Ever since the Samsung Galaxy S5 was released without many of the next-generation features that rumors pegged for it, pundits and fans have turned their sights on the release of the (presumed) Galaxy S5 Prime.
The Galaxy S5 Prime has become increasingly visible as rumors about its impending release continue. There are even several price projections for the device. A Hong Kong pricing database claims the Galaxy S5 Prime will cost 5,020 Hong Kong dollars, or $650 USD, while sources have told Korean publication Naver that the S5 Prime will cost 900,000 Korean won, or $880. Reports have also indicated that the Galaxy S5 Prime might come out in June, with most recent news suggesting mid-June on the Korean mobile networks SK Telecom, KT and LG U+ –. Meanwhile, Samsung has not yet acknowledged that a device such as the Samsung Galaxy S5 Prime even exists.
If the Samsung Galaxy S5 Prime is in fact a planned device, there is also a chance that it may not be released in the U.S. Here are some indicators that the device might not be showing up Stateside.
Few Galaxy Smartphones Outside of Flagships Are Released in the U.S.
Though the Samsung Galaxy family is concentrated with several different devices, it is flagships such as the Galaxy S and Galaxy Note series that are commonly released in the U.S. Twenty-nine Galaxy devices were released in 2013, and out of those only six were heavily marketed in the U.S. These were the Galaxy S4, Galaxy S4 Mini, Galaxy S4 Active, Galaxy S4 Zoom, Galaxy Note 3, and the Galaxy Mega. Notable devices that did not see U.S. marketing include the Galaxy S2 Plus, the Galaxy J and the Galaxy Round. Some devices may be mid-range or low-end and were not marketed by major U.S. carriers, but likely by regional networks.
Other Updated Flagship Versions Were Not Released in the U.S.
The Galaxy S4 released with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 chipset in April 2013, but not long after Samsung released the Galaxy S4 LTE-A, which features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 chipset and enables LTE-Advance connectivity that allows data speeds up to 150mbps. The Galaxy S4 LTE-A first launched in South Korea to test the new medium of connectivity, but also became available in European countries such as Sweden and Germany. Notably, the Galaxy S4 LTE-A was not released in the U.S. because American mobile carriers do not have established LTE-A networks like some Asian and European countries. But LTE-A now comes standard on the recent Galaxy S5 for those networks that support the connectivity.
It May Be a Prototype
When the Samsung Galaxy Round was released solely in South Korea in October, it was soon discovered that the device was a market prototype that was never intended for a global release. Samsung has been experimenting with curved and flexible displays, and the Galaxy Round was the manufacturer’s first attempt at launching a curved device to the public. If the Galaxy S5 Prime was also a prototype, it might similarly see a release only in South Korea or a few countries in Asia.
Rumors Suggest a Limited Release
Not long ago, the Korea Herald reported that the Galaxy S5 Prime might be produced in limited quantities due to a lack of components such as QHD (2560×1440) displays. These displays, which are higher resolution than the Full HD (1920x1080) display that have been featured on some of the more recent Galaxy devices, were rumored for the original Galaxy S5. Reports indicate that Samsung may have scrapped plans to implement QHD displays on its current flagship due to yields that did not match the demand for the Galaxy S5. If this is still true, it could indicate that there are still may not be enough yields for a mass release of the Galaxy S5 Prime.
About the Samsung Galaxy S5 Prime
Several variants of the SM-G906 model number have been discovered and are believed to be associated with the Galaxy S5 Prime. Many Galaxy S5 Prime features that have been rumored since before the Galaxy S5 launch persist, including a QHD (2560×1440) display, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 CPU or Samsung Exynos 5430 CPU, 3 GB RAM, a 16-megapixel main camera, 3,000mAh and the latest Android operating system, likely Android 4.4.3 KitKat. Other features expected for the Galaxy S5 Prime include LTE-Advanced connectivity (where available), fingerprint recognition technology and a built-in heart rate monitor, microSD support, 128GB of storage as well as WiFi, NFC, Bluetooth, and microUSB connectivity options.
At this time it is not known whether the Galaxy S5 Prime will feature a metal design. Reports prior to the launch of the Galaxy S4 suggested that the Prime might have metal implemented into its design. There is evidence of Samsung making deals with various metal suppliers, but there has been no indication of what that metal would be used for, especially whether it would be used for an external design.