Friday, March 21, 2014

The Galaxy S5 avoids being labeled a medical device, despite built-in heart rate sensor

samsung galaxy s5 sensor back 650x0 600x399 The Galaxy S5 avoids being labeled a medical device, despite built in heart rate sensor

Shortly after Samsung announced the Galaxy S5, the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety in South Korea decided it would take a close look at the phone’s wealth of fitness, health and lifestyle features. Depending on the findings, the Galaxy S5 was at risk of being reclassified as a “medical device,” and Samsung would be forced to submit it for approval. This may have resulted in the phone’s launch being delayed.
Apparently, Samsung had already held talks with the Ministry during the phone’s development, but has been made to wait until now for the decision. The good news is, the Ministry has decided the Galaxy S5 doesn’t meet the requirements, and therefore won’t be locally categorized as a “healthcare instrument.”
It’s Samsung’s inclusion of a heart rate sensor on the Galaxy S5 which caused the problem. Under existing Korean rules, products which can test or monitor organ functions are subject to medical device regulations. While this ruling is specific to South Korea, it’s also important for the phone’s international release. It’s one less obstacle for Samsung to overcome in order to meet the April 11 launch date.
The Galaxy S5’s release, along with other similar products such as LG’s HRM Earphones, which monitors heart rate through the wearer’s ears, and Samsung’s own Gear Fit, could result in a change in Korean law. The alteration will see this type of device reclassified as one used solely for fitness and not medical purposes.
So far, any similar issues with the Galaxy S5’s functionality haven’t risen in the U.S. or Europe, but may have done if the Korean Ministry’s decision had gone the other way. Several manufacturers are expected to include health and fitness-centric features on new products this year – Apple’s iWatch being one notable rumored example – and this will smooth the way for their eventual release.

The Galaxy S5 won’t get medical device certification, technically “still a medical device”

The Galaxy S5 wont get medical device certification technically still a medical device The Galaxy S5 wont get medical device certification, technically still a medical device
After completing a review of the Galaxy S5, South Korea’s health agency officially proclaimed that the Galaxy S5, which features a heart rate sensor, doesn’t fall into the “medical equipment” category. This is actually a good thing for consumers, because it means that the SGS 5 won’t risk missing its release date due to the thorough testing that medical devices go through. However, some recent rumours claim that Samsung might be having a different headache with supplying components on time.

The South Korean agency stated that the Galaxy S5 is, technically, still a medical device, but it doesn’t fall into the category under current law. Thus, the ministry plans revisit the law as to differentiate between heart rate sensors made specifically for medical usage, and those made for sport and other leisure activities.

Thanks for the tip!
source: G for Games

Samsung Galaxy S5 Zoom alleged specs leak suggests 19MP camera

samsung galaxy s4 zoom gift 650x0 600x399 Samsung Galaxy S5 Zoom alleged specs leak suggests 19MP camera

Now that Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S5 handset has been unveiled, we can well expect to see its family of variants getting a makeover, too.
It appears at least one of those – the smartphone-camera combo Zoom model – may already be close to release following the publication Friday of what’s claimed to be a spec list for the device.
The information, posted online by benchmark site GFXBench, suggests the next iteration of the Zoom will launch with enhancements across the board.
For starters, the camera’s pixel count is said to jump from 16 megapixels to 19 megapixels (5184 x 3888), however, we’ll really want to see the quality of the images from the device before deciding if the pixel increase can be considered an improvement.
There’s no information on whether any changes have been made to its optical zoom. The original model, which launched last summer, was noted for being the first smartphone ever to incorporate a 10x optical zoom, controlled via the ring located around the lens. For more on this, and to see what Les Shu, DT’s photography editor, found when he compared images from the Zoom with those taken by the iPhone 5S, which has a digital zoom, click here.
As for the S5 Zoom’s front shooter, this is listed as 2 megapixels, slightly up from the 1.9-megapixel camera on the S4 Zoom.
We can also expect to see a 4.8-inch 720p display on the new model – still not massive, but a definite improvement on the piddly 4.3-inch offering on the current device.
Said to launch with Android 4.2.2. KitKat, the next Zoom could also feature Samsung’s new Exynos 5 hexa-core processor (a step up from the original’s dual core), which, incidentally, is currently powering the Galaxy Note 3 Neo.
Other under-the-hood details include 2GB of RAM (up from 1.5GB) and 16GB of storage (double the original).
While the suggested specs for the S5 Zoom are a definite improvement on the original model, we’ll have to wait and see if Samsung has made any changes to its physical design. One of the criticisms leveled at the Zoom by DT’s mobile editor Jeffrey Van Camp was that it was simply too big, making it uncomfortable to hold. Of course, with a whopping great lens attached, Samsung designers will have done well to make it less bulky, but they might at least have been able to make the main body a little slimmer.
There’s no official word on when the revamped Zoom might hit stores, though May is being widely suggested as a strong possibility.
[Webtrek via SamMobile]

Wait… how did the Galaxy S5 suddenly became desirable?

galaxys5charcoalBLACk02 578 80 Wait... how did the Galaxy S5 suddenly became desirable?

Weird back? How do you make me still want it, Samsung?
Sometimes they say that less is more. I always think that’s rubbish. I’m speaking from experience here. I’m writing this with a coffee made from five scoops even though the packet says I only need two. But who cares. I’m high as a kite!
In many other ways though, the less is more mantra is now becoming true. Case in point: The Galaxy S5. Yes, I know I’m late to the party here, but having heard that the pre-orders are opening made me wonder if the annual cash-draining-ebay-frenzy-phone-merry-go-round should begin again.
My opinion of Samsung has actually been slightly changed. It was always the slightly crazy one. Remember the toe-curling launch of the Galaxy S4 launch last year?
Hiring out New York’s Radio City Music Hall, getting some poor fool to ping around the stage in some crap musical role play and then launching a phone which had more WTF features than Buzzfeed.
It sold well – but as so many people agreed: it was just TOO MUCH!
Dancing at S4 580 90 Wait... how did the Galaxy S5 suddenly became desirable?

Seriously… this happened at the Galaxy S4 launch
So, in many ways, it looks like Samsung reigned itself back with the S5. It’s sat on its hands. Put the crazy pills back in the cupboard and the designers clearly laid off the gin during this design phase. Because looking at it: it looks like it just works.
Samsung hasn’t given us a phone that is a perfect circle in shape just because it can. It hasn’t given us one with a 4K display which would be great on the spec sheet but utterly pointless right now. It has created sensible features. Bits and bobs we will actually use.

Good doesn’t need to be new

Sure, some are not original ideas. The fingerprint scanner can hardly be described as ingenious. But others really are useful. The monochrome display to save power.. the after-shot focusing of photos. These are things that you’ll find come in handy. A darn sight more usable than Smart Stay.
Maybe Samsung had no choice. Maybe we are entering the age of sensibility because we have to. Face it, there isn’t much space left for real innovation any more.
The iPhone was the last big device to really give us something completely new (I’m preparing for an onslaught here – but I’m talking iPhone 1 which, regardless of where you sit on the fence, you have to admit really changed things.) Prior to that, it was the Motorola RAZR.
Other devices have tickled my fancy, but none have really wined and dined it, good and proper.
I’ve been using an iPhone 5S since November (jailbroken since January, I hasten to add!) Why? Because I got bored of the S4. It started to slow down, I got fed up with its various nuances.
But after days of ennui over an identikit Samsung phone, suddenly I can’t wait for the S5. April usually means one thing – my bank manager starts to panic.
OK, he doesn’t really – he’s wringing his hands with glee, because he knows I’m about to go ballistic on the old flexible friend. If he’s any sense. he’ll be popping the champagne already. It’s an inevitability.

Samsung execs deny a Galaxy S5 Premium, yet hint at an upscale smartphone lineup… and a Note 4

Samsung execs deny a Galaxy S5 Premium yet hint at an upscale smartphone lineup... and a Note 4 Samsung execs deny a Galaxy S5 Premium, yet hint at an upscale smartphone lineup... and a Note 4Oh, no, the sky is falling, and the Galaxy S5 Premium isn’t happening! We’ve been hearing for ages about a supposed”luxury” F series phones, coming from Samsung, with top-shelf specs, and premium metallic design, at the respective higher price. Its flagship was always assumed to be a stepped-up S5, with upgrades like a QHD display, and an OIS camera, for instance.

Now, Samsung’s boss, J.K. Shin, has allegedly denied the existence of a “premium” S5, saying that “there is no such thing,” during an interview with Korean publications. He cushioned the blow with an info on the Note 4, though, reminding us that “of course, in the fall, [there will be] a new model Galaxy Note. This will come out”.

Apparently, J.K. Shin didn’t deny the work on a more upscale smartphone series specifically, but rather just advised that a more decked-out version of the Galaxy S5, branded “Premium,” isn’t happening. That’s not to say that the eventual series wouldn’t have its own flagship, under a completely different naming scheme.


In fact, Kwon Oh-hyun, Samsung Electronics’ VP, confirmed at the annual shareholder meeting that the company will be maintaining growth “in key businesses, such as mobile phones, TVs and memory chips, by rolling out premium lineups.” Yesterday Samsung unveiled a luxury line of kitchen appliances (read even more expensive refrigerators), saying that it plans to become number one in this segment within a year, adding more water to the premium device series rumor mill.

Samsung’s upscale smartphone portfolio was all a speculation at this point anyway, and, since the latest rumor pegged the first representative for May release, we should know pretty soon if the luxury F series, or whatever it gets titled, is happening at all.

source: Kbench via G4Games & YonhapNews

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Bad news, Galaxy fans: Samsung exec says there’s no premium Galaxy S5

Rumors suggesting Samsung might finally debut a flagship smartphone with the premium enclosure that its premium internal components deserve were put on ice last month when the company unveiled a Galaxy S5 that was just as plasticky as ever. It’s still a great phone, as we noted in our hands-on Galaxy S5 preview, but the divide between Samsung’s wares and handsets like the iPhone 5s or HTC One is growing wider. 

Considering the company launched more than a dozen different variations of the Galaxy S4, we thought Samsung might still have a higher-end version of its new flagship phone waiting in the wings. As it turns out, however, that apparently isn’t the case. 

Speaking with South Korean tech news site K Bench, Samsung’s mobile boss JK Shin has apparently confirmed that there is, in fact, no premium Galaxy S5 version. “There is no such thing,” the executive said. 

He also noted that Samsung will of course debut a new Galaxy Note phablet (the Galaxy Note 4) later this year. 

If there’s any solace for users hoping to see a premium metal Samsung phone sometime soon, it’s that Shin spoke only of the Galaxy S5 when refuting rumors. Some reports have claimed that Samsung is working on a separate “Galaxy F” line of smartphones that will feature high-end metal cases. If one of them looks like this, count us in. 

Read more at: