Through quite a bit of Broadway spectacle, Samsung finally did it. They unleashed the next big thing. Maybe unleash is too dramatic of a word. Let’s just go with announced, I guess. That about sums it up. They took the stage in New York City, and officially unveiled the much-anticipated Galaxy S 4. I think we can all admit that Samsung followed in Apple’s footsteps in one big way: Keeping the overall design aesthetic of the device, while packing it the gills with features.
Did Samsung make a mistake by keeping the physical design style of the Galaxy S III? I don’t think so. There’s absolutely no denying that the Galaxy S III is one of the most popular Android devices on the planet, and some of that (most?) has to do with the design of the phone itself. Samsung bumped up the display size, but kept the phone’s overall design because they know it worked. Why would it stop working? With the new features that Samsung is shoving into the device, I can’t help but imagine that Samsung will have another ridiculously popular phone on their hands when it launches. I have no doubt it’s going to climb our Official Smartphone Rankings pretty quickly after it launches.
Don’t fix what isn’t broken, right?
I think one of the more interesting moves is the lack of changes in the software aesthetic. I know that there are people out there who like TouchWiz, and especially the version that launched with the Galaxy S III last year, but I know an equal amount of people who really dislike it. Both parties have their reasons, and there’s nothing wrong with that. I just think it’s interesting because I figured –maybe hoped—Samsung would take some time to redesign their software. Not start all the way over, but just something different.
But here we are, with the Galaxy S 4 right around the corner hopefully, and with the same design as its predecessor in both hardware and software. We’ve reached the point where you can look around on the Internet, and see that many people believe Samsung copied Apple, and copying themselves all the while. It is certainly an interesting time to be a fan of the mobile industry.
If I had to point out something that I think Samsung made a mistake on, it’s the processor choices. The company copied themselves in another area, too: different processors in different versions of the same phone. Samsung announced that one version of the Galaxy S 4 will have their own octa-core Exynos 5 processor; while in other markets, there’d be a quad-core processor inside the device running the show. Again, just like with the Galaxy S III, we’re left to look at one phone that’s landing across the pond with a different processor.
There are reasons for this, and Samsung isn’t making this decision just to be cruel to some markets. They’ve got their reasons. We may not be a fan of the move, but it is what it is.
For me, though, it just gives me one more reason to skip the Galaxy S 4 altogether, and just wait. Wait for another Samsung-branded device, which will probably be running the same software as the Galaxy S 4, but with a few extras thrown in for good measure. That’s right, I’m going to wait for the Galaxy Note III, and be perfectly happy with that decision.
I’ve had a torrid history with the Galaxy S III, but it’s the Galaxy Note II that’s made me a fan of Samsung Android-based devices. No, I’m not a huge fan of TouchWiz, and I can’t stand it on the Galaxy S III at all. But on the Galaxy Note II I can deal with it simply because of the S Pen and its functionality. It’s a trade-off, and one that I’m very willing to make because of the added features that Samsung’s stylus provides.
This is where you’d probably ask me, “But what about the features that Samsung added to the Galaxy S 4, which emulate some of the S Pen features?” Those are cool, yes, and it’s awesome that Samsung has added that functionality with just your finger, and not necessarily needing the S Pen. I’m sure that will make a lot of people happy, especially those who don’t want to use a huge phone.
But for me, I’d prefer to use those features with the S Pen, because it’s just icing on the cake. And, more than anything else, I think it means that the Galaxy Note III is going to have even more features tucked inside its thin frame, all added and built upon what’s running on the Galaxy S 4. Oh, and I have no doubt that it will launch here in the United States with Samsung’s octa-core chipset. There’s that, too.
So what about you? Are you going to buy the Galaxy S 4 as soon as it becomes available for your carrier? Or are you going to wait out for the Galaxy Note III? Or, just maybe, did you already choose to spend your money on another phone entirely? Let me know!