Samsung last night unveiled its new flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S4, in New York, and proved the rumour mill remarkably correct. SEAN BACHER and ARTHUR GOLDSTUCK separate fact from fiction.
The Samsung Galaxy S4 is undoubtedly one of the most anticipated smartphones to be launched this year. Hundreds of rumors were doing the rounds on the Internet before the launch, but here are some of the most significant, along with the outcome of each from the launch:
Rumour: The phone will feature a 5″ screen with 1920×1080 resolution.
Fact: Correct. The phone features a 5″” 1920×1080 Full HD Super AMOLED Display, with 441 ppi pixel density.
Rumour: Samsung’s own Exynos 5 Octa quad core processor will be used to power the Galaxy S4.
Fact: Correct, with a proviso: the US edition will feature Qualcomm’s Snapdragon S4 Pro chip.
Rumour: The S4 will trace eye movement, letting you scroll through pages using just your eyes.
Fact: Correct, but also includes numerous other forms of gesture and eye controls.
Rumour: The shell will be made out of plastic.
Fact: The shell is made of polycarbonate, which makes it tougher and more durable.
Rumour: The S4 will have a “”wallet”” type app, similar to the Password app found on the Apple iPhone.
Fact: Not announced, but may arrive before long.
Rumour: Samsung’s recent partnership with Visa will allow users to make payments using just their phone.
Fact: The phone supports NFC (Near Field Communications), which allows payment with a single tap, but this was not incorporated into the S4 at launch,
Rumour: The S4 will have a flexible display.
Fact: Pure science fiction, For now.
Rumour: The S4 will include Samsung’s Floating point technology.
Fact: Correct. The S4 includes Floating Touch, a technology that allows you to activate or magnify something on the phone by pointing at it and hovering your finger just above the screen. Ideal for those who need to use their phone while engaged in dirty or sticky work that does not allow for the screen to be touched.
Rumour: Users will be able to charge the phone’s battery wirelessly.
Fact: Not quite true. You would need to buy a separate back that allows for wireless charging.
Rumour: Not only will the phone support 4G, but the handset is rumoured to have 802.11ac wireless networking, which is a dramatic improvement over 802.11g.
Fact: Correct. But it also supports numerous networking protocols, including WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (see full spec list below)
Rumour: In the audio department, the S4 will use the company’s latest audio processor, the earSmart eS325.
Fact: Not announced.
Rumour: A smaller version of the Galaxy S4, called the Galaxy S4 Mini will be launched at the same time.
Fact: Pure fiction.
Rumour: Samsung’s S Health app could well make its way onto the Galaxy S4, allowing users to monitor blood pressure, blood sugar, BMI and weight with the aid of a separate pad.
Fact: S Health is a major feature of the phone.
Rumour: The S4 will run Android Jelly Bean with an updated version of its TouchWiz skin.
Rumour: The S4 is rumoured to have a 13MP camera, but consensus it will be at least 10MP.
Fact: Correct. It has a 13MP rear camera and 2MP front-facing.
The full specs
The full specifications list released at the launch provided the following information:
Network: 2.5G (GSM/ GPRS/ EDGE): 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 MHz: 3G (HSPA+ 42Mbps): 850 / 900 / 1900 / 2100 MHz: 4G (LTE Cat 3 100/50Mbps) : up to 6 different band sets(Dependent on market)
Display: 5 inch Full HD Super AMOLED (1920 x 1080) display, 441 ppi
Processor: 1.9GHz quad-core processor / 1.6GHz octa-core processor (will differ depending on market)
OS: Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean
Rear Camera: 13 Mega pixel Auto Focus camera with Flash & Zero Shutter Lag, BIS
Front Camera: 2 Mega pixel camera, Full HD recording @30fps with Zero Shutter Lag, BIS
Video: Codec: MPEG4, H.264, H.263, DivX, DivX3.11, VC-1, VP8, WMV7/8, Sorenson Spark, HEVC: Recording & Playback: Full HD (1080p)
Audio: Codec: MP3, AMR-NB/WB, AAC/AAC+/eAAC+, WMA, OGG, FLAC, AC-3, apt-X
Camera Features: Dual Camera: Dual Shot / Dual Recording/ Dual Video Call: Drama Shot, Sound & Shot, 360 Photo, Cinema Photo, Eraser, Night, Best Photo, Best Face,
Beauty Face, HDR (High Dynamic Range), Panorama, Sports
Additional Features: Group Play: Share Music, Share Picture, Share Document, Play
Story Album, S Translator, Optical Reader
Samsung Smart Scroll, Samsung Smart Pause, Air Gesture, Air View,
Samsung Hub, ChatON (Voice/Video Call, Share screen, 3-way calling)
S Travel (Trip Advisor), S Voice Drive, S Health
Samsung Adapt Display, Samsung Adapt Sound
Auto adjust touch sensitivity (Glove friendly)
Safety Assistance, Samsung Link, Screen Mirroring
Samsung KNOX (B2B only)
Google Mobile Services: Google Search, Google Maps, Gmail, Google Latitude, Google Play Store, Google Plus, YouTube, Google Talk, Google Places, Google Navigation, Google Downloads, Voice Search
Connectivity: WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (HT80), GPS / GLONASS, NFC, Bluetooth¬Æ 4.0 (LE), IR LED (Remote Control), MHL 2.0
Sensors: Accelerometer, RGB light, Geomagnetic, Proximity, Gyro, Barometer, Temperature & Humidity, Gesture
Internal Storage: 16/ 32/ 64 GB User memory + microSD slot (up to 64GB)
Dimensions: 136.6 x 69.8 x 7.9 mm, 130g
Battery: 2,600 mAh
* Gadget editor-in-chief Arthur Goldstuck was at the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S4 at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. Follow him in Twitter on @art2gee. Follow Sean Bacher on @SeanBacher.