Product Review: Samsung Galaxy S4

This post was originally published at

EDITORS NOTE: This review was written in June 2013 but got (temporarily) eaten by the blog monsters.

Let’s just put it this way: I’m fully entrenched in the world of Apple. I use an iPhone, an iPad, and a MacBook Air. So when Verizon Wireless sent me the new Samsung Galaxy S4 to try out, I was not necessarily going to be unbiased in my opinion from the start. That being said, here are my thoughts after using it for a few weeks.

Out of the box, the phone is very pretty. It’s much sleeker than the boxy feel of the iPhone 5. The screen is huge (5 in.) and the colors and text are sharp and clear. The touchscreen is responsive and once you enable the swype feature for typing, it’s relatively easy to text and email. It runs on Android 4.2.2 (Jellybean) and thumbing through the app store (Google Play Store) I found all the apps I use with regularity on my iPhone.

Things I liked about the phone:

~Picture and video quality. I took video of Yoshi’s choir and the sound/picture, even from the back of the hall, were comparable and even superior to some of the dedicated camcorders I’ve used.

~It’s a mobile hotspot for up to 10 devices. This came in handy at meetings leading up to and the actual V3con event.

~Battery life. I was able to take over 15 short videos (2-6 minutes) and pictures and while I had to charge the phone to upload everything to my DropBox, I was happy that I was able to capture everything I needed to from my events.

Things that didn’t work so well:

~Using it as a phone. We get virtually no Verizon cell service at our house, so it was hard to judge call quality or reception.

~Ow. The phone gets really hot when used for longer periods of time.

Overall, a very nice phone, with almost all the apps I use on a daily basis. Would I trade in my iPhone 5 for the Samsung Galaxy S4? Probably not unless I was going to make the switch to Android, but if I was going to go that route, this phone would definitely be a contender.

Note: I did not receive monetary compensation for this review, but I did receive complimentary usage of a Samsung Galaxy S4 device with Verizon Wireless service for a few weeks.

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2 Responses to “Product Review: Samsung Galaxy S4”

  • The Samsung Galaxy S4 is my current phone. I agree with this review completely, though I prefer Android to Apple. It is overall a great phone. I love the fact that it works as a wireless hotspot, and battery life is very good. With regard to cell phone reception (I am with AT&T), it is rather poor…I think that this has something to do with the phone being 4G, but it doesn’t get reception like some of my older phones, especially in more remote areas.

  • I think it’s awesome Samsung sent you a device to try out. I rarely get to beta-try items. The last thing I got was (not supposed to tell) but the thing before was “Boxee.” I kept the Boxee but wouldn’t pay for it.
    Maybe it’s time you jump from Apple to the Samsung?

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