by Anton Shilov
03/14/2013 | 11:35 PM
Samsung Electronics on Thursday introduced one of the highest-anticipated smartphone this year – Galaxy S4 – the company’s fourth-generation high-end smartphone based on Google Android operating system. The flagship handset features extremely-powerful application processor with four or eight cores, world’s first 5” super AMOLED display with 1920*1080 resolution, 13MP camera and Android 4.2.2 OS. In addition, the Galaxy S IV features numerous exclusive capabilities.
“With the Galaxy S4, Samsung is again going to enhance the way we live. All the innovative features of Galaxy S4 were developed based on the insights and needs we found from our consumers all around the world. Following the successful Galaxy S-series, this phone is yet another great proof point of people-inspired innovation. At Samsung we will never stop pursuing innovation conceived by people, so we can inspire them in return,” said JK Shin, president and head of IT & mobile communications division at Samsung.
Samsung Galaxy S4 is powered by either Samsung Exynos 5 Octa application processor with four high-performance ARM Cortex-A15 cores running at 1.60GHz, four low-power ARM Cortex-A7 cores with 1.20GHz clock-speed as well as PowerVR SGX 544 graphics adapter; or Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 APQ8064T application processor 1.90GHz (quad-core Qualcomm Krait 300 microprocessor (Cortex-A9-like with 3 decoders, 11 stage pipeline, VFPv4 FPU, 128-bit NEON accelerator, L2 2MB cache [512KB per core]), Adreno 320 graphics core (unified shader architecture; supports Direct3D 11 feature level 9_3, OpenGL ES 3.0, OpenGL ES 2.0, OpenGL ES 1.1, OpenVG 1.1, EGL 1.4, Direct3D Mobile, SVGT 1.2), 32-bit dual-channel LPDDR3 memory controller, Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, no baseband/modem). It is expected that the U.S. version of the smartphone will be powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 600, whereas Asian and European markets will get handsets with Samsung Exynos 5 Octa inside.
The new flagship smartphone from Samsung has 5" Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen with 1920*1080 resolution [441 pixels per inch density, higher than that of Apple iPhone 5] and Corning Gorilla Glass 3. The Galaxy S4 features 2GB of LPDDR3 RAM and can be equipped with 16GB, 32GB or 64GB of NAND flash storage as well as microSD memory card slot.
Samsung equipped its flagship Galaxy S 4 model with 13MP main and 2MP front cameras, 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, GPS/GLONASS, NFC, Bluetooth 4.0 (LE), IR LED, multiple sensors (RGB light sensor, digital compass, gyroscope, barometer, accelerometer, proximity sensor, gesture sensor, temperature and humidity sensor), MHL 2.0 output, 2100mAh battery and so on. As expected, the S4 will come with Google Android 4.2.2 "Jelly Bean" operating system and will support all 2.5G, 3G, 3.5G (up to HSPA+ with 21Mb/s) types of networks and will also feature 4G/LTE where available.
While the Samsung Galaxy S4 is very powerful, technologically advanced and is clearly better than its predecessor, it has not become larger than the S III: it measures 136.6mm*69.8mm*7.9mm and weighs only 130 grams (compared to 136.6mm*70.6mm*8.6mm and 133 grams). For many customers the Galaxy S4 will still be too large, but those who have already used a super-phone with a large screen, will definitely like the new top-of-the-range phone from Samsung.
It is noteworthy that Samsung again decided to use Qualcomm Snapdragon application processor for the U.S. version of the Galaxy S4 and not its own high-end system-on-chip with higher core-count and more advanced core types. The reason for such move is unclear, but it is obvious that on the U.S. market the smartphone will quickly lose its performance king crown once smartphones powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 hit the market in Q2 2013.
Besides sporting top-notch hardware and advanced Google Android 4.2.2 operating system, the Galaxy S4 sports a number of exclusive software capabilities which improve overall experience with the device.
Equipped with a 13MP rear camera, the Galaxy S4 also boasts a ‘Dual Camera’ function that allows simultaneous use of both front and rear cameras, users can choose from a variety of frame effects which blend the two pictures naturally and also adjust the size of the small picture inside the big one. The camera functionality extends beyond with ‘Drama Shot’, which allows to see all the action in one continuous time-lapse, and ‘Sound & Shot’, which stores sound and voice together as the picture is taken.
‘Samsung Smart Pause’ enables to control the screen using eyes: when one is watching a video, the video pauses when one looks away, then it starts right up again once the glance is back. ‘Samsung Smart Scroll’ allows one to scroll the browser or emails up and down without touching the screen. It recognizes face looking at the screen and movement of a wrist and then scrolls the pages up or down accordingly.
‘Air View’ allows users to hover with their fingers to preview the content of an email, S Planner, image gallery or video without having to open it. One can even see a magnified view on the internet browser, or a phone number saved in the speed dial on the keypad.
With ‘Air Gesture,’ one can change the music track, scroll up and down a web page, or accept a call with a wave of a hand.
The Galaxy S4 also features ‘S Translator’, which provides instant translation, using text or voice translation on applications including email, text message and ChatON. This instant translation is possible both from speech to text and text to speech and ensures that one can rely on the correct information whilst abroad.
With ‘S Voice Drive’ one can activate commands via voice control for optimization when driving. Once connected with a car Bluetooth, the phone automatically turns into driving mode converting text to speech so one can easily and safely check messages with no need to look at the screen.
‘Samsung Optical Reader’ makes life yet more effortless, by automatically recognizing text, a business card or QR code information, and providing useful functions such as translation, call, text message and search.
At home, using ‘Samsung WatchON,’ the Galaxy S4 will transform into an IR remote to control r home entertainment system including TV, set-top box, Blu-ray/DVD player and even air conditioner. In addition, one can enjoy various content including live TV, cable TV and VOD based on the rich information provided by EPG (electronic program guide).
In addition, the Galaxy S4 ensures that tasks are effortless with innovative features that detect face, voice and motions to enable screen control with no need for finger touch activation:
The Galaxy S4 also keeps its owner up-to-date with health and well-being information using the new ‘S Health’ software. The combination of sensors built within the device systematically and automatically monitors health, surroundings and other environmental details. Also, users can easily check their health conditions using food diary, exercise diary and sleep monitor to stay fit and healthy. To further protect its owner’s well-being, ‘Samsung Adapt Display’ provides an optimal viewing experience, customized for each type of application, and ‘Samsung Adapt Sound’ offers an optimal level and type of sound, personalized for each user.
Samsung Galaxy S4 will be available from Q2 globally including U.S., partnering with AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon Wireless, as well as U.S. Cellular and Cricket. In Europe, Samsung Galaxy S4 is partnering with global mobile operators such as Deutsche Telecom, EE, H3G, Orange, Telenor, Telia Sonera, Telefonica, and Vodafone.