The Future: Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 3
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The Future: Samsung Galaxy S4 vs Samsung Galaxy Note 3


The Samsung Galaxy S4 has been one of the most anticipated smartphones of the year. Following in the footsteps of its successful predecessors, the S4 is clearly the South Korean manufacturer’s best smartphone. Nevertheless, the Galaxy S4 is not perfect and it faces strong competition. Analysts and reviewers have praised the gadget for its hardware and software features, but criticized it for the lack of ingenuity, mainly in the areas of design and build quality. Now, with the hype slowly but surely dissipating, the attention is shifting towards Samsung’s upcoming flagship phone: the Galaxy Note 3.

Same as the S series, the Note line-up has been a tremendous and rather unexpected success. According to analysts, the oversized display of the original Note was supposed to be the handset’s undoing. In reality, the “phablet” has become one of the main segments of the mobile market, and Samsung clearly wishes to keep the trend going.

But will the Note 3 bring new tech or software features, other than what the Galaxy S4 has already shown us? Well, there’s no way of knowing for sure before the Korean manufacturer makes the official announcement concerning the Note 3. Nevertheless, as with every sought-after smartphone, rumors and leaks have begun pouring in, giving us a glimpse of what the future might hold.

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Samsung Galaxy S4 vs. Samsung Galaxy Note 3 – Processing Power

The Samsung Galaxy S4 is currently one of the most powerful smartphones on the market. Undeniably, we expect the Note 3 to surpass its smaller sibling in nearly every aspect.

Hardware-wise, the SGS4 arrives in most markets with a Snapdragon 600 quad-core processor running at 1.9 GHz and an Adreno 320 graphics chip. In certain regions, the Samsung flagship packs PowerVR SGX 544MP3 GPU and the new Exynos 5 Octa 5410 processor. The latter boasts two quad-core chips for a total of eight cores. One of these quad-core units is based on the Cortex-A15 arhitecture and is clocked at 1.6 GHz, while the other quad-core is of Cortex-A7 type, with a frequency of 1.2 GHz.

As for the Note 3, sources at Sam Mobile have revealed that the upcoming “phablet” might pack an Exynos 5 Octa Core regardless of what market it’s going to be retailed in. One model, one processor. Additionally, the CPU will supposedly be accompanied by a Mali 450 graphics chip boasting 8 cores as well.

Galaxy S4 vs. Galaxy Note 3 – Storage and RAM

According to U.S. based customers, one of the biggest gripes in regards to the Galaxy S4 is the fact that, so far, only the 16 GB model has been made available in this particular region. However, Samsung is moving to expand storage options as according to CNET a 32GB model is slated for release for AT&T customers on May 10. We expect the Note 3 to offer multiple storage options, same as the Galaxy S4 does currently outside of U.S.. However, the Korean giant might also consider the idea of increasing the storage capacity of its most affordable Note 3 model. In other words, the phablet could pack 32 GB and up.

As for the amount of RAM, sources are claiming that the upcoming phablet might see an increase to 3 GB of memory, from the amount of 2 GB offered by the Galaxy S4.

Display and Design

There’s no mystery that Samsung’s Note 3 will always have a larger display than its counterpart in the S series, and rumor has it that the size of the panel will be 5.99 inches. Various outlets are reporting that the note 3 will have a “full-HD Super AMOLED display that will sport the same diamond pixel structure as the current Galaxy S4.”

From a build and design point of view, there’s a chance that things will become much more interesting with the phablet. Once again, both critics and consumers have shown their disappointment in regards to Galaxy S4′s uninspired design and extensive use of “cheap plastic” materials. This hasn’t been a huge issue in the past, but with devices such as the HTC One (with its all-aluminum unibody case) overshadowing the Samsung flagship, the Galaxy S4 has let a fair number of customers down.

Rumor has it that this might change with the arrival of the Note 3, and that Samsung will switch gears in order to deliver a higher quality product. Allegedly, the manufacturer is now trying to decide if this change in design philosophy is worth it, and is quite possibly looking at various designs.

Closing Lines

Overall, we expect the Note 3 to be a more powerful, better equipped handset than the Galaxy S4. However, the more important question is by how much it will surpass its smaller sibling. We fear that if the upcoming phablet will not usher in a new age in terms of design and build quality, Samsung will lose ground.

The mobile market is clearly moving in a direction where build quality matters, and Samsung must factor this into its decision making. Even more, considering Galaxy Note 3′s almost guaranteed success, if Samsung (the biggest and most successful Android manufacturer) will adopt a new design philosophy, every other manufacturer would likely follow suit.

The manufacturer is expected to unveil the Note 3 in September, at Berlin’s IFA 2013, and that’s probably when we’ll get our answers.

What do you think and what are your expectations from the Samsung Galaxy Note 3? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below.

Vlad Andrici is editor for and writes about technology issues.

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