Ever since rumors surrounding the Galaxy S5 started to evolve from faint rumblings to full-blown tremors, there have been multiple questions raised about Samsung’s next flagship smartphone. Will it be made of metal or plastic? Would it be powered by the new Exynos 6 / Snapdragon 805 processor? Has Samsung finally implemented hardware optical image stabilization in the camera? Well, thanks to our insider, we can now answer quite a few of those questions, and also confirm some of the specs of the Galaxy S5 mini and Galaxy S5 Zoom, which are also in the works.
First, let’s get the most mysterious thing about the Galaxy S5 out of the way: Yes, it will come in both metal and plastic versions as has been rumored, with the metal version costing around 800 Euros and the plastic model coming in at around 650 Euros. It’s pretty much similar to what Apple has done, offering both a plastic iPhone (iPhone 5c) and a metallic one (iPhone 5s). Naturally, Samsung will be pushing people towards buying the much-anticipated metallic model – we weren’t given more details, but if a recent rumor is to be believed, the phone will basically have just a metallic back plate while being constructed of metal on the sides and front. Also, it’s still no telling whether the premium metal version will be named Galaxy F or something else.
As expected, the Galaxy S5 will sport an AMOLED display of 2,560×1,440 resolution; we were unable to confirm the size, though it should be around 5.25-inches as has been rumored often. The back of the phone will sport a 16-megapixel camera, though it’s unclear if it will have hardware optical image stabilization (OIS). Underneath, the Galaxy S5 will either be powered by the Exynos 6 processor or a Snapdragon 805, depending on whether it’s LTE-enabled or not. On the software front, the S5 will run on Android 4.4 KitKat, which is unsurprising.
While the Exynos 6 CPU was expected - which will likely be capable of operating all eight cores simultaneously - to power the handset, it’s only just been confirmed that the S5 will become one of the first smartphones to sport the Snapdragon 805 CPU, which should offer considerably higher performance than the Snapdragon 800 in the Galaxy Note 3, especially in the graphics department. It’s unclear what factors will decide what processor Samsung uses on which model – the metal version will likely have 64-bit support with the Exynos 6 processor, while the plastic model could be powered by the Snapdragon CPU (we’ve been told that LTE isn’t an issue for the Exynos CPU anymore, so we could see a change in tradition and find the plastic version of the phone with only the Snapdragon CPU in every country.)
When can we expect to see the Galaxy S5 come to market? Well, an announcement should be made in March, likely in London, followed by a launch in early April. We’re still unclear on a few details, such as the amount of RAM, battery capacity, and whether photos will be more blur-free through hardware OIS, but we’re pretty sure those details will show up in the coming weeks, as we near the official unveiling of one of the most anticipated smartphones of 2014.
Here’s a recap of the Galaxy S5′s specs:
- QHD (2,560×1,440) Super AMOLED display
- Exynos 6 / Snapdragon 805 processor
- 16-megapixel camera
- Android 4.4 KitKat
- Plastic/metal versions
GALAXY S5 MINI, GALAXY S5 ZOOM
We were also able to confirm that Samsung will be launching the Galaxy S5 mini and Galaxy S5 Zoom sometime after the Galaxy S5, with an official unveiling taking place sometime in June and May respectively. Both devices will have a Super AMOLED display (4.8-inch on the Galaxy S4 Zoom, of qHD resolution) and run on Android 4.4 KitKat out of the box, which are all the details we have on their hardware at the moment. The S5 mini wasn’t really unexpected, but it looks like Samsung will also be releasing yearly upgrades to its Galaxy S Zoom camera-centric smartphones, hopefully with a better design than the one on the Galaxy S4 Zoom.
If you’ve never tried to jailbreak your iPhone or iPad, then there’s a whole world of tweaks and add-ons that await you. Despite misinformed accounts, jailbreaking will not void your warranty and it’s simple to uninstall a jailbreak too – you just restore your device in iTunes. You can also access iTunes, the App Store and all your apps and backups like normal.
So what exactly is jailbreaking? In short, it’s not far from hacking into your Apple product’s software and opening it up for customization. You can change the way it looks and feels, choose from a host of custom apps that aren’t available in Apple’s official App store and a whole bunch of other things – you’ll get customization not far short of an Android device.
Tweaks include features similar to the new Control Centre in IOS 7, except they were even better, allowing you to add or delete icons you needed or didn’t use – something you can’t do in IOS 7 as standard. The best thing about the latest jailbreaks is that they’re practically one-click affairs and the latest version has just been released for IOS version 7.0.4. Here’s a guide on how to do it and also what are the best add-ons at the moment.
Step 1. The latest jailbreak is only compatible with IOS 7.0.4. Therefore, I’d recommend updating to this version if you haven’t already. If Apple releases a newer version you won’t be able to install IOS 7.0.4 any more, meaning you’ll be stuck without a way to jailbreak untill a new one is released, which could be many months if not more.
If you’re already on IOS 7.0.4 and want to try jailbreaking at some point, don’t update to a newer version if Apple releases it. To check your current version, go to Settings>General> About, and half way down it will tell you under ‘Version’.
Step 2. Download the Jailbreak. There’s only one place to get this from officially and that’s http://evasi0n.com. It’s available for OSX and Windows. Download the appropriate one and unzip the two files within, placing them on your desktop.
Step 3. It’s a good idea to restore your device while connected to your computer first, backing it up as well. A clean install will mean the jailbreak should go smoothly.
Step 4. With your device connected via USB to the computer, run the file evasi0n7. A small window will pop up.
Step 5. Click on Jailbreak. This will start the jailbreak process and you can kick back and relax for a few minutes.
Step 6. Next , the installer will ask you to complete a few tasks. The first is to click on a new evasi0n7 app icon on your devices screen – usually on the second or third page of apps and follow any instructions that appear.
Step 7. That’s it! The process will say completed on your computer – you can now disconnect your device.
Step 8. You’ll now see a new icon in your device called Cydia – this is where all the tweaks and apps are stored. It’s not quite as slick as the Apple App Store but once you get to know your way around it’s all easy to do.
There’s one small issue with the current jailbreak, which is a slight behind the scenes bust-up between the owner of Cydia app store and the people that made the evasi0n jailbreak, and the fact that the jailbreak was released very unexpectedly just before Christmas.
Tthe whole jailbreak app community was taken by surprise and only a few have managed to update their apps to be IOS 7-compatible just yet. It’s also worth noting that due to the fact the iPhone 5S sports s 64-bit processor, it’s likely that many tweaks will need additional upgrades which might mean you won’t see the benefit of the jailbreak for a little longer.
However, now you’re jailbroken and have access to Cydia, you’re in the best place – just remember not to update your devices firmware – doing so will break the jealbreak. Thankfully, Apple’s incremental updates rarely add anything significant. Before using this latest jailbreak, I was happily using IOS 6 with all my jailbreak tweaks.
There are one or two tweaks that are available already that are definitely worth considering though. The first is SwipeSelection. This ingenious app allows you to simply swipe across the screen to select text, instead of using the often infuriating magnifying glass. It can also make repositioning the cursor to add punctuation or letters much, much easier.
CyanogenMod's brief stint in the official Google Play store ended November 27, when Google forced the company to remove its newly minted app.
The unofficial Android installer debuted in the app marketplace with its first ever official release on November 12.
It was rather a surprise that Google approved it in the first place, considering the very nature of CyanogenMod.
With the app's removal it seems CyanogenMod is destined to remain underground for now.
There may be hope for the future of CyanogenMod, though.
In a blog post announcing that the app had been pulled from the Google Play store the company said it was installed hundreds of thousands of times in the two weeks or so it was officially available.
CyanogenMod is an alternate Android installation tool whose makers aren't afraid to push Android hardware in new and sometimes unexpected directions.
It's a versatile tool, but Google reportedly forced the company to take down its official app because it "encourages users to void their warranty."
And sure enough, the app's Google Play page is no longer available.
Android, huh? So much for open source. Maybe Firefox OS has a chance after all.
CyanogenMod is of course still available through cyanogenmod.org, which promises that despite this setback "installing CyanogenMod has never been easier."
Samsung smartphone users have reported their handsets have crashed, frozen or even developed battery problems after downloading the latest software update.
The 4.3.3 update was supposed to provide support for the Galaxy Gear smartwatch, the HomeSync function, and various graphics, performance and multimedia improvements.
However, dozens of users said they had suffered a range of problems with their Galaxy S3.
According to posts on Samsung UK's Facebook page, the S3 is the model most affected, but there have been a handful of users who have also reported problems with the S4.
One of the users, James Coughlin, wrote on the page: "Ive always praised Samsung never had any huge issues until 3 days ago.
"My s3 battery is useless and the when you press the home button it takes up to 30 secs to wake the screen up.
"And as for my s4 it crashed just tryin to upload 4.3. Not impressed at all I might have second thoughts about getting the note3."
Mathew Yates wrote: "Have to say that your jellybean 4.3 update for the galaxy s3 has completely ruined my phone. Thanks alot samsung. Brilliant work!"
Some of the users report having problems making and receiving SMS text messages while others say the phone takes a long time to come out of sleep mode or has a shorter battery life.
Others said they have had to remove the battery multiple times before the phone works without any problems.
Wayne Jones said: "5+ battery pulls to get my s3 back working after this disastrous 4.3 update. How can a company the size of Samsung release an update like this?
"If I did this in my job , id get the sack. Oh and my battery goes down faster than my bank balance , which I thought was impossible. One unhappy Samsung customer."
Samsung replied to everyone who has complained on the Facebook page with the same message.
It wrote: "We appreciate your patience while we work on this. As soon as we have further information, we’ll update you through our social and service channels. Thank you for bearing with us."
A number of technology blogs reported that Samsung had suspended the rollout of the update and was investigating the problems.
A spokeswoman for Samsung said: "As we are currently investigating the reported issues with Galaxy S3 4.3 Jelly Bean update, the upgrading service has been temporarily suspended.
"We are committed to providing customers with the best possible mobile experience, and will ensure to resume the upgrading service at the earliest possibility."
The handset, which could launch next year, will reportedly feature a wraparound screen to display messages on the side and front.
Samsung's Galaxy Round was the first handset to feature a curved display
Samsung is reportedly building a mobile phone with a three-sided display that allows messages to be read at an angle.
The company, which launched the world's first curved phone screen, the Galaxy Round, last month, is said to be working on an upgrade to its Youm series of flexible OLED screens.
The handset could go on sale in the second half of next year, according to a report by Bloomberg.
Samsung showed off its flexible Youm displays at CES 2013 As well as displaying text and email messages, the phone's wraparound screen could potentially display share prices and notifications.
It is unclear whether the handset would form part of Samsung's popular S or Note series, or launch as a new line altogether, the report claimed.
The race to release innovative products first is fierce.
LG's G FLex is expected to launch in Europe early next year Just weeks after Samsung unveiled the Galaxy Round, LG's G Flex smartphone, which features a vertical curve in contrast to the Round's horizontal arc, went on sale in South Korea.
Neither device can be bent or folded, with manufacturers restricted by rigid components, such as the battery.
Apple, which last month unveiled a slimmed-down version version of its iPad tablet with a 9.7-inch Retina screen, is said to be working on a larger iPhone with a screen that curves down at its edges.
Download link for firmware: http://adf.ly/ZDuXV
Download link for Odin: http://adf.ly/ZDuco
Country: Ireland (works in most other countries)
Version: Android 4.3 Jelly Bean
Build date: 26 October
Product code: VDI
The Android 4.3 I9300XXUGMJ9 Jelly Bean is available as OTA update and also live on Samsung Kies server. Those Galaxy S3 users who are staying outside Ireland and failed to update their devices using either of the official methods for being region specific, may follow our step-by-step guide to install the same manually.
iTechKnow reminds its readers that it will not be held liable for any damage to the device. Users are also advised to verify their handsets meet following set of requirements.
Pre-requisites 1) Install USB Driver for Samsung Galaxy S3 to connect the Android device with computer.
2) Enable USB Debugging Mode on phone to connect it with the computer and use Android SDK with it. [Press Menu>> Settings>> Applications. From there navigate and click on Development option then check USB Debugging Mode.]
3) As the tutorial is likely to wipe out all data of the phone, create a backup. If the device is having any custom recoveries such as CWM/TWRP installed then backup data using the recovery.
4) The Galaxy S3 should have battery charge above 80%.
5) The device should be factory unlocked and not locked to a particular carrier.
6) The phone will lose custom ROM with the installation of official firmware. Also, the custom recovery will be replaced by the stock recovery.
7) The device will no longer belong to a rooted version once official firmware is installed.
8) XXUGMJ9 Android 4.3 official firmware works only with Samsung Galaxy S3 GT-I9300. As flashing this on any incorrect variant might brick the device, verify the model number of Galaxy S3 by navigating to Settings>> About device>> Model number.
Steps to install XXUGMJ9 Android 4.3 Jelly Bean on Samsung Galaxy S3 I9300
Step-1: Download Android 4.3 official firmware for Galaxy S3 to computer
Download link can be found above
Step-2: Extract the downloaded firmware file to get a file I9300XXUGMJ9_I9300VFGGMJ5_I9300BUUGMJ3_HOME.tar.md5 file
Step-3: Download Odin3 v3.09. Extract Odin zip to get Odin v3.09.exe in it
Download link can be found above
Step-4: Run Odin3 v3.09.exe on computer
Step-5: Restart the Galaxy S3 in to Download Mode. To do so, first power off the phone and wait for five to six seconds after the display is off. Press and hold Volume Down, Power and Home buttons together until a warning screen appears. Then press the Volume Up button to continue to enter into Download Mode
Step-6: Connect the phone to computer using USB cable while it is in Download Mode. The successful connection will be indicated by an Added message in Odin and also the one of the ID: COM box will turn blue with the COM port number.
Note: If the Added message does not appear, try another ISB port located at the back side of the computer. If Odin still fails to recognise the phone then reinstall USB driver.
Step-7: Click the AP button in Odin and select
I9300XXUGMJ9_I9300VFGGMJ5_I9300BUUGMJ3_HOME.tar.md5 file which was extracted earlier
Step-8: Under Option section in Odin, verify Auto Reboot and F.Reset Time checkboxes are selected. Uncheck Re-Partition option
Step-9: Click the Start button in Odin to begin the installation which will take a few minutes
Step-10: A PASS message will appear when the flashing is completed and the phone will restart automatically. When the home screen appear, unplug the USB cable form the phone
The Android 4.3 I9300XXUGMJ9 Jelly Bean official firmware should now be installed and running on the Galaxy S3. Navigate to Settings>> About device to verify the new software version of the phone.
How to fix bootloop issue
If the device encounter any issue such as FC or Bootlooop, with the firmware installation, then boot the phone in recovery mode. Press and hold Volume Up, Home and Power buttons together. In recovery mode, perform data wiping task by selecting Wipe data/factory reset. Then reboot the phone by selecting reboot system now. In recovery mode, use Volume keys to scroll between options and Power button to select any option. Performing wiping task will erase all data including internal SD card of the device.
You don’t need to be an expert to see the problems facing Google’s Android operating system: on the cheap phones where it is almost totally dominant, old versions of the software make smartphones feel painfully unsophisticated. And on new versions used by top handsets such as the HTC One and the Samsung Galaxy S4, manufacturers are keen to squeeze out Google, differentiating their products by adding unique features.
This, then, is where the Nexus line of phones and tablets fits in. These are Google’s own devices, made with HTC, LG, Samsung and others, aiming to push the boundaries of what Android can achieve while also unifying hardware and software. And with the new Nexus 5 phone, Google is for the first time addressing both problems: it’s a premium handset, but one that’s accompanied by a new version of the Android software that could offer top performance even on slower mobiles.
As a device, the Nexus 5 feels like it should cost a lot more than the £299 recommended price - Carphone Warehouse is even selling it for £295: manufacturers LG have made a concerted bid to give its plastic construction a matt feel that is neither slippery nor cheap. Its 4.95” screen is surrounded by super-slim bezels and a screen that offers the now customary HD. At maximum brightness, it looks as good as any Android rival. There is only an 8MP camera, no removable storage and the construction is great value for money rather than iPhone-peerless. But there is wireless charging if you buy a suitable charger and there is also 4G, unlike the previous Nexus 4. That makes Three's forthcoming free 4G upgrade offer particularly attractive for those on a budget. Battery life, overall, was adequate but not 16-hours-a-day without worrying, while pictures were, again, very good for an 8MP camera.
So far, so evolutionary. And you could be forgiven for thinking the software of the Nexus, now dubbed Android 4.4 KitKat, is only an evolution too: it continues to improve on the feeling of slickness in previous versions. But it adds a few key features: a translucent Google search bar and the top of every page, updated icons, swipe left for Google Now, the predictive search that suggests that since you’re, say, at a bus stop you might want to know when the buses are leaving. The phone dialler is now more sophisticated, adding in search features, and Google’s own Hangouts app now also incorporates SMS. There’s a lot more that can be done with voice, such as setting location-aware reminders, but these are coming to all Google phones eventually. Supposedly, the phone is always listening for a wake-up command such as “OK Google”, but UK models do not seem yet to have this enabled.
Perhaps even more important, however, is a change that is totally concealed: almost everything now effectively runs from the Google Search app, making it easier for Google to manage the problem of Android appearing to be fragmented across different manufacturers.
Elsewhere, Android now requires less space for its basic requirements, making it easier to install on less sophisticated phones - that lays open a future where the full version of the software runs not just on phones but on smart glasses, smart watches and a host of other devices. The underlying impression is that with the Nexus 5 Google is producing yet another smartphone that proves a point: its software can not only power premium devices sold for a decent price, but it can also lead the way with innovative ideas that will come to fruition in the future and probably in devices made by others. At this price, that sort of innovation is easy to get excited about.
Display: 4.95-inch Full HD IPS (1920×1080, 445ppi), Gorilla Glass 3
OS: Android 4.4 (Kit Kat)
Camera: 8MP rear facing with Optical Image Stabilization (1.3MP front)
Battery: 2,300mAh (17 hours talk time, 7 hours internet on LTE)
CPU: 2.3Ghz Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 (quad-core)Weight: 4.59oz (130g)
Dimensions: 69.17 x 137.84 x 8.59mm
WiFi: Dual-band Wi-Fi (2.4G/5G) 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
NFC; Bluetooth 4.0 LE
Storage: 16GB or 32GB, no microSD slot
More rumors are cropping up about the 64-bit Exynos processor that Samsung is expected to debut with the Galaxy S5. According to a new report by the Korean media, the 64-bit processor, the first of Samsung’s Exynos 6 series of chipsets, will be accompanied by 4GB of RAM, making use of one of the biggest advantages of 64-bit processing support.
Samsung has already beaten other manufacturers by being the first to use 3GB of RAM (on the Galaxy Note 3), and 4GB of RAM would be the next logical step. Personally, I hope that the Galaxy S5 does have 4GB of RAM, as 3GB of RAM hasn’t exactly provided the boost in multitasking I thought it would on the Note 3, all thanks to all the unnecessary stuff TouchWiz and Samsung’s add-on features keep running in the background, so another gig of RAM would go a long way towards actually showing some advantages of having more memory than normal.
Google's Android-powered smartwatch 'could be ready for mass production within months' Rumors of Google working on its own Android-powered smartwatch are nothing new — we've been hearing whispers to that effect from several sources over the past six months. But a report in The Wall Street Journal today gives us our clearest indication yet as to when the elusive wearable might make itself known. Citing "people familiar with the matter," the paper reports that the Android-powered watch is in the late stages of development, with Google currently working to fine-tune the device to improve power efficiency and battery life. The company is reportedly now in talks with Asian suppliers to begin mass production of the device, according to today's story.
What's more The advantages of having Google Now on a wearable device could be immense. If it's properly implemented, Google Now could be a perfect fit for wearable devices, and a key differentiator for Google in what could quickly become a very crowded market. Samsung and Pebble are the main players right now, but Fitbit recently inched closer to smartwatch territory with the launch of its Fitbit Force device, and HTC is said to be prepping its own smartwatch for a late 2014 launch.
The Google watch could be ready for mass production "within months," according to the WSJ, which suggests the possibility of an early-to-mid 2014 launch for the product. Google has been getting Android ready for wearables with new features like Bluetooth Low Energy support and notification listener services, but today's news casts doubt on the possibility of any watch-specific announcements alongside Android 4.4 KitKat, which we're expecting to see later this week.