Our newest superphone the Galaxy S4 is full packed with cutting edge technology hardware but we already know that. But what about the so called “bloatware”. The S4 come with a series of new features to enhance the user experience and make the phone more than just a phone. Many of those features are at an early stage and may seems not so useful for the moment, but remember that it is often the case with new software. We all remember the quote from Ken Olsen CEO of Digital Equipment Corporation in 1977
There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home.
Which one is your favorite one? Which one do you think you will use the most? etc..
Features List (it’s a first draft, please notice me if I forgot some)
Auto unlock zone
You can add several "home" Wi-Fi networks and the lockscreen will be disabled when the Galaxy S4 hooks up to one of them. This way you can have a secure PIN lockscreen outside and a quick unlock at home or the office
(EDIT: Looks like a lot of devices are missing this feature. In the mean time you can use HOME UNLOCK for free from the market.
It uses the proximity sensor to detect you reaching for the device and it lights up the screen that shows the time, missed call and message counters, battery charge and music track info.
It runs two apps side by side on the screen. You can adjust the division line giving one app more space. Only compatible apps can be used with Multi-window, for now that means mostly the ones that come preinstalled on the phone.
Note: Samsung is probably blocking apps on purpose since mods exist on the SGS3 forum allowing any apps to use Multi-window.
There's no need for the S Pen on the Galaxy S4 anymore - the phone can detect your finger hovering over the screen. This enables information preview (e.g. SMS text, calendar entry text and so on), previewing videos just by pointing to a spot in the timeline, the next track in the music player by hovering over the next button (works with previous button too), previewing folders, speed dial contacts, and magnifying links in web pages. Air view detects fingers 1cm / 0.5" away from the screen, so there's no danger of accidentally tapping the screen when you wanted to use Air View instead.
You can use this to scroll web pages in the browser (vertical waves), switch between tabs (horizontal waves), move between tracks in the music player and photos in the gallery, accept a call and move app shortcuts and S Planner events.
Air Gestures can detect your hand up to 7cm (just under 3") and might prove useful in some situations.
Who will use this? Former iphone user who looking to look cool.
Prevents the screen from locking as long as the front-facing camera can see your face (great for reading).
Uses the orientation of your face rather than accelerometer info to decide how to rotate the screen.
It allows you to scroll up and down by tilting the phone as long as you're looking at the screen. In effect, it's an accelerometer based scroll that prevents accidental scrolling by making sure you're paying attention to the screen.
It uses the front-facing camera to track your face and will automatically pause the video when you look away. Look back and the screen and the playback continues.
The camera interface is based on the Galaxy Camera.
There are two virtual shutter keys (still and video) on the right, plus a mode button. Modes are picked from a carousel with descriptive images and text. At the bottom there's an up arrow for color effects - the cool thing is that all effects do a live preview, Samsung is really showing off the chipset's processing power here.
Dual shot mode
Snaps a photo with both cameras and presents them picture-in-picture style (think video call). You can move and resize the image from the front-facing camera that's taking a photo of you
360 photo mode
One of the rarest camera modes. It creates a spherical panorama like you see in Google Street View. (There's a regular panorama mode as well.)
Sound & shot mode
It snaps a photo and records a few seconds of background audio, which really gives photos an ambience.
Cine Photo mode
To have motion in your shots you can create cinemagraphs.
Snaps a burst of photos and automatically detects moving objects and removes them. This is great for popular tourists attractions as it's quite difficult to get a photo of those without at least one person walking into your shot.
It takes multiple photos of a moving subject and creates multiple "clones" of it.
**3D Movies & Still
This is rumour to come in a future upgrade
It shares various multimedia across multiple devices in the same room but unlike DLNA it's interactive.
One use case is to play a music track on the Samsung Galaxy S4 and use multiple phones as speakers. You can pick the role of each phone (e.g. left channel, right, all the way up to surround sound). This way you can control the music from one phone but use the loudspeakers of all
More useful are the options to share a picture or a document - you can have the same picture appear on everyone's phone and you can draw over it if you need to highlight a certain element of the image. Imagine this in a business meeting
Finally, it allows for multiplayer games to be played on several phones simultaneously. Of course, only supported games work
Samsung also introduced its new game controller.
Unlike Group Play, S-Link is intended for personal use. You can link the phone to a computer that is synced with Dropbox, SkyDrive or SugarSync and remotely access content on that device.
Can be used to:
Initiate a call,
Open an app,
Change a setting,
Make a memo (including voice memo),
Add a reminder,
Schedule an event,
Set an alarm or timer,
Check the weather,
Do a search on the internet,
Look for local listings (e.g. nearby restaurants)
Answer to a question.
Some features are available outside of S Voice, set the Galaxy S4 to answer a call or snooze an alarm by voice commands even when S Voice isn't running.
It can translate between two languages using either typed text or by using speech recognition. It can read out the resulting translation too, if you don't thing your Korean accent can cut it. S Translator supports all the widely-spoken languages - English, Chinese, Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Italian, Japanese and, of course, Korean. S Translator can be invaluable when traveling
This app can work together with Photo Reader, which employs Optical Character Recognition so you can just snap a photo of the text instead of having to type it in (which can be quite a challenge, imagine typing Chinese if you've never studied it).Photo Reader can read the text for you and sent it to S Translator
IR remote control functionality.
The app can control TVs, DVD and Blu-ray players, streaming media players and air conditioners. Devices are organized by rooms.
The app knows some home setups are messy - some let you change channels with the TV remote, others require you to use the set-top box remote for that. Same for the audio, you might be using the TV to output the sound or an AV receiver. The app will ask about your setup and present a unified remote control interface even if you have multiple hardware remotes to control all the devices.
I can already see the practical jokes you can do with this.
Will track your steps, stairs climbed, and the ambient temperature and humidity, plus track your food intake and estimate calories consumed/burned. You can even track sleep with an optional accessory. There’s a wristband you can wear independently of the phone (in case you prefer running without it), which will track your steps and monitor the quality of your sleep. It will then sync wirelessly with the app. There’s also a connected scale and heart rate monitor.
So let’s discuss about these new features. I can see many aplications for most of these features in daily life. A lot of these features will unleash
their true power when combine with multiple phone.
<- A little thanks is aways appreciated