With Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) having enjoyed a stellar 2014, Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:005930) is currently preparing its Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S7 devices in response. These will clearly be critical releases for Samsung as it attempts to get back on an even keel. The Korean corporation endured a 60 percent slump in profits during 2014, and its bullish pronouncement that it would overtake Apple at the head of the worldwide consumer electronics marketplace seems to be loose talk now.
Samsung will need to produce two outstanding device releases with the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy Note 5 in order to gain some ground on the iPhone series, so here is a rundown and some of the functionality which could be included in these premium and critical handsets.
Galaxy S7 display
Possibly the most notable aspect of the Galaxy S7 is that Samsung will begin to significantly push the curved screen variant of the mobile when it is released. The Korean company is already focusing on curved screen technology in the commercial marketing for its smartphones, which is a natural move considering how popular the screen technology has turned out to be. But this process will be ramped up further whether the Galaxy S7 is released.
It has already been indicated by sources close to Samsung’s supply chain that the manufacturer intends to greatly increase the quotient of curved screen handsets when the Galaxy S7 hits the stores. This is intended to match consumer demand for the device, which is expected to be significantly greater than in the Galaxy S6 series.
Aside from this, Samsung will also be significantly upgrading the specifications of this device from the previous iteration in the series. Again, the display included in the Galaxy S7 is expected to be central to this process. Samsung has become increasingly associated with high-quality display panels, whether in its range of televisions, or in the mobile marketplace. This is seen as a natural development for Samsung, as it became the largest manufacturer and seller of televisions back in 2006, and looks to take advantage of this in other areas of business.
It has thus been suggested that the Galaxy S7 could be the first ever 4K resolution mass market smartphone. This would certainly make sense for Samsung considering that it has prided itself on outstanding quality screens in recent Galaxy releases. But it could be a technological challenge for engineers and developers, so we may instead see a UHD panel included in this device when it is released. Certainly there will be processing consideration for Samsung in this decision, and it could be the case that it is too early to deliver a slick 4K smartphone.
There is some debate as to whether the Galaxy S7 will include its own proprietary Exynos technology, with the manufacturer conceding that it is also considering a Qualcomm, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) CPU for the Galaxy S7. But an OIS-enhanced 16-megapixel primary camera has been strongly linked with the device, and a whopping 4GB of RAM could be standard for the handset as well. This could give it the power to handle 4K.
Further features expected to be included in the S7 include Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) (NASDAQ:GOOGL)’s upcoming Android M operating system and a revamped TouchWiz skin. Samsung is expected to freeze the retail price of this device from the Galaxy S6 when it is released.
Galaxy Note 5 ethos
The Galaxy Note 4 was a rare bright note Samsung in 2014, as the corporation slipped significantly behind Apple in the mobile marketplace. This was a very well received device critically, and it stood up well commercially against the first ever phablet release from Apple. So the next generation of the Galaxy Note series needs to be outstanding in order to continue this momentum, and Samsung clearly has some strong spec intended for this device.
Firstly, Samsung is likely to upgrade the display included in the Galaxy Note 5, probably aiming for ultra HD resolution. It would be mind-blowing if Samsung could introduce 4K technology with the Galaxy Note 5, but this seems unlikely considering the release schedule that the company is working towards. UHD resolution would bring 2,160 x 3,840 resolution at 700+ ppi to the Galaxy Note series.
It has also been suggested that the device will be significantly remodelled in order to incorporate a slightly larger screen while retaining the same handset size as the Galaxy Note 4. in order to achieve this, concept artists believe that Samsung will slim down the bezels included in the Galaxy Note 5. A sleek design based on a combination of glass and metal is also likely as Samsung attempts to disassociate itself from the plasticky feel of previous Galaxy releases that were not particularly well received.
Samsung will also likely include a Next Generation Exynos 7422 processor with the Galaxy Note 5 in accordance with the previous Galaxy S6 release. Recent reports have suggested that this processor will combine the CPU, GPU, RAM, storage, and modem on a single chip, making it an extremely revolutionary unit.
The Korean manufacturer has also been associated with outstanding camera technology in recent mobile releases, so it is certain that we will see new camera functionality in the Galaxy Note 5.
Samsung has been reported to be working on new camera features in its upcoming Android 5.1.1 update, and this is rumored to be related to Google’s camera API. We could additionally see improved optical image stabilization included in the snapper.
Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy Gear
With Samsung expected to release an update to its Galaxy Gear smartwatch in the near future, it is also probable that the Galaxy Note 5 will feature significant collaboration functionality. This is expected to stretch to Samsung Pay, with the wearable and mobile payment marketplace expected to be a significant battleground between Apple and Samsung in the coming years.
A double-edged curved display and an improved multi-tasking version of the S-Pen stylus are also expected for this flagship phablet. There could also be a significant focus on VR, as Samsung attempts to claw back ground it has lost to Apple in recent years.