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June 21, 2013

Hands-on: Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom

At first glance, it’s a bit confusing to figure out if the Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom is indeed a compact camera or a smartphone with really large camera lens. We got a quick hands-on yesterday here in London just in time for the global launch we’re covering.

The design and form factor of the Galaxy S4 Zoom is geared towards a compact camera. It feels a bit bulky in the hands for a smartphone, but light enough for a hand-held camera. Event the posterior design really looks like a camera, with that protruding hand grip and the large, silver lens barrel.

The body has a glossy finish (comes in white and black colors) and has a plasticky feel to it.

At the back is the large, 4.3-inch Super AMOLED screen with a size and design reminiscent of the Galaxy S4 Mini. Samsung admits the DNA of the smartphone is exactly similar to the S4 Mini:

Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom specs:
4.3-inch qHD S-AMOLED display, 256ppi
Corning Gorilla Glass 3
1.5GHz dual-core processor
1.5GB RAM
8GB internal storage
Expandable up to 64GB
16MP BSI CMOS Sensor
ISO Range: 100-3200 (full-stop increments)
Focal range: 24-240mm
Aperture range: f/3.1 – f/6.3
Built-in XENON flash
3G/HSPA+ or 4G LTE (selected markets)
NFC
WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, dual channel
Bluetooth 4.0
A-GPS w/ GLONASS
Li-Ion 2,330mAh battery
Android Jelly bean v.4.2
Dimension: 125.5 x 63.5 x 15.4 mm
Weight: 208g

And to make it more usable as a camera, aside from the grip, Samsung added a dedicated camera shutter button on the top side and a tripod socket when you want to mount it on regular-sized monopod/tripod. The lens ring ring can also be set up to do Manual Focus.

Because of the built-in NFC, Samsung also copied some of the features of the S4 and S4 Mini like Group Play. There’s an In-Call Photo Sharing that allows you to send and share a photo to a person you are currently talking to on the other line, without cutting off the call.

To make taking photos with the S4 Zoom, a bunch of features and pre-sets were created for new users — 25 Smart Mode presets for the usual scenes, a Smart Mode Suggest (gives recommendations for up to 3 scenes based on the subject or environment), and a Photo Suggest (tells you what nearby places to go to for getting good shots, powered by TourWrist, Panoramio, TripAdvisor).

A Story Album allows you to make properly laid-out albums of your photos for presentation and even allows you to send them to Blurb to print (available in 75 countries).

Samsung is expected to ship the Galaxy S4 Zoom some time later in 3rd quarter of this year. As for retail price, there was no information as of this writing but we’re guessing it will be between the S4 Mini and the Galaxy Camera.

Update: Overheard from local sales/dealer that estimated retail price of the Galaxy S4 Zoom is Php23,000.

Samsung Galaxy NX officially announced!

15 Responses to “Hands-on: Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom”

  1. jm says:

    very ugly, who want to buy this phone? 20k? or 25k? you can buy dslr, better than this crap!!

    • Mr A
      Twitter: solidad
      says:

      On the contrary, I am willing to buy this camera since I can snap and upload pictures at the same time. Good for bloggers/media needing to send good photos as soon as possible, particularly on events.

      But if the price of this camera is no different than that other Samsung camera, I would opt to use that instead.

    • Bobong Pinoy says:

      I see people buy dslr like hipsters and didn’t fully utilize the “features” of their camera because all they want is to be “in”.

      This one’s a niche phone and is perfect for bloggers, freelancers and adventurous peeps who wants to get job done without sacrificing image quality.

      Generally consumers are more concerned over the looks over function. I think you’re one good example of this…

    • whinger says:

      At dahil android yan, expect it to lag while taking pics. or magcrash … lololol

  2. sarabee says:

    I really find this product funny, it’s like you mashed a compact point-N-Shoot with an android smartphone, so where’s the concept of mobility? compactness? pocketability? sleekness? Samsungs’ Camera products don’t even produce exceptional image quality

    • Techjunkeez
      Twitter: korabtech
      says:

      Right now, samsung is gearing towards fitting in the SLR technology and smartphone in one. I believe, you’ll get your answer soon.

  3. E says:

    http://www.gsmarena.com/compare.php3?idPhone1=5506&idPhone2=5447

    check this out from gsm arena… Wait for the release of nokia EOS first so you can choose which better suits you…

  4. bobby says:

    Funny design. Sana they’ve designed a cohesive device that wouldn’t make it appear like a 2-in-1. Yung orientation nung likod could have been made horizontal instead of vertical.

  5. red says:

    nice concept, but ugly design. i cannot imagine how do i look when answering phone using this. but great for photo bloggers out there, the question is: hows the camera software?

  6. hahaha says:

    parang nakakahiya gumamit nito pag natawag ka muntanga =)))

  7. rihoko says:

    Not a good design for an “everyday smartphone”. This design should better go with the Galaxy Camera line. If I were to buy one of these, I’ll just use this as a camera. The concept still amazes me though since the first Galaxy Camera.

    Just buy the Galaxy S4 Active if you want the definitive version of Samsung’s flagship phone.

  8. Jes says:

    Una kong reaksyon, “pangit”. Dami pala naming napapangitan. Hehehe!

  9. gmn says:

    sana gnwa nlang nla camera powered by android os.feel ko mganda kung android os ng mga future cams nla kc mbilis tpos mganda screen at innovative

  10. SpiderWak says:

    This against Lumia 920 camera. Which produces better pic?

  11. kaypee says:

    Magnda naman s4 zoom. And im using it now. Unique nga sya eh. Haha.d tulad ng ibang phones, panipisan. Ito naman iba. Tska d sya umiinit tulad ng ibang samsung smart phones.

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Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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