Until now we had only seen the Galaxy S 4 available in white frost and black mist, but Japanese provider DoCoMo will apparently have a new color variant available for their customers. Promotional materials by DoCoMo show a “Blue Arctic” version, shown above, expected to be announced on May 15 and available next month.
We knew Samsung would eventually release more colors for the phone as they did with the S3 — the question was just when. It will be interesting to see if and when the “Blue Arctic” version will arrive in other markets. The Galaxy S 4 Activ has been rumored to come in a metallic orange color – could that make its way to the regular S4 as well?
The name “Project J” was thrown around quite a bit with Samsung’s devices, and is now known to be the original codename of the Galaxy S 4. However, there were multiple variants of the Project J, such as the J Mini and J Activ. The J Activ seems to be a waterproof version of the S 4, known as the Galaxy S 4 Activ, which should be announced by the end of the month. The next logical assumption would be that the J Mini would be code for the Galaxy S 4 Mini, but the name “Serrano” has been tied to the Mini as well. The Serrano is coming to AT&T with the model number of SGH-1257, so it’s safe to assume this will be the Galaxy S 4 Mini. The Galaxy S 4 Activ will probably also land on AT&T, but no word yet.
Either way, these Project J variants are not expected to surpass the original Galaxy S 4 in any way— they are simply mid-range alternatives, with some slightly different features. We’ll keep you guys posted on these phone announcements expected later this month.
There have more more than a few of us who have complained about Samsung’s habit of loading up
crap unnecessary extra apps on its flagship devices, but it looks like the BBC has had enough of Sammy’s shenanigans. The famed British network will air a special episode of its Watchdog series pointing out some very serious issues that identified on the 16GB variant of the Galaxy S 4 smartphone. In fact, Host Anne Robinson poses this simple question best: “Samsung… claims that its brand new Galaxy phone has an extra-large memory, but what did it forget to mention“? Well– while the smartphone no doubt introduces some well… “unique” apps, much of the apps take up an extraordinary space on the device, resulting in roughly only half of the total storage capacity being available to brand-new owners.
Naturally, Samsung will probably want to rebuke the bold Watchdog claim by highlighting its 16GB Galaxy S 4 certainly has a microSD slot for users to take advantage of, but remember— regular apps can only be installed onto the phone’s internal memory, so there is the potential for owners to simply run out of room. Moreover, owners can always buy the larger capacity variants of the device as well because well— bigger is better anyways.
Hit the break to check out the teaser video for yourself.
If you recently got your hands on one of the latest and greatest smartphones to hit the market, like the Samsung Galaxy S 4 or the HTC One, you were probably wondering how great it would be to slap the Facebook Home launcher on it. Not really, but it does seem Facebook is hoping owners of those devices might give their Home launcher a try despite the generally poor reception it has received since hitting the market. Although the Facebook Home app still shows its last update as being April 22, 2013, some users have discovered a new screen popping up on their devices asking if they would like to “Use Home Anyway” when they hit the unsupported device screen when launching the app. This appears to be true on both the Galaxy S 4 and the Sony Xperia ZL. Meanwhile, owners of the HTC One don’t even get the unsupported device screen, instead going straight into the launcher.
Earlier in the week the Samsung Galaxy S 4 Zoom was revealed to be a smartphone that will be all about the camera. The specs of the device will be more like the S 4 Mini, but the camera will be better than the Galaxy S 4 based on the fact that it will be 16-megapixels. What about optical zoom? That’s something we have all been dying for in a smartphone. Turns out the Galaxy S 4 Zoom will sport a 10x optical zoom according to Russian analyst Dmitry Ryabinin. It’s not up there with the 21x zoom that was in the Galaxy Camera, but this one is going to be an actual smartphone.
The S4 Zoom is rumored to be released in mid-June and further evidence supporting that is the fact that it appeared at Bluetooth SIG already. We could see an announcement in the next couple of weeks.
sources: Highfirstname.lastname@example.org / Bluetooth.org
Everyone knew Samsung was offering different variants of the Galaxy S 4 based on region, but according to an IHS iSupply teardown, that difference goes a little deeper than just the CPU.
According to the teardown, the US variant of the phone uses a separate Fujitsu image processor to handle functions such as the eye tracking and scrolling features that Samsung has heavily promoted. The reason behind this is that the Snapdragon S600 apparently couldn’t handle the processor intensive tasks alone, so Samsung improvised. The Exynos version of the phone doesn’t have the extra processor. Overall, it’s not really a huge deal, as most users probably wouldn’t be able to tell the difference anyway. And, honestly, that’s a pretty smart move by Samsung to make both versions of the device perform roughly the same.
The teardown also revealed that the US version uses different hardware for WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, etc., although I’m sure that had more to do with cost and availability than performance.
ITV has refreshed their Android app, but for now, only Samsung device users in the UK can enjoy. The UK television network announced that until August 31, their updated ITV Player app will be available exclusively to Samsung users “for an initial period while we endeavor to optimize and improve the experience before releasing to other device manufacturers.”
The updated app features landscape navigation support, improved playback, 3G/4G streaming, and support for older devices. Right now the app is dominated with 1-star reviews in the Play Store, so hopefully for ITV users this update is a big improvement.
The download link and press release can be found after the break.
Samsung released its new SideSync software that they say “connects the PC and mobile as one.” We couldn’t agree more, as this innovative application allows for a sort of dual-screen feature from your PC to your Galaxy phone. You can drag and drop files from your computer and place them right on your phone’s home screen, copy clipboard content from one device to the other, and even use a screen sharing mode which lets users view their Galaxy phone’s screen on their PC monitor to use it as a virtual phone. From this mode users can take full advantage of all of the functions of their phone, and can also resize the phone’s screen on the PC monitor. All of this can be done while effortlessly navigating both devices using the PC mouse.
Check out Samsung’s walk-through video of SideSync after the break.
We were hopeful that we would see Samsung’s flexible display by the end of the year, but 2014 seems more likely. In the meantime, we can get a little taste of what is coming from a couple of patent filings. The first one is based on the overall design and interaction from the controller that detects how much the display is bent. The above image shows a controller that controls the image displayed based on bending information received by the sensor. The display can be bent concavely or convexly and the display will zoom in or zoom out accordingly. You can even roll the display. The touch screen is capacitive and includes a top film, a first layer, and second layer. The bottom includes the “bending detection part”.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Samsung has run into a problem at the end of March; they almost have too much money. Samsung’s net profit rose 42% in March 2013, and after calculating debt and everything, they’re left with about $28.5 billion. That is an extremely large pile of money. That figure has tripled in the past year. Samsung’s mobile division accounted for about 74% of that rise in profit, which is a pretty staggering statistic when you consider all the televisions, components, and appliances Samsung makes.
Analysts expect Samsung to put that money into investing in different areas of its businesses, and possibly give shareholders higher returns. Samsung has stated that they will make “investments sustainable for areas like facilities, R&D, and marketing that will help the company solidify or boost competitiveness,” which I think is a pretty typical, safe answer. Rest assured, I think we can all say Samsung is likely going to beef up it’s Galaxy line of mobile devices, as it’s the biggest cash cow for the company right now.
source: Wall Street Journal