tech

Review: Tech in Galaxy S 4 doesn't come together

41 Comments
By PETER SVENSSON

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41 Comments
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LOL. Yes the same "clarity of purpose" that's missing from all platforms that isn't following Blackberry's hail mary. Somehow I think iOS and Androids will be fine without that "clarity".

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

LOL. Those poor people thinking they look smart with this oar-size phone...while they're actually seen as, well, poor people.

-7 ( +4 / -11 )

Did I read that right??? A screen size that's somewhere between 4.5 and 5 inche on your phone and you're "poor?" :P

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

@ Lostinnagoya - elitist much? Just because you paid more for your iphone doesn't give you any extra status. Enjoy you phone and let others use different makes. Free choice is the way to go.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

@Burakumin, elitist where? By "poor people" I meant "not smart enough". I see you don't know what subtlety is, poor guy...

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

@lostinnagoya LOL. Those poor people thinking they look smart with this oar-size phone...while they're actually seen as, well, poor people.

I presume you are a troll, or perhaps lost somewhere in techland? I switched from an iphone to the S3 and suddenly I can use smartphone features. The extra size makes everything you do online so much easier. I will leave aside the flexibility that I now have using android and that I am not constantly having to update my apps.

Oar size phone indeed. I am assuming you have never actually used one.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

What the author meant with this piece, is that the s4 is not suitable for women and elderly. Fair enough, this phone shows what technology samsung has and new technology isn't for everyone. That's why I convinced the missus to get an iPhone, and my 76 year old mother in law too. They are happy campers. I graduated from the iPhone the moment the 4s arrived which brought nothing new to the table, happy I didn't wait for the 5, because those 0.2 inches increase were just an insult to injury. Now I'm sporting a note 2, and I love it. Basically speaking android is the next step in evolution,

6 ( +7 / -1 )

What, an article that doesn't follow the standard "there is one other component tech company in the world, therefore Apple is domed" marketing campaign from Samsung?

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

oar size phone!? LOL actually some of us actually want to preserve our eyesight and not have to squint to read those credit card size phones, my HTC has a 5inch true HD screen and I wouldnt trade it for anything smaller, especially for those half eaten fruit phones.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

This part made me laugh:

S 4 doesn’t really advance the aesthetics of its predecessor the way competitors Apple, Sony and HTC have done with their latest phones.

Apple's iPhone has looked almost exactly the same for years... surely Apple users must be sick of the sight of that boring shape.

Personally speaking, for a clumsy person like me, I prefer the plastic Galaxy phones... they are light and tend to bounce when dropped (as I have done several times with my S2 to no ill effect).

0 ( +4 / -4 )

As for screen size, the large Galaxy screens are so nice.

I don't know how iPhone users can bear those tiny little screens.

Once you have had used a lovely big-screened phone for a few days, I guess it would be near-impossible to go back to a tiny screen such as the iPhone, straining one's eyes to look at the tiny images and letters....

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

"LOL. Those poor people thinking they look smart with this oar-size phone...while they're actually seen as, well, poor people."

I wish. The price of the S3 wasn't cheap at all. Samsung is currently charging more for their products. Iphone is getting cheaper. Win win for the consumer.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Overall, I think, in a very short time, smartphones have matured to a point where they already have most features the average user could want.

Features-wise, it's impossible for any manufacturer - Apple, Samsung, whoever - to produce a revolutionary smartphone.

As the article notes, some new features have the potential to annoy, such as this hover feature.

What the manufacturers should really really be doing, instead of wasting time on useless features is IMPROVE THE BATTERY LIFE!

We need smartphone batteries that last a week...

0 ( +4 / -4 )

"oar size phone!? LOL actually some of us actually want to preserve our eyesight and not have to squint to read those credit card size phones, my HTC has a 5inch true HD screen and I wouldnt trade it for anything smaller, especially for those half eaten fruit phones."

Comparing HTC to any other tech company is laughable at best. HTC will never beat Sony. The list goes on. Apple, Samsung, LG, Nokia. HTC products are all garbage. Anyone who has used their products will tell you the same.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

HTC products are all garbage.

My first smartphone was a docomo HTC HT-03A... at the time it was a really good phone and I was very satisfied with it.

They seem to have stumbled more recently but the HTC One is getting rave reviews so maybe they are back on track.

For me, my next phone will be the Galaxy Note 2 or 3.

It's all about screen size... those huge lovely Galaxy Note screens are amazing and I've realized that, even though the phone is bigger, it will be fine for me to use as my phone.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

anyone know when DoCoMo is going to get it? JT failed to provide that info.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

My HTC phone is good quality

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I am a recent convert to the iPhone and I am very happy with its form. It is neither too small for my hands, or too large for them. Choiwaruoyaji hit the nail on the head. Smart phones are to the point where there is no real difference that average consumers care about.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

choiwaruoyaji-san,

What the manufacturers should really really be doing, instead of wasting time on useless features is IMPROVE THE BATTERY LIFE!

Exactly!

The Galaxy S4, according to one review I read doesn't have enough battery to last a day with moderate use.

These "smart" features come at a price.

Having to lug an adaptor around that you might forget in a coffee shop somewhere is not a feature I need.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

The Galaxy S4, according to one review I read doesn't have enough battery to last a day with moderate use.

Nobody as of now has had the chance to review it.....the whole article written here is based on less then 30 minutes of hands on.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

If the battery life is good when you turn off these extra features, it'll be a great phone. Otherwise I say pass and get a HTC One.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

choiwaruoyaji: "It's all about screen size... those huge lovely Galaxy Note screens are amazing and I've realized that, even though the phone is bigger, it will be fine for me to use as my phone."

When you need a backpack to hold your 'phone', it's not a phone but a pad.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

When you need a backpack to hold your 'phone', it's not a phone but a pad.

Said the man with the tiny hands..

Q

0 ( +3 / -3 )

When you need a backpack to hold your 'phone', it's not a phone but a pad.

The Galaxy Note 2 fits nicely in my jeans pocket.

The docomo staff at my local Yodobashi Camera let me borrow one of the mock-up models and I kept it in my pocket for about an hour as I browsed around the shop.

It worked out fine.

It will also be fine in a jacket pocket but shirt breast pocket... hmm... maybe no... but I think I can live with that.

The huge screen just beats the tiny iPhone screen hands down (as do the big Galaxy S3 or S4 screens).

Every time I look at the iPhone I marvel at how the users can bear to use that tiny screen.

One other thing... the Galaxy Note or Note 2 are THE phones to use for kanji input. If you're studying/using Japanese everyday, this is incredibly good. The stylus allows easy input and using various apps/dictionaries you can find an unkown kanji in seconds. Wonderful.

Of course, if you're not studying/using Japanese then I suppose it's not a deal-breaker.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

BertieWoosterMar. 17, 2013 - 06:33PM JST

The Galaxy S4, according to one review I read doesn't have enough battery to last a day with moderate use.

Interesting, since nobody outside Samsung even has one of these phones. Post a link or it didn't happen (rule of the internet)

Interesting fact though, everyone with an icrap4-5 I know can't get more than 6 hours on their phones, while my android phone regularly does two days even with frequent checks of email and web.

1 ( +5 / -5 )

Samsung provided reporters with some hands-on time with pre-production units, which revealed the S 4 to be, in terms of hardware, a solid successor to the III. The screen is slightly larger, at 5 inches on the diagonal compared to 4.8 inches for the III and 4 inches for the iPhone 5.

When you compare the new 5" phones (5.5" Galaxy Note 2) to the 4" -the iPhone really looks smaller and it seems obvious to go with the 5". I am all for these "oar type" phones and some people are "poor" (intellectually bankrupt) with them and do not know how to turn off the "hover function" (useful when having gloves on) etc.

I have an HTC Evo 5 (4G) and they are solid phones. --> bought it just to test out Android on wifi. I still feel iOS is the better platform with better software. The first Android phones were crap, and HTC was part of that. HTC had the FTC security lawsuit issues. http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2013/02/htc.shtm

I am waiting for the new 5"->6" (Steve Jobs be damned) iPhone and probably will get an iPad also. iPad mini does not have the correct shape to use as a phone. -So if all of this pushes the new iPhone production up -I am good.

The Samsung Galaxy Note II will be the candidate for me if Apple does not come thru with the new iPhone.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Judging others intelligence and financial status based on how much their phone costs = intellectually bankrupt.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Judging others intelligence and financial status based on how much their phone costs = intellectually bankrupt. It's a pity Samsung couldn't live up to the hype with the S4. Hopefully HTC can pull off a successful release of their new flagship.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I wanted to say "technically bankrupt" -but that can give a confused meaning. I should have said "technically challenged"

**No wonder why people are going back to the galapagos phone. All these confused Android/Windows users that should have just bought a refurbed iPhone on the cheap in the first place Really they should have classes to teach these things and not some 2-5 minute phone in hand type thing. 2/3 of the time I look at a Galaxy Note 2 it is never turned on and has the fake sticker over the screen? --> How can they expect a 2yr sale/commitment with something like that. I just YouTube these phones and watch carefully, but I really need the louder audio.

http://www.htc.com/www/smartphones/htc-one/ (has the 2 big front firing speakers)

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

badsey, who the hell needs massive speakers when most places in Japan request manner mode? If you really need to have more people listen to your bad music or pointless youtube videos (a joke for those who are sarcasm challenged), you can buy pretty good speakers for under 5000 yen, and if you don't, you can just use whatever headphones you want (I prefer the sony NC series since they are very effective for the price, if a bit cheap on the build). It's the same solution to bad laptop speakers too, and much more neighbor friendly.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I have a Samsung S3. The phone I had before was awful. A lot of my friends have iphones, and I could see they were a really good phone. I just didn't want to own an Apple product. I didn't bad-mouth it though.

When Apple took Samsung to court, and said they were ripping off the iphone, I knew what phone I was going to get next.

Both the iphone and the Samsung phones have their good and bad points. Why do the Apple fanbois always so fiercly defend their iphones at all cost? It's a PHONE, not your girlfriend!

This is why Apple fans get so much ridicule.

S 4 doesn’t really advance the aesthetics of its predecessor the way competitors Apple, Sony and HTC have done with their latest phones.

Apple's iPhone has looked almost exactly the same for years... surely Apple users must be sick of the sight of that boring shape.

This comment rules!! And is so true.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

@ Probie, apparently, some believe that by owning an iPhone they are both smarter and wealthier than everybody else. Interesting concept, no?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Who cares about clarity of purpose?! We don't use our phones for some higher philosophy! As long as the features are useful for our own purposes, who cares whether there's an overarching scheme to them.

And of course many 3rd-party apps don't use the new features yet - they're new! How many apps used speech recognition when it was new? Time will tell which features prove useful and get adopted by more apps.

(And Apple users should really stop calling other people not smart enough. Apple's whole mantra from its very founding is to make tech/computer easy to use even for laypeople - that is, users don't have to know what's going on behind the scenes to use it. Apple users are some of the more technology-naive people I've encountered - and Steve Jobs wouldn't have had it any other way.)

3 ( +3 / -0 )

choiwaruoyaji: "The huge screen just beats the tiny iPhone screen hands down (as do the big Galaxy S3 or S4 screens)."

Only to those who need it. It's like those giant calculators with the big buttons that are easier for anyone to push, including young children. Anyway, as the article says, the new Galaxy has barely improved on the old, whereas other companies have vastly improved. If a screen is all you want, then all the power to you.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

choiwaruoyaji: "The huge screen just beats the tiny iPhone screen hands down (as do the big Galaxy S3 or S4 screens)."

Only to those who need it. It's like those giant calculators with the big buttons that are easier for anyone to push, including young children.

You'll say that until the iphone 6 or whatever comes out with a large screen. Then it'll be the best thing ever.

Anyway, as the article says, the new Galaxy has barely improved on the old, whereas other companies have vastly improved.

Yeah, the iphone 5 is SO different to the iphone 4!

If a screen is all you want, then all the power to you.

Here again we can see that belittling anything that doesn't have a half-eaten apple on it is the favoutite passtime of the Apple fanboi.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

It is ridiculous some arguments Samsung users make use of, totally detouring from the problem that the device is: "it is the best when you let it slip down, it won't break", "the huge screen is good for the eyes", among others. Since when someone decides on a device based on the probabilistics of letting it falling down? Or that the size of the screen is good for the eyes? This review and many others is about the whole experience, and Samsung is a loser at that. The only review I read praising the Android interface (O Globo newspaper), reviewed it two days later, saying some of the advertised functions just didn't work at all. S4 was so bad the next day Apple shares rose 2,65% while the rest of US stocks fell down, solely based on the general perception that S4 is cheap technology in a cheap body, like this article and hundred others say... I wonder those saying that "yes, it's ugly and dysfunctional but plastic doesn't break, apple fanboys!!" ask their beer in plastic pints when going out, afraid of breaking real glass....hmmm it makes sense: plastic smartphone in one hand, plastic pint in the other.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Okay, LostinNagoya. You brought up the plastic argument, so other non-crApple lemmings answered. If you still think that the iPhone is better, please, enlighten us as to why? It sure isn't the performance, technical specifications, or future proofing. Everybody knows (or should know, as it's pretty obvious) that crApple's business model thrives on planned obsolesence. You say that aluminium is better than plastic? Fine, for arguments sake, let's say that it is. What else has your great master told you that puts it better than Android and Windows phones? Is it the pricetag? Okay, if taking a golden spoon into the forest suits you better than a cheap swiss army knife works for you, that's your call. If aesthetics are all that's important in a phone for you, then by all means, get an iPhone, any iPhone reincarnation will do. They all look the same anyway. And if you ever feel the desire to personalize, you can always buy one of those ridiculous looking rubber cases to hide and protect your precious aluminum toy.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Jimmy Kimmel performing an experiment on Apple fanboys. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rdIWKytq_q4

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@LostinNagoya

I wonder those saying that "yes, it's ugly and dysfunctional but plastic doesn't break, apple fanboys!!"

It's not ugly or dysfunctional. Unless you're talking about the iphone.

ask their beer in plastic pints when going out, afraid of breaking real glass....hmmm it makes sense: plastic smartphone in one hand, plastic pint in the other.

I have no idea what you are trying to say here.

Anyway, Magnet pwned you in the next post on here.

From the article:

On the S 4, the “Email” app will show previews, but the “Gmail” app won’t. The built-in “Gallery” app will show picture previews, but other photo apps won’t.

Whever wrote this is obviously biased. The Email app, and the Gmail app, are more than likely made by different companies, same with the gallery and photo apps. Expecting them all to work with one new phone, when they are from different makers is unfair.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

S4 vs. iPhone 5 benchmarks completed. S4 speed TWICE as fast as iPhone 5.

http://www.redmondpie.com/galaxy-s4-benchmarks-are-in-twice-as-fast-as-iphone-5/

And that's by redmondpie, the dude who makes programs to jailbreak iPhones.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

This article just reeks of a writer that wants to defend himself for buying an iPhone 5 and sporting it while drinking at the local Starbucks.

Some of the issues I take up with the article include the design ideals of phones. The iPhone 5 brought absolutely nothing to the table. Yes the materials changed, I'm holding a 4 and 5 right now to look at the two generation gap. They look the same, but the 5 has what I'd argue as a fault with their materials choice. Both have small cosmetic scratches, but the scratches on the 5 appeared so much faster and are much more obvious.

Looking at what I'd argue as important for phones I'd upgrade to: which is faster, which has a better screen, which has good reception, which has good battery life?

I do agree that some things like the swipe gestures do sound gimmicky, but the auto-pause feature does seem nice. The comment here about it not working at all is the first time I've heard a press reviewer say that.

I'd have loved to see Samsung's flexible screen technology on this but really, when you look at it, this is a phone that improves on every hardware facet against other phones on the market. People try to compare it to the lackluster iPhone 5, but there's really no comparing.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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