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Samsung Galaxy S4 Smartphone Review - Final Thoughts

Samsung Galaxy S4 Smartphone Review
Samsung's latest flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S4, gets a month of real-world testing... but is it as great as everyone says it is?
| Phones in Mobile Devices | Posted: Oct 3, 2013 2:01 am
TweakTown Rating: 75%Manufacturer: Samsung

Final Thoughts

 

This is one of the hardest Final Thoughts I've had to write. I put off writing my S4 review for a couple of weeks because I was so tied on my thoughts, and didn't want to hastily write a review of the smartphone to just get it out of the way.

 

TweakTown image content/5/7/5772_70_samsung_galaxy_s4_smartphone_review.jpg

 

I apologize that my review is up months after the Galaxy S4 was released, but we didn't get a sample until a month after its release, and I really wanted to take my time with this one. I feel like my real-world testing idea has really worked, because if I had written this review in the first week, it would've scored a much higher score, and I probably would've dunked it in our Editor's Choice Award.

 

But, I haven't. It has been scored appropriately, to what I recommend it receives. The Galaxy S4 is a great smartphone, don't get me wrong. It is fast, it's light, the display is amazing, the battery life is mostly good, but I feel like there's this huge "but" written all over it.

 

I feel like Samsung has reached the point where they're just making slightly bigger, slightly faster, slightly more feature-packed smartphones as time goes on. The Galaxy S4 looks, feels and acts like an S III, but it's not an S III at the same time.

 

I feel like my Final Thoughts can be boiled down to a few questions I'll ask, which is what I say when people ask me "which smartphone should I buy?" Here it is: if you have a smartphone that is two years old, say the Galaxy S II, or iPhone 4/4S-era smartphones - the Galaxy S4 is great.

 

But, if you have a Galaxy S III - you should skip the S4. If you own an iPhone 5, you're going to upgrade to this. If you have something like the Xperia Z or HTC One, you have the better end of the stick here, in my opinion.

 

I think the Xperia Z had its high points, but I do enjoy the S4's screen. I'm yet to use the HTC One, but I think that is something Samsung should be scared of. They should also be frightened of Google/Motorola, and Sony.

 

I think Samsung has reached a fork in the road with its Galaxy smartphones... they need to make a premium smartphone, and offer it with stock Android or a downloadable (or provide an 8GB microSD card in the box that includes TouchWiz) add-on for TouchWiz.

 

A premium feel would be a killer feature on future Galaxy smartphone, something I think we're going to see in the coming months leading up to the Note III. Early next year we should see the Galaxy S5, which should be a very, very interesting device.

 

If Samsung can release a premium-made Galaxy S5, at the time when Android 5.0 "Key Lime Pie" launches, and give users stock Android, they could truly become the undeniable leader of the smartphone market.

 

TweakTown image 5/7/5772_1234_samsung_galaxy_s4_smartphone_review.png

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