Samsung has officially launched the Galaxy S IV for the South African market. The launch took place at an event at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg, which formed part of Samsung’s “Samsung Galaxy S4 World Tour.” The tour has already made its way through a few major cities including London (16th April, kick-off event), Moscow (17th April), and Sydney (24th April), to name a few. Other countries upcoming launches include India, USA and Canada.
Before the event got under way, Samsung took the time to remind us of the previous range of Galaxy S smartphones that have gone before, from the first launch of the Galaxy S back in 2010. Once proceedings were under way, the responsibility of Master of Ceremonies on the night fell to Michael Mol (Dr.) who, after a brief introduction to the evening, announced the VP and COO of Samsung Electronics Africa, George Ferreira, who, in turn, provided more detail on the device before revealing it to the crowd. Unlike the 2012 launch of the Samsung Galaxy SIII, there was no major build-up to the event, most likely due to what we already knew from the official global launch of the Galaxy S IV in New York earlier this year. Ferreira then took the time to introduce a few of Samsung’s new ventures and partnerships for their flagship smartphone, which included services such as Kleek (music service), DStv Mobile (entertainment service), LearnThings (education service), Blue (financial service) and Smart Trainer (sports service), along with a few others.
Two new guest speakers, Craige Fleischer (Director of Mobile Communications Samsung Electronics SA) and Robert Ngeru (COO Samsung Electronics East Africa), provided a much more detailed look at the Samsung Galaxy S IV, going through each of its new features, while sharing the stage with a few celebrities who gave a brief rundown as to how the new smartphone has and will change their everyday lives.
Once all the formalities were out of the way, it was time to get our hands on one of the many units available for demonstration. Based on initial use over a few short minutes, there’s enough there to make the Samsung Galaxy S IV different from its predecessor, the Galaxy SIII. Even if you’re not one for tinkering, or have much tech background, the software features available make for great personal and business use.
Apart from the Samsung Galaxy S IV, a few Galaxy Note 8.0 units were also display, although it didn’t draw too much attention to itself tucked away in the corners. A few official S IV accessories, which will be available on release, were also demonstrated. The evening was then rounded off with performances from DJ Fresh, Euphonic and Roger Goode. [You know that once you start seeing ‘Ghostbusters’ characters up on stage, it’s time to call it a night.]
The good news for South Africans is that we will be receiving the international i9500 model, which will be available with Samsung’s Exynos Octo CPU (8 Cores configured in 2 sets of Quad-Core CPUs at 1.6GHz Cortex-A15 and 1.2GHz Cortex-A7, respectively). Other specs include: 32GB internal storage, 5″ 1080p display, 13MP rear-facing camera, 2GB RAM and 2600mAh battery, and will also be available in White Frost, Black Mist (for those interested). The LTE model will be fitted with Qualcomm’s 1.9GHz Quad-Core Snapdragon CPU.
If you’re wondering when you can get your hands on Samsung’s new flagship smartphone, the wait won’t be much longer, as they will be available for sale to the public come 10am on Saturday, 27th April 2013, in select regions. Although there wasn’t much talk on the pricing for the smartphone, we can tell you that it will cost around the R8,500 mark and will be available from operators, Vodacom, MTN, CellC and Telkom Mobile (although only Vodacom and CellC have confirmed their contract packages), as well as in stores such as Dion Wired and Incredible Connection.