Home electronics are still unusual territory for fashion designers, although several have launched interior design collections.

Luxury goods segments are benefiting from a surge in the wealthy alongside fast economic growth in countries such as China, India and Russia, while Middle East markets have strengthened as a boom in commodity prices increases incomes.

''We make as much of a personal statement with the mobile phones that we carry or the televisions that we have in our living rooms as we do with the shoes and bags we wear or the furnishings we choose,'' Armani said in the statement.

No financial details were disclosed.


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