Here’s how floating touch and smart pause will work on the Galaxy S4 [video]

March 14, 2013
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So close yet so far. Samsung managed to keep Galaxy S4’s design under wraps for so long, but someone spilled the beans with only a few days to go until the official announcement.

We can no longer be 100% sure of anything in today’s tech world, but the recently leaked alleged dual-SIM variant of the S4 is 99% the real deal. But not only have the looks and specs of the S4 been revealed a tad too early. We also know how some of the new software functions will work.

Like floating touch. A technology that was inconspicuously introduced by Sony with the modest Xperia sola last year. A short video demo, embedded below, shows us what Samsung has done with the “magic touch”. The clip comes from the same source that leaked the hands-on S4 video and the high-quality image gallery, so it’s more than trustworthy.

Basically, the S4’s floating touch is like GNote 2’s Air View, only you don’t need a stylus to make it work. You just place your finger an inch or two above the screen and the magic happens. For now, the technology seems to be fairly limited, but we’re guessing the S4 shown off in the video was a prototype with unfinished software. Hopefully, the non-touch interaction will be better and richer once the phone is out.

A second short clip uploaded today focuses on Smart Pause, another very neat software function Samsung is to intro with the S4. This will use eye tracking sensors to pause videos when the user is not watching them. Unlike floating touch, this does appear to be smoother and it actually detects head movements in a flash.

Is it really useful? Maybe not, but it’ll certainly not be the only feature to take advantage of eye and head tracking technology. Smart Stay, Smart Rotation and Smart Scroll will be just some of the others, according to existing rumors.

There are a couple of other videos that we’d like to show you, even if they’re not as revealing as the first two. One focuses on GS4’s browsing experience (spoiler: it’s blazing fast), while the other is a quick demo of the new unlock screen. Enjoy and please let us know what you think of these clips. Is this the real S4 or are we dealing with the most elaborate hoax in Android history?

Don’t forget we’ll be covering the official New York S4 announcement later today as we always do with such events – epically and exclusively. And who knows, maybe Sammy still has a few surprises in store, even after all these leaks.

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