If you are undecided if you take a smartphone or a digital camera to your next vacation to snap photos, don't be undecided any longer because today Samsung made it true what many feared (design-wise) by announcing the upcoming launch of the Samsung Galaxy S4 zoom. And no, it's not a Samsung Galaxy camera with telephony and Internet but it's a Samsung Galaxy S4 with a 10x optical zoom, a 16 megapixel CMOS Sensor, OIS, Xenon Flash and with Samsung's very latest Galaxy S4 technology. Samsung calls it "the ultimate smartphone and camera experience in one" but I have my doubts that the Galaxy S4 zoom is still counting as a "smartphone"; even if I like the idea- somehow.
The Galaxy S4 zoom comes with a revolutionary new "Zoom Ring", a simple and intuitive way to access the Galaxy S4 zoom's key features. When you're in the middle of a phone call and you see something you absolutely have to share, a quick twist of the Zoom Ring will activate the In-Call Photo Share feature, letting you capture and send an image directly via MMS to whoever you are talking to simply. For easy camera navigation, the Zoom Ring can be used to activate the "Quick Launch and Shortcut" features, giving you instant access to multiple camera modes including Auto, Gallery and Smart Mode with a simple twist.
The Zoom Ring also revolutionizes conventional camera zoom controls. Optical zoom control replaces traditional dials and buttons with smooth, easy-to-operate digital controls. Professional-quality accuracy and unprecedented ease of use are just a twist away, making it easy to compose a scene and capture wide-angle shots or tight close-ups.
When it comes to high quality photography, bigger isn't always better. The compact Galaxy S4 zoom's best-in-class 10x Optical Zoom and 16 megapixel BSI CMOS Sensor lets you capture beautiful images from far away or up close and personal, in all light conditions, without having to carry heavy camera gear around with you. Furthermore, the built-in Optical Image Stabilizer (OIS) helps keep the camera perfectly still even when you're not, reducing blur and stabilizing the image while zoomed in for high-quality photos and video.
Photo Suggest instantly connects you to huge libraries of images taken by fellow photographers, to help you find and compose your best shots anywhere in the world. Photo Suggest can even direct you to the ideal nearby location which will give you the vantage point you need for that perfect photo.
The Galaxy S4 zoom also features Samsung's popular "Smart Mode", so you can stop worrying about settings and start taking professional-quality artistic shots. Simply choose from a series of pre-set modes and the camera will automatically adjust to ensure you capture the best photo possible. Use "Drama Shot" to merge continuous shots of moving objects into a single composed image, or "Action Freeze" to instantly capture high-speed action. If you aren't sure which Smart Mode to select, the "Smart Mode Suggest" feature can assess the scene for you and provide a short list of the best options for your consideration based on surrounding factors such as light levels, focal length, or face detection, ensuring you always get the best shot you want.
The Galaxy S4 zoom's heritage is evident throughout, from its sleek and stylish design to the powerful, yet intuitive user interface. Running on Android Jelly Bean 4.2, the Galaxy S4 zoom boasts many of the same features as the recently launched Galaxy S4, including "TouchWiz", which lets you fully customize various aspects of your device including the lock screen and notification bar, for a truly personal mobile experience.
When you return from your travel adventures, "Story Album" lets you arrange all of your treasured images and videos into one timeline to share with friends and loved ones. You can also edit images and even order prints directly from the device through a partnership with blurb. If you'd rather transfer your images to your laptop or tablet for safe keeping, "Samsung Link" lets you do so quickly and easily with just the touch of a button.
Alternatively, you can sync all of your data in your own personal cloud through "Samsung HomeSync", providing the ultimate peace of mind and ensuring your images and videos are waiting for you whenever you need them.
The Galaxy S4 zoom features the new "Samsung Hub", a one-stop destination for all of the latest music, videos, books and games. Search, download and enjoy all of your favorite entertainment at the touch of a button, all directly from your device. When you find that amazing new track or game that you can't wait to share with your friends, "Group Play" lets you connect directly with their Samsung devices so you can all listen and play together, without the need for a WiFi or cellular signal.
Samsung has yet not unveiled any prices or detailed launch dates or launch regions. However, the support of Samsung HomeSync is a good indication that it will be definitely launches in the U.S. since Samsung mentioned at the recent Mobile World Congress that HomeSync will be released in North America first.
Cheers ~ Arne