Samsung announced it’s next flagship phone, the Samsung Galaxy S5 at the Mobile World Congress 2014, held at Barcelona. This smartphone comes similar to it’s predecessor, except that it is packed with a better camera, bigger size, fingerprint sensor and a heart rate monitor. And, the device is waterproof!
The 5.1 inch Samsung Galaxy S5 comes with a new back look that offers a better grip. If you are familiar with the original Nexus 7 launched in 2012, the Samsung Galaxy S5 looks more like the original Nexus 7. Talking about the hardware features, it comes with a 2.5 Ghz quad core Snapdragon 800 processor, 2 GB RAM and offers 16 GB or 32 GB internal memory. You can also expand the memory up to 128 GB.
Regarding software, it comes with a toned down version of TouchWiz UI on the top of Android 4.4 KitKat.
16 MP rear camera with which you get UHD recording capability and real-time HDR.
Fingerprint sensor along with the home button. Samsung has also announced partnership with PayPal to offer fingerprint security options to make payments. iPhone 5S was the first device to come with fignerprint sensor.
Heart rate monitor. Hold your finger on the sensor and the device will start recording your heart rate, thanks to S Health 3.0. Over time, the device will also start making graphs based on your heart rate results.
It is water and dust proof.
This device will be available from April 11, 2014.
If you are hunting for a price tag, we do not have updates on that yet. Based on guesses, the device should be available at $650.
Samsung has kept rolling out umpteen number of devices and is one of the big successes of the Android platform. Samsung has chased Apple’s iPhone success with a fierce focus.
They not only dominate the smart-phone niche with their Galaxy S III and Galaxy SIV, they have also created a new niche between a phone and a tabet called “Phablet” and have owned this niche with Galaxy Note devices.
But how much is Samsung’s impact on the Android platform. According to OpenSignal, Samsung dominates with a 47.5% share of the Android market.
Each block shows a different device and the size represents how much market share it has on the Android platform. The dominance of Samsung is clearly seen with almost half the Android devices carrying the Samsung name.
Why Samsung’s dominance is not the best news for Google
Google might not be comfortable with a single manufacturer being so dominant on its Android platform. It basically means with Samsung ever moves away from Android, it could cause immeasurable harm the the platform.
Also Samsung is not exactly happy with Google buying Motorola which is bound to compete with Samsung’s Galaxy S IV with Moto X a new phone it released in a couple of days.
What are your thoughts on Samsung’s share of the Android market? Do drop in your comments.
The Galaxy S IV was launched in 50 countries which included India. Now when phones are launched companies try to find the weirdest possible ways to sing praises of its device.
So what did Samsung do?
They hired Bollywood actor Ranveer Singh and made him dance to a song that was a remake (copy) of Psy’s ‘Gangnam Style’ music video. The words of the song were “S for Samsung style”. The Korean lyrics of the song were further changed into praise filled phrases about Samsung’s Galaxy S IV phone. The song is even more ridiculous than I make it sound.
Below is the full video.
If I was ever going to buy Samsung Galaxy S IV, I think this video would have definitely changed my mind.
Jokes apart, Samsung might be doing great business and also selling millions of phones. But they definitely need to learn that it would be better if their phone did the talking and not some bizarre over the top song and dance show.
Samsung has set a lot of expectations for its new flagship Galaxy S IV model. The phone was unveiled in New York. The octa-core rumors turned out to be true. The phone does not disappoint and lives up to some of some of the hype that was set for it.
Here are some of the basic specs and some unique features.
Galaxy S IV Specs
Display: Full HD Super AMOLED screen, 1920 X 1080 display (441ppi). The screen will be 5 inches. The screen though wider than S III the body of the SIV is slightly smaller.
Processor: 1.6Ghz quad-core processor (some locations will have 1.9Ghz octa-core processor)
Networks: 2G, 3G, WiFi, Bluetooth. An LTE version will be rolled out later in the year.
OS: Android 4.2.2
Camera: 13 MP primary camera and 2 MP secondary camera.
Memory: 2GB RAM. It will ship with memory storage of 16/32/64 GB.
Battery: 2600 mAh and it is a removable battery.
Galaxy S4 Unique Image and Video Features
Dual Camera Mode: The phone has two cameras front and back. Dual Camera mode allows the user to take a photo with both cameras and mix them in.
Drama Shot: More than a 100 shots in 4 seconds and can be used as a collage in a single frame.
Eraser: Allows users to take photos and remove people in the background of the photo especially in a crowded place.
Story Album: Users can create story album of photos and videos from a holiday. The unique part is users will be able to send hard copies of the album at a price.
I saw Samsung’s presentation’s webcast and it was pretty shoddy. It packed in too much information and mentioned feature after feature that really did not let what the phone could do sink in. But the Galaxy S IV is solid product and it will probably end up selling a lot more than Galaxy S III. The launch in New York was a sign of confidence by Samsung. It shows it is ready to face-off with the big names in the US (namely Apple).
The phone will be available in most countries by April.
The phone model is supposedly GT – I9502. The phone allegedly is the dual-sim version of Galaxy SIV for China. The phone seems to have Android 4.2.1 and 5-inch display screen. It has 2GB RAM and 13MP camera. The phone does seem to have all the specs to be the next Galaxy S IV.
You can also see a short leaked video hands-on:
Is it the real deal?
We will never know about that. Samsung Galaxy S IV might be testing many models during their testing phase and this could be one of the prototypes. But it will be great to compare and check to see if the phone when unveiled on March 14.
Samsung has confirmed in a tweet that there is a “unpacked” event in New York City on March 14. The event will be where Samsung will unveil Galaxy S IV. Samsung has had a fantastic year in 2012, with record sales for Galaxy S III handset. It is almost certain that Galaxy S IV will be sold in very large numbers.
Samsung has had difficulty selling its Galaxy S I and S II handsets with patent filings against it by Apple. Thought S III was a different story and with S IV launch in New York, it is obviously trying to make a big splash in the United States.
Expectations from Galaxy S IV
There have been rumours that Samsung will be stepping away from Android in favour of its own Tizen. Though, it seems very unlikely that Galaxy S IV will have Tizen. It will most probably ship with Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean.
Earlier in the year, Samsung showcased flexible OLED screens. They might make an appearance with Galaxy S IV versions. I think it might be fair to expect a screen that folds over the edge, which could be useful to display notifications. It will most probably have a 5-inch display screen.
Samsung Galaxy S IV will end up competing with the likes of HTC One, Nokia’s Lumia 920, possibly an iPhone 6 (or iPhone 5S) and BlackBerry 10 for top honours in the smart phone industry. If Samsung keeps doing as well has it has in the past year, it could probably mean very difficult days for HTC, Nokia and BlackBerry.
At the recently concluded CES 2013 exhibition Samsung did disappoint mobile fans with by not revealing much about their mobiles phones they would be introducing for the year. But they did showcase a new display technology that could change the mobile industry all over again. It introduced flexible OLED display screen branded as Youm. That basically means the display screens can be bent around the edges of a device.
These demonstrations were made with only prototype but I do think considering they introduced these screens to in January, we should see Samsung include flexible display are only prototypes at the moment but it won’t be surprising if Samsung introduces this technology to their flagship devices.
Here is a video demo of Youm Flexible OLED Display by Samsung
Why Flexible OLED Display screens are better?
First advantage is because the screen is flexible, it becomes less fragile like say glass. It will make the screen almost unbreakable.
If the screen bends over the sides of the device, it can actually increase the display area without needing the device size to be increased.
Accepted wisdom is that such screens will consume a less power which means battery life is extended.
Do watch the video and let us know in your comments what you thought about this technology?
Samsung has released two new phones, Galaxy Grand and Galaxy Grand Duos. The Galaxy Grand has a 5-inch screen and looks a lot like it’s more famous cousin the Galaxy S3. The phone has been unveiled with no fanfare. It is expected to be priced significantly lower than high end phones like Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2. The price range would potentially make it a very lucrative buy in markets like India, south-east Asia and Africa.
Galaxy Grand Features
The phone has a 5-inch WVGA TFT Touchscreen. The disappointing part is the low resolution of 800 X 480 pixels.
It does have 1GB RAM and processor speed being 1.2 GHz. That is not exactly the 1.5 GHZ that most newer models over the year will sport. Internal storage is 8 GB.
It will feature the latest version of Android 4.1.2 and also have 8 MP back facing camera. The front camera is 2MP.
The phone supports 2G, 3G and Wi-fi networks. It is not compatible with 4G networks.
The Galaxy Grand Duos has all the same specs with added functionality of using dual-SIMs.
Samsung might be getting a bad reputation for being a copy-cat but it has shown the ability to surprise. When the Galaxy Note was out, many experts (including yours truly) thought it was too big to be a phone. But Galaxy Note and Note 2 have sold in their millions proving that Samsung does have a keen sense of what the market might be looking for.
With Galaxy Grand it is obviously targeting buyers in markets like India and other countries where users might be interested in a low cost hybrid of Galaxy S3 and Note 2. This is potentially a smart move by Samsung as it might undercut competitors like LG to capture the mid-level priced smartphone niche. The phone might also be a hit with frequent travelers who would find the dual-SIM option useful.
What are your thoughts on yet another Galaxy phone by Samsung? Do drop in your comments.
Samsung Galaxy Note 2, which according to latest reports has sold over 5 smartphones. Samsung has confirmed that the Galaxy Note 2, itself had sold over 3 million units in the just 37 days. While Samsung has seen success over the past few years, it has not seen such sale numbers in such a short period of time. The final number of sales in Europe and North America will only go higher over the next couple of months, where it is the traditional shopping season.
Samsung has actually got their bet on larger screens correct. Today almost all phone manufacturers including Apple have increased the screen size on their latest iterations of the phones. It could be because the phones are used more for consuming media content like videos, where having a slightly larger screen seems like a useful idea.
Are ‘Phablets’ here to stay?
Honestly, I am not the biggest fan of Samsung’s Galaxy Note 2. The phone has 5.5 inch screen size. It feels too big for a phone and honestly does not comfortably fit into a regular sized pockets.
That said, the phone is preferred by many who are looking at something between a phone and a tablet.
Samsung’s Galaxy Note 2 selling in such high numbers, shows that Samsung has actually made the right choice. It seems ‘phablets’ are here to stay and we might see more manufacturers doing the same.
Samsung Galaxy S3 has been one of hottest selling Android based smartphone in the world. The phone initially ran on Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich). According to XDA Developer Forum, Galaxy S3 users are getting the option to upgrade to Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean).
For Samsung, it’s Galaxy S3 phone has been a big success story. The phone actually stands out as a different phone and not like its predecessors which often looked too similar to the iPhone.
Considering Apple’s iPhone 5 sales are breaking records, this update being offered by Samsung is just in time.
List of Samsung Devices to get Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean)
Android has really come off age as a OS in the past year or so. One of its major weakness have been the getting phone updated to the latest versions. Samsung has revealed a list of 10 phones (excluding S3) and tablets that will get the Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) in the near future.
Galaxy S II
Galaxy S Advance
Galaxy S II LTE
Galaxy Ace 2
Galaxy Ace Plus
Galaxy Mini 2
Galaxy S Duos
Galaxy Tab 2 7.0
Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus
Galaxy Tab 2 10.1
Galaxy Note 10.1
The Android 4.1 Jelly Beans was released towards the end of June. That means the update for Samsung has taken almost 3 months. Most people who buy phones would not like to wait for a 3 month period for OS upgrades.