First Five Thoughts About the Galaxy S4 from an iPhone 5 User

Image Credit Samsung
So I have read all the reviews, watched all the videos, and even expressed my opinion before having some time with the new wildly popular (no surprises there) Galaxy S4. Then I had time to actually use the phone this week and all in all, my first impressions were mostly what I expected.

Before we jump in and invite all the Android lovers (aka Apple haters) to cut my head off, let me just give you a little background. I use an iPhone 5 but that is only because my beloved Note 2, which I was using as my primary mobile device, was stolen. I have the Note 1 and I love it, but performance-wise the iPhone 5 still trumps it. I have two Nexus 7 devices, and I love that tablet. All in all, I am far from an Apple fanboy or Android hater. My first impressions of the S4 are as objective as they get. Now that I got that off my chest, feel free to attack me for my opinion, but try to keep it professional and address the points, not my personal preference or what you think my personal preference is.

Here are the first five things that went through my head as I used the Galaxy S4 for the first time.

5 Oh Yea, All the Tricks…

Of course, one cannot try the S4 without testing all the funky things the phone does. So I tried to pause and play videos by turning my head, and that worked 50% of the times I tried. I tried all the other goodies and my conclusion was obvious. I would never use any of these. No normal person would.

4 What is that Feeling?

While the S4 might look very similar to the S3, it feels totally different. I am no hardware expert and I am sure if I spent a few minutes comparing the two devices side by side, I would discover what exactly contributes to the different feeling the two devices give. Having said that, it is clear that the S4 has sharper edges, better dimensions to fit into an average hand comfortably, and a much, much, more impressive screen. It just feels SO much better than the S3 and I am not talking about the plastic, which I mentioned above.

3 Doesn’t this thing have an 8 Core Processor?

My first inclination when testing the S4 was to run it against my iPhone 5, which I might add, is a 32GB phone with less than 3 GB available. So, this is far from an ideal device in terms of speed. Yet, as I opened both cameras, and proceeded to press the Home buttons, the iPhone responded and went to the Home screen, but I had enough time to say to someone: “See? This is the problem with Android, and specifically Touchwiz” before the S4 reached its Home screen (I know there are many ways to optimize the speed, but I was testing a normal S4, and this was the result). Enough said. This thing is not nearly as fast I expected.

2 Plastic, Yes. Junky? Not Quite.

I have a problem with plastic phones, especially when there are devices like the HTC One and the iPhone 5 on the market. Plastic to me equals lower quality. That is what I expected from the S4, a phone that just doesn’t feel like a premium device. That was not the case. It feels like a solid phone and the plastic feels secondary to the overall feel of “wow, this thing feels good in my hand.”

1 Is that the Galaxy S4 or S3?

No, seriously, as I looked at the S4, I literally could not tell if I was looking at the newest device or one that has been out on the market for over a year now. That, like it or not, is a problem. The other side of that argument is that “If it ain’t broke…” but when it comes to innovation, people like to see change. The S4 has many changes but they are hard to see at first glance and maybe it’s just me, but that annoyed me.
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