We are within a few days reach of the grand unboxing promised by Samsung Electronics for its latest Galaxy series offering, the S4. Over the last few days, the internet is ripe with rumours about the features of the S4 and whether it will be able to compete with iPhone, HTC One X or Nokia Lumia. But in order to stay on as the number one phone company in the world, S4 has to do more than beat the HTC’s and iPhones, it has to outdo the performance of the S3.
image credit: BGR.com
The Samsung Galaxy S3 was officially available in May of 2012 and managed to sell 40 million units by January of 2013. Once released the Galaxy S4 will be fighting competition on two fronts, one is the increasing number of Apple followers, and Galaxy S3, being the other.
Globally acclaimed, as the ‘Best phone of 2012’, the Galaxy S3 will now be available at a lower price making it an affordable phone in the high-end smartphone category. While, it will still benefit Samsung monetarily, the war between Apple and Samsung has gone beyond company profits and each product launch is a battle of superiority. Therefore, the success of S4 is imperative for Samsung.
Flaws of S3: Mistakes that needs remedy
To outdo the S3, S4 has to right the wrongs that Samsung saw with the S3. Also, it must adapt quickly to some of the rich features that are available with the competitors. The S voice, Samsung’s reply to the much famous ‘Siri’ on the iPhones, needs drastic improvements. S voice was even criticized by a fair share of users for not responding at times, an attitude not expected out of a digital voice assistant.
While it has not come to us officially, it is believed that Samsung has noted the negative responses it got for shipping a significantly expensive phone with a ‘cheap’ plastic build and therefore, the S4 might have a metal body.
The company could also have a stringent quality control program with this version of the Galaxy phone and avoid the delays and issues that surrounded the blue body cover for the S3. It is believed that delays and non-availability cost Samsung tens of thousands of customers and probably bringing in the standard black for the phone would go well with people who do not like the white phones, thereby increasing sales.
There was no upgrade in camera specifications from the Galaxy S2, when the S3 was launched and naturally, the S4 is due for a massive camera upgrade. Since even the iPhone has not seen a camera upgrade, the S4 might win a fair number of customers over its competitors with a superior camera and the range of camera options that Android offers such as Burst mode.
Samsung stuck to a PenTile display the last time with the S3 as a measure to save battery power. But the PenTile display also gave a bluish fringe effect to images on the S3, a limitation that was highly criticized by the crisp-Retina-display admirers from the Apple Fan Club.
Can the S4 use a RGB display and silence its critics is something only time will tell. But for a company that showed promise by brining to us, the ‘Ripple Effect’, correcting the display issue should be fairly easy.
Taking a leaf out of Apple
One of Apple’s greatest strongholds is its ecosystem and the range of Apps available on the is tore. Samsung realizes that in order to do better on this front, it has to offer much more on its OS platform through the ‘Google Play’ (Store). Samsung can also use the open nature of Android to its own benefit. Users of the Android OS can install ‘Apps’ directly from the PC, without them being available on the official app store, a luxury, a lot of Apple users miss.
The S3 had some great features that allowed users of other Samsung devices to share and edit files over a Wi-Fi network. Such integration can be developed further in the S4 to network with other Android based devices thereby leaving out users of other OS (read iOS).
In the end, the success of the S4 and its ability to outshine the S3 will also depend on one important factor, price. Like we said before, the S3 is a great phone and is now going to be available for a cheaper price. The price of Samsung Galaxy S4 must be competitive with the iPhone’s and HTCs, while also offering enough new features to convince a potential buyer to spend a little more and choose the S4 over the S3.