The Samsung Galaxy S4: 10 things to know

10 things you need to know about the Samsung GALAXY S4
10 things you need to know about the Samsung GALAXY S4

In addition to our first impressions of the new Samsung Galaxy S4 we've considered the tech specs, features and applications that Samsung is offering users with its latest smartphone and, to make things easier for you, distilled all of this info into an easy-to-remember ten-point guide.

So, without any further ado, here are the top ten things that you need to know about the new Samsung Galaxy S4...

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The S4 is not a smartphone, it's a "life companion"

Samsung is all about improving the way we live, using technology, as J.K. Shin, the company's President and Head of IT & Mobile Communications Division explained at the S4 launch event this week:

"All the innovative features of Galaxy S4 were developed based on the insights and needs we found from our consumers all around the world. Following the successful Galaxy S series, this phone is yet another great proof point of people-inspired innovation. At Samsung we'll never stop pursuing innovation conceived by people, so we can inspire them in return."

Drama Shot

The S4's lucky 13-megapixel camera

Okay, it might "not be all about the megapixels" as keen amateur snappers often say, but the tech improvements of the new 13-megapixel camera on the Galaxy S4, combined with the software improvements to Samsung's onboard camera app are sure to blow any would-be David Bailey away.

S4 snappers can now place themselves in their pictures far easier and better than ever before, which is a particularly cool feature for on-the-fly family shots. Also, you can now record sounds for photos taken on your S 4; a minor but fantastic way of recording a memory.


Touch-less tech is the future

We are all so familiar with touchscreen technology nowadays that Samsung's mention of "touch-less tech" at the S4 Unpacked launch was quite novel.

What the S4 designers mean when they speak of "touch-less tech" is plain and brilliantly simple, Air View, which has been one of the most popular features on the Galaxy Note II, helping to create what Samsung's JK Shin referred to as "instant, effortless and accurate touch-less interfaces" on this latest smartphone.

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Storming the Tower of Babel

Imagine if you were able to talk to and communicate with the vast majority of the world's population, despite only being fluent in English and, perhaps, having a smattering of one or two other languages you vaguely remember from school?

Samsung's S Translator on the S4 makes this inspiring vision an actual reality, allowing you to swiftly translate voice or text into nine different languages. It's essentially Douglas Adams's vision of "the Babel Fish" made real!

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Don't be a solitary smartphone user

One real problem with smartphone usage to date is that it has, by force of habit for many of us, become a solitary activity, distancing us from our friends, family and colleagues at work. The S4 will change all of this, by encouraging and helping us to play and listen to music together again.

The S4's Group Play feature encourages users to share music and play games together, in ways that are easier and more intuitive than ever before.

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A smartphone to keep you in shape

Samsung's new S Health software promises to "empower your life by keeping you up-to-date with health and wellbeing information through a range of accessories," using a number of sensors to track your progress, in addition to Samsung peripherals such as the S Band; Body Scale and HRM heart monitor.

All of which is an incredibly handy way of reminding you to keep up with your running, swimming or gym regime; eating healthily, and keeping a check on your weight and overall fitness.

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Samsung Knox will change the way you work

With Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) being a major issue for many workplaces right now, it's vital that you invest in a smartphone that is going to let you work as well as play. After all, do you really want to be carrying two devices around with you at all times?