As the countdown continues to March 14 when Samsung will raise the curtain on its new Galaxy S IV, rumors about the features of the new smartphone abound.
One of the more intriguing rumors is that the S IV will have eye-scrolling navigation. If that were true, it would be the kind of tech innovation that, in the past, has been reserved for the smartphones from Samsung’s arch-rival Apple.
The new handset’s eye-scrolling feature was reported Monday in the New York Times. If true, the technology will track your eye movements and scroll the phone’s screen based on that information. So, for example, when you finish reading to the bottom of a screen page, the phone’s software would then automatically show you more text.
Eye-tracking movements also could be used to play games, although the computing power for that might be beyond the reach of a smartphone at this time.
While there are small eye-tracking technologies in the market, they’re not small enough to fit into a phone. A Swedish firm, Tobii Technology, makes a small eye-tracking unit that fits in the bevel of a laptop, but it is too large for a smartphone.
Eye navigation rumors aren’t anything new for a Galaxy S model. Before the Galaxy S III was launched, it, too, was rumored to have eye navigation. What it actually has is a face-recognition feature that keeps the handset’s screen bright as long as there’s a face in front of it.
S VI photos?
No run up to a smartphone introduction would be complete without leaked pictures of the handset. Photos of the supposed Galaxy S IV show a phone without a front button, which has been a mainstay of past Galaxy S units. If the new Galaxy S doesn’t have that button, it means users will have to depend on Android’s virtual interface for functions previously assigned to the button.
Galaxy S fans who hope that the new Samsung mobile would have the premium build quality of competitors, such as the iPhone, the HTC One, and the Nexus 4, may be disappointed. The rumor mill says the S4 will be primarily constructed of plastic, giving it a less-than-premium feel.
Other features of the phone repeated most often in buzz feeds indicate that Samsung’s smartphone will come in two colors—black or white—and in three storage capacities—16GB, 32GB, and 64GB—although it also is supposed to have storage-card support.
Other consensus features include 2GB of memory, a five-inch AMOLED 1080p display—give or take a hundredth of an inch—as well as a 13-megapixel rear- facing camera and a 2MP front-facing camera. The operating system is supposed to be Android 4.2 (Jelly Bean).
There remains some debate over what processor Samsung will put in the S4. Some Galaxy watchers predict the new handset will have Samsung’s Exynos 5 OCTA 8-core chip, which doesn’t support LTE, while others predict it will run on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 600 processor, which does support LTE.
There are also those sitting on the fence who predict two models of the phone will be introduced—one with LTE support and another for 3G.
All questions should be answered at Samsung’s March 14th event in New York City.