Judging by the rate Samsung's releasing new products right now, it won't be long before every human on the planet will be able to own a different type of Samsung gadget. It now has about 350 models of tablet, countless cameras, hi-fi gear, vacuum cleaners, the lot. And as for phones...
Using the Galaxy S4 as a guide, the arrival of the Samsung Galaxy S5 next week will be followed by the launch of a Galaxy S5 Zoom, Galaxy S5 Active and Galaxy S5 Mini. We don't know anything about the Zoom or Active yet - or indeed whether they will ever exist - but we can tell you a bit about the Mini.
And the good news is that it's got a surprisingly impressive spec sheet. So if today's 5in-plus megaphones are too much of a stretch for your dainty fingers, and Sony's Xperia Z1 Compact is too much of a stretch for your wallet, the S5 Mini could be well worth a look.
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Design and build
We've not actually seen the Galaxy S5 Mini yet, but it's a fair bet that like the Galaxy S5 it'll have a mainly plastic build. After all, if Samsung isn't going for the all-metal premium feel on its flagship device, it's hardly going to do so on a cut-price model. It'll most likely keep the S5's dimpled, grippy back, but we wouldn't mind betting that the metal sides sported by the S5 will be missing here.
We'd hope that like the S5 the Mini will also be water- and dust-resistant to the IP67 rating, and it'd be nice if it also retained its big sister's fingerprint and heart-rate sensors, but sadly the latter two are unlikely. You'll almost certainly be able to swap out the battery, though - pretty vital, as mini versions of big phones usually suffer in the battery department.
One of the Galaxy S4 Mini's big flaws was its 4.3in non-HD screen, but fortunately the S5 Mini rights that wrong.
According to the SamMobile website, which got its hands on the S5's full spec sheet, the S5 Mini will instead have a 4.5in Super AMOLED display with a 720p resolution. OK, so full HD would have been nice, but that at least puts it on a par with the excellent Sony Xperia Z1 Compact, against which it will inevitably be judged. Well, by us at least. And as with all Samsung phones, we'd expect its screen to be nice and bright and to serve up vivid colours.
READ MORE: Sony Xperia Z1 Compact review
More after the break...
Power was never really a problem on the S4 Mini: its dual-core Snapdragon 400 chip and 1GB of RAM were fine for a small phone. We don't yet know what processor the S5 Mini will get, but it will almost certainly be another Snapdragon affair. We'd expect it to get either the quad-core version of the Snapdragon 400 or possibly even a quad-core Snapdragon 600 or 800; given that the Galaxy S4 had a Snapdragon 800 and the S4 Active got a Snapdragon 600, neither seems too much of a stretch.
Other specs that have been revealed by SamMobile include 1.5GB of RAM, 16GB of storage and a 2100mAh battery. If the storage seems a bit stingy, bear in mind that it will almost certainly have a microSD slot. A Samsung phone without one would be a rare beast indeed.
The rear camera will apparently be an 8MP effort, while round the front there'll be a 2MP camera that should be just fine for all your selfie and Skype needs. And, as with all new Androids, it will come with Android 4.4 KitKat.
PRICING AND AVAILABILITY
Online rumours have pegged the S5 Mini for a June launch date; the S4 Mini arrived in July last year, so it's a decent guess. As far as pricing goes, we'd expect it to sell for around the same as the S4 Mini did at launch - so S$600 or thereabouts. That's not exactly a bargain, given that you can pick up a new Google Nexus 5 for less than S$600, but maybe Samsung will surprise us all and release a truly cut-price model. Keep checking this page for all the details as soon as we have them.
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