Image by Karan Chopra
Samsung are currently preparing themselves for one of the busier days in the company’s year; the release of their brand new smartphone, the Samsung Galaxy S5. The S5 is due to release on April 12, and while that will likely dominate the headlines generated in Samsung’s direction for some time, it should not be forgotten that the model’s predecessor, the S4, is approaching its one-year anniversary since release.
The S4 was released on April 262013 and with T-Mobile conveniently offering up a $48-dollar discount on the smartphone (using the code GS4SAVINGS), it may be time to reflect and look back on what was a extraordinary phone for Samsung, rather than look to the future.
The numbers are there to evidence the success the phone brought it’s producers as well, as the S4 saw 40million units sold in the smartphone’s first six months on the market. That isn’t even the best of it however, as the S4 made history by becoming the fastest selling smartphone in both Samsung and Android’s history, when it reach the 10million mark after just 27 days on the market.
Fans of the smartphone who decide to purchase now will not only receive the initial upgrades the phone offered, such as the advanced camera features, but the progressive updates Samsung offered to customers throughout the later months of the S4’s release. These features and updates include compatibility to the Galaxy Gear smart watch and Android 4.4 ‘KitKat’ that was released as recent as February 2014. The ‘KitKat’ update allows new features such as a camera shortcut on the S4’s lock-screen and a major overhaul of secondary storage, which appears to be the resolution to one of fan’s major gripes with the product.
That last part about S4 updates makes the smartphone seem faulty however, which in truth, is far from reality, as the S4 was considered to be one of the shining lights in 2013 for Samsung. The screen and camera (fully compatible with HD) improvements were noticeable to even the casual Samsung users and key features such as both backward and front-facing camera lenses were addressed in a bid to appease the fans.
Samsung also offered the ingenious idea of ‘smart-mode’, which was for the less tech-savvy members of your family. The mode transformed the home screen into a simpler, easier-to-navigate system that allowed all the most used apps on the S4 system to appear on the users’ home screen. This allowed for people completely unfamiliar with smartphone systems to use the S4 with complete ease. For those of you reading who want a simplistic phone that won’t confuse you and will do the job you ask it to do, then this paragraph should be of vital importance to you.
Another key feature of the S4, and one not found in many smartphones these days, was that of call blocking. Except this was no ordinary ‘blocked number’ process. The S4 allowed you to program unwanted numbers for out-going calls, so that you didn’t pick up the phone to someone you would regret. For the party-goers, this feature was a must-have, as the amount of awkward drunken phone calls the phone blocking ability has solved to date can only be speculated on.
In short, the Samsung S4 was a phone that was easily accessible to both hard-core and newfound smartphone users. The S5 may be on the horizon, arriving with dazzling new updates and features, but it does not take away the glory of the S4 and the subtle improvements it offered customers, that made it the perfect phone for everyday use.