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Electronics maker Samsung unveiled their latest smartphone, the Galaxy S4, at a launch event in Johannesburg, South Africa on Thursday April 25. The event was attended by over 2500 guests, as well as media representatives from across Africa. “With the Galaxy S4, Samsung is again going to enhance the way we live. All the innovative features of Galaxy S4 were developed based on the insights and needs we found from our consumers all around the world. Following the successful Galaxy S series, this phone is yet another great proof point of people-inspired innovation. At Samsung we’ll never stop pursuing innovation conceived by people so we can inspire them in return,” said Craige Fleischer, Director of Mobile Communications at Samsung Electronics South Africa during the press conference. The device adds a number of innovative features that hasn’t been made available on any other Galaxy device, such as Smart Pause, Smart Scroll and Samsung Adapt Display, as well as updated features such as S Voice Drive, Air View and Air Gesture. The company’s new Galaxy S4 looks set to strengthen the firm’s grip on the smartphone market. Warranty Consumers who buy Samsung Electronics’ new Galaxy S4 smartphone get a 24-month warranty with it, which includes two free repairs or replacements in the case of accidental damage. The cover extends to damaged screens and water damage and applies to all markets in Africa. “This warranty is yet another way Samsung is showing its commitment to customer service by introducing it as standard on the Galaxy S4 and will be extended to other Samsung devices in the months to come, ” says George Ferreira, VP and COO of Samsung Electronics Africa. “The ADH will be incorporated into the existing 24-month standard factory warranty on the Galaxy S4. This warranty will cover only screen and liquid damages, and customers will be limited to two incidents per 24-month period that can be two screen, two liquid, or one incident of each,” Samsung explained. ADH will be available in countries including Ethiopia, South Africa, Namibia, Nigeria, Zambia, Kenya, Mauritius, Ghana, Uganda, Senegal, and Cote d’Ivorie, Sudan, Angola, Tanzania, Botswana and Mozambique. A look at hardware The Galaxy S4 is also jam-packed with all manner of rather unique features, a similar strategy as seen with the SIII, with Samsung highlighting a few of them during the presentation. Upon first laying eyes upon the device, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the device is simply a slightly larger Galaxy SIII. But look closely and you’ll see some differences. For one, the screen is slightly bigger, being 5-inches as opposed to the SIII’s 4.8-inch display – it’s been achieved by simply shrinking the bezel of the device. Look closely and you’ll also notice the S4’s screen is slightly sharper, being full HD as opposed to its predecessor’s 1280×720 screen. Those hoping for a similar design to the sleek HTC One will be disappointed – the handset remains almost identical to the SIII. It’s not a train smash, but after using the One, you kind of want a phone with aluminum too. Still, the design is pretty solid, with rounded corners and a removable back cover, exposing the battery bay, microSIM slot and microSD slot. Those wondering whether the bigger screen means a more awkward experience needn’t worry too much, as the phone is still about the same size as the SIII. In fact, the device was pretty comfortable to hold, perhaps owing to the slimmer form factor. Powering the handset is an octa-core processor, along with 2GBs of RAM, although the LTE version will be toting the speedy Snapdragon 600 quad-core chipset. Either way, you’ll be getting a powerful handset. As for the camera side of things, the S4 possesses a 13-megapixel main camera, and much like the rest of the software, it’s full of some intriguing features. The biggest additions in this regard are Drama Shot, Eraser, Animated Photo and Sound & Shot. Drama Shot is the kind of feature you’d use when filming action sequences, such as a stunt or skateboarding trick. The on-stage demo showed a BMX rider pulling a 360 degree spin across an obstacle, with a burst of photos being taken. The actions within each photo are combined into one snap, in a pretty cool result. We didn’t get a chance to try this out but we’ll do our best to put it to use with the review unit.