In case you’ve been living under a rock for the past few weeks, tonight is the night that Samsung launches its new flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S4.
The only real competitor to Apple’s iPhone range, the Samsung Galaxy S3 passed 40 million units sold in January. It surpassed the iPhone 4S in sales back in November, and will go head to head with the iPhone 5 which launched in September.
It is worth noting however, that Apple’s brand loyalty remains unscathed – it is still considered the most valuable telecoms brand – something Samsung is working hard to catch up on.
As a result it is going all out on a massive advertising campaign that is already looking like one of the biggest in the industry’s history, covering the web, movie TV spots and splashed across billboards in some of the world’s most iconic locations.
Samsung has also been releasing teaser images that seem to show the phone’s final design – which looks very similar to the existing Samsung Galaxy S3. Which, judging by the aforementioned sales figures isn’t a bad thing.
As What Mobile reported yesterday, the lukewarm response (by Apple’s standards) to the iPhone 5 has seen up to 25% of users considering joining the Samsung camp.
As Ovum analyst Tony Cripps told What Mobile, the key thing for Samsung to focus on will be its supply chain – it doesn’t want to have the supply shortages that plagued the S3 launch back in July 2012.
So what can we expect?
The rumour mill (via apparent leaks) suggest that the phone will run Jelly Bean 4.2.1 and pack the new Exynos 5 Octa processor. This is Samsung’s new CPU that draws from eight cores, four Cortex-A15s and four Cortex-A7s, designed for better energy efficiency, multiple application running and maximum grunt. Other reports suggest 2GB of RAM, internal storage of 16GB and upwards, with a sizeable 2600 mAh battery.
The general consensus is that the S4 will feature a 5Ã¢¬³ Super AMOLED screen with very high resolution (the Telegraph reported a higher resolution than seen anywhere else), with Computerworld reporting 1080 by 1920 with 440 pixels per inch, equivalent to the Sony Xperia Z (which was reviewed by What Mobile here).
A 13MP camera seems likely, with a 2.2 or 2.1MP front camera, not bad for those Skype calls to loved ones. 4G LTE is a no-brainer, as are the bells and whistles of microSD storage, NFC and Bluetooth 4.0.
Some of the more out there features are the rumoured Smart Scroll and Smart Pause, functions that apparently track a user’s eyeballs and scroll pages or pause videos according to eye movement.
What Mobile will be live blogging from the event at midnight for you night owls, so watch this space.