back to article First Samsung Galaxy S4 review leak: Stop FONDLING, start FINGERING

Samsung's new Galaxy S4 smartphone isn't being launched until 2300 GMT today - but the first review is already online with technical specifications and videos of it in action. And it suggests there's no need to touch the mobile's touchscreen to make it work. A few journalists bagged early access to the new handset on condition …

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Joke

Maybe their just producing the knock-offs now before the orginal has hit the shelves.

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FAIL

their =they're

Need edit option.

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Headmaster

Double fail

They'er = They are

Need a grammer opton.

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Headmaster

Re: Treble fail

Grammer = Grammar

Need a spelling option.

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Re: Quadruple fail

They're = They are

They'er = spelling mistake

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FAIL

Re: Quintuple fail

opton -> option

Need a proof-reading option!

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Trollface

Re: spelling option

Grammar don't need no spellin' option, she's been dead longer 'n Grampar!

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Coffee/keyboard

Re: spelling option

Need new keyboard option after reading so much grammar fail.

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Anonymous Coward

Is this the start of the post-iPhone era?

Looks great. iPhone and iOS are increasingly looking like a trip down memory lane. Can Apple do something special with iPhone 6 to meet the challenge or are we set for more legal tedium from the 'lets litigate not innovate' company?

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Re: Is this the start of the post-iPhone era?

I think the wider issue is that all smartphone and tablet makers are struggling to develop anything genuinely game-changing at the hardware and OS level, as evidenced by the fuss about phablets being the next greatest thing (really?).

Perhaps that's a positive sign of maturity and stability. The online world still hasn't totally adjusted to the death of the Windows-PC-as-primary-computing device yet. Many websites still don't work very well in a mobile browser, and there are banks (and the Irish revenue service) that still require Java to log in.

There have been many dead-ends in consumer electronics (my attic-crap-boxes are full of things like folding Palm keyboards and Xbox 360 HD-DVD players) but it seems like touch-based smartphones and tablets are here to stay.

Thumbs up for long-lived devices* and incremental improvement.

* unless your battery is glued

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Re: Is this the start of the post-iPhone era?

"The online world still hasn't totally adjusted to the death of the Windows-PC-as-primary-computing device yet."

As much as I love my Android phone, the "death of the PC" is still a bit ridiculous - yes, I want them to improve websites rather than relying on "apps" for only one or two platforms; no, I don't want to use my small phone as my primary computing device.

(Well, it might be primary in terms of sales - mobile phones have long outsold PCs, whether it's dumb phones, feature phones, or Symbian smartphones of the 2000s. But I don't think higher sales means that most people are using them as their primary device - rather they upgrade more often, or people are more likely to share a PC in a household than a mobile phone.)

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Re: Is this the start of the post-iPhone era?

> the "death of the PC" is still a bit ridiculous - ... no, I don't want to use my small phone as my primary computing device.

No one has suggested that you do. You have a PC that you use, and will continue to use, but you might not buy another one. Your current one may last 10 years (I daily use machines older than that) and increasingly you will use phones and tablets to do tasks that once were PC only.

It is not that PCs will stop being used, they will increasingly not be bought, ie it is the 'death of the PC manufacturer' (and PC OS maker).

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Anonymous Coward

Proximity fingering? Naughty Samsung. Sounds great really. Will save the screen from getting sticky. Erm ...

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No doubt tech journalists will try and make this out to be an amazing new innovation, despite the fact that it existed in the Xperia SOLA a year ago.

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Looking good...

My contract is up in 4 months, and I'm not going back to Winphone, so phones like this are definitely tempting - and by July they'll be affordable...just...

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Anonymous Coward

Gimmicks all the way.

So if you want to watch a YouTube music video while working purely to listen the music you have to watch the video now? these things get switched off when people realise they don't work that well. So why add them at all?

They're just gimmicks added to fill the vacuum of real useful features that have all been done now.

How about something useful like doubling the battery life?

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Trollface

Wrong icon, you need this one

<----

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Anonymous Coward

How very dare you

How dare you suggest that Google/Samsung/Android are not perfect. Are you not aware this is el Reg?

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To be honest, I thought the smart stay feature was a gimmick before I tried it (it's the feature that keeps the screen awake if it detects your eyeballs looking at it). Having used it I find it works very effectively. There is no reason to switch it off.

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WTF?

"So if you want to watch a YouTube music video while working purely to listen the music you have to watch the video now?"

Erm, isn't that what music players and internet/FM radio are for? Why waste bandwidth on video that you aren't interested in?

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Big Brother

>"So if you want to watch a YouTube music video while working purely to listen the music" blah blah blah blah .........

Is it time for el Reg to get rid of the coward posting option? I'm getting tired of all the moronic shiite.

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FAIL

FAIL you are

Yes.. listen to Youtube to listen to the music.. So the screen stays on wastes battery and YouTube stops when you turn the screen off.

Wouldnt it be easier to just download music to your phone..? Or do you expect them to pander to every cheapskate out there?

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Anonymous Coward

Anonymity

"Is it time for el Reg to get rid of the coward posting option? I'm getting tired of all the moronic shiite."

You, Andy, appear as shite to the, perhaps, older folks who remember a time when usage of the Internet meant that you could be anonymous. Hail El Reg for paying tribute to the good ol' days. Now get off the Internet already, Andy, and go cry somewhere retard. I wish you the best with your friendly neighborhood stalkers, gangbangers etc...

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Stop

Re: Anonymity

Sorry Andy, but there is no corrolation between being anonymous and "posting moronic shite".

We Gold and Silver posters don't need to be anonymous to post our moronic shite, ta very much.

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Anonymous Coward

8 processor core? 8?

What, exactly, is the point of having 8 processor cores on this thing? I've only got 4 in my desktop pc, and that rarely needs more than 2 of them. You only need 8 if you're planning on running a LOT of apps simultaneously in the background, actually doing stuff instead of being suspended. For starters, how many things do you need to be able to be doing actively doing stuff in the background anyway? And even if you can think of a use for it, you'll only be able to do it for a few minutes and then your battery will run out.

Its just another gimmick, along with the eye tracking and proximity sensing stuff, that no one will actually need or use.

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Re: 8 processor core? 8?

I think it's big.LITTLE - 4x low-power ARM A7 cores which will be used most of the time and 4x A15 which can be switched to _instead_ of the A7 cores when things get demanding. (A7/A15 are binary compatible).

I wouldn't be surprised if the A15s barely get used, but it should make for better battery life, and 8 cores sounds great on the marketing.

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Re: 8 processor core? 8?

8 cores are to save power, since they can be individually turned on only when required. Not all of the cores are the same, some will be optimised for keeping the phone ticking over on standby, some will be for specialist tasks such as decoding video. Anyway, the sooner the phone accomplishes a task, the sooner the user can pop it back into standby and turn off that thirsty screen.

That's the concept. Since many phones today have at least two cores, and the manufacturers are competing on battery life, one assumes there is some truth in it.

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Something useful for those 8 cores

Samsung could get Folding@home ported, especially since Sony have ended support on the PS3. All that silicon could do some good overnight, after the phone has fully charged and is still connected to the mains.

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Pint

Re: 8 processor core? 8?

From what I have read, it is more like two quad cores.

A low powered one for everyday stuff to preserve the battery, and a really kick arse one for when the load needs it.

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Re: 8 processor core? 8?

> You only need 8 if you're planning on running a LOT of apps simultaneously in the background,

Not so. Android supports threading, so one app could use as many cores as are made available to it.

> Its just another gimmick, along with the eye tracking and proximity sensing stuff,

By having many cores (though I suspect that only 4 are usable at any one time, the choice being made between high power CPUs and battery saving CPUs) there is more ability to keep the eye tracking and proximity code running so that these respond instantly while the running apps still give good performance. With a single core there could well be stuttering or slow responses due to context switching.

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Boffin

Re: 8 processor core? 8?

>"I've only got 4 in my desktop pc, and that rarely needs more than 2 of them."

I can assure you, my 6-core workstation will beat the crap out of your 4-core on almost any process. Depends on if you need speed or not.

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IT Angle

Re: 8 processor core? 8?

The point on Android? Mucho - it's a true multi tasking OS, unlike the half assed "tombstoning" comedy effort Apple brainwashed their iSheep into believing is just the same, and hence can't make use of that kind of horsepower no matter how much they innovate Samsung.

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Re: 8 processor core? 8?

"I can assure you, my 6-core workstation will beat the crap out of your 4-core on almost any process. Depends on if you need speed or not."

and I can assure you that you'd be surprised at how single-core dominated most software currently is. So, in all likelihood, his 4-core will probably have a higher clock rate than your 6-core and hence his will beat the crap out of yours on almost any process. PC benchmarks tend to be more multi-threaded than most typical use applications and their dominant tasks/workflows.

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Thumb Up

Re: 8 processor core? 8?

As you say all depends on the task, now I don't know about you but I kinda suspect that someone with 6 cores on their desktop is doing more than reading email, surfing, and a bit of word and excel on the side. My lappie has an i7 chip, and the principle applications I run use all the cores/threads most of the time (not so much when I'm gawping at the screen, chewing the end of a biro, working out what I'm supposed to do next) and i recall the old days, less, but faster cores not being so good.

i guess your mileage may vary.

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aqk
Boffin

Re: 8 processor core? 8?

>>> ...all depends on the task, now I don't know about you but I kinda suspect that someone with 6 cores on their desktop is doing more than reading email, surfing, and a bit of word and excel on the side. <<< ....

Either that or he's a top executive.

The presidents of the various companies about 15~25 years ago always had a MUCH more powerful PC than me, a lowly techie.

It was very useful for the prez of the last company I worked for, to play Solitaire on. And he much appreciated it when I showed him how to play Freecell- A much more ADVANCED game! But it didn't get me a raise.

Anyhow the company went out of business a few years later.

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Winkers

Can you wink at it in Morse Code?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Winkers

I don't know why this was downvoted. A program to do that could actually be useful to some people. Stephen Hawking isn't unique.

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Anonymous Coward

the rumoured eyeball tracking is evident, and demonstrated, pausing on-screen video when one looks away from the display

That's going work really well for the people who look away from the screen when there's something they fon't like/are scared of appears. Can just imagine someone watching a nature program on this when suddenly:

Aargh - a spider, quick look away, wait a few seconds, it will have gone now, look back, aargh - its still there, look away again, wait a bit longer,. look back - its STILL THERE! etc etc etc

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Gold badge

I have a medical condition called nystagmus, basically me eyes don't ever stay still. So would this leave me unable to watch video, and with the screen auto-scrolling around like a flea on speed?

Interestingly (and irrelevantly) drinking alcohol makes this condition improve - I presume because it's a muscle relaxant. Sadly my doctor refused to prescribe me booze though...

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You can turn the feature off if it doesn't work for you.

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Boffin

"I have a medical condition called nystagmus, basically me eyes don't ever stay still. So would this leave me unable to watch video, and with the screen auto-scrolling around like a flea on speed?"

I suspect the quick answer to that question's "Yes".

I suspect the longer answer's "Yes, unless you turn that feature off".

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Silver badge

>So would this leave me unable to watch video, and with the screen auto-scrolling around like a flea on speed?

No, it wouldn't. Turn off the 'feature' in settings, or install a 3rd party media app which doesn't use it. Otherwsie just stick some tape over the sensor.

You'll probably want to install a 3rd party media app anyway, just to extend the codec support.

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Anonymous Coward

Technically, noone's eyes stay still. These saccades mean that our eyes jump around to different parts of the image that we're viewing several times per second. So, in order to make an eye watching technology, they must have already compensated for regular eye movement. Whether that would be enough to compensate for your condition is another question though.

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Anonymous Coward

I saw my super geek mate last night, was surprised to him with some old phone. "I've just sold my Galaxy SIII... [Why?!] ... The SIV's getting announced tommorow!"

Announced? When does it ship?

Since I hadn't got any decent answer out of him when he eBayed his SII just prior to the release of its successor, I didn't bother asking what exactly his SIII didn't do for him.

He then proceeded to show me the custom firmware on his router, which was happily sat on a fibre connection in the next city...

Oh well. He's the same lad who used a satellite connection for newsgroups years before broadband came to our rural neck o the woods. Amazingly, he didn't know to put anti-freeze in his windscreen washer reservoir in his fancy German car... since colliding with a parked car this, he now does.

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Stop

Anti-freeze is a BAD idea to put into a washer reservoir! De-icing fluid is a better idea.

Keep the anti-freeze for the radiator.

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Anonymous Coward

Proper washer fluid has an anti-freeze in it. Use the correct stuff - at least in the winter - or freeze up and possible damage the washer parts.

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Anonymous Coward

fancy German car

Not the only one. I well remember a colleague taking delivery of a new BMW in winter, and promptly burning out the washer motor when the nozzles froze and he just kept trying to pump water out.

Windscreen washer fluid never seems to work properly. Even though mine is the recommended strength for down to -15 degrees, wind chill (and presumably water on the nozzles which then froze) caused it to stop coming out when the temperature hit -4 this week.

The problem with these features on cars is that they aren't used for much of the year and they catch you unawares when the weather suddenly changes. But people don't like nannying messages coming up on the display.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "Anti-freeze"

Antifreeze will take your paint off. Do not put it into your washer reservoir.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "aren't used for much of the yesr"

You don't use your washers all year round? Can you actually see out of your car?

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