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General [Official] S4 users reviews

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by Kexmonster, Apr 23, 2013.

  1. GatorfanDroid

    GatorfanDroid Well-Known Member
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    Is the mobile hot spot unlocked / free to use on the s4 by sprint?
     

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  2. bgapfire

    bgapfire Lurker
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    As with any user comparison, the views and thoughts are purely subjective. I don't pass this off as fact. This comparison is based off of MY own experiences with both. Both devices are with AT&T. I owned the One and currently own the S4.

    HARDWARE
    Well, the forums are alive with the debate over who has the better hardware. I must say that I was truly enamored with the aesthetics of the One. It is narrow enough to fit in the hand well. The curved back also adds to this feeling. The phone still feels light even with the aluminum build. BoomSound is phenomenal. Sound is nice and full. Button placement was horrible for me. The power button is too recessed and I didn't like the capacitive buttons. This doesn't mean they're not functional; I just didn't like it. The S4 is sexy for what it brings to the table. I prefer not using a case and the soft rounded edges of the plastic feels better in my hand. The button placement works better for me as I don't have to adjust my hand once I turn on the screen or to use it. The sound cannot compete with the One. If I had my choice, I would prefer all manufacturers utilized the software buttons of the Nexus. Having said that, I'll take the S4 button placement over the One. Overall, I prefer the look of the One but the S4 is a close enough second to not make a difference for ME.

    FEATURES
    I will not regurgitate the plethora of features from both devices as it has been discussed ad nauseam. Personally, I prefer having the options available than not. In my opinion, they are not gimmicks. They're options that you don't have to use if you choose not to. Whether the S4's features are as functional as some would like is another discussion. They can be used in some capacity for a particular situation. I give the edge to the S4 for this reason alone. Specifically, here is what I missed: Blocking mode- can you find an alternative in the play store, yes. But it is nice knowing it is built into the software. S Beam- many of my family members own S3's or Notes and it is nice being able to share music when the situation arises. The gallery of the S4 is more appealing and familiarity makes it easier to use for ME.

    CAMERA
    Hmm... I am not technical enough to articulate the specifics of imagery. As an average camera operator, I didn't see enough of a difference in the pictures or videos that would have tilted my decision to one phone or the other. I do enjoy the available of options for the camera on the S4. I have already dabbled with the dual camera function and it is great. My daughter gets tickled recording and watching herself already.

    USER INTERACTION
    This was big for me. I use my device about 50/50 for business and personal and I utilize the Google ecosystem. Pardon the hodge podge of thoughts as I speak on this topic. I enjoy the using both skins. I found the One to be a little more mature or adult as opposed to the S4. I dislike the colorful icons of the S4 (I am aware of the different launchers as well- just speaking of stock as I have Nova).

    Lock Screen- Definitely the One. I used the productivity lock screen and really enjoyed how the incoming calls, messages and calendar entries are done.
    Messaging- The One. I don't necessarily care for bubbles in messages. The straight forward approach of the One was perfect. I specifically like the black background with blue lettering.
    Dialer- Push. Prefer the Sense version but it wouldn't tilt my decision.
    Browser- Push. I use Chrome 90% of the time and didn't see a difference in speed or rendering

    SCREEN
    This is purely subjective. It really depends on what the end user enjoys. I don't think the majority of buyers will see the more accurate color of the One. I worked at Best Buy many, many years ago (for that lovely discount) in the TV area. The average buyer cared only for the pop of color than accuracy. No matter how much you educate or inform, they're viewing the screen and they want to be happy with what they have. I don't want this to be a discussion on PPI and what technical experts say. When I look at the screens of both, the text clarity is superb. I don't see a difference. Also, the AMOLED display is not as saturated as previous iterations. Looking at videos and pictures was equally impressive. This made it a push for me because I could live with both. The single item of difference in the screens is the overall brightness of the One over the S4. Images look painted on both screens.

    MISC
    Removable vs. Non Removable battery and storage is subjective as well. There is no right or wrong answer. I prefer the insurance of the removable battery. For me, it is much easier to swap a battery and go than carry a portable charging device.

    In conclusion, you really can't go wrong with these devices. I hope everyone goes out and uses each phone to make a choice instead of listening to the One or S4 partisan arguments. Buy what fits you and be happy. The S4 is like those comfortable jeans you enjoy wearing. Although there are options just as good, it fits perfect when you put them on. What I've learned is if HTC softens the corners of the One, changes the button placement and provides a removable battery, I may just own one for longer than a week.
     
  3. angel71rs

    angel71rs Newbie
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    Excellent! I have an S2, considered upgrading to the S3, but the S3 I got my GF for Christmas has horrible battery life. Was hoping the S4 would do better. Your review especially appreciated due to you being on ATT. One reason some think for bad battery life on S3s is the way ATT manages radio when LTE signal is weak.

    I'm considering both, was leaning towards the S4 due to removable battery & memory slot. Only concern is battery life. Hoping you can post good news on this like trparky...
     
  4. josborne6

    josborne6 Well-Known Member
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    Just have to say that this is one of the nicest handsets I've ever used. Butter smooth and super fast. Used the HTC ONE, iPhone 5, Optimus G and the S4. This gets my vote. Obviously a huge step up from an EVO 3D which was my prior handset. Haven't really dove into the new software yet but TW is pretty nice.
     
  5. Senden

    Senden Newbie
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    Completely agree, it's an absolute joy to use this phone and feels like a huge step up from my Galaxy S2.
     
  6. LookSir,Droids

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  7. karen667

    karen667 Newbie
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    I agree too. I've just moved from the S2 to the S4 and am loving it.
     
  8. sean76

    sean76 Android Expert
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    I played with one today that one of friends was using on at&t...So were not talking demo, live model about 2 days old.

    Ok it's plastic I know, but it does feel pretty solid in the hand. No creaks or anything like that, and it just feels right honestly. Very good dimensions all in all.

    The screen is super amoled and over saturated but not to the point were your like omg this is blown way out of proportion. It's a very nice screen but a little colorful for my liking.

    The camera was very good and the phone itself felt way faster then the demo I used the other day. The demo to me felt a little sloppy and sluggish...my friends was of course night and day compared to the demo.

    Now would I trade my new HTC one in for the S4? Probably not, but I'm also a realist and have to honestly say it's a lot nicer then I previously thought.

    Hope you new owners are enjoying it!
     
  9. Aaron91RS

    Aaron91RS Member
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    HTC to Samsung

    I had a rooted/Fresh ROM’d HTC Evo 4G, Evo3d, and Evo 4G LTE. Now I have the GS4, already rooted, custom recovery, and a few tweaks, so that is the background and I will be mostly comparing from what I am used to on my HTC. Of course you’ve all read lots of reviews on all the air/gesture/eye/great display stuff so I won’t repeat itunless asked. This will be more the little stuff that gets annoying over time.
    The gs4 has options/menu’s and settings galore compared to the HTC. Want the bottom keys to stay lit 1.5 secs or 6 secs, there’s a setting for that. Want those silly ATT(GSM) texts to not break up when going to a Sprint(CDMA) phone, there’s a setting for that! Every standard app had more settings/options on the Samsung vs the HTC.

    In stock form the JB GS4 had lag where my ICS Evo didn’t. Obviously this is not a hardware issue so I started freezing up and removing bloatware. If you aren’t going to root though you may notice this, although you can still disable stuff unrooted so maybe not.
    Little things I miss. You can’t beat the HTC 4G lte camera with an F2.0 aperture and I imagine the new One is only better. The one thing I really don’t like in the GS4 camera is the panoramic mode. Where the HTC let you take set pics and stitched them together very well, the Sammy lets you pan like a video for a panoramic.This creates a very choppy pic. The Sammy camera has a smaller field of view so this is one feature wish was improved. The GS4 voice command to takes pics seems to work well with the ‘shoot’ keyword but not as consistent with ‘cheese’ which is the one you want to work unless you like the duckface look.

    Another Ironic thing is the voice commands on the musicplayer like to pause it if you sing along because they must interpret certainlyrics as voice commands. I wonder if Vanilla Ice would stop playing before the first line.
    That said the voice commands to play a certain song or pause it during playing are neat when that’s your intent.

    The combined inbox is similar to HTC. One change I wish for is if you click on an email notification, then delete that email you’re back in only that emails single inbox instead of the combined inbox.
    Having both the HTC and GS4 in the direct sun makes them both hard to see something I thought maybe would be gone with the Supercalifragilisticamoled display

    The photo gallery imports Picasa pics by default which tooka second to search on how to undo and then clear cache. The photo gallery iconsaren’t uniform size like the HTC. Just takes a little getting used to. Again the gallery like everything else has way more settings then my ROM’d HTC.
    Because of the resolution and I imagine it has to be thesame on the HTC One, some apps may not wrap text right. VNC viewer seems to stop working right after connecting which I hope developers fix.
    If you get a text message sent to a group of people the GS4 actually tells you that and lists all the recipients, my HTC never did and thenI’d get random texts from other people I didn’t know replying to that person’s original text, so that’s a nice change.

    I wish the power button was on top and not across from the volume because if you squeeze one your opposing fingers press the other side’sbuttons. I do like the USB port is back at the bottom vs my HTC.
    The Evo3d had a nice non slip rubber backing. The Evo 4g lte was so slick it would slide out of my pocket lots of times when I was sitting down driving etc. I’m amazed I never lost it. I am SO glad the GS4 has a stickier plastic backing compared to the Evo 4g lte. Those that want a heavier phone that conducts heat go buy an iSomething. I’ll take this plastic over my ‘solidbuilt’ Evo 4g lte thank you.
     
  10. Money_Mark

    Money_Mark Well-Known Member
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    Here is my quick review after 4 days with my GS4...

    First, I really love the new phone. I upgraded from the GS2 and glad I waited and did not get the S3. Now it really feels like a legit upgrade.

    The screen is just so beautiful. The Apple retina display is great, but the SGS4 finally overcomes it with the 1080p Super AMOLED display. The images just seem to pop, and watching videos in HD is a real treat. Finally, a phone that I dont mind watching videos on besides youtube.

    Camera is fast (like shutter speed is redic fast), which is a nice to not have to wait to take multiple photos. The quality of the pics is awesome, and really I really enjoy looking at them on the phones screen.

    Call quality has been great and I have had no issues up to this point.

    Thats all for now, more to follow...

    MM
     
  11. InfernalByte

    InfernalByte Android Expert
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    I have the SIII mini and I'm always waking the infernal device by accidentally hitting the on button while it's in my pocket. I have two questions; 1) Is it comfortable in a regular jeans pocket, because it looks huge? 2) Have Samsung addressed the issue of a short press of the on button waking the device?

    3) (Ok, I have 3 questions :) ). The Galaxy note phones still haven't lost their value at least in the UK, with still high contract prices but lower than the S4, is the S4 just another cash cow?
     
  12. veccster

    veccster Android Enthusiast
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    Was going to say the same. I can't imagine life without SwiftKey. Yes, the stock Android keyboard has gotten better but SwiftKey is far better for word prediction.

    I was planning a trip to San Antonio. When I text someone and typed "San", the suggestions did not include 'Antonio'. Typed it in manually once and that suggestion is there every time I type 'san'.
     
  13. veccster

    veccster Android Enthusiast
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    I can't imagine life without a removable battery. I am a phone addict and check it several hundred times a day. It's my personal computer that stays with me at all times.

    When I'm getting low, I pop in a new battery and am back to 100% - and continue carrying my phone and checking it like an addict. Without that option, I would have to tether myself to a charging cable or leave my phone behind (unthinkable). My spare batteries charge in an external charger that changes colors when fully charged ($10 on ebay).

    I look around at the airport and laugh at all the 'white' charging cables plugged into any outlet that can be found. I rest in peace knowing my 100% charge is in the thumb pocket of my jeans ready for action.
     
  14. chong67

    chong67 Android Expert
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    I saw the S4 at BB store last night. I did not like it. Its the same thickness as the S3. The plastic feel all over and shiny/finger print magnet slippery back.

    Put the speakers in the front and get rid of the plastic please!
     
  15. GatorfanDroid

    GatorfanDroid Well-Known Member
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    Are smoking something or high? the s4 if lighter then the s3 and looks great. Don't base it all on feel man. it's performance will blow away the s3. and maybe the display ones are fake ?
     
  16. halon

    halon hakuna matata
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    Maybe I missed it, but how is the speaker volume? And is the vibration noticeable when in your pocket?
     
  17. sincarafan

    sincarafan Well-Known Member
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    Chong if the plastic bothers you there are aluminum covers that can replace the backs. Also the s4 is not the same thickness as the gs3.
     
  18. batlbot

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    GREAT questions. Virtually unnoticeable vibrating and low volume rings in phones has been a sore point for me forever.

    Also, where are all the other reviews???
    Surely there are more folks who could post something in this thread.
    WE NEED TO KNOW!

    HTC One or S4??? :thinking:
     
  19. KiwiMark67

    KiwiMark67 Newbie
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    I thought I might give a quick first impression review:

    I have changed from a 2 year old HTC Desire HD to this I9505 16GB S4
    The change has been a smaller jump than from my previous Nokia N85 which was a non-android and non-touchscreen smartphone.
    Really the Desire HD could have served my needs OK for a couple more years.

    So why change, was it really worth it?
    Well, the S4 does have a bunch of extra features and higher performance.
    The quad core 1.9GHz processor does enable it to do things quicker and easier.
    The camera is better and my old Desire HD did not have a front facing camera.
    The S4 has a noticeably better speaker than my old HTC had, something I had noticed with one friend's S2 and another friends S3 - better sound than my HTC.
    The screen - just wow!
    The battery with the higher capacity is much better too - I'll charge every night and most likely never have an issue with it.

    So yes, both are touch screen pocket computers running Android and my new phone is being used for mostly the same apps that I ran on my old phone. Sure, changing phones isn't strictly necessary and if I didn't have the money I would have been OK on the old phone.
    But I am happy with my new phone with better sound, better camera, better screen and more powerful processor - it is a nicer experience using the S4.
    I also plan on using the NFC for paying for stuff once it is available on my phone in this country.
    Overall I'd say that if you can afford it you wont regret updating the phone to the S4.
     
  20. marflo

    marflo Member
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    I goy my s4 one month ago. So far it is ok. No huge issues bu still some. Battery life is average if the wifi is on the deplete rate is fast. Now i encounter something. Randomely when the lock screen is on patern the home button is non responsive. You have to hit several times to get the lock screen and draw the patern to unlock it. Same happened with other creen locker apps.
     

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