We can expect a host of new features in the Samsung Galaxy S5, many of which remain unknown. But a recently surfacing patent suggests one new feature on the Galaxy S5 could be an option that allows for custom one-hand operation of on-screen apps.
Samsung is well known for its large-screen devices. The Samsung Galaxy S4 display is a spacious 5-inch wide diagonally, while the more recent Galaxy Note 3 features a mammoth 5.7-inch display.
Currently, there is little word on whether the Samsung Galaxy S5 will sport a larger display than its predecessor. A display much larger than 5 inches could put the Galaxy S series into phablet territory, which does not appear to be Samsung’s intention. For many, the Galaxy S4 is already teetering on the threshold of too big, while the Galaxy Note 3 includes settings that allow users to shrink and move their screen for easier accessibility. The Samsung patent, recently discovered by tech website Galaxy Club, indicates that the Korean manufacturer plans to expand on its one-handed operation option, making it customizable according to the user’s comfort zone.
Display renders included with the patent show how users can slide their fingers across the screen of a capable device in order to set their comfort zone. Subsequently, various on-screen features, such as the keyboard and music player, will be oriented in that direction, which could even be diagonal if the user so chooses.
Whether this setting will be included on the Samsung Galaxy S5 is not yet known. Notably, manufacturers file countless patents that are never implemented onto devices. But this particular patent could be a useful option for the Galaxy S5 and future Samsung Galaxy smartphones, especially if display sizes continue to increase. Currently, the largest Galaxy smartphones is the Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3, which as is name indicates features a 6.3-inch display. For comparison, most tablets start at 7 inches.
Samsung Galaxy Camera Development
Samsung has also been focusing on its camera development, which continues to be a central theme in its latest smartphones. The Samsung Galaxy S4 introduced a 13-megapixel camera to the market, while the Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom is a literal camera-phone with a 16-megapixel BSI CMOS sensor on its back. The latest reports indicate that Samsung is now developing 20-megapixel camera modules for mobile devices.
ETNews reports that the 20-megapixel lens will likely be introduced sometime during the second half of 2014, which means such an updated camera won’t be ready in time for the Samsung Galaxy S5. The 20-megapixel lens is projected for future Samsung Galaxy handsets, likely to release in 2015 at the earliest. By then, Samsung could be gearing up to release a sixth-generation Galaxy S smartphone and a fourth-generation Galaxy Note. Again, at this point, reports are merely speculation.
Camera development for the Galaxy S5, however, does not appear to be going as many predicted. Fans and pundits alike have been anticipating an optical image stabilization feature for Samsung Galaxy cameras since the Galaxy S4 released. Early rumors for the Galaxy Note 3 suggested the device’s camera would feature OIS, but the Note 3 ultimately released with a 13-megapixel camera not much different from that seen on the Galaxy S4. Ever since, rumors have suggested that the Samsung Galaxy S5 may feature a camera module up to 16 megapixels with the OIS feature.
Samsung has not yet confirmed whether the Galaxy S5 will feature a 16-megapixel lens, but new reports suggest that the smartphone’s camera may not feature OIS, due a component shortage, which has apparently continued from the Galaxy Note 3. The word is that the Galaxy Note 3 was supposed to feature a 13-megapixel camera with OIS, but a specific part needed for OIS photography, the auto focus (AF) actuator, was in low supply, causing Samsung to cancel the feature for the Note 3.
Reports from that time also indicated that the manufacturers of the AF actuator had plans to increase the production capacity the component in early 2014 in preparation for future devices. Now it is uncertain why a component shortage may be an issue for the Galaxy S5. However, it is still quite early in the pre-release season for the Galaxy S5, so all rumors should be considered lightly until more concrete evidence emerges.
Other Samsung Galaxy S5 Rumors
Meanwhile, other reports suggest the Samsung Galaxy S5 will feature either a Samsung Exynos or Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, as would be expected as well as 3GB of RAM, a 4,000 mAh battery, and a 2-megapixel front camera in addition to the previously mentioned 16-megapixel main camera. The Galaxy S5 may also release in two design variants, one with a metal exterior and a flexible OLED display, and another with a plastic exterior and a standard OLED display. The Galaxy S5 is expected to run the Android 4.4 KitKat operating system upon release, and may also be paired with its own Samsung Galaxy Gear companion device, a next-generation Galaxy Gear, which would release at the same time as the Galaxy S5.
What do you think of the recent Samsung Galaxy S5 rumors? Let us know in the comments below.
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Fionna Agomuoh is a Technology Reporter for the International Business Times, a vegan foodie, and a lover of Electric Dance Music.