The launch of the Samsung Galaxy S4 – known as the i9500 – on Thursday was packed with a few surprises. Other than the fact that Samsung will use a Qualcomm chip, we were also intrigued to see that the S4 comes with LPDDR3 (low power DDR3) memory. Other devices that use this memory technology are the Samsung-built Nexus 10 tablet, the Optimus G Pro, the HTC One and the ZTE Grand S.
It’s worth noting that that Samsung only started to produce 2GB memory modules back in September 2012. Compared to LPDDR2, this new generation has a much higher transfer rate (1.6Gbps per pin vs. 1.066Gbps). In real life, that should translate into higher performance especially on bandwidth sensitive applications.
The other noteworthy fact is that the Galaxy S4 will be available in 16GB, 32GB and 64GB models. A 64GB Galaxy S3 was supposed to land in July last year but it never happened. It opens the prospect of being able to put together a 128GB monster as the handset has a microSD card slot, unlike two other smartphones that come in 64GB models, the iPhone 5 and the HTC One. A branded 64GB model costs around £43.
We will need to wait for a detailed teardown to find out whether smartphone is using the new eMMC Pro storage technology. That was launched back in September 2012 and was built using a 20nm process, offering the eMMC 4.5 specification which is much faster than the previous one.
Last but not least, we don’t yet know whether, as for the Galaxy S3 and for the Galaxy Note 2, there will be some sort of free cloud-based storage offer for customers. Samsung offered 50GB Dropbox with the Galaxy S3 for two years but it also partnered with Box.com on Knox and Sugarsync for its AllShare devices (like Samsung Smart TV).
Check out our ongoing coverage of the Samsung Galaxy S4, from the very beginning until the launch (and beyond), including the rumours, the rehashed reports, the disappointments and the expectations.
Why not read the rest of our articles dedicated to the hardware within the Samsung Galaxy S4