Samsung Unpacked live: Galaxy S5 with fingerprint scanner, 16MP camera to launch on April 11


1:30 am: Global launch on April 11
Galaxy S5, Gear 2, Gear 2 Neo and Gear Fit will be available in nearly 160 countries on April 11. As usual India will be in the first round of countries to get the Galaxy S5, but the big question is how much will Samsung price it at. We have a lot of time to debate that, but for now, Samsung has bowed off stage. So that was the Galaxy S5. Exciting enough for you? Or a 'meh' effort by Samsung?

 

1:20 am: Big battery features, fingerprint scanner, data security, parental controls
Samsung is throwing in all the software features one can think of. One in particular sounds impressive. Samsung says the new Ultra Power Saving Mode will keep the phone on in standby for 24 hours with just 10 percent battery left. There's a 2800 mAh battery that's touted for 12 hours of video playback and 10 hours of web browsing over LTE. We are really itching to test this out. If that holds up, Samsung may have just blown the competition out of the water.

 Samsung Unpacked live: Galaxy S5 with fingerprint scanner, 16MP camera to launch on April 11

Hybrid AF in a mobile phone

We are going over the fingerprint scanner now. As we expected, it's built into the home button and can be used to unlock the phone and has other utilities too. Samsung breezed through this segment. We are assuming there's more details about this coming later in the event. Samsung says security is one of the pillars of the S5 and here's where Knox and the parental control features come in. It's all a little rushed now and just as soon as we were talking about parental controls, we are now hearing about the Gear smartwatches.

Heart rate monitor on the Galaxy S5 and the Gear devices

Heart rate monitor on the Galaxy S5

We have covered the new Gear smartwatches in detail here. The Gear Fit being talked about now. It's the world's first curved Super AMOLED display. And this one too has swappable straps. It can show you messages, missed calls and lets you reply to messages too. It's compatible with 20 Galaxy devices. It has a built-in heart rate monitor to alert you in times of emergency, if at all or guide you during a workout. The Galaxy Gear Fit  will be enabled through the new S Health app.

 

The new Gear smartwatches and Gear band have heart rate monitors

The new Gear smartwatches and Gear Fit band have heart rate monitors

1:10 am: The Galaxy S5 philosophy, design, full HD display and ultra fast camera
Samsung is talking about the philosophy behind the phone, saying it listened to customer feedback. We are going over the design of the phone. Samsung is talking big things about the back of the phone, which has a perforated look. Now we are talking about the UI design. Samsung has a redesigned settings menu, which seems to be the headline act as far the UI is concerned. This is quite underwhelming to be honest. Looks like a rushed out flagship.

Only a full HD display

Only a full HD display

Samsung also says its new adaptive display technology will adjust brightness and contrast depending on time and place, besides the amount of light.

It's just a back panel but Samsung has a lot to say about it

It's just a back panel but Samsung has a lot to say about it

Samsung is now going over the camera features of the 16-megapixel shooter. Samsung has added a new companion chipset for the camera to handle image processing. As a result there's Hybrid AF and it's said to be the fastest autofocus on a mobile device at o.3 seconds. In addition, there's Selective Focus to apply focus after clicking the photograph, depending on the scene. It's like the Instagram effect, but only baked into the native camera app.

 

The S5 philosophy

The S5 philosophy

12:55 am: Feature packed Galaxy S5 official, Galaxy Gear Fit also announced
Without any delay Shin makes the Galaxy S5 official. Immediately he goes over the features of the Galaxy S5. We knew most of these: water-proof design, heart rate monitor, 16 MP camera, full HD display (no QHD as rumoured). Shin also talks about the Gear family and pops out a surprise: the Samsung Galaxy Gear Fi. It's a fitness band which can also show you SMSes, missed calls and will primarily show you a live reading of vital stats such as the heart rate etc. Samsung's betting big on fitness apps. Shin went over the fitness aspect of the S5 earlier too. Now we are going to get a deeper look at the S5.

This is the Galaxy S5

This is the Galaxy S5

 

12:48 am: 200 million Galaxy S phones sold, says Samsung

So that was the Barcelona Opera House Chamber. Samsung is here to show devices. What else is coming besides the Galaxy S5? Maybe a better look at the Galaxy Gear smartwatches and maybe something more? And now, JK Shin is here. He's talking about the Galaxy S series. 200 million sales of the Galaxy S phones worldwide, says Shin. That's four generations of Samsung flagships.

Samsung's JK Shin

Samsung's JK Shin

 

12:40 am: Late, but finally there
The orchestra has stretched beyond what most people would have expected. We are already seeing the first hands-on videos and initial impressions from various websites around the world. And looks like we are underway.

 

12:20 am: The classical touch
Minutes away from the start of the Unpacked event and Samsung is treating the audience to some classical music. This is so Samsung. It has often used classical music before its events and for its marketing.

A typical Samsung touch

A typical Samsung touch

 

12:10 am: Watch the unveiling live
We've just got hold of the live webcast for the event. Here it is:

12:00 am: Galaxy S5 unveiling minutes away
It's almost here. Some would say that this is the most highly anticipated phone of 2014 and we are minutes away from seeing it. The Samsung Galaxy S5 will be unveiled in Barcelona in just under an hour and we will be covering the Unpacked event as it happens.

 

What do we know about the S5 so far? Well, nothing is official, but we have a pretty good idea. A leak earlier today gave us nearly all details about the the next Samsung flagship. The highlights are the 16MP camera, the fingerprint scanner and the new Exynos processor. We could also have a super high-resolution S5 sporting a QHD or 2560x144o pixel resolution. But that still remains unconfirmed. In any case we'll find out soon enough.


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