What Do I Expect From The Next Samsung Galaxy S4?
About half a year has been passed since the launch of the Galaxy S3 and Samsung has once again raised the bar for smartphones. Over 20m S3’s have been sold to date and still counting remaining in-terrored by Sammy’s loss of $ 1.05b to Apple. Heck, its sales even increased by 15% after lose to Apple and launch of iPhone 5.
A friendly reminder before we start: I’ve been enjoying my Galaxy S3 since day one but that doesn’t mean that it’s a perfect device, there’s always room for improvement.
After spending months with the S3, here’s my Opinion on What I expect from the Next Galaxy S4–
Samsung changed their design strategy with the Galaxy S3 – So much, so that it doesn’t even look like the successor to the S2 with respect to design.
The design may not have appealed the audience at first, including me. But believe me, it’s not easy to handle such a giant. But thanks to its rounded corners and short bezel, the phone doesn’t feel as big as it’s competition phones in overall size.
But will it carry this design strategy forward in its future devices also?
With the Note II, the Korean Manufacturer has given a slight hint that the answer maybe YES.
Screen Size and Display
I have already got a few ‘Terrible looks’ from a few people saying – Uh look, such a BIG mobile!? (I guess they haven’t seen people taking with Galaxy Notes/Tab 2!). But it’s NOT actually the people I care about.
Rumors say that the Galaxy s4 will be coming with a taller 5” screen, which may not seem to be a big jump from the S3’s 4.8” but in my opinion it’s completely UNnecessary. I’d be happy if the S4 Sports the same 4.8” screen while improving the display.
Oh wait, we haven’t talked about the display. People with Owl-like eyes were too quick to notice that the S3 came with a Pentile display and started bashing Samsung over its choice of not using the normal RBG.
Honestly, it doesn’t make any difference for an average consumer but wouldn’t we like to stay ahead in this heavy competition?
You might be aware that the Chinese Firm ‘Oppo’ has already kick started the Crazy Pixels race by announcing the Oppo’s finder 5 with over 441 Pixels Per Inch (PPI) which will easily blow away any display – including Apple’s much Hyped Retina Display with 326 PPI. Yes, Samsung should be doing pretty much something like that with FULL-HD Display (1920x1080p).
People have always been bashing Samsung for the quality of materials they use in their device – cheap glossy plastic, and I’ve been no exception.
I mean, just Look at HTC’s Polycarbonate One X , iPhone 5’s aluminium and glass black or even Motorola’s Kevlar Razr i and how premium they feel in Hand.
Maybe Sammy using plastic increase the durability or to reduce the overall weight for such a big phone – but hey, I don’t mind my phone gaining a bit weight to feel more premium in my hands.
I would love if the Galaxy S4 drops the use of plastic(ky) materials and stick to something more solid, which doesn’t slip from the hands like the S3.
Earlier this year, Nokia ‘revolutionized’ the Camera on a mobile device with the Pureview 808.
Less than a month ago, it took steps even further with the Lumia 920 with Optical Image Stabilization, Light sensor which can capture 5-10 times more light than any other camera phone which ultimately results in better low-light shots.
If you’re an Above-average-Geek, you might be aware that More Megapixels doesn’t always count for a better Image.
I think that Complementing a 13 MP camera with a more powerful Optical Light sensor and enhanced image processing would be the cream of the crop for Shutterbergs in The Galaxy S4.
Taking lessons from Nokia, I hope Samsung brings something Innovative in the camera field
(I’d avoid deeper digging on how Nokia faked the photos and videos, but undoubtedly Nokia’s Pureview Camera cannot be beaten by any other mobile device at least for now.).
Android 4.1 JellyBean has already debuted a couple of months ago and it’s unlikely that there will be a MAJOR version release until the end of next year.
(Latest Leaks cite that Android 4.2 is underway which I believe will be a minor version upgrade and Not Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie.)
So, it’ll be safe to assume that the Galaxy S4 will come with Jellybean out-of-the-box.
Of course, Manufacturer skins aren’t getting away– Expect Sammy’s proprietary ‘TouchWiz’ed’ version 5 on atop Android.
There’s little hope for Stock Android as manufacturer’s need a way of differentiating its Android device with a competitor’s Android device on Software counterpart.
With Version 4, there was a much-needed UI overhaul and it ‘stole’ some features like ‘Turning over to mute a call’ from HTC’s Sense. Actually this is the first time ever, Samsung has managed to please me with its software.
No, TouchWiz may not be the most beautiful skin available,but the features definitely more-than-compensate for it. Sammy paid attention to every little nook and corner with TouchWiz 4 which definitely delivers. Take the Pop-Up Play and live video thumbnails in the Video Player. Or the Picasa-like Face tagging, Best Photo mode in the camera.
While some may call them just gimmicks, Features like Smart Stay, Direct call and Smart Alert, I believe, give us a peek into the future and lets us experience the vast ecosystem that Android is committed to be delivering.
And, I hope Samsung adds such Unique features in the next TouchWiz as well.
The Galaxy S3 is a already a Power House with Four Samsung’s in-house EXYNOS CPU’s screaming in the beast.
Again I’m repeating, If you are an above-average-Geek, you should also know that a Quad Core processor doesn’t necessarily imply that it’ll be faster than Dual Core device.
What I’m Trying to Say is, Expect the Galaxy S4 to come with an ARM Cortex Dual Core A15 SoC as opposed to S3’s A9 Quad core. Speculations point towards a Mali T-604 GPU and EXYNOS 5 SoC clocked at 1.4 GHz.
It’s pretty much expected that the successor will be equipped with 2GB of RAM, as it has become a norm for most Smartphones these days.
But who knows?
New leaks indicate that The Company is testing a Device with 3Gigs of RAM, and we know Samsung is always contended to delivering the best Hardware experience but my dear,
Don’t sell Specifications; I want the Galaxy S4 to be a ‘Human Phone’ (No Pun Intended!)
While the Galaxy S4 most probably be thinner than the S3 but it will be interesting to see how Sammy manages to bump in more battery in such a thin space – Use the In-cell Tech Which Apple has in the iPhone 5 Maybe?
With 2100 mAh,The Galaxy S3 certainly has one of the biggest battery in the industry, but mine still hardly powers one full day on extremely heavy usage.
While bumping in more mAh’s of battery, one should also pay attention to optimizing the software for better battery life – which Apple has proved with the iPhone 5.
The Future of S-Voice
Personal Assistants have been lately a matter of controversy and debate with regard to their real life use.
What do you think they should do with the S-voice Personal assistant app which was heavily marketed as a prime feature?
In my Opinion, they should either open up the API for developers OR completely axe it down – after all, it’s pretty much a novelty feature for showing-off to friends than any real life use.
Thanks to the presence of Google Now on Jellybean which takes the personal assistant apps to a whole new level, I’m pretty much sure I’ll not miss the badass S-voice.
Other Small Tidbits
One of my biggest gripes with the S3 is that, it doesn’t come with a Physical Dedicated Camera buttons. This may not be an issue on small phones, but it’s tough to hold a device this big in landscape mode and tap the Virtual camera button to take a picture.
Also, I bet that Sammy’s design team would be in dilemma so as whether to use a physical home button to continue the legacy the Galaxy Series started OR the On-Screen buttons first introduced in Ice-Cream-Sandwhich. I would take the On-Screen buttons any day over the Physical ones, because of the improved discover-ability of Menu Button and a quick dedicated multi-task button.
It’s obvious that it’ll be available in 16, 32 and 64 GB versions with Expandable Storage but as Sammy says, the quest is for something new, I’d love If it jumps the Bandwagon and makes a 128GB version available.
Lately, the world has been drooling about Glasses-Free 3D Technology in Smartphones.
I envy my friends who have the LG Optimus 3D.
We expected the S3 to come with 3D tech but The Korean giant crushed our expectations saying that – 3D isn’t mature yet.
Yes, I agree that 3D hasn’t become mainstream for smartphones, but being the leader in display Technologies, I expect the company to spark an innovation and make all our iPhone friends envy who still think that NFC and Wireless Charging hasn’t matured yet.
I am not betting on this – but still having hopes, fingers crossed!
So, When is the Next Big Thing Coming?
Rumors point towards a launch at the Mobile World Congress 2013 which is scheduled for March.
Wait, before your adrenaline starts rushing, let me tell you they are again mere spectaculations and who knows if Samsung’s decided to hold Separate Special event for the launch, just like it did with the S3?
Didn’t read the Tad-long article?
Well, that’s what TL;DR Stands for Too-long-Didn’t-read.
Here’s a brief summary of all the things I crave for in the Galaxy S4:
Screen/Display – 4.8” Super AMOLED Plus, 1080p Screen,3D Technology with at least 350+ PPI
Battery – 2500+ mAh while optimizing the software to be less Resource Hungry.
Software – Android Jellybean 4.1/4.2 on Board with the next iteration of Touchwiz and adding features and improving the Visual Appearance of TouchWiz.
Hardware – ARM Cortex Dual Core A15 Clocked at 1.7 GHz with 2GB of RAM and Mali T-604 GPU.
A dedicated Physical camera button, dropping the three Physical buttons and adhere to the Standards of On-screen buttons introduced in Ice Cream Sandwich.
A better build quality with Matte/Kevlar/Polycarbonate finish and scraping out Plastic materials. Storage Option of 128 GB with Expandable memory.
Camera – Primary 13MP and Secondary with 2MP with a more powerful Image sensor and enhanced Image Processing.
About Author– Abhi Kurve is a Technology enthusiast obsessed with Smartphones and Computers, and Passionately Blogs at A day With Android. Get personal with him on Facebook or Follow on Twitter for more Android Awesomeness!