Over the last few weeks, Samsung and HTC have announced their latest and greatest flagship devices: the HTC One, and the Samsung Galaxy S4 which are soon to be released later this season.
The one distinctive similarity between these smartphones is that their screens feature a 1080p resolution, although the HTC One’s screen is 4.7 inches, and the Galaxy S4 measures out to five inches. Because the screen of the One is smaller, it has a larger pixels-per-inch (PPI) of 469, while the S4 holds 441.
The build quality of the One looks astounding in comparison to the S4, which replicates the design of its younger brother, the S3, compiled of a polycarbonate plastic. Being made of aluminum, the feel of HTC’s tapered device is very solid in the hand. Considering that the dual speakers on the One are placed in the front, sound quality should be very crisp and clear, especially with multimedia playback, which is known as HTC BoomSound. Don’t forget the HTC One also features Beats Audio, giving even more brownie points in a future comparison. The S4 on the other hand has its own “exclusive” features, one them using a sensor which can pause a video when its user moves their head from the screen. This could be problematic for few, as some people may not need to watch a video for the video itself, but rather for the audio playback.
The cameras on each of these devices stand out as well, as the HTC One sports a 4MP UltraPixel camera, in which each pixel absorbs 300% more light in captured photos to provide better quality. A cool feature in this shooter is HTC ZOE, which allows the pictures you take come to life, as well as pictures turning into three second clips to animate them. If you’ve heard of the popular app Vine, then you’ll know what to expect with HTC ZOE. On the back of the S4 lies its 13 MP camera lens, which allows a new feature called “dual camera” mode, which takes pictures simultaneously from the front and rear cameras, creating a single scene. This feature could be also useful in terms of video chatting, so you can see the person you’re talking to, as well as what they are seeing themselves.
One aspect that the S4 will win in a battle against the One is its removable storage and battery capabilities. The S4 contains 16GB of built memory, with the option of adding more storage of up to 64GB via a microSD card and a removable battery. On the other hand, The HTC One comes with a built in configuration of 32 or 64GB, and a non-removable battery.
Will either of these devices finally be given the title of “the iPhone Killer?” After the iPhone 4 made its debut, I noticed that owning an iPhone was the new “thing.” But after the Samsung Galaxy SIII was released, that phone literally became “the next big thing,” as Samsung had called it. I wouldn’t have much doubt if these devices outmatch the current and upcoming iPhones for a few reasons. One of them is that there are current iPhone owners who are getting bored of Apple’s repetitive iOS. Although I’m one of these people, I still do enjoy my iPhone 5 as it provides a UI experience as well as an ecosystem like no other.
Until these beasts of phones are in the hands of the consumers, we’ll just have to wait for a real life comparison for the typical average user.
Just recently, Sony made nothing more than a decent announcement regarding the highly rumored PlayStation 4. The event itself reminded me of a dull, yet somewhat surprise-filled alternate to E3.
Although the console was not displayed to the public, Sony gave a brief description about its hardware and its capabilities. The PS4 has upgraded versions of previous hardware featured in the PS3.
The DualShock 4 controller was shown off, with a couple of new features and looks. For starters, the most obvious difference is the touch pad lying right above the dual analog sticks, as well as “Options” and “Share” buttons on the top of the controller. The handles of the controller now resemble the feel of the PlayStation Move Motion controller.
It also sports a colored light indicator to designate the difference between player 1 and player 2.
Unfortunately, this new console will not be PS3 compatible, which means consumers will most likely have to purchase and download their games all over again. On another positive note, games will be able to be played as soon as they begin downloading, not just after they have finished, thanks to a secondary custom chip for background processing.
After the PS4 was discussed, the stage was given to game companies such as Bungie, Blizzzard, and Ubisoft, which all showed great looking games to soon be playable on the PS3 and PS4. These titles included Destiny, Watch Dogs, and Drive Club.
The conference went on without a price point or official release date, however it will be released this upcoming holiday season.
With Apple releasing the iPhone 5, two new iPod models, and accessories all in one day, how can you not acknowledge them as one the most innovating companies of all time?
Last year as part of my Environmental Science class, I had to live a day without having an impact on the environment. I decided to not use any energy and boy was that a difficult choice. Without energy, I couldn’t use any form of electricity, which meant my phone and laptop were off limits. I couldn’t be any more serious when I tell people how hard that was. For a whole day, I didn’t know what was going on with my friends and how the rest of the world was doing unless I got out of the house and saw everything physically. After that day, I realized what a luxury technology is to our world. However, it’s just as much of a necessity as well. Without technology, we can’t do half of the things we want to. I might sound exaggerating to a good number of people out there, but this is a serious matter. Unable to access my facebook, twitter, and my phone, I couldn’t communicate with anyone unless I happened to be lucky and find them out and about. Sure I could write snail mail, but what good would that do for somebody who uses their machinery like it’s their only lifeline. The other day I thought about how simple and convenient computers and cell phones are supposed to make our lives. Even though that is its main purpose, it actually makes life a bit harder for those who weren’t born in my generation such as my grandparents because they were born without these devices and lived like “normal” people. If I showed my grandfather my iPhone 4, he would look at it with amazement and confusion, not knowing how in the world to use it. Then he would make a phone call to a friend with his Samsung flip phone from 2003 because of how “simple and convenient” it is to use. My point is, as years pass by, technology advances for the benefit of those accustomed to it while those born without it find their original methods even tremendously simpler. And as this technology advances, we find a greater need to own it and adapt it to our environment as we feel it is necessary to live. Although, I do believe that some devices are just out of the question and aren’t needed what so ever. What do the rest of you think? Has technology become a luxury, or is it so necessary that you can’t live a day without it?
So, the moment nearly everyone who cared about Apple waited for: the showing of the new iPhone, was probably wasted in the eyes of every single one of Apple’s true fanbase. All of us “techies” waited an extra 4 months on top of the usual annual release of a new iPhone, just to show us that it now has a dual core A5 chip, and an 8 mega pixel camera that can now shoot 1080p HD video. Oh, and there will also include a beta version of Siri, “a humble personal assistant” as Apple declares it to be, which acts as an updated version of your “genius” and actually listens, responds, and completes a majority of your commands. These features sound and look cool, but all I’ve got to say is, “that’s it? No larger screen, new design, or capacitive home button?” 16 months of complete secrecy and rumors just for 3 new features, besides iOS 5, which we already knew about since June? Maybe if iOS 5 was introduced during the presentation of the iPhone 4S, it just might have been more exciting, but “beggars can’t be choosers.” Of course people are going to buy it, considering the iPhone is probably one of the top-selling and best smart-phones out there. It will sell especially to those who didn’t purchase the 4 last year, and instead stuck with their older iPhone, whether it was the 3G or 3GS. Apple will now also have Sprint customers running for the 4S, now that Sprint has been added to the list of current carriers along with Verizon and AT&T. Unfortunately, T-Mobile didn’t make the cut. But hey, that’s what the unlocking of phones is for. I personally don’t mind or care about this release, considering I’m totally fine and happy with my current 4. It helps me get whatever I need to get done, and does it with minimal glitches and reboots. I’ve had iOS 5 installed for the past week and as of now I have no thought about jail-breaking my phone again, at least for a long while. As for a new iPhone I’m pretty sure I can wait for the iPhone 5 to be released, or at least shown in June 2012 to upgrade, just as a good majority of others believe. Which, hopefully Apple will return to that same period of time in which the iPhone was shown in the early summer and then released within the next couple of months, which was delayed this year by Verizon’s release of the iPhone 4 on February 10, 2011. However, I do feel bad for everyone else out there who was just as hyped up as I was. I wouldn’t doubt that there were plenty of people that were even more hyped than myself. I wasn’t planning on getting the new iPhone until my upgrade was available next year, but I guarantee that those who were dying to see the unveiled iPhone were disappointed at the very least to find out that the 4S is just an update of the 4. So, back to the subject: Is the iPhone 4S worth the wait? To most customers, yes indeed. These would include Sprint customers, as well those who currently own a 3G or 3GS. For these specific groups of people, I would say it’s definitely worth buying. On the other hand, I do know deep down that there are plenty of iPhone 4 customers who are going to buy this, just for the hell of it. These customers should really give a second thought before they typically waste their money and a 2 year contract just to upgrade towards a few new features. If you’re an average person that uses their phone for calling, some web browsing and to play with a couple of apps here and there, then stay with what you got. And to those who use their phone non-stop to the point where it could replace your own computer, then by all means go for it.