After the Samsung Galaxy S4 release, Samsung will likely release another Samsung Galaxy S4, a smaller version called the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini. Samsung has already seemingly confirmed the Galaxy S4 Mini for arrival and we now want to take a closer look at what to expect from the smaller version of Samsung’s flagship.
Last year, Samsung announced the Samsung Galaxy S3 at a massive launch event in London during the month of May. The event was strictly about the Galaxy S3 and its new software and there were no signs of another Galaxy S3 smartphone that would launch later in the year. That phone of course was the Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini, a smaller, less powerful version of the Samsung Galaxy S3 for those that were turned off by the size and price of the larger version.
Given the success of the Galaxy S3, which has sold over 40 million times around the world, it’s no surprise that Samsung has announced a successor in the form of the Galaxy S4 which arrived earlier this month in New York City. And, given the launch of the smaller Galaxy S3 Mini and rumors of a cheaper iPhone for later this year, it’s not surprising to hear that Samsung has a new Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini up its sleeve.
Shortly before the Galaxy S4 launch, there were rumors that Samsung was cooking up a Galaxy S4 Mini. Like the Galaxy S3 event though, the Galaxy S4 launch event came and went without a miniature arrival, the spotlight steadfastly focused on the larger model.
Just a few days after the Galaxy S4 emerged however, the Galaxy S4 Mini, or what appeared to be the Galaxy S4 Mini, emerged in specs and photos showing it next to the larger Samsung Galaxy S4. And like the Galaxy S4, there is already quite a bit of anticipation behind the arrival of the Galaxy S4 Mini especially now that Samsung has seemingly confirmed it for launch after the Galaxy S4.
So with a Galaxy S4 arrival just ahead in the distance, it’s time to take a look at five things consumers should know about the smaller Galaxy S4 ahead of its release.
Cheaper Price Tag
The first thing that consumers should expect from the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini is a cheaper price tag from the price of the Samsung Galaxy S4. Due to its size and the fact that Samsung wants to make it appealing to emerging markets in order to combat the iPhone, and quite possibly a cheaper iPhone that’s rumored for later this year, the price of the Galaxy S4 Mini will undercut the price of the Galaxy S4.
By how much, it’s not yet known but currently, the Samsung Galaxy S4 is going for £580.00 SIM-free in the United Kingdom so we expect the Galaxy S4 Mini to be far less than that in order to stay appealing and counter-act many of the cheaper Android phones, and otherwise, that are currently on the market.
Powerful, But Non-Flagship Hardware
So far, the rumored Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini specifications look like they will easily be able to take on some of the lesser, non-flagship smartphones that are on the market.
Rumored specs for the Galaxy S4 Mini include a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED qHD display with 256ppi, 1.6GHz dual-core processor though rumors suggest it may also have a quad-core processor, and Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean along with Samsung’s new TouchWiz interface, Nature UX 2.0. It’s also likely to come with a similar Galaxy S4 design and both HSPA+ and LTE speeds.
If these are the real deal, it means that the Galaxy S4, as expected, will feature hardware that is below the Galaxy S4 in terms of quality. However, that doesn’t mean that it won’t be able to compete in the market that Samsung is aiming for.
In fact, if it indeed has a quad-core processor and a high pixel-per-inch count like 256, it will certainly be able to hold its own within the mid-to-low end smartphone market.
While the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini will likely come with Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, the latest version of Android, don’t expect it to get swift updates like Samsung’s flagship Android devices.
Indeed, the Galaxy S3 may be on Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, but there are no signs of an update to Android 4.2 Jelly Bean while the Galaxy S3 looks like it will get the update sometime in the near future, probably after the Galaxy S4 arrives.
Samsung gives the royal treatment to its highly adopted phones, the Galaxy S3 and the Galaxy S2 proved that. That means that the Samsung Galaxy S4 will more than likely get quicker Android updates, both large and small, including the upgrade to Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie which is rumored to required a quad-core processor just to operate.
That doesn’t just go for Samsung flagship phones either. Flagships on Motorola, HTC and even the iPhone will likely get swifter software updates than the Galaxy S4 Mini. So those that like being perpetually updated should keep that in mind before buying.
Galaxy S4 Software Features
While the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini may get slower updates and feature hardware that is of a lesser quality than the Galaxy S4, it will likely have many of the software features that Samsung has introduced with the Galaxy S4.
Last year, we saw Samsung put features like Pop Up Play, S Voice, and Direct Call emerge on the Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini. And already, rumors suggest that Samsung won’t skimp Galaxy S4 Mini buyers on software features.
The device is rumored to be getting TouchWiz though it’s unclear just what that entails. Likely, it means that some of the Galaxy S4 features will be on board. Probable features include the new camera functions which include Sound & Shot and Dual Camera, both of which are two of the enticing software features of the Galaxy S4.
It could be that Samsung also includes a sensor on the Galaxy S4 Mini that allows for users to take advantage of touch less gestures, but that remains less likely than the other software features.
May Never Arrive in U.S.
And finally, those in the United States who may be excited about the prospects of the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini should resign themselves to the fact that it may never show up in the United States.
Last year, the Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini never showed up on a carrier in the U.S. and this year’s Galaxy S4 Mini may be no different, even with all of the attention.
One saving grace is that the Samsung Galaxy S4 16GB, the cheapest model, may come in priced at $249 which leaves lots of wiggle room for a Galaxy S4 Mini. Perhaps, carriers price it at $99 or less on-contract to fill in their budget lineup.
At this point though, consider the odds of a Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini U.S. release slim.