Samsung Galaxy S4: Does It Really Compare to the iPhone and Nexus?

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Samsung go further than the Galaxy Note S2 with eye-tracking technology. Image by vernieman

Samsung’s Galaxy S4 goes further than the Galaxy Note S2 with eye-tracking technology. Image by vernieman

Samsung’s Galaxy S4 is the new smartphone on the block and has already caused a stir; with consumers and competition. The phone has been released hot on the tail of the lawsuit between Apple and Samsung over patents and it is already proving to be more popular than the iPhone 5.

Is this going to cause another legal upset between the two rival companies? It isn’t just Apple who is threatened by this new phone. The technology used with the Galaxy S4 is up against Google’s new smartphone, the Nexus 4.

What Is the Galaxy S4?

Many people are just hearing about the S3 – the S4’s predecessor. Samsung releases phones in quick succession, unlike rival Apple. The screen is 5ins wide and has a higher resolution than other smartphones on the market, thanks to having the same amount of pixels as 55in TVs. The 2GB system memory (RAM) and eight-core processor also means that web-browsing should be much quicker and games fanatics will not be disappointed.

On top of that, the smartphone has advanced eye-tracking technology, offering users the security that if they fall asleep while using the phone, or they leave it somewhere, the phone will automatically turn off. How do they do this? With the camera on the front of the phone, which watches your every move. While quite scary when you think of it – think Big Brother – it does offer advantages of saving the battery. The S4 goes one step further by pausing videos if your eyes stray from the screen so you never have to miss a thing.

The phone also offers the ability to automatically scroll when your eyes get to the bottom of the screen. This works along with how the phone is tilted so that you are always looking at the screen naturally.

Limitations of Eye-Tracking

The question many people have is whether this will also work for video games. The technology has not yet been released to console developers, which needs to happen before games integrate eye-tracking. As for the S4, eye-tracking doesn’t work for the games – yet.

Another downside is the fact that the eye-tracking function only works for certain videos. You must be watching the videos through Samsung’s own Video Player app. If you’re using anything else, the video will keep playing whether your eyes are on it or not. Bad news for YouTube fans; you’ll have to keep manually pausing and starting the videos.

The scrolling function works with emails as long as you are looking at them through the phone’s email system or Internet browser. It doesn’t work with office management apps.

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