Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Galaxy S IV to use eye movement to scroll, perhaps more

The yet-to-be-announced Samsung Galaxy S IV is just being teased for now, but rumors of its feature set are starting to ramp up. Samsung has filed for a trademark in the United States on both "Samsung Eye Scroll" and "Eye Pause," the New York Times reported on Monday, pointing to the device looking back at you as you look at it.

According to an anonymous Samsung employee, the Galaxy S IV, Samsung's newest flagship phone, set to be introduced on March 14, will track a user’s eyes in order to determine where to scroll on a page. As an example, when users read articles and their eyes reach the bottom of the page, the software will automatically scroll down to reveal the next screenful of text.

In 2012, Samsung's Galaxy S III launched with a similar eye-tracking feature. Even if a user did not occasionally touch the screen, Smart Stay would keep the display lit if it detected a viewer was looking at the screen.

The source did not explain what technology was being used, but it would probably use the phone's front facing camera to track eye movements, as does Smart Stay. He also did not say if the feature would be demonstrated at the Galaxy S IV unveiling in New York City on March 14.

The Samsung employee said that overall, the software features of the new phone outweigh the hardware modifications, from the GS3 to the GS4. However, in an interview, Kevin Packingham, Samsung’s chief product officer, disagreed that the new hardware in the phone would be insignificant compared to the software changes, saying “It’s an amazing phone.”

Speaking of the hardware, Samsung has not elaborated on the details of the Galaxy S IV, meaning its hardware and software specifications, but there have been numerous rumors already. Among them:
  • An eight-core Samsung Exynos 5 Octa processor
  • A separate eight-core GPU
  • 2 GB of RAM
  • A 4.99-inch (why can't they just call it 5-inch?) SuperAMOLED display
  • A 13-megapixel rear-facing camera with 1080p video capability
  • A 2-megapixel front-facing camera
  • Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean)
  • TouchWiz (not everything is a positive)
The Galaxy S IV will be launched on March 14 at 7:00 p.m. EST in New York City.

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