Samsung Galaxy S5 Release Date Nears: Bigger, Sharper Display Expected; Device Could Be Dust- And Water-Proof

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Samsung is expected to add new features to the Galaxy S5 in an effort to counter stalling growth in the smartphone segment.

The Samsung (KRX:005935) Galaxy S5, the next-generation iteration of the company’s S series of flagship smartphones, could feature a larger and sharper display, and is expected to be resistant to dust and water, according to the latest round of rumors about the new handset.

Compared to the existing Galaxy S4 that has a 5-inch screen (1920x1080), the upcoming Galaxy S5 could sport a bigger 5.2-inch screen and a sharper display, Bloomberg reported, citing “a person with direct knowledge of the matter,” who also revealed that the device would feature an improved battery and camera.

According to the report, Samsung is facing slower demand for its smartphones and will add new features to the Galaxy S5 in an effort to counter stalling growth in the smartphone segment. With the new product, the company will also hope to fight off new handsets from rivals like Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Chinese phone makers that sell devices priced as low as $100.

“For me, better specs don’t cut it,” Roberta Cozza, an analyst at Gartner, told Bloomberg. “They need to find a way to get users to pick the Samsung brand across different types of devices to better compete with Apple.”

In the fourth quarter of 2013, Samsung shipped 112 million mobile phones in the quarter, down from 113.6 million units a year earlier, according to a report from International Data Corporation.

Lee Young Hee, executive vice president of Samsung's mobile business, said last month that the company was working on an eye-scanner technology to use in the new Galaxy S5. The company is also expected to focus its advertising on the new smartphone's improved security features, such as a fingerprint sensor built into the home button, advanced camera, and integration with wearable devices such as the Galaxy Gear.

According to another report from SamMobile on Wednesday, Samsung may not launch a rugged version of the Galaxy S5 as speculated earlier and instead make the regular version of the device dust- and water-resistant.

“For the previously released Galaxy S4, water-proof and dust-proof capabilities were adapted to the handset’s variants. But for the Galaxy S5, the standard model will have them immediately,” SamMobile quoted an anonymous source as saying.

Wednesday’s report contradicted earlier reports that said that Samsung was working on an “Active” version of the Galaxy S5, which could be dust- and water-proof. The reports had also said that the “Galaxy S5 Active” could account for 25 percent of the handset's overall sales.

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