As expected, Samsung unveiled the Galaxy S4 Mini, the compact version of the company's new flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S4. Featuring a 4.3in qHD Super AMOLED display, the Galaxy S4 Mini is quite portable and is expected to deliver superior performance. Besides, it supports many intuitive features and service provided by the Galaxy S4. The new handset will be available in two colour variants: white frost and black mist.
The manufacturer has not provided details on the global market availability of the Galaxy S4 Mini but has promised that the handset will be displayed at the Samsung Premiere 2013 Galaxy & ATIV media event in London scheduled for 20 June.
IBTimes UK brings out a detailed features comparison of the new Galaxy S4 Mini and the compact version of the third generation Galaxy S Smartphone, known as Galaxy S3 Mini.
Galaxy S4 Mini vs Galaxy S3 Mini: Display
Samsung's newest Galaxy S4 Mini features a 4.3in display as compared to the 4in display of the previous Galaxy S3 Mini.
As for the screen technology, both the S4 Mini as well as the S3 Mini have Super AMOLED display. The key difference is, the Galaxy S4 Mini has a quarter HD (qHD) display with resolution measuring 540 x 960 pixels giving it a pixel density of 256 pixels per inch (ppi) whereas the Galaxy S3 Mini features a WVGA (Wide Video Graphics Array) display with resolution at 480 x 800 pixels and pixel density at 233 ppi.
Although the Galaxy S4 Mini qHD display does not match the sharpness of the 5in HD display of the Galaxy S4. But the S4 Mini marks an improvement over the 4in WVGA screen of the Galaxy S3 Mini, which makes the new handset slightly more appealing. Additionally, the S4 Mini has a bigger screen when compared to the 4in display of Apple's flagship iPhone 5.
The Galaxy S3 Mini, as an IBTimes review notes, has a good screen with sharp, accurate colours, deep black and good levels of saturation and contrast.
Galaxy S4 Mini vs Galaxy S3 Mini: Dimensions
The Galaxy S4 Mini is 124.6mm long by 61.3 mm wide by 8.94mm thick. Considering the physical dimensions, the Galaxy S4 Mini is slightly longer but less wide than the compact version of the Galaxy S3. Also, the S4 Mini is thinner than the S3 Mini, featuring a thickness of 8.94mm. There is a marginal difference between the weight of both the handsets with the Galaxy S3 Mini weighing just five grams more than the S4 Mini, at 112.2g.
The manufacturer claims the compact design of both the handsets provides a comfortable grip and enables a convenient one-hand operation.
Galaxy S4 Mini: 124.6 x 61.3 x 8.94mm
Galaxy S3 Mini: 121.55 x 63 x 9.9mm
Galaxy S4 Mini vs Galaxy S3 Mini: Operating System
The Galaxy S3 Mini was first shipped with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean software. In January, Samsung rolled out the Android 4.1.2 software upgrade for the device which integrates an array of new features such as Multi-View (the Multi-Windows feature in the Galaxy Note 2), Page Buddy, new Gallery app, new Notification Panel (which can be customised), Smart Rotation, continuous input in Samsung keyboard (like Swype or Android 4.2 keyboard), Paper Artist app and Group Cast app.
Besides, the Galaxy S3 Mini bundles some of the features which were first introduced in the Galaxy S3. These include Smart Stay wherein the phone's front-camera tracks the user's eyes and keeps the screen lit as long the user is looking at it, the Direct Call that enables users to dial a call by lifting the phone to ear. Other key features include Smart Alert, Buddy photo share, Pop-up play and S Beam.
The Galaxy S4 Mini, in contrast, will run on the latest Jelly Bean software, Android 4.2.2, once it comes out of the box. The latest operating system (OS) brings significant improvements over the previous Android 4.1.2. The key features of the OS include Gesture Typing, Photo Sphere, Daydream, enhanced Google Now, Google Search and Android Beam. It adds support for wireless display which enables users to share movies, YouTube videos and other videos and images on their TVs.
The Galaxy S4 Mini and the Galaxy S4 shares a few features such as S Translator which provides instant translation both from speech-to-text and text-to-speech, S Health which enables users to monitor caloric balance and health condition. Sound&Shot, Story Album, Group Play, ChatON and WatchON are some of the other important features.
Galaxy S4 Mini vs Galaxy S3 Mini: Processor and RAM
As rumoured, the Galaxy S4 Mini indeed uses Snapdragon 400 chip featuring a dual-core Krait processing unit with each core running at clock speeds up to 1.7GHz, and paired with Adreno 305 graphics unit.
The Galaxy S3 Mini, on the other hand, is powered with NovaThor U8420 chip featuring a dual-core Cortex-A9 processor clocked at 1GHz. The NovaThor chip also integrates Mali-400 graphics unit. The Galaxy S4 Mini has 1.5GH of RAM against the 1GB RAM of the S3 Mini.
Galaxy S4 Mini vs Galaxy S3 Mini: Camera
The Galaxy S4 Mini has an eight megapixel rear-facing camera with features including auto-focus, LED flash, geo-tagging, touch focus, face detection, HDR (High Dynamic Range) and Panorama. The camera is capable of capturing 1080p video at 30 frames per second (fps). The handset also has a 1.9 megapixel HD front-facing camera.
The Galaxy S3 Mini, unlike the S4 Mini, has a five megapixel rear camera and a VGA quality front-camera. The rear-facing camera of the S3 Mini carries some of the similar camera features like the S4 Mini and can record 720p video at 30 fps.
Galaxy S4 Mini vs Galaxy S3 Mini: Connectivity
The Galaxy S4 Mini, as noted by the manufacturer, will be available in either 4G LTE or 3G HSPA+ or 3G dual-SOM variant which will be determined by the market. It offers Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, dual-band, DLNA, Wi-Fi direct, Wi-Fi hotspot and Bluetooth v4.0 with A2DP, LE and EDR.
The Galaxy S3 Mini also offers Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, dual-band, DLNA, Wi-Fi Direct, Wi-Fi hotspot and Bluetooth v4.0 with A2DP, LE and EDR. It supports data speed up to HSDPA 14.4 Mbps and HSUPA 5.76 Mbps.
The major difference in terms of connectivity is that the new Galaxy S4 Mini supports 4G LTE network speeds whereas the Galaxy S3 Mini supports 3G network only.
Galaxy S4 Mini vs Galaxy S3 Mini: Storage
The Galaxy S4 Mini will be available only in 8GB storage variant but will support microSD card for additional storage up to 64GB. The Galaxy S3 Mini is available in both the storage variants: 8GB as well as 16GB with microSD card slot (up to 32GB).
Galaxy S4 Mini vs Galaxy S3 Mini: Battery
The battery of the Galaxy S4 Mini stores 400mAh more power than the Galaxy S3 Mini which runs with a 1, 500mAh batter.
Galaxy S4 Mini vs Galaxy S3 Mini: Price
During the launch, Samsung did not cater information on the pricing of the Galaxy S4 Mini. But based on the price deal offered by the UK retailer, Handtech, the 8GB version of Galaxy S4 Mini is available for pre-order with a suggested retail price of £389.99 (including VAT). This is approximately £144 more than the Galaxy S3 Mini which costs £246 with similar storage capacity.
Also read- HTC One Mini Vs Galaxy S4 Mini