Samsung unveils Galaxy S4 with eye tracking, better camera

After much hype, some leaks, a short delay, some cheesy jokes and a speech by the company's president, Samsung unboxed their new Galaxy S4 - a phone that comes with eye tracking.

The handset also has features such as dual view shooting, "smart scrolling and pausing, health tracking and a translator to break down language barriers.

They showed off the phone Thursday night at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.

The phone looks very similar to the S3, but the back is straighter and it is a bit lighter. The Galaxy 4S is 130 grams and comes with a 5-inch, 1920 x 1080 display. The S3 only had a 4.8-inch screen.

[ Factbox: Galaxy 4S vs. iPhone5 ]

OS: Google Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean

Eye tracking: One of the neatest and most-anticipated features is the eye tracking. If you are watching a video and look away, the video will stop playing. The same technology allows you to scroll up and down or flip pages just by looking.

Camera: It comes with a 13 megapixel camera on the back and 2 megapixel front-facing camera. The dual camera feature allows person taking the video or photo to also be in the video by using the camera on the front.

The sound and shot feature allows people to record sound right before or right after taking a picture. So when people see the picture they can also hear the sound that was happening at the time.

You can take more than 100 shots in four seconds to pick the best one or put many together to show action.

Translator: This feature allows you to write anything into the phone and have it translated into one of nine other languages. It supports both text to speak and speak to text and comes with more than 3,000 embedded phrases so you can navigate places like airports without a connection.

[ Read the live chat from Wednesday night ]

The phone also allows users to hover a finger over any tab such as an inbox or gallery and get a glimpse of what's in the tab before opening it.

It works when you are wearing gloves, unlike the iPhone where you have to buy special gloves to use it without getting your hands cold.

It can also count calories and while the presentation made it seem like it can be a doctor in your pocket, that probably isn't advisable.

"At this point, Samsung appears to be trying to kill the competition with sheer volume of new features - there should be something here for everyone, even if most of these new features won't be used by most users," said Jan Dawson, chief telecom analyst at Ovum, to Reuters. "Samsung can likely rely on its vastly superior marketing budget and the relatively weak efforts of its competitors in software to keep it ahead. But competitors will catch up and Samsung will need to continue to stretch. Overall, there are lots of features, but based on past experience most people will never even find them on the device."

Despite the ridiculously cheesy keynote presentation, the new features all seem like stuff that will be extremely useful whether at work or our while having fun. The trick for average people will be finding the features.

The S4 unveiling is less than a year after the debut of the S3. The phone will be available in all markets between April and May and come in both black and white.

(Reuters photo)

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