We must admit the ceremony for the revealing the Samsung Galaxy S4 was amazing. Not so good comments were said for it though, but this new handset made good initial impressions. Running the latest Android OS 4.2.2 Jelly Bean and piled with cool new features, this smartphone has only a slight improvement in the hardware part.
We have a different point of view for the S4 than others. With the new phone, Samsung has set new standards in the smartphone industry and has made a step further than other phones, including the iPhone. It has nearly the same design with the S3 but with bigger screen, 5-inch, better resolution of 1080p, slightly better processor quad-core 1.9 Snapdragon 600, better rear camera 13 pixels and better front facing camera with 2 megapixels.
We can say that the problem is in its enhancements that weren’t the ‘must have’ features that every phone should have and haven’t proven to be very useful. The control app that works with the IR is very impressive, the eye tracking capabilities that allows you to pause a video when you are looking away from the phone – also impressive. The others are not quite interesting or maybe they are, but if someone really needs them and figures them out eventually. But if you enjoy high-end phones, prospect and technology at its best , you won’t be impressed by this new device, and you will be able to pick HTC One or iPhone 5 over this new handset.
As for the design, on first glance the smartphone is large, huge to be exact. It is somewhere between the new Galaxy Note and the last Galaxy S3 smartphone. But, if you are used into holding big smartphones it won’t be so odd for you. Some of the users were fired up about the all plastic case. They were expecting something else, beautiful all metal design like the HTC One or polished and elegant design like the one on the iPhone 5. But Samsung said that that wasn’t their goal. They are still using plastic just for durability and manufacturer benefits. Oh yes and price, which is totally logical.
The eye tracking gestures feature worked better in theory than in practice. Smart Pause and Smart Scroll are working slower then I expected, taking a bit of time to pause and to resume the video. The same thing happened with the scrolling of the content on the screen. A small delay maybe makes sense, because you don’t want to stop the video every time you look away from the display, but still you can disable this feature if you want.
If you want to get the phone and use the phone by yourself you will wait another month to do so. Samsung reported they plan to release the phone somewhere in April or May. The carriers in the US that will sell the smartphone will be Verizon, Sprint, AT&T, Cricket Wireless, US Cellular and T-Mobile. However, they didn’t share their plans for other countries. Maybe the price will be the same as the S3, but from Samsung there is still no information of that kind.
There are still few areas that the competitors may use as their strong side. Premium build materials are one of the factors, wireless charging is second and other areas that need some improvements. The hardware isn’t beautiful and the software isn’t inspiring enough.
This is still the first sneak peek of the smartphone. For more information and reviews of the phone, stay tuned.