The new Samsung GALAXY S 4 launched today amongst much pomp and ceremony, and with a few broadway actors thrown in the mix too. It will officially be available in April, but no word yet on exactly what date it will be available in New Zealand.
SMNZ were invited along to watch the live stream down at the Generator Northern Steamship Building in Britomart, thanks to Pead PR.
The new GALAXY S 4 has a heap of new features. Some new to Samsung, and some just generally brand-spanking new. There is literally 5 pages of information sitting next to me on this desk to write about. But instead of telling you about the whole phone, I am going to tell you about my favourite parts.
For me, the highlight was the new camera and the functions that come with it. It may be that some of these features have been done before (by Samsung, or others) for for the sake of this article, let’s pretend that everything I am writing about is new new new. MMMK.
1. The new 13 megapixel rear camera
That’s quite a few more than we are used to seeing on a smartphone. The new GALAXY S 4 has a few nifty ‘duel’ functions like Duel Camera – which allows you to film from both the front and back at the same time and capture it, and also Duel Video Call, which enables you to make and receive a video call while showing what you are looking at during the call. It’s like having three screens going at the same time.
2. The 12 shooting modes
Yep, you read that right – 12. Some of the standouts for me were Drama Shot, which takes 100 shots in 4 seconds and allows you to see all the action in one continues time-lapse (a great one for fashion bloggers!) and Sound and Shot, which stores the sound and voice together as the picture is taken. Basically you open up the image and there is a picture of you smiling, and the person hears the sound “Hiiiiii Mum! I miss you”. It’s like video, but you’re not moving. I also LOVED the Eraser function, which enables you to erase things that get in the way of your shot (like cute little squirrels, or a random arm that juts into your photo and just ruins everything!!). Finally, the Story Album feature was also on my awesome list – it’s pretty self explanatory – the phone takes your photos and groups them in to albums for you if you say yes. Great if you’re on holiday, or take lots of photos of your cute-as-heck nephew and want to keep them all together to see how he has grown (he will be two on Sunday, thanks for asking).
3. The connivence bits
Everything these days is about making life easier, and the new GALAXY S 4 tries to do that in new ways. For instance, with the Samsung Smart Pause – your video will stop when you look away from the screen. Somewhere deep inside your phone sits a little green man with his hands on a big PLAY/PAUSE button and when you look away BAM – he hits pause. No but seriously, this is a cool function. Great for when you’re on the couch trying to watch the new Taylor Swift clip on your Samsung phone and your partner tries to get you to look at the fishing show he is watching to “check out the awesome snapper”. (Side note: I don’t care, I only want to see a fish cooked on my plate thank you.)
There are some great new (and safer!) technology bits around driving, like S Voice Drive, which should mean you have to actually interact less physically with the phone while driving (read: you will be less likely to crash in to someone while texting and driving). But since I don’t drive, I have nothing to really compare it to.
4. Health and stuff
Hmmmm… Twitter certainly had lots of opinions on this today! The basic run-down is this: There are some new functions like S Health, that can help you be a healthier person and live a better life. From checking calories, to exercise and sleep monitoring, right through to checking blood sugar levels for diabetics – the new GALAXY S 4 has it all. I’ll let you form your own opinions, in fact – I suggest you share them below!
Finally, and this is the most important part – the new Samsung GALAXY S 4 comes in TWO COLOURS! Black and white. They had two fang-dangled smart names for them on the stage, but basically, it’s black or it’s white. I know Michael Jackson said it doesn’t matter which one you are, but you really would look like a knob caring around two phones for no reason, so you’ll just have to pick one.