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Samsung Unveils the Galaxy S4 619

Posted by samzenpus
from the new-stuff-is-new dept.
adeelarshad82 writes "It's been leaked, teased, accused of being a copy of its predecessor, and celebrated as the likely champion of the mobile ecosystem for 2013. Samsung has finally unveiled the next in their line of globally available smartphones, the Galaxy S4. The phone carries a 5-inch Super AMOLED display with 1080p resolution at 441ppi, weighs only 130 grams and is no more than 7.9mm thick. On the inside, the Exynos based Octo-Core processor clocked at 1.6 GHz and the Snapdragon based Quad-Core 1.9GHz processor power this machine. Galaxy S4 is also packing 2GB of RAM and a 2600mAh battery, and its microSD slot is accessible though the removable rear panel. The S4 will include several new features, such as Air Gesture, Smart Pause, and Smart Scroll. Samsung's vice president of portfolio planning said many of the software improvements in the Samsung Galaxy S4 could make their way into existing Samsung Galaxy S3 phones."
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Samsung Unveils the Galaxy S4

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  • by viperidaenz (2515578) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @08:41PM (#43178069)

    Oops, my bad. It was Apple Marketing Chief Phil Schiller who said that

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 14, 2013 @08:41PM (#43178081)

    If you can't wait for a more detailed one, here is a teardown.
    http://micgadget.com/34139/chinese-tech-site-disassembles-the-samsung-galaxy-s-iv-before-it-gets-official-release/

  • Re:Eh, that's it? (Score:1, Informative)

    by The Grim Reefer (1162755) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @08:55PM (#43178227)

    This is Samsung & Android.

    If you want innovative, you'll have to go with Apple. /ohsnap

    Yes, innovations like not having to hold the phone a certain way to make calls? [gizmodo.com] /ohsnap

  • Re:Screen size (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 14, 2013 @09:02PM (#43178299)
    Apple uses Sharp's LCDs. Which are generally considered better than Samsung's. Not just my opinion; Samsung agrees. A couple months ago, they bought a 3% stake in Sharp.
  • Re:Eh, that's it? (Score:5, Informative)

    by mrbester (200927) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @09:03PM (#43178317) Homepage

    A custom ROM would have helped.

    Sent using my SGS i9000 running CyanogenMod 10.1 M2

    Yeah I'll probably upgrade...

  • Re:Eh, that's it? (Score:1, Informative)

    by dugancent (2616577) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @09:12PM (#43178395)

    No they don't. They buy one every other year.

  • Re:Screen size (Score:3, Informative)

    by sd4f (1891894) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @09:12PM (#43178405)

    I suppose you could see a difference, i like amoled screens because the blacks are incredibly good, and colours are quite vibrant, but i googled about it being pentile and there doesn't appear to be solid confirmation, but some sites are saying it's a pentile screen, which in effect means 2 sub pixels per pixel.

    If you compare subpixel density, the SGS4 is 882 subpixels per inch, my lumia 920 is 1280x768 with a pixel density of 332, comprising three sub pixels and 4.5 inches, therefore the subpixel density is 996 per inch, therefore if it was pentile it would be 498 ppi. Both of them are really small, and not really a big difference, but i think it's a bit misleading to directly compare pentile screens with proper sub pixel layouts.

    My old SGS1, that was obviously inferior with its pentile arrangement. It couldn't draw straight lines, and on a solid colour screen, one edge was green. Pictures were very nice to look at though, but web browsers and text, were not very good at all.

  • Re:Screen size (Score:5, Informative)

    by Misagon (1135) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @09:15PM (#43178433)

    The S IV's screen isn't LCD, it is AMOLED [wikipedia.org].

  • 5 months old... (Score:5, Informative)

    by mtb_ogre (698802) <.ten.tuhergo. .ta. .ergoeht.> on Thursday March 14, 2013 @09:18PM (#43178473) Homepage
    Jelly Bean was released in November, making it 4 months old, 5 months by the time the SIV is generally available. Jelly Bean will be obsoleted by Key Lime Pie at Google's I/O developer conference in May so you get a whole month to enjoy being on the current version of Android, that might be some kind of record. After which you get to wait another 4-5 months for Samsung to get the OS up and approved by US carriers.
  • Re:Eh, that's it? (Score:5, Informative)

    by AK Marc (707885) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @09:27PM (#43178529)
    Exorbitant cost? I paid more for my Samsung Galaxy S3 than my wife's iPhone.
  • by geek (5680) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @09:43PM (#43178639) Homepage

    Only 4 cores will ever be active at any one given time. 4 high power cores and 4 low power cores for battery efficiency.

  • 1 Month old. (Score:4, Informative)

    by mjwx (966435) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @09:52PM (#43178713)

    Jelly Bean was released in November, making it 4 months old, 5 months by the time the SIV is generally available. Jelly Bean will be obsoleted by Key Lime Pie at Google's I/O developer conference in May so you get a whole month to enjoy being on the current version of Android, that might be some kind of record.

    That was 4.2, released in November, 4.2.2 was released on 11 February 2013. So just over 1 month old.

    After which you get to wait another 4-5 months for Samsung to get the OS up and approved by US carriers.

    If you dont live in the US (or do live in the US and buy directly from Samsung) this isn't a problem.

    It's not an Android issue, it's an issue with your incompetent telco's.

    Also, you've got the option of community ROMs.

  • Re:Eh, that's it? (Score:5, Informative)

    by viperidaenz (2515578) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @09:55PM (#43178727)

    like LTE or new shiny.

    or iPhone -> iPhone 3G = 3G
    -> 3GS = faster hsdpa and video recording
    -> 4 = retina display, 'face time'
    -> 4S = 4G, Siri
    -> 5 = LTE

  • by dfghjk (711126) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @10:01PM (#43178775)

    "It" doesn't scale to 8 cores. It's a 4 core processor where each "core" has both a low power and high performance core that it selects between. Only 4 cores are operational at any given time.

    Of course, that doesn't matter to the tech-savvy membership of /. 8 is greater than 4, that's what counts.

  • Re:Screen size (Score:5, Informative)

    by Solandri (704621) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @10:11PM (#43178837)

    If you compare subpixel density, the SGS4 is 882 subpixels per inch, my lumia 920 is 1280x768 with a pixel density of 332, comprising three sub pixels and 4.5 inches, therefore the subpixel density is 996 per inch, therefore if it was pentile it would be 498 ppi.

    No, because your eyes suck at seeing blue [gamesx.com]. Your eyes have very poor resolution in blue, moderately better resolution in red, and sharpest resolution in green. The whole point of a pentile display is not to waste subpixels on blue and red that your eyes can't even see. So you put in more green subpixels than red or green.

    Put another way, even though the Lumina has 996 subpixels per inch, 67% of them are much higher resolution than your eyes can resolve, while 33% (green) are lower resolution than your eyes can resolve. So you're actually wasting a lot of subpixels. With a pentile RGBG display, the ratio of subpixels better matches your eye's resolving ability. 50% of the pixels are devoted to green, 25% for red, 25% for blue. So pentile can produce a sharper looking picture than RGB while using fewer subpixels. Pentile only looks bad if you unrealistically put your eye right up to the screen or take a magnified photo.

    And before anyone starts rebutting that they can see the difference, no you can't. This trick is not new nor did it start with Android pentile displays. It's been used in NTSC TV broadcasts, color film formulation, and JPEG and MPEG compression. All of those store and display red and blue at a lower resolution than green. That you never noticed this before is proof that it works. It's just new to computer displays because until recently we didn't have spare computing power to waste on converting RGB data for a single pixel into a RGBG subpixel array millions of times in real time.

  • Re:Screen size (Score:4, Informative)

    by Solandri (704621) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @10:14PM (#43178863)
    Here's another link [nfggames.com] with a more detailed handling of what the link I included shows. Including the same pic with red pixels enlarged.
  • by GigaplexNZ (1233886) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @10:43PM (#43179063)

    Not on Android. There was no way to turn on WiFi with a single click until Android 4.2.2, and even in Android 4.2.2 is it a press and hold, not a tap.

    I'm running 2.3.7 and I just hit the WiFi button on one of the widgets.

  • Re:Smartphone? (Score:5, Informative)

    by niftydude (1745144) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @10:43PM (#43179065)

    With a five inch screen it's a small tablet! I wouldn't mind having one, but I'd still need a phone, my pocket isn't that big.

    In terms of size - the S4 is actually smaller and lighter than the S3 - even though the S3 only has a 4.8" screen.

    S3: 136.6 x 70.6 x 8.6 mm, 133 g
    S4: 136.6 x 69.8 x 7.9 mm, 130 g

    The screen runs closer to the edges, and the buttons at the bottom are slimmer. All in all, some pretty neat engineering.

  • Re:Eh, that's it? (Score:4, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 14, 2013 @11:00PM (#43179179)

    It's a 441ppi _PENTILE_ display.

    A proper display LCD has 3 subpixels per pixel, which means a 326ppi display actually has 978 dots per inch.

    A 441ppi pentile display has 2 subpixels per pixel, which is 882 dots per inch.

    So strictly speaking, the Galaxy S IV still has less pixels per inch than the last 3 revisions of the iPhone. In fact, I think even the Galaxy S II might have had a better display than this new one.

  • Re:Eh, that's it? (Score:2, Informative)

    by smash (1351) on Thursday March 14, 2013 @11:42PM (#43179413) Homepage Journal
    2009 wants its meme back.
  • Re:Eh, that's it? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Zontar The Mindless (9002) <plasticfish@info.gmail@com> on Thursday March 14, 2013 @11:45PM (#43179429)

    This is ridiculous. How is the smartphone who most people (at least in US) own is a fashion accessory?

    1. A smartphone is a "which" or a "that", but not a "who". (At least you didn't use "whom" as a nominative, thank random factors for small favours.)

    2. Most people in the US wear shoes, which are highly functional and indeed in many circumstances necessary items, yet they too are often regarded as fashion accessories. Life is fraught with such mysteries!

  • Re:Eh, that's it? (Score:5, Informative)

    by ephraimX (556000) on Friday March 15, 2013 @12:14AM (#43179613)
    That's... not how it works. The "penta" part refers to a prototype arrangement that isn't actually in use in any phones (see here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PenTile [wikipedia.org]).

    These phones are using the RGBG pattern, which has the greens 1-to-1 with the pixel map, which means each pixel is either a green-with-red or a green-with-blue. So the parent here did do the math correctly.
  • Re:Found 'em (Score:5, Informative)

    by sacrilicious (316896) on Friday March 15, 2013 @12:22AM (#43179639) Homepage

    Well, the last two quarters they were outselling all other smartphones on every U.S. carrier that carried them.

    Even if this were true, what an incredibly misleading statement. Android has 75% of the smartphone market outright [idc.com], and rising FAST. I have no idea if Apple somehow outsells every other *individual* model of cellphone (or however else your statement might be twisted to be "true"), but the raw numbers most definitely support the rhetorical asking/observation "where's Apple in all this".

    And all those cores are of little use without software to use them. iOS still has a huge quality and power lead in apps.

    I'd ask for substantiation, but this quote is too subjective to warrant it.

  • Re:Eh, that's it? (Score:5, Informative)

    by thegarbz (1787294) on Friday March 15, 2013 @12:28AM (#43179661)

    Plastic body? How about the far better screen, processor, ram, feature set (NFC, Bluetooth 4), external SD card, better sound quality.

    Shit give me a plastic body with those features any day.

  • Re:WTF (Score:5, Informative)

    by thegarbz (1787294) on Friday March 15, 2013 @01:07AM (#43179845)

    While Samsung doesn't lock down the bootloader they do a few underhanded things to ensure warranty claims can identify phones which have had their firmwares played with. Flashing custom firmware on a Samsung Galaxy phone causes a yellow triangle to appear during boot. This is a feature in the bootloader firmware. Fortunately the XDA guys have figured out ways around it, but the phone is definitely not open in the same way a Nexus is open.

  • Re:Found 'em (Score:1, Informative)

    by stenvar (2789879) on Friday March 15, 2013 @01:42AM (#43179967)

    Apple Haters - totally ignoring Apple successes for twenty years and counting.

    Twenty years? Apple nearly went out of business in the late 90s and their OS and Mac business was in shambles. And the original Mac, OS X, and iPhone were all basically rip-offs of other people's technology.

  • Re:Eh, that's it? (Score:4, Informative)

    by julesh (229690) on Friday March 15, 2013 @02:24AM (#43180073)

    At 441ppi, you should be able to resolve individual pixels at a distance of about 20cm. For the retina display the distance is about 27cm. For me, the natural distance I hold my phone from my eyes is about 40cm, so I doubt this will make much difference at all.

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