If it's incomplete, don't release it

Anna Scantlin
Contributing Editor from Kansas City, MO
Published: April 24, 2013

Here’s a problem that I’m seeing with today’s smartphones: It’s becoming less and less of an occurance that we actually see new products released. We see the first version pop up, and everybody is happy. Maybe a year (or sometimes less than a year in some cases) later we see the “edited” version of the phone come up – a better, more functional device that fixes all of the problems or missing components from the previous model, all while using the same name. Why does this happen?

Tech news website Tbreak Technology has reported that Samsung is planning on releasing a “water-proof, dust-proof, more rugged version” of the Samsung Galaxy S 4 in the coming months after the release, confirmed by Young Soo Kim, President of Samsung Gulf Electronics at the launch of the Galaxy S 4 today in Dubai.

… Is there something I’m missing here? I can understand why a more rugged version of the Galaxy S 4 would be beneficial to people who work outdoors and deal with the elements every day, but is there some reason why regular run-of-the-mill consumers wouldn’t be able to benefit from these protective features as well? After all, it only takes one bad battle of phone versus water for the phone to lose everything, and whether you work in an outdoorsy environment or not we are probably, at some point in our day, most likely around water. “Danger, Will Robinson!”

I feel like this shouldn’t warrant a secondary model. I think these types of features should have been included in the first – and only – model of the device. Enough with the trend of continuing devices – I’m tired of that mess. Why should I buy this model if there’s a high probability that a second, better model that will ultimately last longer is coming out within months of this release?

Although I don’t know what the “rugged” Galaxy S 4 will look like, I wonder if they’re making it a secondary version because it won’t follow that trend that mobile consumers like to see: thin devices. I imagine by being water-proof and dust proof that it might have a little more heft to it, but would it really be that big of a deal? Plus, we know it’s possible to make a water-proof and dust-proof device that looks decent, even if it’s not the thinnest device around. Look at the Sony Xperia Z: A big, beautiful device that incorporates all of the above; imagine that. The Galaxy S 4 could have had a lot more support behind it if these features were part of the original lineup.

If this secondary design is coming as soon as Samsung makes it seem like it is, I think it wouldn’t have killed anybody if Samsung decided to wait it out to release the Samsung Galaxy S 4 altogether. I’ve already talked about my feelings on how quickly Samsung pumps out devices – it seems like a very shotgun type of method. The Galaxy S III was only released last year, and as long as “the next coming months” means sometime in 2013 I think Samsung has themselves covered to the point where they would have been fine otherwise.

It happened with the iPhone and now it seems like it’s starting to happen with the Galaxies. I don’t want to see this become a “thing” – if you didn’t release it with your first model then wait until your next model to incorporate it. At least rename it or something. Plus, Samsung already supposedly has a second Galaxy S 4 in the making already – the mini. Making a more rugged design would make this the third phone with the Galaxy S 4 name in it. That’s a lot of Galaxy S 4s. Just take a breather and release it with the Galaxy S 5. It’s going to come out at some point, and just because you missed a nice feature with your first release doesn’t mean you should have a right to a re-do. It’s confusing and annoying.

I know they’re going to do it anyway, but that won’t stop me from letting ol’ Samsung know that I’m giving effectively giving them the "stank face”.  Sorry you missed your water-proof and dust-proof boat, but sometimes you just have to live and let live. Let the people who bought their device enjoy it for a year or two before you release the exact same device with a couple of better features.

Gosh.

Image via Mashable