Galaxy S5 confirmed: due late-April, iris scanner a possibility, beast specs rumored

By , Jan 9, 2014

Samsung Galaxy S5 (concept, Concept Phones 001)

Yesterday, I told you that Dennis Miloseski, head of studio for Samsung Design America, basically confirmed that the Galaxy maker will be adding new wearable devices to its Galaxy Gear smartwatch lineup in 2014. He also noted that the South Korean company tends to have two major launches.

One is for its Galaxy S flagship handset in the Spring and the other tends to be for the Note phablet in the Fall. Speaking to Bloomberg today, a Samsung executive vice president has now officially confirmed that the Galaxy S5, a successor to the current S4, is coming by the end of April.

It will feature a brand new design and may or may not take on Apple’s Touch ID with an iris scanning technology. Hardware-wise, Samsung shouldn’t disappoint as the S5 is shaping up to be quite a beast of the phone.

With the upcoming iPhone 6 in the pipeline, I thought we should compile everything we “know” about Samsung’s next big thing that’ll take on the iPhone in a few months time, all over again…

Speaking to Bloomberg, Samsung’s executive vice president Lee Young Hee hinted that her company’s release schedule calls for an annual Galaxy S announcement around March or April, here’s the exact quote:

We’ve been announcing our first flagship model in the first half of each year, around March and April, and we are still targeting for release around that time.

When we release our S5 device, you can also expect a Gear successor with more advanced functions, and the bulky design will also be improved.

The device may offer an iris scanner security feature, he said:

Many people are fanatical about iris recognition technology. We are studying the possibility but can’t really say whether we will have it or not on the S5.

I previously explained that Samsung’s Touch ID is at least a year away because it considers the technology to be in its early stages “and unnecessary for its current lineup of devices”.

“We never officially admitted that Samsung was weighing the fingerprint system”, a Samsung official told The Korea Herald last September. “We are not yet developing the technology”.

Samsung Galaxy S5 (concept, Concept Phones 002)

It’s been rumored that California-based Validity Sensors would supply fingerprint sensors for Samsung devices, but apparently those plans have been shelved in favor of the new optical scanning.

Fanboyism aside, iris scans generally offer greater accuracy and stronger security versus one’s prints. On the other hand, no one has ever implemented iris scanning on a mobile device so we can only speculate on its performance and usefulness on phones.

As a reminder, the iris is a circular structure in the eye which controls the amount of light reaching the retina by changing the diameter and size of the pupil. To illustrate the point better, if the pupil is the eye’s aperture, then the iris is its aperture stop.

Human Iris (Wikipedia 002)
Image via Wikipedia.

We all know Apple’s Touch ID is very accurate and reliable.

However, it’s been proven that the technology can be hacked provided you’re armed with the perseverance and know-how needed to collect a person’s fingerprint. You then need to have access to some highly advanced technology to replicate the collected print. This is why Apple requires you to use a passcode as a failsafe mechanism.

If you ask me, iris scanner poses some usability issues.

I’d rather unlock my phone by placing the finger on the Home button than hold the device in front of me for iris scanning (replace ‘phone’ with ‘tablet’ and you get the picture).

Should Samsung use the S5’s front-facing camera to record people’s irises, it may not be accurate enough in low-light conditions.

And what happens if I’m drunk or on drugs or wearing glasses?

Activator + Touch ID

Touch is just quicker and Apple’s Home button implementation is seamless.

By the way, the executive also acknowledged a somewhat lukewarm reception to the Galaxy S4 as Christmas sales of the S4 were 13 million units, down from 17 million in the previous quarter:

When we moved to S4 from S3, it’s partly true that consumers couldn’t really feel much difference between the two products from the physical perspective, so the market reaction wasn’t as big.

For the S5, we will go back to the basics. Mostly, it’s about the display and the feel of the cover.

Slow S4 sales are hardly a surprise given the new iPhones came out and the S4 looks nearly identical to the previous-generation S3. And after the S5 hits, you can also expect a Gear successor “with more advanced functions, and the bulky design will also be improved,” according to the exec.

So, what else do we “know” about the S5?

How about an overhauled TouchWiz overlay?

Samsung TouchWiz UI redesign (EVLeaks 001)
Samsung’s alleged new smartphone UI, via @evleaks.

A brand new screen technology is another possibility.

According to the Chinese technology blog IT168, Samsung will source the S5’s quad HD screens (apparently measuring about 5.25 inches diagonally) from Sharp because of production issues plaguing Super AMOLED displays.

The display should sport 2K resolution, which offers twice as many pixels as the full HD 1080p displays. Specifically, the report claims the S5 will use Sharp’s Low-Temperature Polysilicon (LTPS) screens, which are based on AMOLED tech.

Specs-wise, SamMobile is expecting a 64-bit eight-core Exynos processor (or a quad-core Snapdragon chip, depending on the device model) with 4GB of RAM, a massive 4,000 mAh battery and a 16-megapixel camera with improved low-light performance based on its new ISOCELL technology.

Samsung ISOCELL

Finally, the new feel of the cover could be based on an all-new metal casing for the S5.

Matter of fact, SamMobile has some compelling reasons to believe that Samsung may offer the S5 in two flavors, one with a plastic cover coming in April and the other ultra high-end model with a premium aluminum finish, branded under the Galaxy F moniker and coming later in the summer.

If the S5 is in fact up for a refresh around March or April, we would expect an announcement soonish, possibly in February.

Of course, sketchy rumors have suggested that Apple may repeat its iPhone Air/Mini strategy by releasing two iPhone models this year, including one with a potentially massive 5.7-inch display in May.

Who’s excited about the next big things from Apple and Samsung?

What will your next smartphone be, an S5 or an iPhone 6?

Galaxy S5 renderings courtesy of Concept Phones.

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  • chumawumba

    Great another shitty Scamsung phone

    • patrick

      Nice, mature

      • Maxim∑

        4GB of RAM? Nice touchwiz will take up 3GB.

        64bit wont be happening since dalvik on Android is not ready for emulating apps at 64x. It would require developers to update their apps similar to whats happening in the jailbreak community. And in Google play with massive fragmentation that wont be happening.

        Beast specs mean nothing with Samsung, they will just boost it by 15-20% in benchmark tests and it will still lag thanks to touchwiz. So yes Scamsung

      • Your Mother

        lol, you’re just hating right now.

      • ✪ aidan harris ✪

        I agree, it is very mature to point out the facts in products rather than making up a bunch of fiction…

    • Isa Altintas

      How can you call this shitty? If it comes out with the specs above, it’s amazing. Don’t be such a fanboy. I own an iphone 5s and an ipad mini, but I like what Samsung does, good tech.

      • Umut Bilgiç

        Lol, iphone with 1.1 GHz CPU and 1 gig ram is still much much faster/snappier/responsive/reliable then samsung.

      • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

        It’s easy to be much faster when you have more energy to do the same old little stuff…

      • Umut Bilgiç

        He is talking facts, not fiction. This does not make him a fanboy. I am sorry, but i do not really think that you own 5s or ipad mini. It looks like you tryong to prove us something. Please dont try, work on yout acting better.

      • Dan

        since when it calling a company a ‘ shitty Scamsung’ a fact? That’s an opinion. Also why do you spam comments one minute after the other, can’t you post all of your gibberish into one post?

      • Umut Bilgiç

        My phone is bugged woth disqus sorry. And, i was quoting to the other guy, talking actual facts, so I am sorry I have not payed attention to the post.

      • Cameron Chao

        i think in alot of cases, Samsung deserves the bad rep it gets. Not saying Apple doesnt deserve some, just not as much as Shamesung.

      • Dan

        Maybe but there are more mature way to express it ;)
        I do agree they deserve some bad rep, but they come out with some good stuff once in a while.

      • Isa Altintas

        How are you so sure I don’t own an iphone and an ipad? I had samsung in the S 2 days, I like apple better, doesn’t mean I have to hate Samsung. You’re being really dumb lol. Everyone is. Fanboy wars between Apple and Samsung, while they are making the billions lol

      • Umut Bilgiç

        If you really own them, I am sorry. But, really.. Samsung cramming in 4 gigs of ram is cool and all, but it will still be laggy and buggy all around the place.

      • Isa Altintas

        When I had samsung, never ran stock. Mostly CyanogenMod and MIUI. Search CyanogenMod and you’ll see what I mean. My point is just be open to everything and stop hating, it really is pointless..

    • bigzjoseph

      Remember not anyone can make smartphone. …. you probably owned a Samsung device

      • Framboogle

        The only Samsung devices I own are Blu-ray players and TVs.

  • leart

    I don’t care, I am happy with my idevices and I am waiting for iphone 6 or whatever it will be the name

  • La Cucaracha

    Next up will be areola bump scanner

    • Dani Hayes

      KICKSTARTER!!!

    • chumawumba

      Or sperm fertility scanner

    • Joe Benning

      That would be awesome! Chicks whipping their tits out to unlock their phones…yes!

      • InfinitePlusOne

        Can do that now, scan it instead of finger to store first, then use it to unlock

  • Rowan09

    Nice but I’m not sure about a retina scan. This year should be interesting and it’s nice to see Samsung finally deciding to drop the plastic for a more premium feel (at least if they make 2 models). All these quad core, octa core designs are just for spec junkies because I personally haven’t seen any gains yet, but maybe with the 64bit we might see significant improvements.

    • Umut Bilgiç

      64 bit really doesnt improve so much believe me.. Not with a smartphone that does not have more than 4gigs of ram at least. It only allows for little things with huge data managemant and memory mapping.

      • Dan

        Quite a scientific explanation you have there, you sound like credible source of information.

      • Umut Bilgiç

        :p thank you, I actuallu study on computer architecture, so I am pretty familiar with concepts. :)

      • Daniel

        actually the 64bit change might be taken towards the future, but the changes are very much there, sure to maximize full potential of 64bit, the 4gb ram is needed, but the 64bit still changes a lot of architecture towards doubling the amount of memory handling and registers and the cache sizes. i honestly dont see iphones with 4gb of ram for atleast another 4 years or so.

      • Rowan09

        That true but it’s for future application and it does help a little.

      • Umut Bilgiç

        Exactly! The future is 64 bit. Look at all the great data-hungry apps out there updated to 64 bit, garageband, sketchbook pro, djay 2 and a lot more productivity apps. Lovely!

      • ✪ aidan harris ✪

        There really isn’t any reason for manufactures to not include a 64 bit processor. Even if it makes no real difference uneducated consumers only see specs as the bigger they are the better the device so people that do not know much about computer hardware are more likely to buy a phone with a 64 bit processor than one with a 32 bit processor because 64 is two times 32…

      • Umut Bilgiç

        Good point!

      • mike

        Actually there is a benefit, not now but for the future, by the time 4GB ram is available and apple will use it to their idevices, all the apps in the appstore will have 64bit suppor. Apple did not upgrade the ram to 2 or 3GB because there is no major benefit, maybe apple is waiting for the 4GB of RAM to be available to work with their 64bit processor. :D

  • Gróf Attila

    specs looks great but sill running android

    • Manuel Molina

      I said wow, those specs are amazing. Then I thought about android and remembered why I didn’t miss my galaxy note 2.

    • Cameron Chao

      Samsung Specs always look out of the world on paper, and then the iPhone releases a dual core phone, destroys it in the benchmarks. Oh and that’s with samsung cheating by overclock too.

  • Dani Hayes

    This pertains to Apple how??

    • http://www.idownloadblog.com/author/dujkan Christian Zibreg

      This pertains to Apple because Samsung is right now the dominant player in mobile, top Android vendor and the Galaxy S series is the iPhone’s closest competitor so…

      • Dani Hayes

        I see. Guess this site should become more like Phonedog or PhoneArena than. Great article on an APPLE rumor site.

      • Rowan09

        Are you new or something? Why we’re articles done on the Pebble, etc? January is slow for Apple news

      • Dani Hayes

        Usually when you have a website dedicated to Apple devices you should tend to stick to that target. Would you go to a Chinese restarunt for a plate of enchiladas?? No. You go because its a Chinese restarunt. Same principles apply here. It’s a site about Apple not android. Just because they write about Samsung and somehow try to make Apple fit into it doesn’t make it correlate to Apple.

      • Rowan09

        I understand but they shouldn’t write about the pebble either. I’m fine with the article, I want to know so I can get an idea of what Apple might do.

      • Jonathan

        Before you start complaining:
        The S5 is going to be a big competitor against Apple, so people (including me) would want to know what Apple is up against with.
        Also, iDB posts several things other than Apple, and that’s what makes this website my favorite of all.
        Apple
        Jailbreak
        Apps
        Promotions
        Giveaway
        Some Android
        Videos
        Wallpapers
        Yeah, those are the main. I’m sure I’m missing some. Now, take away everything, and just have Apple, iDB would be much more boring.

      • Dani Hayes

        Guess they have to do these for the ad-revenue than. Makes sense now.

      • Umut Bilgiç

        Wth, really? Try making gd damn tech blog, spend hours on it. Buy products for good quality content, pay for servers and not include ads. Are you making any profit? No.

      • Umut Bilgiç

        This is not an apple rumor site…

      • ✪ aidan harris ✪

        Exactly, this is not 9to5mac…

      • Dani Hayes

        idownloadblog, seems misleading than. Thought it was about Apple. I guess I was wrong.

  • R4

    I really dont see how a phone would have an iris scanner, it would actually be quicker to use a passcode than any iris scanner I know about.

  • kline1

    OK, I came over to this site because mmi and iclarified started posting all this android and samsung BS. WTF i thought this site was for iProducts only? Am i wrong if i am im sorry i will start looking elsewhere.

    • R4

      It’s usually only iProducts, Idk why they bothered to post this

      • Jason Baroni

        Other guys go through Apple’s market, so I think it is important to know this alternative news so we can understand what is going on. If they were using to post each of Android news you would rarely see any post about Apple, because Android devices line up is huge.

    • chumawumba

      Samsung makes iProduct knockoffs so in a way they are iProducts

      • R4

        Thats not true, they used to have similar phones but they’re newer phones are very different.

    • Dani Hayes

      Just to create ad-revenue.

      • Vitaliy Anonymous

        WTH is up with you guys being against ad revenue? I understand being against their writing style, but seriously, why would someone waste their time scouting for news, writing the article and paying for servers, and not getting paid for it?

    • s0me

      If you read it he talked about Apple too, everytime you see another company in the title there is Apple mentioned in the middle or at the end. They compare Apple’s competition. I came here for jailbreak news.

    • diggitydang

      It’s usually iDevice stuff, but I think it’s still relevant, with Samsung, you know, being Apple’s biggest direct competitor and all!! I’m in favour of articles like this, and if there are posts I’m not interested in, iDB isn’t holding a gun to my head telling me to click on it and making me read it.

  • diggitydang

    I’m very happy with my iDevices, but I think you’re overhyping TouchID… accuracy is only about 75% for me and I’ve contemplated turning it off altogether because that 1 in 4 times annoys the h#ll out of me – Try Again… Try Again… Try Again… I swear I hear the phone actually laugh at me when it suggests I just enter my stinkin’ passcode!! hahahaha…

    Anyway, I’ve seen several sites discussing its inaccuracies, so I know I’m not an isolated case, which ultimately makes TouchID far from perfect… is it better than anything else the market has seen? Yes. But there is still so much room for improvement…

    • Mike Colacone Saal

      Mine seems to work great! maybe its because I’ve only had it for a month, but have you tried to re enter your fingerprints?

    • Cameron Chao

      It doesn’t work well with sweaty/greasy/dirty fingers. Try re-inputting the prints though, make sure you do it properly, especially when they ask you to scan the edges of your finger.

    • Matt

      To ensure that it works for you pretty much all of the time, you have to set up your finger print twice. I have my right thumb set up twice so the accuracy is dead on and pretty much every time it works. Maybe once or twice a day is when it doesn’t but that because I position my finger wrongly.

  • La Cucaracha

    How about a phone with a real padlock and key? That would be so “high tech”

  • T_Will

    That TouchWiz font looks horrible.

    And I doubt the actual S5 will live up to the concept photo up top.

  • jack

    these dog eaters……

  • Dao Sasone

    I hope its made out of quality material instead of plastics.

    • Maxim∑

      it will be high quality stitched plastic leather

  • D1squs

    Im sure they’ll just market this as a iris scanner but in real life its just take a picture of the face of the owner and unlock it. Samsung moves as usual.

  • Carlos Gomes

    So… three months before launching a product they’re still trying to figure out if they’re gonna add an iris scanner?

  • Jonathan

    Let the iPhone 6 smash the S5.

  • n0ahcruz3

    Its made of “pleather”

  • Matt

    If that’s how it looks then it’s not my cup of tea. I wouldn’t like having my screen bend in the sides I see it unnecessary. But the specs are beastly as all Samsung phones. My next phone will be a 6S because I’m using a 5S now. I’m interested in seing what the biggest Apple competitor will on Apple and how Apple will react to that.
    But the looks I can’t get over that look it’s just horrendous

  • Alex Marwaha

    I call BS

  • @sexyhamthing

    Slow S4 sales are hardly a surprise given the new iPhones came out and the S4 looks nearly identical to the previous-generation S3.

    Im sorry….. was this article an opinionated rant? childish… s4/s3 are easily told apart….

  • N&LH

    Not impressed, Samsung galaxy has higher specks than iPhone. Not surprisingly the iPhone beats Samsung galaxy in performance, responsiveness and reliability. So, it is all about marketing

  • YzMENTALzY

    Got a iPhone 5 and have my upgrade at the end of the month iv had iphones and ipads from the start and will probably get the s5 if i wait it out abit longer looks good if only we in uk get the octa core model. The reality is i love the apple eco system but the phones are getting boring, its great when jailbroken and hardly has flaws as its hardware and software working together seamlessly. But i just have the feeling samsung might take the batton and run with it this time its great for consumers like me and you and competition with apple. The s4 is a great device in my opinion (fanboyism aside) i have had a play around and as for touchwiz its good but too bulky you can use a mod and get rid of it for people that dont know and it will be a stock android. The only problem i have with the viruses and malware on android but hey you win some and you lose some… Im stuck but would want the s5. Im getting bored of iphones. Same thing every year just a new chip and ram which is underclocked every year apple should be pioneering. The screen in my opinion is too small if apple bring out a bigger screen i wouldnt mind getting the iphone 6 as for the s5 im leaning towards it alot.

  • batongxue

    Stop wasting time on Samsung articles.

  • http://173.58.214.169/ That’s what Siri said!!!

    That is fast on SameSung ‘s TouchWiz UI so i wonder how fast it would be running vanilla Android like a Nexus device.

  • Christopher Ablaza

    Dear lord… I hope they do iris scanning just so they can make fools of themselves. Who wants to hold their phone to their eyes to unlock it?? This feature plus the revolutionary “awkwardly touch phones to transfer pictures even though I can do this wirelessly” is going to be the next big thing!

    • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

      “awkwardly touch phones to transfer pictures even though I can do this wirelessly”

      Seriously? That’s all what you think NFC is capable of? Here’s a video (youtube com/watch?v=qp5il7yhM4Y) that might get your head out of Apple’s behind…

      • Christopher Ablaza

        I know what NFC is capable of. But awkwardly touching phones is what is FEATURED in ad campaigns. CALM DOWN MR ELECTRIFYER

      • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

        What makes it awkward (if you even know the conventional definition of that term)? If you’re too lazy to lift your hand to someone standing next to you, then making a call with the earpiece must be even more awkward for you, ’cause it requires more effort…if that’s the case, you really should go see your doctor for a mental and physical checkup, ’cause my 80 year old grandma can lift a phone to her ear.

      • Christopher Ablaza

        hahahahahhaha. You really need to breathe man. I meant socially awkward. not “difficult” or physically straining. Google “jerome jarre – how to be awkward.” You’ll figure it out eventually.

  • Faatehhamad

    Everybody is saying that Touchwiz sucks. I own an S4, and I agree with you. However, as Samsung is releasing a phone with 4 GB of RAM, why do you think that there would be lag? I’m pretty sure that Samsung is going to take certain steps to ensure that there would be minimum annoyance in the operating system. Since many do not own a Galaxy phone here, let me tell you this that Samsung is trying a lot to remove hindrances i.e lag, low responsiveness etc. In fact, Samsung has been releasing updates now and then, and believe it or not, my phone works just like I want it too, without any sort of annoyance, short battery time, or poor RAM management. Apple only wins because iOS is extremely polished (although sacrificing features), while Samsung gives more importance to providing a user with more new features than perfecting the ones that are already present. Who’s the real innovator right now? Samsung. But who’s still winning the war? Apple, but Samsung is not much behind.

    • bring_it_on

      How is a company that just throws ill conceived features at you that it has yet to fully master considered the true inovator? When i pay top dollar for a product i want them to function seamlessly…

  • Your Mother

    the Galaxy S5 is absolutely positively my next phone !!