[Discussion] Galaxy S4 Bloatware


Senior Member
Dec 26, 2011
Hi everybody,
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.

Quick glance
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.

Air View
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.

Air Gestures
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.

Smart Stay
Prevents the screen from locking as long as the front-facing camera can see your face (great for reading).

Smart Rotate
Uses the orientation of your face rather than accelerometer info to decide how to rotate the screen.

Smart Scroll
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.

Smart Pause.
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.

Camera Modes
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.
Eraser mode
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.
Drama mode
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

Group Play
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

Multiplayer games
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.

S Voice
Can be used to:
Initiate a call,
Dictate text,
Take pictures,
Play music,
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.

S Translator
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;)


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Senior Member
Nov 2, 2012
I think I'll actually use most of those features except multi window. I love the auto unlock feature. And I'm definitely getting a game pad when it is released

Sent from my Xperia Arc S using xda premium
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Reactions: Kremata


Senior Member
Nov 2, 2012
Yes I'm surprised Samsung didn't talk much about the game pad, It looks awesome.
It's definitely gonna be a major competitor to Project Shield. The S4 + Gamepad is more portable and has way more features. The Shield's processing capabilities are either matched or bettered by the S4.
And since the S4 is going to be a huge seller, hopefully more game developers like Gameloft will hop onto the bandwagon and make their games compatible. It would be awesome to play Mc4 with that :D

Sent from my Xperia Arc S using xda premium
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Senior Member
Aug 20, 2011
I am veey much interested to see how capable is Ir blaster. I would love it if it will control all my devices without nees of anything else. Surly a great thing to show off too, haha.

sent from: The New S-Pen :)


Senior Member
Sep 16, 2012
Project Shield is different, that uses your computer to play your computer games on the device remotely (at least that is one of its functions), but all the Samsung version needs is a way to stream games from the PC like Project Shield and then it would best it, with your computer doing all the work all it needs is some sort of remote viewer app with no delay.
In fact with project Shield being android based it could be more than possible you could just install the app and it would work (possibly with some hacking) actually come to think about it Nvidia could just sell the app make some money hat way as I don't see many people wanting a 2nd device just for games when they already have a phone.


Senior Member
Oct 20, 2011
This add-on controller to me it looks like a cheap attempt to counter Nvidias Project Shield.

I played with most consoles from cheesy monochrome to Gameboy and PSP. Touchscreens were the first to bring a new dimension into handheld gaming. I don't see any need to go back. Instead gamedesigners should rather focus on making the best experience for what the given hardware offers.

I don't feel like carrying around extra controllers with me.

The other, imho useless feature is "Smart Pause". When I watch a longer movie I sometimes look away from the display to just relax my eyes, but that doesn't mean playback shoud stop.

But in general: The more gimmicks the better :D
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Senior Member
May 19, 2008
I agree much of the software is bloatware, but I will be disabling quite a lot of it, till I can root and remove things like chaton etc..


Senior Member
Dec 26, 2011
I am veey much interested to see how capable is Ir blaster. I would love it if it will control all my devices without nees of anything else. Surly a great thing to show off too, haha.

sent from: The New S-Pen :)

Yes 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. And it's supposed to come with a very complete database.

Soon you will start seeing people changing the channel of TV's in sports bar and public places. I don't know if Samsung thought about this. Oh boy.:confused:


Senior Member
May 16, 2012
I like the air gestures and stuff, but I hate the embedded unremovable Chinese bloatware that comes with almost every phone one buys in China. How beautiful would it be if they were replaced by Google Apps.


Senior Member
Feb 24, 2008
for some reason i'm finding the menu/touchwiz to be more responsive on my S3.. i've only had the phone for a few hours but i can see some slight lagging in the UI at times. phone does have tons more stuff installed than the S3.. i never rooted my sprint S3 since it ran pretty good and didn't seem so bloated, the S4 may change that. :rolleyes:
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