Samsung, Sony, Nokia, and others have all launched devices at IFA 2014 in Berlin, a week before Apple steps up to the plate.

All eyes are on Cupertino, California for next Tuesday's expected unveiling of the new Apple iPhone 6 and possibly the iWatch. But a plethora of new devices were just launched by Apple's rivals at the IFA 2014 tech expo in Berlin this week. What competition will Apple be launching against this fall?

Samsung: The First Smartphone Designed for VR 

It's of course hard to say at this point whether any of the devices revealed at IFA 2014 can rival what's become an incredibly hyped-up product cycle for Apple, but the most likely candidate has traditionally been, and continues to be, Samsung.

Apple's chief hardware rival opened up the week in Berlin with a couple of attention-grabbing additions to their Galaxy Note line. First is the Galaxy Note 4, which comes with a 5.7-inch screen sporting quad HD resolution (that's 1440 x 2560p, or a ridiculous 515 pixels per inch).

As we covered in more detail here, the Galaxy Note 4 is otherwise more or less an incremental upgrade over the previous year's model, with higher megapixel counts on both cameras, a faster processor and a more refined look.

But the big feature of the Galaxy Note 4 -- and a reason why we may soon care about quad HD on smartphones -- is the Gear VR accessory.

Gear VR is a boxy headset that you click your Galaxy Note 4 into that basically turns the combination into a high-resolution Oculus Rift. That's not an exaggeration: Oculus helped Samsung design the 360-degree virtual reality kit.

With this refined take on Google's Cardboard VR Hack, featuring a touchpad and back button, along with the ability to switch your view back to "reality" through the Note 4's camera -- and the growing consensus that VR may become the platform for a future "Web 3.0" -- Samsung may be on to something big here: the first smartphone that's also a mobile VR set. Time will tell.

Samsung also unveiled the Galaxy Note Edge, a variant of the Note 4 with an even higher pixel count and a curious curved "side screen" about an inch thick on the right hand side of the device.

It looks as if the Galaxy Note 4 were a paperback that you left standing on its side for too long, warping the pages into a permanent curve. It's another attempt by Samsung to make use of flexible displays, though with current limited functionality as an app launcher, Twitter feed, and a couple of other nonessential modes, it's hard to see this feature gaining the edge over competitors.

Sony: Updated Xperia Z Line

Sony unveiled three new devices in various sizes for IFA 2014, following up on its Xperia Z line.

The Xperia Z3 continues Sony's tradition of building boxy, waterproof smartphones with high-resolution cameras, decent screens, and high-powered processors. The Xperia Z3 flagship sports a 1080p 5.2-inch screen, a 2.5GHz Snapdragon processor and a 20.7-megapixel rear camera with a wide angle lens and extra light sensitivity for low-light photography.

Overall, the Xperia Z3 is just a decent follow-up on the Z2, following industry standards for Android flagships but offering little else to appeal outside its established consumer base.

Sony also unveiled two variants of the Xperia Z3: The Xperia Z3 Compact and the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact. The first device is a pared-down mid-tier smartphone with the same 20.7-megapixel camera and the same waterproof rating and PlayStation integration as the Z3 line, but a lighter, smaller body and a smaller sticker price.

The Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact brings 1920 x 1200p to its iPad mini-sized 8-inch display, offering the same Sony bonuses as its cousins, but without the standout camera.

Nokia Lumia 830: The Affordable Flagship

Nokia and Microsoft plan on challenging Apple through pricing, unveiling what's being hyped as the "first affordable flagship smartphone" in the Nokia Lumia 830.

The Lumia 830 is Nokia's lightest and thinnest smartphone so far, weighing just less than 5.3 ounces at a third of an inch thickness. For 330 euros (the U.S. price hasn't been announced yet, but the equivalent is around $430 unsubsidized, give or take), the Nokia 830 offers a 5-inch 720p display, a decent LTE-capable Snapdragon 400 processor and a Carl Zeiss PureView 10-megapixel camera with the Lumia Denim software update that offers blazing fast photography and 4K video capture.

To grab customers away from Apple or Samsung, the Lumia 830 still has that Windows 8.1 operating system-switch to contend with, but offering wireless charging and one of the best camera software/hardware systems, packed into an attractive, slim device at a very low unsubsidized price may draw some of the pre-paid crowd away from the two bigs.

Asus ZenWatch: Bringing Style to Android Wear

While Apple has been rumored to place a particular emphasis on the iWatch's fashion appeal, Asus revealed an Android Wear smartwatch to compete with the beauty-first market.

Called the ZenWatch, Asus's relatively cheap smartwatch emphasizes style over everything else -- and it's certainly the best looking Android Wear smartwatch to date.

As we previously reported, it comes with a 1.6-inch curved AMOLED display, 4GB of storage, a 1.2GHz Snapdragon processor with a half-gigabyte of RAM, Bluetooth 4.0, various sensors, and Google's Android Wear operating system.

But what really matters is the look and design of the ZenWatch, which comes with a leather strap and silver and gold detailing that makes it actually look like a nice watch -- especially compared to most of its Samsung, LG, and Sony competitors.

But we'll have to wait until Tuesday to find out how the ZenWatch -- along with all of IFA 2014's offerings -- stack up against Apple's new products.

For more stories like this, follow us on Twitter!