My experience with the SGS4

I've owned the SGS4 for three days now. Here's my experience

What I like:

  • The weight; mad light, love it.
  • The design (not the materials)
  • Some aspects of touchwhiz; the dialer, the messaging app, app drawer, home screen
  • Some Samsung apps; s health, Samsung hub (it does have neat stuff; looks nice, but needs to look holo not metro), s translate (g translate is better but s translate is better implemented), and the camera app
  • Samsung features: smart stay, air gestures (esp. air gestures), camera stuff esp. sound & shot (for trolling my brother and friends)
  • The camera; takes amazing pictures without much option setting on my part. The auto picture taking mode is very good.
  • The screen! It's really great! Calibrating it by choosing movie mode has opened my eyes about true colors.

What I dislike

  • Although I am indifferent to whether a phone is made out of poly carbonate, metal, glass, etc, I must admit Samsung must step their materials game up
  • The rest of touchwhiz (esp the drop down menu; get rid that green color!); it's bloated, inconsistent and outdated. Change the color palette similar to that of the dialer app (it's mainly white and knowing how badly amoled does with whites....) and adopt a more holo look (like the s health app)! For example, the settings menu could totally get rid of the gingerbread tabs for holo ones.
  • The button set up; I get it Sammy, you wish to have an iconic look, but lets get with the program. After using my nexus 7, on screen buttons ftw & bring back the multi task button.
  • Death to the menu button; although it may be the most user friendly feature of Samsung's button layout; laundry lists aren't beautiful.
  • Make Google now more accessible. We should have the option to choose whether double tapping the home button brings up s voice or Google now.
  • 32 gb should be the minimum, even with expandable storage as an option. 16 gb doesn't cut, especially with touch whiz being bloated as it is.
  • Eye controlling features => at this point, they are gimmicks. Sammy, work on refining those.

Conclusion: Samsung's big thing with the S4 was software, which, safe to say, was not a complete home run. Some areas were hit and miss. Design wise, I like how it looks (god bless that screen), but new materials wouldn't hurt. With that said, my phone is still the envy of so many iPhone and galaxy owners. All I hear is "I might switch to a Samsung" or "Samsung is more innovative than Apple", etc. In my experience, such compliments are usually heard after they hold the phone, look at the screen and watch me use the air gestures. One of my friends even suggested I take of the case because the phone feels better as such. Samsung has really done a good job of becoming the de facto alternate choice of iPhone. It's crazy how much mind share they have; so much that my roommate asked me whether the HTC One was another galaxy phone. Bottom line, good phone but as so many reviewers say, not the best. Regardless, it was the best choice for me.