Samsung's Galaxy S4 Looks Very Good

Samsung recently revealed its newest phone in the Galaxy S line, the Samsung Galaxy S4. Despite its odd choice of using a theatrical show format during the announcement, Samsung showed off some interesting stuff.

As every one expected, the phone comes with a 5-inch screen. More interesting than the actual hardware specs, though, is the software. Samsung showed off its "Air Gestures" and "Smart Stay" features, which allow for touch-free use of the phone and eye-based tracking of the user's intent, respectively. Changing music tracks without having to touch the phone (such as while driving) is useful, as is the ability for the phone to automatically pause video when the user looks away. I'm skeptical of the usefulness of the eye tracking that automatically scrolls text content, since it seems like that might register too many false positives or false negatives to avoid being annoying. I'm guessing that the ability to use the phone even when wearing gloves has something to do with the Air Gestures feature, but I could be wrong about this.

The S4's integration with televisions and with health and fitness devices makes a lot of sense. It also goes a long way towards flexing Samsung's muscle as one of the largest electronics manufacturers in the world.

A new accessory that seems to have slipped in under the radar is the wireless game controller that connects to the S4. While the design of the controller seems to have been a bit *ahem* 'inspired' by the Xbox 360 controller, it may portend a greater focus in the future on gaming for Samsung devices. There is some criticism of the controller as having limited utility since it is not a standard component that game developers can count on users having, but with Samsung's burgeoning influence in the industry it is simply a matter of time before there is enough of an installed user base to make this close to ubiquitous. Remember, folks, Samsung sells more Android devices than anyone.

In summary, it looks like Samsung has a real winner of a device in the Galaxy S4. Samsung has put together an excellent phone for consumers that will sell like hotcakes.