Samsung Galaxy S IV: Rumour roundup

samsung_galaxy_s4Samsung is going to launch its flagship Galaxy S IV smartphone tomorrow at a press event in Radio City Music Hall in New York. Tech media from around the world has already started reaching New York to witness one of most anticipated smartphone launches of the recent times.

I thought it was the right time that I stopped a bit and looked back at all the rumours and leaks that we have seen in the past few months. I must applaud Samsung for keeping such a tight lid on the phone, which really hasn’t leaked in as detail as normally happens with Android phones.

I will be taking component by component on what has been leaked and what I expect to see in the smartphone later tomorrow.

Processor: There has been a lot of confusion about the chip in the smartphone. As soon as Samsung announced Exynos 5 Octa processor, most of us believed that it will be the chip inside the retail unit of Galaxy S IV outside North America.  Later, reports came suggesting that there were heating issues with Exynos 5 Octa and thus Samsung has chosen Qualcomm’s Snapdraon 600 quad-core processor for all Galaxy S IV units. Then the very recent leaks again revealed the presence of Exynos 5 Octa.

Latest report from Bloomberg: Just hours ago Bloomberg reported that Samsung will be putting Exynos 5 Octa in some units and Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 in others.

“The U.S. version will use Qualcomm Inc.’s quad-core chip, giving the phone more processing power to handle multiple tasks at the same time, they said. In other markets, it will rely on Samsung’s “octacore” eight-core chip,” Bloomberg reported via its sources.

I agree with Bloomberg and believe that we are going to see the same tomorrow.

RAM: Well, it is quite clear right now that we are going to see 2GB RAM in all the Galaxy S IV units. It was really a no-brainer.

Display:  This is another component where we have seen a variety of rumours suggesting one or the other display technology. We have heard about LCD, OLED, PHOLED and what not.

I believe we are most likely to see 4.99-inch AMOLED full HD display in Galaxy S4 tomorrow, which was also displayed by the company at CES.

Cameras: Similar to RAM, this is again a component where there have been consistent reports saying that Galaxy S IV will come with 13MP rear camera. The details are still unclear whether the phone will have some special underlying technology that will make the S IV camera special.

The front camera is expected to be 2.1 MP with HD recording support.

Battery and Wireless charging:   There has been no much information on the battery front. The initial reports indicated the presence of 2600 mAh battery and the same has been repeated again and again by the tech media. The battery is very likely to be user-replaceable.

On the wireless charging front, we have heard that Samsung is going to offer separate battery covers as an options accessory that will support wireless charging, but that seems unlikely and I think Samsung will include wireless charging by default in Galaxy S4.

Android & Software Customisations:

There is no confusion on the expected Android version in Galaxy S IV – it will be Android 4.2.1 and Samsung will most likely push Android 4.2.2 update soon after the public availability. However we can’t say the same about Touchwiz.  We don’t know much about the expected software customisations that we are going to see in Galaxy S IV apart from Smart Scroll and Smart Pause that were leaked recently.

There have been inconsistent rumours about the Touchwiz look, and I believe that Samsung will show a refined a different looking Touchwiz in S4. The software customisations that were part of S III and Note II like multi-window, S-Voice, Popup Video, Smart Stay, Direct Call etc. will also be present in S IV.

Design: This is another part, which remains a mystery till now. We have seen some alleged design leaks, but none of them inspires confidence. Unless Samsung is planning to play safe and keeping a Galaxy S III like design in S4, we expect to be surprised tomorrow.

A recent design leak
A recent design leak

Other features: In other details, we will see the usual Bluetooth 4.0, GPS, Glonass, microSIM support, 16/32/64 GB internal storage with microSD card support. These don’t really require any leaks for confirmation.

A quick look at expected Galaxy S IV specifications for tomorrow:

  • 1.8GHz Octa-core Exynos 5 Octa processor with PowerVR SGX544MP GPU
  • 1.7GHz Quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor with Adreno 320 GPU (in North American variants)
  • 2GB RAM
  • 16GB/ 32GB/ 64GB internal storage with microSD card slot
  • 4.99-inch Super AMOLED full HD display with 1920x1080p resolution
  • 13MP rear camera with full HD recording support
  • 2.1MP front camera
  • Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, DLNA, NFC, Wi-Fi Direct
  • GPS, Glonass
  • Micro-SIM card slot
  • Android 4.2.1
  • 2600 mAh Li-Ion  Battery

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