A new report from SRLabs indicates the new Samsung Galaxy S 5 fingerprint scanner is similar to other devices on the market in being open to attacks using molds of fingerprints. Similar to the iPhone 5S and other commercial grade fingerprint scanners, malicious individuals can make a mold of a fingerprint that is sufficient to unlock a Galaxy S 5. In the case of the latest Samsung smartphone to hit the market, Samsung does not require any additional password or PIN to be used in conjunction with the fingerprint to unlock the device or to take advantage of PayPal’s integration with the fingerprint scanner. » Read the rest
We posted a teardown of the Galaxy S 5 last week, which was for repair purposes, but teardowns can also give us an indication on how much the device costs the manufacturer to produce. IHS, a marketing research firm, conducted their own teardown and concluded that the Galaxy S 5 costs about $256 to build. That is $12 over last year’s Galaxy S 4 ($244).
Other than upgraded hardware, the main additions this year’s GS5 offers over last year’s GS4 is a fingerprint scanner, a biosensor, and the ability to survive a heavy dose of water. IHS concluded the fingerprint scanner costs about $4 and the biosensor runs about $1.45. There was no word on the cost of the waterproofing, but Andrew Rassweiler, and analyst at IHS did say, “Inside we see mostly a lot of recycled components that we’ve seen before. There’s really nothing special inside where Samsung is pushing the envelope. There’s no breakthroughs, there’s nothing earth-shattering. It’s really just a continuation of what has come before.”
Late last week, Hiroshi Lockheimer, Google VP of engineering for Android, took the stand for the Samsung vs Apple trial. Of course this trial is all about copying Apple, and Lockheimer argued that they never tried to copy Apple’s iOS. Not only that, many of the Android’s software features were created before Apple did.
“We liked to have our own identity; we liked to have our own ideas,” Lockheimer said. “We were very passionate about what we were doing, and it was important that we have our own ideas.”
Need to see how the new Gear Fit should be used? Samsung has just release a commercial that showcases different scenarios involving the wearable. The commercial shows how the device can be an activity tracker and how you can control your smartphone without actually touching it. One thing is for sure, the Gear Fit is one pretty good looking piece of hardware.
Hit the break for the thirty second commercial. » Read the rest
Samsung’s Group Play has been featured on their devices since the debut of the Galaxy S4. The feature allows users to pair multiple devices and share content like pictures, documents and music. Today version 3.0 of the feature was launched, bringing a new interface which is similar to other recent Samsung apps, as well as enabling a Group Camcorder option.
This new option allows users to pair their devices and use each others cameras to capture video. The host device can then edit the video to create the best sequences. Group Camcorder is actually already present on all Galaxy S5′s, but to use it you will need to install Group Play 3.0. Also, the Galaxy S5 is currently the only device that supports Group Play 3.
Samsung has sent out invitations for an event that will announce the next generation Zoom. However, contrary to the belief that the device will be known as the Galaxy S 5 Zoom, the device will become the Galaxy K. It’s interesting that Samsung went with that name considering they’ve already released a Galaxy K in South Korea. Albeit that was almost four years ago. According to rumors though, the Galaxy K will be a brand in of itself and will not resemble the Galaxy S 5 in anyway.
While most of the newer devices have already received Android 4.4, owners of slightly older devices have kept waiting. For owners of the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 and Samsung Galaxy S 3, that wait might not be much longer. A Samsung customer managed to get a hold of someone from tech support, who confirmed that Samsung is expecting to launch the Android 4.4 update on the Galaxy Note 2 somewhere in mid-April, and for the Galaxy S 3 by early May.
These time-frames are for the Korean variants of these devices, but devices in the rest of the world shouldn’t be that far behind.
The international version of the Samsung Galaxy S5 has already been rooted by Chainfire, and that was before the device was even launched. Well now it looks like seven more versions of the device have been added to that list, as announced by the developer today.
The versions included are as follows: SM-900H (International Exynos), SM-G900M (Middle and South America), SM-G900R4 (US Cellular), SM-G900T (T-Mobile US), SM-G900T1 (Metro PCS), SM-G900W8 (Canada) and SM-G900P (Sprint). To root the devices you’ll need to use the CF-Auto-Root tool, and as Chainfire noted on his Google+ post, rooting the device will break Knox warranty and increase the flash counter. Users may also have issues with Private mode.
Samsung never seems to disappoint with sales. The company’s April 11 launch of the flagship Galaxy S 5 smartphone has reportedly surpassed sales of last year’s Galaxy S 4 by more than 30%. In fact, some European markets experience sales growth of more than double when comparing the GS5 to last year’s GS4. And that number was expected to go up significantly had retailers not run out of stock. Across Europe, lines were formed despite many believing that there was no true excitement for the Galaxy S 5.
So before you go knocking Samsung for not using metal, just remember that people will still buy anyways.
That’s not all though. As if all that gold wasn’t enough, Mr. Legere then received a gold Samsung Galaxy S5, which was also shown off on Twitter! It certainly must be nice to be getting all that gold!