Hey gang, Valkor here. It's been speculated for weeks… months even about the Samsung Galaxy S IV (S4), when it would launch, and what kind of features it would have. Some speculated it would use bendy glass, but that theory was squashed during CES 2013. Speculation continued, rumors were flying about and most turned out to be true. In the end, we all had to wait for official word from Samsung on just what exactly would the S4 entail. And that time my friend has come on gone. On March 14th Samsung held a huge "Unpacking" event at Radio City Music Hall in NYC – bigger than any Samsung event I've ever attended, which included a full orchestra, a show piece, a packed audience and hands on time. All of which to showcase their latest smartphone and its many features. On a side note, members from HTC were out and about handing out chips and hot chocolates to members of the press whilst we wait entry into the theater. Very lulzy move HTC, very lulzy indeed.
Before I continue, I wanna give a shoutout to Rich from My Take Radio for rollin with a brotha. I learned a lot from you sir and I hope with your sound advice I will take TOV to the next level. Back to the show and to get an idea of where this event was going and it's theme, you'll have to start at the beginning with this vid:
The Samsung Galaxy S4 is the successor to the Galaxy S3, but coming in just a bit thinner and way lighter than it's older brother. Another significant diffrence is the size of the screen - the GS3 measures at 4.8" while the GS4 checks in at 5". And the larger display means higher picture clarity and resolution; the GS4 touts full HD with a 1920 x 1080 Super AMOLED display. Other features include:
- 13MP Full HD rear camera and a 2MP Full HD front camera
- 2GB LPDDR3 of onboard RAM
- have an internal storage of 34/64 GB with expandle memory through Micro SD up to an additional 64GB
- Runs on Android Jellybean 4.2.2
- Battery is 2600mAh
- supports NFC, 3G, LTE, WiFi (a/b/g/n/ac)
The soutside isn't the only change the device is receiving; Samsung is touting the GS4 as a "life companion" and if they can pull off all the features announced at the unpacking event, then this might be the only phone you'll ever really need... until the GS5 makes its debut. Here's a breakdown of some of those nifty features.
- Dual Camera: Getting tired of taking a photo and not being in it? That ends now! With the Dual Shot feature you can make use of the front and rear camera, allowing you the shooter to occupy a small window next to the subject. You can even customize the box as well.
- Air View - allows you to scroll through pages with a wave of your hand. Air View also applies to floating touch; much like the S Pen you can hover your finger over objects to view them.
- S Translate - all the translator you'll ever need will be right in the palm of your hand with the S4. It can not only translate text but also voices and images such as signs in 9 different languages.
- Sound and Shot - With this feature you'll be able to add voice - a 5 second audio clip, with your still images.
- Eraser - Takes multiple frames of a subject, removing unwanted persons from the shot such as someone suddenly walking in front of or behind your subject.
- Group Play - Allows you to connect up to 8 S4 devices and stream music through each one without wifi connectivity. It's also touted to work with multiplayer games. Now that's something I'd like to see!
- Smart Scroll/Smart Pause - Smart Scroll locks on to your eye movement and when you reach the bottom of, for example a web page, it'll automatically scroll the page up. Smart Pause works when you're watching a movie, again locking on to your eyes, and pausing the film as you look away, replaying when you look back.
These are the more significant features announced at the event and there were plenty of others however I'll save that for a full review of the device. So what's my initial impression of the S4? So far it is noticably lighter than both the Note 2 and the GS3 - very light! And the size feels of the phone, even with the larger screen,is still pretty small when compared to the Note 2 (image below and yes that's Pedo Bear as my wallpaper. Don't judge me!).
Overall I was pretty impressed with the device. To top off the evening envelope were being handed out and inside... a 64GB microSD. Yea I can make full use of that. But me thinks it's a taste pf things to come as this event was entitled "Samsung Unpacked 2013: Episode 1". Will there be an episode 2? stay tuned TOVers, we'll have that and more as we get closer to the April launch.