galaxy s4 vs galaxy s4 active aa active water resistance

You might have already heard rumors suggesting that the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Active is on its way, but that’s not the only ruggedized handset that Samsung has in the works – at least if a new rumor proves true.

According to a new report from Korean-based ET News, the Samsung Galaxy S5 may also feature water and dustproof functionality. Unlike the S4 Active and Note 3 Active, Samsung is supposedly adding these ruggedized features to the default model of the GS5.

As you know, many of Sony’s handsets ship with water/dustproofing out of the box, including the recently unveiled Sony Xperia Z1. If the rumor proves true, that means Samsung is essentially taking a page out of Sony’s playbook.

So why change up their design now? As it turns out, the Galaxy S4 Active has proven considerably more popular than Samsung realized it would be. Samsung may also feel that switching to a ruggedized design will help the company shake the image of its devices being “less premium” than some of its competitors.

ETN’s sources further indicate that Samsung is experimenting with new materials and may even make some changes in its supply chain, all in the effort of building better ruggedized handsets than the competition. Of course, this is all just a rumor at this point, so speculation is advised.

Is the rumor believable, though? Maybe. Switching to a ruggedized approach for all of its flagship devices would require a major change in design philosophy on Samsung’s part, but it’s obviously quite doable as Sony has been creating sleek, sexy ruggedized handsets for a while now. For now, all we can do is wait and see.

What do you think, would you like to see Samsung switch to producing ruggedized flagship devices?

Andrew Grush
Andrew is one of the three Managing Editors of Android Authority, primarily responsible for the overseeing of US team of writers, in addition to several other projects such as VR Source and more. He loves tech, gaming, his family, and good conversations with like-minded folks.
  • TechDevil

    I would definitely not mind a waterproof S5. I didn’t like how the S4 Active looked with the physical buttons, though, so I’ll have to wait and see if there are any changes there.

  • Jack Parker

    Im not sure, first they say its going to be made out of metal, now waterproof. Wouldnt it rust?
    I honestly think samsung should go the Metal way like so many other companys have

    • Lisandro O Oocks

      Aluminum doesn’t rust

      • MadCowOnAStick

        silver tarnishes :D
        not that they would make it out of silver

    • firefly

      probably samsung go waterproof to justify their use of plastic. :/.
      just my 2 cents though.

  • Seth Forbus

    I own the waterproof xperia Z, I have to say I use the waterproof functionality ALL THE TIME. It really is the main feature I’ll be shopping for in phones from now on. I’d be excited to see this in samsung’s flagship.

  • rabidhunter

    Umm, weren’t they having problems with the Galaxy S4 Active where it wasn’t as waterproof as they thought. I think I remember AT&T saying that they would only allow one replacement for water damage.

  • Dusan

    I live in Sweden, we don’t bathe here very often. It doesn’t matter.

    • APai

      irrespective of the hygiene aspect, methinks the waterproof capability is quite handy. accidental spills, sweat, tropical climate, sudden rains can all play spoilsport with speakers, connectors. so, yeah – waterproof feature is quite handy, more so around the tropics

    • Blowntoaster

      Nasty. what’s up with that? When the Europeans come and visit the country I currently live in, they also do not bathe. and the temperatures are high, it’s humid, dusty etc. why???

      the human body excretes all kinds of oils/ fluids n crap etc. and not to mention the “naughty bits” that need to be washed regularly. you do make use of the loo don’t you? bleh…

  • Diogenes5

    I think this is a tacit admissal that there isn’t much way to differentiate anymore just from bigger specs. 1080p is enough in a 5″ screen; 2560×1440 would make no sense whatsoever nor would a faster processor compel most people to upgrade from an Snapdragon 800 as everything is already silky smooth with good battery life. Expect to see more differentiation by the introduction of cute but not necessarily needed features.

  • Android Developer

    How come the active has gorilla glass 2 while galaxy s4 has gorilla glass 3?
    i’ve noticed it only now:

    also, wouldn’t making it all metal make a worse reception and cause more radiation?
    the S4 active somehow has 0.26 W/kg while the S4 has 0.42 W/kg . weird. what covers the S4 active ? is it metal or something else?

    • mikegonzalez2k

      Yes that’s true. Metal, or any alloy for that matter.
      Electromagnetic shielding reduces the coupling of radio waves.

      In General Physics we call this phenomenon permeability.

      • Android Developer

        @mikegonzalez2k:disqus Well so why do people want metal so much?
        i think polycarbonate is just fine, and it was used for a very long time…
        before the iphone, there weren’t any phones that i remember that were made of metal at all.
        what are the advantages?

        • Blowntoaster

          finally, someone that’s not all nuts about metal.
          I’d stick with Poly carbonate.
          they can replace the faux plastic “metallic” strip on the side of the S4/Note 3 with real metal though. that would be enough metal. the rest can be poly or glass even as on the Xperia Z/1…

          • Android Developer

            @Blowntoaster:disqus it’s not just that, but many people put cases that aren’t made of metal on their metallic phones, so the explanation of “it feels nice/premium” isn’t there anymore, and the looks is totally different.
            even without a case, metallic phones can get wormer, no?

        • mikegonzalez2k

          People seem to think that for some reason metal is better. Mostly it’s the “way it feels” It is in actually worse in my opinion. Besides having issues with radio signals, it’s heavier, and also has a higher heat transfer.

          Personally I prefer Polycarbonate.
          Polycarbonate is not ordinary plastic.
          Actually it’s about 300x stronger than regular plastic.
          As an industrial material it has a high impact resistance and is extremely durable. Concerning heat transfer, it actually disperses the heat unlike aluminum, so it stays cooler to the touch. It’s also significantly lighter.

          Aluminum is more of an image thing.
          From a tech point of view it makes no sense at all.

          • Android Developer

            is polycarbonate also cheaper than metal?

          • mikegonzalez2k

            It can be. It depends on the alloy (which metals are being mixed together). It is cheaper than aluminum. But that is because it is easier to create from a manufacturing standpoint. It has nothing to do with the quality.

          • mikegonzalez2k

            Aluminum does have some properties that are worth noting. Which is why Apple probably chose to use it.

            It is structurally more sturdy.
            It has a high resistance to corrosion.
            It is theoretically 100% recyclable without any loss of its natural qualities.

          • Android Developer

            i wonder:
            theoretically, suppose polycarbonate was also very durable against high temperatures, do you think it could be used as the whole body of an aircraft ?

        • Bao

          Nokia had an 8250 which was made of metal if I remember correctly..

  • LiiIiikEaBau5

    no more sammy fan, moved to LG and Sony!

    • sammy_fanboy

      LG G2 is a mere copy of S4.They even copied laggy touch wiz.LG can’t see pass Samsung.They are It’s shadow.

      • LiiIiikEaBau5

        Samsung copies Apple, then other korean companies copies Samsung

        • das

          if samsung copied apple ,where is apples Spen ? multitasking ? drag and drop to different apps ? air view ? smart stay/pause ,removable battery ,SD card slot ,…. list goes on ,and why did apple copy samsungs touchwiz features such as a control panel from a pull/drop down menu ? lool

  • MRM

    The appeal of the S4 Active, at least for me, is also its replaceable battery and microSD slot. If the S5 will have some water resistance, and these two features, I think it’s a win. I know, water-resistance AND replaceable battery/microSD slot is a bit of a tall order.

    In the meantime, I’m debating whether I should get the Xperia Z1…it doesn’t have a replaceable battery, which, for someone that travels a lot like myself, is kind of an issue — I don’t want to sit there plugged in or with a phone plugged into a backup charging device while waiting for the phone to get charged up. I also have about 60GB of HD content I can watch while on the plane or in the subways.

    • itzvarma

      Z1 is a great device and this might solve your problem..

      • MRM

        Thanks, itzvarma. Those do look nice, although a bit pricey. The thing is, with spare batteries, they’re really small and easy to carry around — for my current phone (LG Nitro HD….for which you need a lot of spare batteries!), I can carry two or even three spare batteries in the change pocket of my jeans…

  • cookies

    What they should do if it is water and dust proof is make the touchscreen work underwater

  • ProudToBePinoy

    Then again Samsung copy again…

    • Rushan

      in terms of what?

  • poop

    Second paragraph, first sentence, too many instances of “the”.

  • 1212

    and the copycat finally gives in.

    lg is copying the z name with its flexible display series and samsung copies the waterproofing feature.

    but will they still use amoled with a waterproof device? i heard amoled is not good with water.

    • ecaps24

      So, sony invented waterproof now?

  • rykellim

    This is an interesting thought because like many others, I thought that there would be hardly any use for my Xperia Waterproof… I was wrong! When my screen is filled up with grime and fingerprints, all it takes is a quick wash under the tap and voila! Clean as new. Not to mention that I can still click and view under a rainy sky while everybody else has their phones kept in the bag… so go ahead, Samsung, beat Sony. :)

    • Jack

      You are so right! If the Samsung Galaxy S5 would be water and dust proof the cleaning of the smartphone is really easy. Just a quick wash under the tap and you are done.

    • Jais

      Its water resistant, not waterproof. To be honest, it’s a phone it doesn’t have to be. the s5 abonnement doesnt have to.

  • Ryan

    I got the GS4A when it came out and I love it. I enjoy music on the shower, I like being able to wash my phone off when it gets dirty and honestly, I’m kinda digging the physical buttons. Plus, the style just looks and feels more durable than the regular GS4. Throw in removable battery and storage and I was sold. When it becomes a standard, you’ll love it.

    And as far as the people griping that the screen doesn’t work while wet, your only option for a touchscreen that does do that would be a resistive screen like the old Samsung Instinct. Do you really want to go back to that?

    • BB BB

      Lol they should add soap dispenser. Don’t drop the galaxy.

  • BB BB

    Just don’t eff up the removable battery and SD expansion.

    • Notch Brick

      I pretty sure this will be the end of it, If we get an Active GS5 in order to avoid all the issue of people not resealing battery doors with the GS4 Active, they will just seal the door and have 32gb’s of storage and a 3000mHa Battery.

      Back when the AVERAGE person got an Android phone with only 4gb’s of space, yes we needed Micro SD, now the average joe doesnt complain with 32gbs, and a 1 to 1 1/2day battery life.

      • My Z Ultra has an SD slot and is waterproof, so it’s not all that difficult to accomplish. The battery door on the other hand might be a little more complicated.

  • Groud Frank

    The S5 won’t be out until the second quarter of 2014 and I refuse to get excited about these early rumours. Remember that metal Samsung Galaxy S4 and Note 3?

    • das

      metal ? ew

  • As much as I like to believe this and think it’s a great idea, I’m very skeptical. If the design language of the S4 Active carries over AT ALL, then the phone won’t sell (in my opinion). I’m sure they would look for a more sleek design but it would be nearly impossible to do so while keeping the design interesting.

    Also, aren’t we expecting a metal S5. I cannot imagine they would go with a metal, water resistant, SCRATCH resistant phone. Something’s just not adding up here.

  • Dominik Ladoš

    I think we can forget the removable battery

  • Johnny

    I guess this was to be expected for the Galaxy S5, but it sure is a nice feature! I genuilly hope it will be featured in the S5 and other smartphones around the world!

  • Maistro

    Pretty awesome. I like the SGS 5. samsung galaxy s5 is going to be the best phone in 2014 i think.

  • Lucius

    Dutch customers can compare all providers for the Samsung Galaxy S5 at this site.

  • Lucius

    If you’re interested in the rumours of the Samsung Galaxy S6 you can visit our website!

  • DUsan

    The question now remains if the Samsung Galaxy S6 will be waterproof like the Active versions are :)

  • Harold

    I’d like to see if the Samsung Galaxy S6 is also water resistant. When they (Sammy) introduced the Galaxy Alpha and it’s design elements, it seemed difficult to make it water resistant. That’s why the Galaxy Alpha is not IP certified. I do want the Galaxy S6 to have this feature, though!