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.


Image via Mashable

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27 Reactions to this post

"Are you a fan of continuation devices (iPhone 3G/3GS, 4/4S)? Why or why not?"

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Jude Fils-Aime EXACTLY MY POINT. that's why I'm not going too RUSH and BUY like everyone else. I'll wait till may of next month. plus waiting for more new phones
Rodger Samiie Myers Lots of the things are not noticeable...on a previous review between the Samsung Galaxy 3 and the Note 2...even with its dual core, the S3 stood par in par with the Note 2 in terms with performance...it became a preference battle...its obvious that the S4 had to be better but it still isnt a marvelous revolution...after all some of the things would not be noticeable..the S4s strength will come from its software...not the hardware...camera MP isnt much of a matter...HTC proved that...ppi isnt a matter...its still pentile and 80 ppi difference is hard to tell...battery life isnt that different...screen size...by 0.2...im more after the whole android 5 with the eye scroll thing and palm movements
Jay Truthz Musiq The S3 was a dualcore phone with 720p screen with ppi in the 200s, a 2100Mah battery, and a 8mp camera. The S4 is a quadcore sd600 clocked at 1.9ghz, 1080p screen with 441ppi, 13mp camera with more camera features, an improved infrared sensor for better use of all its S features, a 2600mAh battery, IR transceiver and the ability to scwitch between natural and normal amoled look of the display. So how is it that the hardward doesnt look different except for the screen? Do you mean the design doesn't look different?
Sebastian Gomes It's not like you're required to go sgs2, 3, 4. Same thing with the iPhone. You don't need the 4, 4s, 5. Continuations are good because I wasn't eligible for an upgrade when the sgs3 was available, but now I'm eligible for the sgs4. So it accommodates everyone
Murtaza Rzv galaxy s 4 is complete smartphone of 2013...water proof also coming of galaxy s 4
Gordon Christie Just the galaxy s range
Javier Segura I would but than again I'm tired of waiting for Android to get out of Beta..
Dino Dimakopoulos whatever is in the S version is what shoulda been in the previous version (or even earlier). This is the rule. Regardless what you buy, the next version will have something your currebt version should have (and could have) had. Dont think for a minute that Apple doesnt hold back features for sales purposes.
Kumar Amarendra Rather than throwing sets to market day and night.. the companies should improve their testing and launch complete products... if you guys remember.. Sony Ericsson P990.......one of the completest product. which had all the input methods. and was capable of doing each and every task of todays phones. .. I still don't find anything of that kind in the market which was way ahead of its times.. just increase p990s processing power and ram and the touch screen method.. and you would have the best device ever with the Symbian..... very sad to see the Symbian dead... it had infact best of the media player..
Rodger Samiie Myers its a yes and no situation, example the upgrade from iphone 4s to 5 was unneeded to some since the real advantage was the OS not so much the hardware. However the 4 to 4S was a good hardware jump since it offered a faster processor, better cam, and the full unlock ability. on androids side its the same. If you look at the Samsung III and IV, hardware wise it doesn't look different at all for exception of the screen size and camera. However the samsung IV outshines in it's software, but still it will be available to the samsung III aso it can be a major drawback.
Saurabh Bisht Iphone 4s was my favourite until S3 and Note 2 SHows Up..
Dwayne Cook I don't really care as long as it's awesome.
Daniel Quintero In case of apple the s versions were made to add features stolen from android and webos
Frank Porter So you're saying you ARE an apple fan. Alright then haha
Chris Kang I never was involved in developing a phone, so I can't really judge
Ryan Meyer I have an iPhone 4S and perfectly happy with it... I'll probably end up getting the next iPhone after my contract ends!
Dalton Davis All I can say is I'm not no Apple fan!
Thanaraj Jaindren Give me a device that isn't continuous? Yeah thanks right
Mark Schroeder Biraj, Aaron isn't the only person who works at phonedog
Marcus Duff It's all about the dollar. They don't care what we want. I've always said make a phone that is and does everything and you own the market. More money in a perfect product than a bunch of half ass ones...Just me I guess........
Mark Schroeder I don't think there is a sure answer for this. I mean for those who want all the new little things right away then this is an obvious yes but for those who wait out their two year contract they do want to see more then a minor bump. They have been stuck with the same phone for 2 years so would you really want to feel the same thing again for the next? So I think the cycle is good enough. A 1 year refresh and 2 year reboot. It's not perfect but it seems to work. It kind of sucks if you get the newest phone whenever it comes out but you can't expect something dramatically new every year.
CeeGii Borels baka naman Chiri Mobile?
Cj Espiritu android forever
Jordan Brown Someone may not care about the features of the iPhone 5 and be perfectly happy with an iPhone 4S, which costs $100 less than an iPhone 5.
Jordan Brown I am. It's good for users to have variety, sometimes they may not want to spend a lot of money, and they can get a decent device for really cheap or free with a 2 year contract. Besides, a lot of phone makers still do this. Samsung still sells the Samsung Galaxy S2 and S3 (and the S1 depending on what carrier you have).
Biraj Patel i thought Aaron was in TExas? who is in Lee Summits Missouri? lol And ... about the question.. it depends on wat they do to improve the device every model they put out

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