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Late last night, the tidal wave crashed. If you were awake and watching your Twitter feed, then I'm sure you saw it. All at once, and quite unexpectedly if you missed the signs, reviews for Samsung's next big thing made themselves known. The publish button was hit, and a wide range of views on the Galaxy S 4 became available for anyone and everyone.

As you've noticed by now, our own Aaron Baker has already put up a plethora of content on the Galaxy S 4. We've got a review (in two parts!), along with a nice gallery for you to look at if you just can't stop yourself from looking at Samsung's newest plastic shell. You can check it all out in our fancy new Galaxy S 4 Hub.

I spent the better part of the rest of my night last night reading reviews, watching reviews, and taking in all of the different outlooks on the Galaxy S 4. There are plenty of opinions, to be sure, and there are plenty of avenues that connect down the road. People agree here, disagree there. In the end, though, I can't quite put together my own opinion on the new smartphone quite yet, simply because I haven't gotten my hands on one. So, that has to wait.

For now, I want to touch on something that many of the reviews put some focus on, too. Right now, let's talk about software. Because this is something that Samsung is obviously banking on. Well, that and the simple fact that the Galaxy S III was such a huge success, that keeping the same physical design aesthetics will work out this time around, too.

Actually, it really is all about the software, and Samsung's decision to keep with the same design as the Galaxy S III shows that. There's been much said about Samsung's plastic phone, and I'm sure it's something we'll hear about even more in the weeks to come, but that's for good reason.

Samsung wants you to pay a premium for the Galaxy S 4. As I've asked in the past, there's a chance that it could be too expensive when it finally does land on your favorite carrier's network. But obviously Samsung's not worried about that. They've got the marketing muscle to make sure that the Galaxy S 4 is in everyone's eye at one point or another, so more than likely a few people out there will buy it.

I heard yesterday that Samsung has a reality distortion field. That may sound familiar to you, if you're hip to Apple's presentation history for devices like the iPhone. It's a sense that the company in question lives in a world where only their truth is the actual truth, and nothing else matters. Or exists. Samsung is launching a plastic smartphone in the year 2013, against competitors like Apple's iPhone 5 (*and* whatever comes next), and also HTC's One.

And they want you to pay a premium for it.

So now we're back to software, because this is where Samsung's premium expectations come from. Yeah, there's a 13MP camera on the back, and yes, the 1080p HD display is 5-inches with a pixel per inch count of 441. These are just extra features to Samsung. Their real focus is the software, and all of the goodies they can pack into it.

I understand the idea, of course. You get what you pay for and all that. The thing is, and I got this same feeling from every single review I read or watched, it sounds like Samsung may have went overboard this time around. The features that Samsung has included in TouchWiz are numerous, and to be honest with you, I think it might take too long to list in this article.

Just look at the image at the top of this article. That's a lot of icons. And, just as we've seen in previous Samsung-branded devices, the notification shade is littered with options. Features like being able to navigate your phone without touching the screen, or eye tracking technology. Do you want to stack applications on top of each other? You can do that, too.

And here's the thing: Samsung absolutely knows they're shoving a lot into this phone. They knew it when they launched the Galaxy S III and the Galaxy Note II, I think, because they included something called "Easy Mode." And it does exactly what the name implies: Makes everything stark, simple, and "easy." Unfortunately, it also makes the Galaxy S 4 look even more like a kid's toy, which is just strange.

In any event, Samsung's shoved a lot of software stuff into the phone, and as I've said above, it may be too much for many people to handle. So the logical conclusion is that many of those people who buy the Galaxy S 4 are going to just ignore those features, and forget they exist at all. It isn't that big of a stretch of the imagination to assume that they are, then, paying a premium for services that they'll never use.

Is that a bad thing, though? After all, they'll have them, even if they don't want to use them "right now," they could use them later if they so desired. And doesn't having them in general count for more than not having the features at all? You're paying a higher price than, say, the HTC One, which offers 32GB of storage for $200, along with a second-to-none industrial build.

But there's no doubt that Samsung's included way more on the software side than HTC has in Sense. No one's disputing that.

So what I want to know from you, is if you're willing to pay that premium. The 16GB Galaxy S 4 will run you $200 (with a new, two-year contract, of course), which is the same price as HTC's One. Are you willing to pay more for your Galaxy S 4? Or are you already planning to get another phone, to avoid that premium for software you may never use? Let me know!


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Comments & discussions  

51 Reactions to this post

"Will you pay more for Samsung's Galaxy S 4 laundry list of features, even if you think you'll never use most of them?"


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Jamie Crane
Jamie Crane Bet htc ones features get replicated in next series of phones not s4 futures and I no a few people who's screens have broken on there s3 so your chatting a load of rubbish I see ya got no pic mouth
Marlon Milligan
Marlon Milligan Super LCD 3 > Amoled
Murtaza Rzv
Murtaza Rzv Samsung is no 1..n galaxy s 4 is 2013 best smartphone...dumb people dont know what exactly s4 is...the beast and intelligent
Murtaza Rzv
Murtaza Rzv Ofcourse
Donnie Ross Oneill
Donnie Ross Oneill Nope! I'll just steal it from one you guys!
Hector Alvarado
Hector Alvarado Hell no!!!!!!
Anthony Bailey
Anthony Bailey It must really suck to be wrong lol.
Anthony Bailey
Anthony Bailey Samsung manufacturers the much vaunted retina displays for iPhones and Samsung screens are usually preferred over crap HTC screens, which always look washed out and lackluster. The HTC One is the first HTC screen that is even worth a second thought. I have owned the Note and Note II, and none of my screen have broken. WTF are you talking about? A whole bunch of nothing it seems.
Kenneth Li
Kenneth Li only LOSERS complain about plastic! Mercedes C and S class use the same material for the body, why is S class costs twice as much? it' what inside that count, STUPID!
Matthew Swanson
Matthew Swanson It's tempting but it's really just a spec bump.... if the camera pans out as a real improvement i might trade in my note 2..
Jose Calderon
Jose Calderon Android is for geeks who care more about specs lol
Rok Vrtacnik
Rok Vrtacnik Nope i install cyanogenmod on a phone right away ;D thats why i dont look over the included software. If i would have to buy an s4 i would buy the octa core version
Jamie Crane
Jamie Crane P's forgot to mention if you Samsung s4 fans are going on about batt on htc one what about complete build quality of Samsung cheap and nasty screens nearly always break
Jamie Crane
Jamie Crane No problem if you've got warranty or phone insurance if batt goes wrong the htc one is by far the best phone I've ever owned and the features on it are useful I love blinkfeed love the camera just big pat on the back for htc
Vicki Figueroa
Vicki Figueroa Hope you htc one lovers battery doesn't crap out cause it'll become a nice paperweight. At least the S4 has a removable battery that can be replaced if needed. I've had to replace my battery during my contract already with my current phone so I know its a necessity to be able to change your battery. So good luck with that.
Kenneth Li
Kenneth Li JUST STOP WITH ALL THESE GARGAGE! I might have to unlike you, every freaking day, PhoneDog posts STUPID article or asking STUPID question! you get what you paid for! otherwise everybody will be driving Ford Focus or everybody is buying their clothes at walmart!
Vicki Figueroa
Vicki Figueroa Ill use all the features.. & it'll be $199 on contract & yes ill pay that
Eko Budi Prasetio
Eko Budi Prasetio never, i prefer htc one
Kevin Peters
Kevin Peters Nope... all gimmick! I own the feature rich Note 2 and thought I would use the SPen more and I have pulled it out maybe 10 times. The Note 2 was the best phone I have ever owned and I have owned all the premium phones that Sprint has put out over the last 13 years. I just purchased the HTC One... it has replaced the Note 2 as the best phone out there. Really enjoying this phone! Happy that HTC has finally made a truly great phone!
Chris Roberts
Chris Roberts Hahahaha lol @ all you HTC One band-wagoners/ex Samsung lovers... Yea who the hell wants to be able to flip through pics answer calls and go through web pages etc. without touching the phone while your eating hot wings.. Ya'll are gonna need more paper towels lmfao!!!!
Randy B Hoopes
Randy B Hoopes Nope still plastic, no thanks. HTC One is better
Chris Roberts
Chris Roberts Ahhh I see Samsung's phone mixed with Android was just to much Tech for you.. lol
George Majao
George Majao Why would you pay for plastic anyway, it should be free with new contract.,
Miranda Brito Inacio Mandlate
Miranda Brito Inacio Mandlate never!!!!!
Huey Liggins
Huey Liggins I like what phone jack said. Because ya know what? They both use gimmicks. Every damn one of you are hypocrites. Gimmick gimmick gimmick. Of course we won't use some features. But it would be great to have em. And to be honest Samsungs gimmicks are more productive than htc. But htc has some nice software features I can't ignore as well.
Mark Fisher Jr.
Mark Fisher Jr. Too much for a dam phone. Just get a computer for all that.
PhoneJack Pug
PhoneJack Pug Why buy Pepsi when you can buy coke?
Lloyd Doucet
Lloyd Doucet I answered this question when i purchased the HTC One Sunday
Denise Ryan
Denise Ryan no
JayR Yambao
JayR Yambao Indeed I would. I'm probably one of the few that uses pretty much every feature of my Note 2. I'll skip the S4 for the eventual Note 3 though.
Carlo Towl
Carlo Towl No
Amjadov Ski
Amjadov Ski No I am ready to pay for hardware more
Rich Field
Rich Field Useless gimmicky crap that most people won't use 95% of the time. On top of it the features lag.
Anthony Bailey
Anthony Bailey The HTC dick riders should be the last people talking about "gimmicks." What do y'all think Zoe and Blink Feed are LOL? I would pay the extra money for the superior features of the S4 over the lackluster One. Samsung knows how to give you features that turn out to be much needed. These "gimmicks" are the reason my Note 2 isn't outdated and still beating brand new phones like the HTC One in comparisons. I see a lot of jelly.
Prdwayne Taylor
Prdwayne Taylor we've been doing it for years why stop now
Kyle Cordiano
Kyle Cordiano Smart scroll. Pointless and not worth the extra $50.
Gavin Feist
Gavin Feist Nope. Switched from S3 to iPhone. Best thing I've done in years.
Matthew Ryan Vargas
Matthew Ryan Vargas no
Jordan Brown
Jordan Brown 99% of the features on the Samsung Galaxy S4 are for those annoying people who like to brag about all the useless features their phone has.
Aeyrton Kee
Aeyrton Kee Nope. And most of the features are available as apps!
Abdelrheem Mahmoud
Abdelrheem Mahmoud NEVER!, most of the features are not practical just for commercials and advertising, The HTC One all the way
Diego Velasquez Lopez
Diego Velasquez Lopez Noooo
Roger DeOliveira
Roger DeOliveira ehh i dont need it then, i only text
Anonymous
Anonymous Can it do my laundry and dirty dishes?
Eldon Ong
Eldon Ong cool but gimmick , trust me
Nick Sanford
Nick Sanford no.still waiting on the HTC ONE to come to verizon
Jordan Brown
Jordan Brown Yes it does Roger.
Roger DeOliveira
Roger DeOliveira does it make phone calls?
Kevin Hsu
Kevin Hsu no, because most of it isn't even functional
Jordan Brown
Jordan Brown I don't think I would use half the features on the Samsung Galaxy S4. I thought the S3 was overkill.
John Dalisay
John Dalisay yes




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