The big mobile release for Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:0059935) next year will be the Galaxy S6. The Galaxy S range is considered very much the flagship smartphone for the Korean manufacturer, and Samsung will be looking to produce something particularly outstanding with its next model in this series. The next 12 months will be a key period for Samsung, given that 2014 hasn’t been hugely successful for the corporation.
While its biggest rival Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has gone from strength to strength on the back of the massive success of the iPhone 6, Samsung has had a lean time by comparison. After recently announcing that its profits had tumbled by 60 percent, the stated aim of the Korean company of overtaking Apple in mobile sales in the near future appears a forlorn hope, at least at present.
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After a difficult beginning to 2014, Apple turned the corner by firstly focusing on producing quality products, and secondly promising the city that it would release successful new product lines. The first of these, Apple’s first phablet, the iPhone 6 Plus, has already hit the stores, and the Apple Watch is expected to follow shortly into 2015. It would seem that there is less room for manoeuvre for Samsung in this regard, so the company will instead need to focus on the former of the two strategies, namely creating some truly outstanding technology to entice consumers.
With this in mind, the recent rumour that Samsung may be about to include its flexible, curved display technology in some of its mainstream smartphones may come as little surprise. It has seemed a natural progression for Samsung to include such technology in its smartphone range at some point, and the release of the Galaxy S6 could be the point when we first see Samsung’s flexible technology included in a mass market handset.
Samsung Galaxy S6 curved screen expected
Already the analyst community is suggesting that this is a very likely occurrence. Speaking at the IHS Display Analyst conference on Thursday, Jerry Kang, a senior analyst at IHD Technology, suggested that the Galaxy S6 will feature a ‘dual-edged’ display which is care on both sides of the screen. He also asserted that Samsung had originally considered this design for the recently released Galaxy Note Edge, but the Korean corporation later shelved this notion in favour of a screen which is simply curved on the right side.
However, not all analysts agree with Kang. While Samsung has been experimenting with this technology for quite some time, it may not yet be ready to be incorporated into such a mainstream and relatively affordable device as the Galaxy S6. What could occur instead is that such a design may be sold as a hybrid model of the Galaxy S6; effectively an updated version of the Galaxy Note Edge.
Regardless of the veracity of these rumours, it certainly appears that the development of the Galaxy S6 is already well under way. Recent reports indicate that Samsung has been developing the device under the prototype name of ‘Project Zero’. When it will release details into the public domain about this forthcoming smartphone remains to be seen, but a likely release date will be around the time of the 2015 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
Aside from the possibility of a curved screen, analysts and Samsung fans have also been ruminating on what other technology and specifications will be included in this hotly anticipated handset. So here is a quick rundown of some of the possible specs which will be included in a Galaxy S6.
There are already rumours circulating that Samsung will release the first ever mass market 4K device in due course, but the odds are against this being the Galaxy S6. Firstly, this would surely make the device prohibitively expensive, and while the Galaxy S6 is intended to be a flagship smartphone, it has also benefited from relatively affordable pricing. It is hard to believe that Samsung could include a 4K screen in the device and keep costs to a manageable level.
Secondly, the timescale involved would seem to be a massive issue. Although it doesn’t seem all that long since the Galaxy S5 was released, the reality is that the Galaxy S6 is only a matter of four months away, at most, and solid details of this forthcoming device will probably begin to leak to the media early in 2015. With Samsung still experimenting with this technology, a much more likely specification for the display would be a Quad HD (2,560 x 1,440) resolution.
In terms of screen size the display could be increased very marginally from the 5.1-inch screen of the Galaxy S5, but is likely to be significantly smaller than the 5.5-inch screen of the Galaxy Note series.
The camera has been a real focus of recent Samsung releases, and when the Galaxy S5 was unveiled, the Korean Corporation chose to devote a significant amount of its presentation to the qualities of the snapper in the S5. With this in mind, Samsung is likely to upgrade the camera in the Galaxy S6, and we could see a 20-megapixel lens included in the smartphone.
Processor and Storage
It is generally considered that Samsung will opt for a brand new Exynos 7420 with a 64-bit chip featuring four Cortex-A53 and four Cortex A-57 cores for the Galaxy S6. It seems unlikely that Samsung will improve on the 128 GB storage that was possible via micro-SD in the Galaxy S5.
Price and release date
Apple has had the confidence and swagger to increase the price of the iPhone 6 over previous devices, but it is debatable that Samsung is in a strong enough position to follow suit. One should expect the price of the Galaxy S6 to be frozen from the S5 price point.
There has been some speculation in the media that Samsung might push forward the release date for the Galaxy S6, with some sources suggesting it could even reach the stores for Christmas. This seems highly unlikely, though, given how important a device this is for Samsung, and an unveiling at the Mobile world Congress in March, 2015 is a safer bet.