The Samsung Galaxy S4 rumors can finally be put to rest. The device was unveiled at an event in New York City last night, and one thing is certainly clear with this new gadget: the battle for market dominance is shifting away from the hardware specs and toward the software.
Suddenly Samsung has realized that specs aren’t enough. It has to show off what those specs can do by adding intuitive features which make the most of them.
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At first glance, the Samsung Galaxy S4 doesn’t look much different than its predecessor. The device is about the same size, although the screen is a full 5 inches. The phone also has the plastic case Galaxy users complain about constantly, although this time Samsung has squared the edges and made it easier to grip.
As expected, the Galaxy S4 will run on one of two processors, depending on where it’s sold: the Samsung Exynos 5 octo-core processor or Qualcomm’s quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor. All models have two gigs of RAM and a large battery.
Now let’s take a look at the software features of the Galaxy S4.
First the Galaxy S4 makes full use of its two cameras with a variety of eye and picture / video taking features. Perhaps the simplest feature in this category is the Smart Pause feature, which pauses a video when the front camera senses that the user is no longer looking at it.
The camera can even take 12 photos at the same time and then play them back in a time lapse, thanks to the Drama Shot feature. And if users want to add themselves to a photo, they can just use the Dual Camera feature, which utilizes both cameras so that they can insert themselves in the photo they’re taking. Users can even utilize both cameras on video chats with the Dual Video Call feature.
There’s even a photo album feature, which enables users to put those photos to good use by creating a custom photo album and having it shipped to them. This is very similar to a service that’s available on iOS devices.
Samsung has also included some new control features like Air Gestures and Air View, which makes it easy to control the device without even touching it. Smart Scroll also enables users to scroll through emails or web pages by simply tilting the device.
In addition, the Galaxy S4 will also adapt the user’s display and sound over time, based on the things they usually watch or listen to on it.
Miscellaneous Other Features
S Health is one of the newest features on the Samsung Galaxy S4. It helps the user track their fitness and eating habits. There’s a pedometer built right into the device so that users can count their steps, and taking photos of meals can help count calories. Samsung also plans to offer a fitness bracelet, fitness belt and digital scale to go along with this app.
The IR Blaster enables users to turn their phone into a universal remote; feature analysts like Gene Munster has been trying to talk Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) into for a while.
If you plan to travel, S Translate can help you out by translating 10 different languages. It can even translate text on your phone.
And finally we get to the mapping software. Samsung claims its new S Voice Drive improves the Galaxy S4’s GPS abilities even further by accepting voice commands while the user is driving.
By the end of next month, the entire globe will have access to the Galaxy S4 through 327 different carriers in 155 countries.