Last night in a highly anticipated launch in New York,
Samsung unveiled its latest flagship device, the Samsung Galaxy S4, which
many are saying could be the iPhone's closest competitor yet.
The device is running Android Jelly Bean and will offer peace
of mind through its Knox security software.
The new device is closing in on the territory of the Galaxy
Note II, with
a 5-inch Full HD Super AMOLED screen.
While the phone has joined the giant screen trend, it has not sacrificed this on the scales, weighing a mere 130g and with
dimensions of 136.6 x 69.8 x 7.9mm.
It's ready for 4G and EE have announced that it will be offering
the device on its super-fast 4G network. It also holds a whopping 13MP camera with 4128 x 3096
pixels and an LED flash.
The device runs on an Exynos 5 Octa 5410 chipset, and
features a Quad-core 1.6 GHz Cortex-A15 & quad-core 1.2 GHz Cortex-A7
One of the big rumours around this device was its ability to
recognise your eye movements and scroll through the page accordingly. This
Smart Scroll feature was indeed announced last night, the software tracks eyes
and wrist movement in order to scroll through emails. Additionally its Smart
Pause functionality works in a similar way: watch a video and take your eyes
away from the screen and it will recognise this and pause the content.
"The debut of nifty eye motion-sensitive controls to allow
users to pause video and scroll through pages using eye movements alone is
smart, and for commuters crammed in trains - or just those who love a bit of
futuristic tech that makes their lives easier - this novel feature will really help
the Galaxy S4 to stand out," said Ernest Doku, Telecoms from uSwitch.com
Is it nifty or just a consumer gimmick? And more
importantly, will it truly work? We will have to wait to get our hands on a
review unit until we can be sure.
Business travellers will find the translator function useful.
Samsung claim that its "S Translator" feature will understand and translate
nine languages including Brazilian, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese,
Latin American Spanish and Portuguese. This feature can translate from speech-to-text
and text-to-speech, while also recognising 3,000 phrases stored in the phone,
in case you are without data connectivity.
Businesses will also welcome the new built in Knox software to tackle the poor security record of the Android OS.
Knox provides securing booting when the
S4 starts up, enhancements to Android that separate data from applications and
Tima, a technology Samsung said offers continuous monitoring of the system.
Knox also allows the IT department to
separate work from personal use. The S4 presents the user with a different
environment in work mode, which Samsung claims is separate from the personal
use environment. It offers an encrypted file system, virtual private network
and mobile device management support.
Speaking to Computer Weekly, Tony Cripps, devices and
platforms analyst at Ovum noted that, with Knox, Samsung is offering
enterprise-grade mobile security, which makes it an alternative to Blackberry
"Samsung can also take advantage of any reluctance by
businesses to deploy applications and data on Apple iOS devices," Cripps said.
While the hype over recent innovative smartphones such as
the BlackBerry Z10 and the Nokia Lumia 920, may have died down. It seems that excitement of the latest Galaxy may have continued
the two-horse race between Samsung and Apple. But will the two companies put their patent battles behind them? I doubt it - it's just too easy to throw money around in the court room, than
to spend it on actual innovation.
Available in white and black, the devices should be entering
the market at the end of April.