29 April 2013

Africa: Samsung Launches Galaxy S4

Sandton — Global electronics giant Samsung last week Thursday launched what is easily the smartest smart-phone on the market, the Galaxy S4 that comes after its predecessor the Galaxy S3.

In short the Galaxy S4 unveiled last Thursday night in Sandton, South Africa, is a newer, compact, updated and smarter version of the popular Galaxy S3. The event that attracted hundreds of people, among them journalists and even Samsung executives, took place at the Sandton Convention Centre, which is regarded as the most prestigious convention centre in the Sandton Central Business District.

Though the Galaxy S4 already made its debut in New York, London, Sydney and Hong Kong the gadget with a staggering array of futuristic features would make even James Bond envious. The much sought-after product, particularly by the techno-savvy urbane elite, started retailing simultaneously in all African electronic shops on Saturday.

The phone, fitted with the world's first Full HD Super Amoled display, a 5-inch scratch-resistant screen, 2 600 mAh battery, a 13-megapixel-rear camera and a 2 megapixel front camera retails for N$8 499 (US$940) in South Africa. Other features that make the Galaxy S4 a world-beater is its dual camera that can take photos in a sequence, while it also enables the user to erase unwanted images such as a person accidentally appearing in the photo.

The erasing can be done without compromising the quality of the photo and it also comes with a calorie counter and in the case of the user driving a vehicle, they can dictate and instruct this amazing phone to write and send text messages without taking their eyes off the road and their hands off the steering wheel.

The S Translator on this phone, encased in polycarbonate casing, can provide instant translation from text to speech and from speech to text of 10 international languages such as from French to English and vice-versa, a feature that will come in handy for globe-trotting executives and businessmen and businesswomen.

Robert Ngeru the chief operations officer for Samsung Electronics: East and Central Africa told New Era on the sidelines of the launch: "The Galaxy S4 is our newest product in the market. It's a smart companion as it has all the relevant features that are required on a cellphone, be it on health, be it on training and on education, be it on email and office work. So it covers all the aspects of everyday life."

When compared to the Samsung S3, the Samsung S4 has newer and more enhanced features, a more durable and bigger screen, said Ngeru, who also noted that the new phone can also measure a person's weight, while its camera can take static photos that have a moving background.

What makes this product much sought-after is the fact that Samsung has already established 330 service centres across Africa to service the Galaxy S4 as it comes with a 24-month warranty that covers without any charge any problems that will be experienced within the stipulated period.

The warranty, called the Accidental Damage from Handling (ADH) - the first of its kind - covers all the Galaxy S4 handsets "with no questions asked, and which is a world first," George Ferreira the vice-president and chief operations officer of Samsung Electronics Africa told the well-attended event in Sandton.

Ferreira and other Samsung executives described the Galaxy S4 as "a lifetime companion" because it opens unexplored frontiers in the cellphone revolution.

Namibia will be among the countries in Africa that will be privileged to host a Samsung service centre for ADH, while other countries include South Africa, Zambia, Kenya, Mauritius, Ghana, Uganda, Senegal, Cote d'Ivoire, Sudan, Angola, Tanzania, Botswana and Mozambique.

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