Samsung Galaxy S4 has been launched last night revealing a last generation smart phone complete with a gallery of never-before-seen technology.
In a much-hyped public event, Samsung introduced the Galaxy S4 with an array of new features, including a few triggered with simply a wave of the hand.
The event at New York’s Radio City Music Hall – which featured a live orchestra, bubbly master of ceremonies and even a tap dance number – was streamed on Samsung’s YouTube channel.
Samsung Galaxy S4, which crams a 5-inch 1080p screen into body slightly smaller than the S III’s, will go sale globally in the April to June period.
Skinny but durable, the S4 is 69 mm wide, and 7.9 mm thick. It weighs just 130 grams, and is encased in polycarbonate.
The newest features involve different options for navigation. If the phone senses someone is looking at the screen, the user can tilt it forward or backwards to scroll up and down a Web page.
That feature falls slightly short of what some consumers may have expected after the New York Times reported that the phone would be able to scroll automatically by tracking readers’ eyes.
But what it can do is sense when it has someone’s attention. When a video is playing the stream will automatically pause if the person looks away from the device and it will restart when the eyes come back to the screen.
Texting while driving will be a thing of the past, as the smart phone’s voice recognition feature has the capability to dictate, reply, forward and save messages using only verbal commands.
The same voice recognition can be seen in the translator feature, which can understand nine languages.
Samsung has also made efforts to combat the issue of messy fingerprints, with a screen that now senses fingers hovering just above the screen, and applications that react.
The Mail application shows the first few lines of an email when a finger hovers above it in the list, and the Gallery application shows an expanded thumbnail.
Users can control some other applications by making gestures in the air above the phone.
In the browser, you can command the screen to scroll up by swiping from top to bottom a few inches from the phone.
The Camera application can now use both the front and rear cameras simultaneously, and can insert a picture of the photographer even as he or she is capturing the scene in front of them.
Samsung Galaxy S4 also has an erase feature, which allows the phone to take several pictures of a subject, then create a composite of the images to remove an unwanted photobomber.
In the US, Galaxy S4 will be sold by all four national carriers – Verizon Wireless, AT&T, Sprint Nextel and T-Mobile USA – as well as by smaller ones US Cellular and Cricket.
Samsung did not say what the phone will cost, but it can be expected to start at $200 with a two-year contract in the US.
JK Shin, the executive in charge of Samsung’s mobile communications division, promised the money would be well spent for a “life companion” that will “improve the way most people live every day”.
Slightly thinner than its predecessor, the Galaxy S4 will go on sale next month.
The skinny but durable handset includes such special features as voice-recognition text messaging, translator software that can recognize 9 languages and an incredible touchscreen technology that toggles some features just by waving your finger.
It uses apps like Samsung’s WatchOn to bring on-demand video straight to the phone.
The cameras on each side of Galaxy S4 can be used in sync with each other, planting the photographer inside the photo he or she is taking. It also has an erase feature.
The phone also utilizes HomeSync, a way to store data on a cloud – and beam a photo across the world to be viewed on the home TV. Speaking of television, the smart phone can double as the remote
SAMSUNG GALAXY S4
Height: 136.6 mm (5.38 inches)
Width: 69 mm (2.72 inches)
Depth: 7.9 mm (0.31 inches)
Weight: 130 grams (4.59 ounces)
Pixel density: 441 per inch
Display: 1920-by-1080 pixels
Network speeds: 3G and 4G LTE Lite
Camera: 13 megapixel in back-facing camera, 2 megapixel in front-facing
Voice recognition: Can translate 9 languages and utilizes voice-activated tools that can dictate, reply, forward or save text messages
Built-in apps: Video chat; internet browser; Gmail; Google Talk, Google Play Store; infrared LED; Google Maps; YouTube
Processor: 1.9GHz quad-core processor or 1.6GHz octa-core processor
Internal memory: 16GB; 32GB; or 64GB
Other memory: Data stored in Samsung’s HomeSync – a household cloud service
Battery: 2,600 mAh
Operating system: Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean