Samsung is well known for its ability to release a wide range of smartphones over the course of a year, and 2013 is no exception.
Besides the already-launched Galaxy S4 and the sought-after Galaxy Note 3, Samsung is planning two more phablets under the “Mega” moniker. And several recent rumors suggest the company’s lineup will soon expand even further.
Specifically, over the past few weeks the mobile world has been assaulted by several leaks and rumors regarding the so-called Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini, Galaxy S4 Zoom and Galaxy S4 Active. What can we expect from these handsets?Enjoying this article? Click here to subscribe for full access. Just $5 a month.
Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini
The Samsung Galaxy S(x) Mini series is not a figment of someone’s imagination. This mid-range lineup made its debut last year with the Galaxy S3 Mini, and according to a handful of leaks and rumors, the Mini series will soon receive a new member – the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini
The S4 Mini is all but officially announced at this point. Pictures of the device have already surfaced, revealing the handset’s overall design (similar to the Galaxy S4).
Judging by a leaked spec-sheet, the SGS4 Mini could arrive with a 4.3 inch Super AMOLED display featuring a resolution of 540 x 960, 1 or 2 GB of RAM (for the 3G and LTE-enabled variant respectively), 32 GB of internal storage, an 8 megapixel rear-facing camera, a 2,100 mAh battery and Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich).
More importantly, the spec-sheet suggests that S4 Mini’s CPU (Exynos 5210) will be built according to ARM’s LITTLE.big processor architecture – a Cortex-A7 core working in turns with a Cortex-A15 core. The CPU will allegedly be clocked at 1.6 GHz.
The handset is expected to arrive in the US, via AT&T, with the model number “SGH-I257″ (as reported by Pocket Now). Availability-wise, rumors have pointed towards a mid-July release, during week 29 of the year.
Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom
Another Samsung smartphone that could hit the market in the near(ish) future is the so-called Galaxy S4 Zoom, a camera-centric handset that will apparently feature a 16 MP sensor.
According to rumors, the SGS4 Zoom borrows the 16 MP sensor from the existing Samsung Galaxy Camera. The sensor would be capable of 10x optical zoom.
There’s not much else to say regarding this handset, other than the idea that it would boast a design similar to the Galaxy S4 Mini. Spec-wise, the Zoom could feature a 4.3 inch AMOLED display, 8 GB of storage expandable by up to 64 GB via microSD, and Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.
As far as the handset’s purported release date goes, sources of Sam Mobile have reported that the Galaxy S4 Zoom should be available in black and white flavors, with the black model arriving during week 23 (June 3 – June 9). The white model should follow shortly after, during week 25 (June 17 – June 23).
Samsung Galaxy S4 Active
The third and last (but definitely not least) rumored S4 spin-off is the so-called Samsung Galaxy S4 Active. The existence of this device was first hinted by Samsung’s Young Soo Kim during the SGS4 launch event held in Dubai.
Ever since, the Active has continued to resurface on the web in the form of rumors and leaks, bolstering the idea that it is indeed a real device. Evidently, the Active hasn’t been officially confirmed and until the Korean manufacturer announces it, anything can change.
Nevertheless, the handset has already been spotted on the official Bluetooth SIG website, and if the Active turns out to be real, here’s what you can expect:
First things first, in theory, this gadget will be based on the original Samsung Galaxy S4 model, which means that most of the hardware features found in the S4 will also be found in the SGS4 Active. These include a 5 inch 1080p Super AMOLED display, a Snapdragon 600 or an Exynos 5 Octa processor, 2 GB of RAM, a 13 MP camera and Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean. But the one thing that would make the Active unique is that it will allegedly be a rugged smartphone, featuring both dust and water resistance.
Once again, according to sources, the SGS4 Active (model number GT-I9295) could become available for purchase during week 26 of the year.
All in all, judging by the volume of rumors that have been making the rounds, Samsung has big plans for this year, encompassing pretty much every imaginable niche.
As always, don’t hesitate to share your opinions in the comments. Would you be interested in one of these smartphones?
Vlad Andrici is editor for gforgames.com and writes about technology issues.