Samsung is holding its Unpacked 2013 Episode 1 event on March 14 in New York City. As though the event invitation isn't obvious enough, the Korean company should be (or should we say, will be?) unveiling the successor to its highly popular Galaxy S III smartphone, which has reached global sales of over 30 million units in November.
It is becoming an annual practice for Samsung to hold its own launch events outside of Mobile World Congress 2013 and Consumer Electronics Show 2013, where its competitors usually unveil their flagship devices for the year. So what tricks does Samsung have up its sleeves this time round? Well, there are plenty of rumors, speculations, and leaked screenshots of the device. Here's a quick look at the reports so far:
|Device||Samsung Galaxy S IV||Samsung Galaxy S III|
|OS||Android 4.2 Jelly Bean||Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich (at launch)
Android 4.1 Jelly Bean (LTE model)
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 or Exynos 5 Octa||Exynos 4212 Quad quad-core 1.4GHz|
|RAM||2GB||1GB (non-LTE variant)
2GB (LTE variant)
microSD slot (supports up to 64GB)
|Display||4.99-inch Super AMOLED||4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED|
|Resolution||1,920 x 1,080 pixels||1,280 x 720 pixels|
|Cameras||Rear: 13MP / autofocus / LED flash||Rear: 8MP / autofocus / LED flash|
|LTE||Yes||3G and LTE variants available|
|? x ? x 9.2mm||136.6 x 70.6 x 8.6mm|
An alleged press image of the Samsung Galaxy S IV appeared on Picasa suggests a design with thinner bezels, a bigger physical home button, and less rounded corners. The Korea Times also obtained information from an insider source that the device will come with a 5-inch display.
Korean sources also claim that the Galaxy S IV will be the first of its series to come with the S Pen, a stylus concept which first started in the 5.3-inch Galaxy Note, and is also in the current Galaxy Note II.
But there are conflicting reports on the processor used in the Galaxy S IV. Although the phone is likely to be powered by the Exynos 5 Octa processor which Samsung unveiled at CES 2013, a report by DigiTimes stated otherwise. It is possible that Samsung may switch to using the Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processors - the same processor used in the ASUS PadFone Infinity, HTC One, and LG Optimus G Pro.
On the other hand, leaked Antutu benchmark results reveal that the Galaxy S IV would be powered by an Exynos 5140 1.8GHz processor, PowerVR SGX544MP GPU, 2GB RAM, and Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. It would also be sporting a 4.99-inch full HD (1,920 x 1,080 pixels) display, and a 13-megapixel rear camera. Other specs include 4G LTE support, Bluetooth 4.0, and two storage capacities (16GB and 32GB). Screenshots of the app Quick System Info PRO suggest that a quad-core 1.7GHz processor will be running under the hood instead.
Also, Samsung is likely going to utilize the front-facing camera of the Galaxy S IV for two new features - Smart Scroll and Smart Pause. Similar to Smart Stay, it was mentioned that the camera will detect eye movement, and scroll through a webpage automatically or pause a video. Would such a feature work to consumer's advantage - if it turns out to be true? Well, we'll have to wait till next week when the full details are unveiled.
Samsung Lebanon has apparently let the cat out of the bag on Facebook when it responded to a query on the availability of the Galaxy S IV. They mentioned that the device "won't be released before May 2013".
Samsung Galaxy S IV: A Compilation of News We've Gathered To-date