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March 15, 2013

Samsung Galaxy S4 hands-on, first impressions

We had an early preview of the Samsung Galaxy S4 ahead of the public launch this evening but was under NDA so we couldn’t publish it ahead of the announcement. Here’s what we got from the 30-minute or so hands-on of the Galaxy S4.

It’s pretty clear the leaks were accurate about the design of the S4. The look somewhat reminds us of the Galaxy S1 or something in between the Galaxy S3 and the Note 2. The physical size of the device is almost similar to the Galaxy S3. However, because they were able to trim down the bezel on all sides, the display size of the screen was increased to 4.99 inches.

The body is a bit glossy and has some patterns below the finish. Despite being thinner (7.9mm), the device feels more solid and has a bit of heft.

We took some sample videos from the 13MP camera and got these. Not that this was under low-light conditions.

The number of sensors has increased to even include even temperature and humidity sensor. The IR blaster is already present in the Galaxy Note 10.1 and the Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus and is now included in the Galaxy S4.

Here’s a quick video demo we got earlier:

The Samsung PM told us it will support up to 6 LTE bands so there’s high probability it will support both Smart and Globe when it is released in the Philippines.

Samsung heavily focused on customizing and adding more features into the Galaxy S4 like gesture functions and the native camera app.

The camera can do dual-shot front and rear camera (overlay photo in the shot) as well as dual-video recording (split-screen video recording), 3-way video calls and dual-camera video calls.

The Sound & Shot functions shoots a photo and add 9 a second audio. the Drama Shot combines multiple photos into one image while retaining the moving subject. The Cinema Photo is like a GIF maker which animates background from multiple photo while keeping the subject static; and the Razor Shot which removse moving subjects in photos (anti-photo bombing).

The Galaxy S4 comes with S-Translator which can auto translate text to voice and vice-versa (Chinese, English, French, German, Spanish, Portuguese etc.)

The NFC can pair up to 8 devices to share and stream music on all of them to form a band. It can also be used for group playing (Asphalt 7, GunBros 2) via direct WiFi connection.

Air View is a “Hover with Finger” to preview email, calendar and FlipBoard (this was copied from the hover on the Note 2 but this time using the fingers instead of the stylus).

Air Gesture: Air Browse, Air Jump, Air Call Accept (wave of the hand). While Smart Pause is basically eye tracking by pausing video when you look away and resuming when you look back. Smart Scroll works when you tilt the device to scroll content on a page.

There’s also a Samsung Optical Reader to digitize calling cards and Save to Contacts (witj S-Translator enabled).


Galaxy S4 and Galaxy S3. The Galaxy S4 is less curvy.

There are also a number of accessories for the handset S Band, Body Scale, Heart Rate Monitor – syncs to S4 via Bluetooth. S View Cover – small viewing window that gives specialized view – time, battery, SMS, playlist, caller ID, accept or reject calls.

You can read more about the specs and hardware here as well as the Quadrant Benchmarks here.

Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini photos and specs leak
Samsung Galaxy S4 system dump available for download
Samsung Galaxy S3 & S4 to get Android 4.3 next month

60 Responses to “Samsung Galaxy S4 hands-on, first impressions”

  1. john says:

    Sir abe,
    Just read that Kim Lato of Kimstore personally confirmed that her online store will be offering the recently announced stellar flagship smartphone, Samsung Galaxy S4, before April ends!

  2. Renz says:

    Wow octa core! Pero ang inaantay ko talaga lumabas lahat ng smartphones by end of 2013, then i will decide which handset i’ll buy. It is also rumored that the NEXUS 5 will come out sometime in October and there’s another one, Motorola X. 2013 will be a battle for these phone manufacturers and companies!

  3. gamaguchi S says:

    It’s pretty clear the leaks were accurate about the design of the S4. The look somewhat reminds us of the Galaxy S1 or something in between the Galaxy S3 and the Note 2. The physical size of the device is almost similar to the Galaxy S3. However, because they were able to trim down the bezel on all sides, the display size of the screen was increased to 4.99 inches.

  4. hp terbaru says:

    in the market were them and nokia. The hell with the octa core when most of the consumers only use it for browsing and gaming. HTC still wins for me. Oh i like the LG optimus G, too. Ung mga nagcocomment sa kin dian. Magbasa kau. Ung aesthetics and phone build ang tinitira ko sa samsung. Technology wise they’re good Magbasa kau kung ayaw niong palunok ko senio S4 nio! Bwahahahaha! teknomaniaku.blogdetik.com

    Reply

  5. Unown says:

    Phones are getting bigger and bigger, eh? O_o

  6. marlon says:

    It’s actually smaller than the S3 but with a much larger screen

    http://www.gsmarena.com/compare.php3?idPhone1=5125&idPhone2=4238

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