After months of rumor, leaks, and speculation, the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini is finally official as Samsung surprisingly took the wraps off the device well ahead of its event on June 20th. While the device is official, and much of its information known, there are still some questions that linger in regards to the smaller version of the Galaxy S4.
In the weeks since Samsung’s March announcement of the Samsung Galaxy S4, rumors have persisted in regards to three new Samsung Galaxy S4 devices that are thought to be hitting shelves in the next few months. First, the Samsung Galaxy S4 Active, a rugged version of the Galaxy S4 that will be both dust and water resistant. Next, a Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom, a device that is thought to be coming with a 16MP camera sensor and more. And finally, a Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini, a Galaxy S4 for price-conscious individuals.
Samsung made the first of those devices official today, announcing the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini well ahead of the company’s scheduled June 20th press event in the United Kingdom. And, as expected, the rumors in regards to the miniature device were dead on.
The Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini arrived with the specifications that we had heard about for weeks. It’s going to be coming with a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED display with qHD resolution, a 1.7GHz dual-core processor, an 8MP camera, 2.1 MP front-facing camera, 8GB of storage and Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. It will also have 4G LTE and some of the software features of the Galaxy S4.
Despite Samsung’s announcement, there are still some Galaxy S4 left, meaning, there are still some pretty important things that consumers need to know about this now official smartphone.
That said, here are five new and important things to know about the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini.
No Specific Release Date
Indeed, Samsung announced the Samsung Galaxy S4 but unfortunately, its specific release date remains a complete mystery. We’ve heard that the United Kingdom should get it in July, a month that we heard will contain the Galaxy S4 Mini’s release date but even then, we don’t have a specific release date for the UK or any other regions of the world.
That means that we’ll likely have to wait until June 20th, or longer, for Samsung to make an announcement, something that should help to complicate things for consumers looking for a new smartphone.
For those in the United States, a release remains even more mysterious as the press release that was issued was issued from the United Kingdom and did not have any mention of the U.S.
Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini Price Still A Mystery
The Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini price, which did not leak out ahead of the device’s official announcement, remains a mystery as well, leaving potential buyers puzzled by today’s launch.
While consumers should know that the price is still missing, they should also know that the price of the Galaxy S4 Mini will remain low. This is a phone aimed at those that don’t want to spend the money on a big time smartphone like the Samsung Galaxy S4, HTC One or the iPhone 5. Instead, it’s aimed at budget-conscious individuals who don’t need the latest and greatest from a smartphone.
We expect pricing to be revealed in the next few weeks but as of right now, know that it remains an enigma.
No U.S. Carriers, Yet
The Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini announcement came and went without another crucial element: Carriers. Right now, we know that it will come in three different flavors including 4G LTE, 3G and 3G Dual Sim though we don’t know what carriers those devices will be coming to, if they will be coming to carriers at all.
We imagine that carriers somewhere, possibly in developing countries, will take on the device like the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini, but it’s unclear if a country like the United States will opt to carry it.
Carriers in the U.S. did carry the Galaxy S3 Mini and there were rumors that AT&T might be on board with the Galaxy S4 Mini but as of yet, it hasn’t materialized.
At the very least, know that a carrier announcement is likely, but no guaranteed.
There Are Other Cheap Options
Yes, the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini is a nice addition to the Galaxy family. However, there are plenty of other options out there for those looking for a budget-friendly smartphone.
For instance, the Samsung Galaxy S3 is extremely cheap. It comes with a better display than the Galaxy S4 Mini and it features many of the same features like an 8MP camera and dual-core processor. Better yet, it will get some of the Galaxy S4′s features as well, though it won’t come with the IR port that allows for Galaxy S4 Mini owners to operate their home theater systems.
The Samsung Galaxy S4 itself is only $160 through Amazon which is fairly cheap, and it’s a price that should continue to drop in the months to come. The HTC One, same deal, cheap through Amazon. Other phones like the Nokia Lumia 920, Droid DNA, iPhone 4S and more are other cheap options that should look attractive compared to the Galaxy S4 Mini.
So yes, it’s a nice device, but it’s not the only cheap device on the market. Keep those options open.
HTC One Mini
And finally, consumers should know that a serious Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini competitor is still said to be on the way. The HTC M4, also thought to be called the HTC One Mini, is likely going to be arriving next month to compete with the Galaxy S4 Mini and compliment HTC’s flagship Android smartphone, the new HTC One.
Unlike the Galaxy S4 Mini, the HTC M4 is thought to be made of metal and have a 720p display rather than a qHD display. It’s also thought to be coming to AT&T’s 4G LTE network, something that the Galaxy S4 Mini may or may not do.
So, before taking the plunge with the Galaxy S4 Mini, consumers should know to weigh it against the HTC One Mini, at least.