The Galaxy S5 will likely feature a lot of new hardware, and may even come with a flexible screen. Here’s all the information publicly available about it so far.
It hasn’t been six months since the Galaxy S4 was launched, and there are already rumors indicating that Samsung intends to launch the Galaxy S5 as early as January.
While earlier leaks indicated waning sales of the S4 as a reason for the early launch of the Galaxy S5, those rumors have been contradicted by Samsung CEO JK Shin. He’s been quoted as saying that over 40 million units of the Galaxy S4 have been sold to date, which makes it the bestselling Samsung device to date. Sales of the Galaxy S3 in total were at 50 million, but it has been two years since it was announced. The S4 is in line to overtake sales of the S3, and this is a great sign for the South Korean manufacturer, who revealed that it had one of its best quarters ever last quarter. Samsung mobiles in general sell a lot thanks to the strong advertising efforts combined with the great hardware, but the Galaxy S4 has raised the benchmark for other flagships.
Instead of resting on its laurels, it has been said that Samsung will unveil the Galaxy S5 in January. And like it usually does with high-end devices in the Galaxy series, Samsung is looking to add a host of software and hardware features to the Galaxy S5. One such noted feature is the inclusion of a metal chassis. Samsung has oft been criticized for making handsets with plastic, and while it has come out and said that it does so to build on the longevity of the device, the build quality is one the area that most users feel that the device is lacking in. With the Galaxy S5, it looks like Samsung is finally going to address these user concerns.
It has been theorized that the Galaxy S5 chassis will be built in a Samsung facility in China, and that testing is currently underway to figure out logistics of building such a device. Another hardware change, and a major one at that, might be the inclusion of a flexible screen.
Devices with flexible screens have been announced by both Samsung and LG, and while the first offerings are more or less designed to gauge user interest, it is a likely theory that the Galaxy S5 would come with a 5.5-inch flexible OLED screen. Another rumor suggests that the Galaxy S5 would feature a regular AMOLED 5-inch screen with a resolution of 2,560 x 1,440 pixels, which gives it a pixel density of 560 ppi.
The Galaxy S5 will likely feature a 64-bit Exynos processor. Samsung makes these in-house, and the latest Exynos 5420 made its way onto the Galaxy Note 3. However, it is rumoured that Samsung is looking to overhaul the Exynos line with the 6-series processors, which would be the first to come with 64-bit architecture. Qualcomm is similarly said to be working on 64-bit processors, and it looks like 2014 will be the year we see 64-bit processors for Android devices.
Another major change will be seen in the imaging section, with the Galaxy S5 finally set to include a camera sensor that features optical image stabilization. Samsung demoed a camera module that features OIS at a convention in Korea last month, and it looks like the unit will make its way onto the Galaxy S5. It has been mentioned that the Galaxy Note 3’s camera will include OIS, but that did not turn out to be the case. Last week, Samsung has confirmed during a conference in Seoul that the camera will be a 16MP offering, and that it will feature ISOCELL sensor technology. This technology allows for better picture quality in low-light conditions and is said to be better than the BSI (Back Illuminated Sensor) that is used in camera sensors today.
In the memory segment, it has been alleged that the Galaxy S5 will feature 3 GB RAM, and internal memory variations that could reach 128 GB. Also said to be included is a less cumbersome version of the TouchWiz skin, and Samsung executives have come out and said that later iterations of TouchWiz will be smoother and feature better software. Also, the Galaxy S5 will likely come with Android 4.4 KitKat.
Samsung made the best of an early launch with the Galaxy S4, as it was available in the market a full month and a half before HTC One. HTC is more to blame than Samsung for that, but it worked out to the South Korean manufacturer’s advantage in the long run. Samsung sold over 10 million S4 handsets by the time the HTC One started selling. Samsung might be looking to a similar strategy with the Galaxy S5, and that might pay similar dividends. The HTC One’s successor, a device codenamed M8, is rumored to launch by the end of Q1 2014. That would mean that Samsung has to launch the device sometime in February or early March. As such, unveiling the device at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona next year makes a lot of sense.