It has been barely a month since the first bits of info about it started to surface on the Internet, but now we finally have definitive proof of its existence. Samsung today officially announced the Galaxy S4 Active, the “rugged” version of its latest flagship Android smartphone. It carries many of the same features flaunted by the original but at the same time, it also comes in a redesigned body that’s meant to make sure it survives all kinds of environments in the wild.
Samsung designed the Galaxy S4 Active to follow the IP67 certification, which means that it is both dust tight and waterproof up to 1m in depth for up to 30 minutes. The press release states that it can handle anything “from the most rugged mountain trails to the roughest rivers.” Yet it’s only just a little over 1mm thicker than the original, and just about 20g heavier in its nearly same-sized body.
The Samsung Galaxy S4 Active’s main features include a 5-inch Full HD TFT LCD screen (with pixel density set at 443 ppi), an 8-megapixel rear camera with LED flash, a 2-megapixel front-facing camera, Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi ac, NFC, Wi-Fi Direct, irDA, and USB connectivity. Meanwhile, its innards contain a 1.9GHz quad-core CPU, 2GB RAM, a number of different mobile sensors, and approximately 11.25GB of user-available memory — at least for the model that is advertised as having 16GB.
Although it is an entirely new phone, it really isn’t that different from its non-rugged counterpart overall. For instance, it will also run Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean right out of the box. And it will be equipped with several exclusive Samsung software features, such as S Travel (Trip Advisor), S Translator, Smart Pause, Airview, Air Gesture, and S Health.
Speaking of exclusive software features, the Galaxy S4 Active will have one unique camera offering to its name: Aqua Mode. This is a new camera setting that is said to “increase visual quality and clarity for enhanced underwater images and video.”
Samsung plans to start selling the Galaxy S4 Active first in the U.S. and in Sweden beginning this summer in three different color options: Dive Blue, Orange Flare, and Urban Gray. It will also be featured at an upcoming Samsung event scheduled to happen in London on June 20, 2013.
What do you think about the Galaxy S4 Active? Did you wait for its official announcement, and if so, was it worth it? Sound off in the comments section below.
GALAXY S4 Active lets users focus on living life to the fullest by providing a rich experience without the fear of damage from outdoor elements
SEOUL, Korea 17:00 KST – June 5, 2013 – Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd, a global leader in mobile technology and digital solutions, today announced the GALAXY S4 Active, designed to enhance life experiences of the active user who wants to stay connected while exploring environments from the most rugged mountain trails to the roughest rivers.
“The GALAXY S4 Active is the newest addition to the GALAXY series and is purposefully designed for active users who love the outdoors,” said JK Shin, CEO and President of IT & Mobile Communications Division at Samsung Electronics. “Samsung has taken the innovative features of the GALAXY S4 and added breakthrough protective design elements to create a device that thrives in an active environment and is built for a lifestyle of travel and exploration.”
Recognizing the demands of a dynamic lifestyle, the GALAXY S4 Active was engineered to keep active users connected as they explore and experience the world around them.
The GALAXY S4 Active has qualified protection from dust and water (IP67＊), so you never have to leave the device at home during a long day at the beach or dusty hike. The fully sealed design keeps dust particles out and protects against water damage for up to 30 minutes of submergence at a depth of one meter. Equipped with a water-resistant earphone jack, the GALAXY S4 Active frees you to use earphones in more adventurous conditions, in the same way you’ve used them in normal ones. Whether capturing every moment of a wild rafting trip or taking a great underwater photo in the pool, the device’s unique construction lets users capture amazing moments previously impossible using a normal smartphone.
(＊ IP stands for International Protection against ingress of solid foreign objects and harmful ingress of water. The highest level is IP68,)
Explore Longer with Powerful Performance
An active lifestyle requires plenty of energy, and the GALAXY S4 Active offers a long-lasting and powerful user experience.
Featuring a 1.9 GHZ Quad-Core processor and 2,600mAh battery, the GALAXY S4 Active can handle the most intensive tasks with ease and precision. Striking color and stunning resolution on the device’s beautiful 5.0’’ Full HD TFT LCD screen (443 PPI) makes playing the newest games or watching hours of video easy on the eyes. And with ‘Glove Touch’, cold weather is no longer a problem since the touchscreen can be fully operated while wearing gloves.
With an 8-megapixel rear camera, users can easily share their vivid experiences while on the go. Unique to the GALAXY S4 Active camera, ‘Aqua Mode’ can be used to increase visual quality and clarity for enhanced underwater images and video. The volume key located on the side of the device can be used as a camera key, allowing users to easily and quickly open the camera application to capture photo and video the moment it happens. Additionally, the camera transforms into a powerful LED flash light to assist in low-light and nighttime activities with a simple long press of the volume key.
Richer & Fuller Life Experience
The GALAXY S4 Active is designed with a seamless interface that incorporates popular features of the GALAXY S4.
‘S Travel (Trip Advisor)’ offers travel assistance, local information, and recommendations to provide a more seamless experience in an unfamiliar environment. ‘S Translator’ makes international travel easy by providing instant text or voice translation for emails and text messages.
The camera interface is designed to make capturing and sharing meaningful moments intuitive and more engaging with multiple shooting modes including ‘Drama Shot’, which allows users to see all the action in one continuous time-lapse, and ‘Sound & Shot’, which uniquely stores sound and voice together with the image to capture the moment in an immersive visual/audio format. With ‘Story Album’, photos taken with the GALAXY S4 Active are collected and sorted according to a user’s timeline, geo-tagging information or a specific event to instantly create an organized photo album. To help facilitate sharing, users can also use the ‘Group Play’ function to enjoy music, photos, documents and games together and across various devices including GALAXY S4, GALAXY S4 mini, GALAXY Mega 6.3 and GALAXY Mega 5.8.
‘Samsung Smart Pause’ enables users to control of the screen using optical cues. While watching a video, the video pauses when you look away and starts right up again when returning to view, saving vital battery life and time spent rewinding. ‘Air View’ lets you preview the content of an email by simply hovering your fingers over the screen, which saves time and data. With ‘Air Gesture’, you can change the music track, scroll up and down on a web page, or accept a call with a simple wave of the hand. Additionally, ‘S Health’ helps you keep track of your personal health statistics. When paired with the S Health Accessory, you can monitor your heart rate, weight, sleep pattern and other personal measurements to assist in a healthy lifestyle.
Enhanced Content and Services
The GALAXY S4 Active also offers competitive content and services to provide a seamless mobile experience anytime and anywhere.
Using the ‘Samsung Hub’, users can access music, videos, books, games and engaging educational content. With a beautiful magazine-style interface, users can browse a variety of content across services, as well as purchase and manage their content easily with a single Samsung Account. Users can also control their TV through Samsung WatchON’s IR remote, which transforms the GALAXY S4 Active into a remote control for TVs, set-top boxes, and DVD players. Through ‘Samsung WatchON’, the GALAXY S4 Active also offers a broad selection of entertainment content including live TV, cable TV and video on demand, facilitated by the rich digital context provided by Samsung’s EPG (Electronic Program Guide) system. ‘ChatON’, another unique feature, connects and facilitates group chats, media sharing and interacting in creative new ways using pictures, hand drawings or figures across mobile devices. Further enhancing the device’s sharing capabilities, users can use ‘Samsung Link’ to share and sync content across multiple Samsung digital devices.
The GALAXY S4 Active will be available for purchase beginning this summer, with initial retail in the U.S. and Sweden. It will be offered in three different color options: Urban Grey, Dive Blue and Orange Flare. Specific availability will vary depending on the market.
Media requests and invited partners will be offered hands-on demonstrations with the GALAXY S4 Active at the Samsung Premiere 2013 GALAXY & ATIV in London on Thursday, June 20th.
＊ All functionality features, specifications and other product information provided in this document including, but not limited to, the benefits, design, pricing, components, performance, availability, and capabilities of the product are subject to change without notice or obligation
＊ Android, Google, Google Search, Google Maps, Gmail, Google Play, Google Plus, YouTube, Google Places, and Google Navigation are all trademarks of Google Inc.
About Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. is a global leader in technology, opening new possibilities for people everywhere. Through relentless innovation and discovery, we are transforming the worlds of televisions, smartphones, personal computers, printers, cameras, home appliances, LTE systems, medical devices, semiconductors and LED solutions. We employ 236,000 people across 79 countries with annual sales of US$187.8 billion. To discover more, please visit www.samsung.com.
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Unfortunately, they havent been as good as Sony here, just look at there waterproof range ( Xperia Z, Z tablet etc ) they made the devices look absolutely amazing but this doesnt look half decent, and no doubt it will cost more then the Galaxy S4 as well
Most people buy phones for looks ” Oh that looks like a good phone ill buy it ” so in my opinion it wont sell many, at all. What do you guys think?
Keep in mind, Samsung has been in the business of making “rugged” phones for a long time now, and this can be seen as a move to simply ride on the success of a well-known model — like with the creation of the Galaxy S4 with Nexus experience.
Looks are subjective – I’ve seen already a few commenters saying the Active looks better than the regular. I would certainly prefer it over the regular, if only for the peace of mind that comes when you know you have a solid phone.
As for the price, the Active has a cheaper sensor and the LCD display is definitely cheaper than the AMOLED. I think the price will be similar if not identical.
The rear looks better but ugh those damn hardware buttons on the front don’t look better.
Yeah, those look like 2008.
Probably for the sake of running under water, capacitive buttons don’t work under water.
That, and using with gloves and in difficult conditions, I think.
The harsh corners of the Xperia Z don’t do justice to many user’s hands. If they rounded them a bit, they might have got a better score in ergonomics. And since smartphones are more valued for ergonomics than looks the S4 Active is better in ergonomics.
I like one thing about it: the fact that the rugged phone isn’t a mid-range dumbed down device, but basically the flagship phone that people are supposed to want, even if they are into dangerous sports or just simply tend to be more careless. Down side: going in the wilderness the S4 Active won’t last long with the original battery – it could have been a bit thicker for the sake of a couple hundred extra mAh’s
It’s better than the original!
at first glance, it looks like a China knock-off. I’m happy with my S4 and although I would’ve loved to use my phone while being in a bathtub I’m not spending anymore money on phones until a Galaxy S6 come out or until HTC decides to make a decent matching phone with a power button on the side and a dedicated Home button.
i like the part they mentioned 11.25GB, very clear and transparent
Looks beautiful! I’m soo glad that they haven’t compromised on specs like the Mini version.
11.25gb free and yet it has almost all the software features of the original GS4? Seems hard to believe. What features are missing in this variant?
Or has Samsung really optimised Touch wiz to reduce storage as they were saying they would be?
Not all, of course. There’s S Translator and S Health on there, for instance. They only left out the few which appear to have been the most useful for outdoorsy or adventurous types, at least that’s how I see it.
My wife has the Rugdy Lte and I seriously considered getting that one myself. I didn’t I went with the S4. Had I known about this one I would have waited. I am always worried about dropping my phone in the water.