Rumor: Samsung Galaxy S4 coming with S Pen


Yesterday we got a look at some concept renderings for a group of Russians’ idea of what the Samsung Galaxy S4 would turn out to be, but now it’s time turn our attention to some actual rumors. Today’s report won’t contain a massive list of specs to rundown, but the one detail we do get to ponder is one that could drastically change the landscape of Samsung’s 2013 lineup.

According to Korean sources, the Samsung Galaxy S4 will come with the very S Pen support that sets the Samsung Galaxy Note series apart from everything else. This would imply Samsung’s looking to go at least 5 inches as far as display size goes, but that’s another story for another day. The S4 would introduce all the familiar S Pen features we’ve come to know and love, as well as new features that Samsung’s sure to be cooking up as I type.

The implications for the Galaxy Note line would be unclear at this point. It’s likely Samsung could be looking to merge the two lines with the Samsung Galaxy S name taking precedence. Perhaps Samsung found it less desirable to market two flagship devices — after all, the Galaxy Note is poised to become just as big as the Galaxy S4 at the rate Samsung is going.

Samsung found quite the niche market with the Samsung Galaxy Note, and combining the two would help line its pockets even more. After all, what sense does it make to have your main flagship play second fiddle to the “little big brother” each year? While some characteristics of the Galaxy S3 — such as its less encumbering size — are more desirable for some people, it’s no secret that the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 either matches it or outclasses it in every other way.

And it’s not like the Galaxy Note name would die. Samsung still has a tablet line to uphold the name with, and if other recent rumors are to be believed then it could be looking to round that portfolio out soon. The OEM is said to be coming to town with a 7 inch version of the tablet to complement the 10 inch version currently available.

None of this is 100% certain, of course, but should Samsung decide to go this route then it would make a lot of sense. If the rumor mill that was spinning leading up to the Galaxy S3’s launch is anything to go by we won’t know much until the very last possible second. Still, we’re hoping to hear more about what the Samsung Galaxy S4 will bring to the table as we get close to an eventual late Sprint or early Summer launch. What say you to all of this?

[Enuri via PhoneArena]

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. If S4 comes with S-pen, wouldn’t it defeat the purpose of having a Note 3?

    1. I personally think all High-End Samsung phones should come with this tool. It basically comes down to options. People who prefer bigger screens with go for the Note 3 while GS4 will be a smaller version. Keep up the good work Sammy!

    2. “It’s likely Samsung could be looking to merge the two lines with the Samsung Galaxy S name taking precedence.”

  2. The Note 2 beats out the SGS3 in every way besides lack of interior storage. After the software you are left with only 11gb of int storage. The Korean versions come with 16 – 32 and 64 gb of int storage and then the added sd card. I looked from heaven to hell for a 32 or 64 gb model, the only country selling those is Korea, when you buy a Korean Note 2 you also get an extra battery and a seperate battery charger to charge the spare battery. Very nice package. Most Korean Samsung phones are sold with the extra battery and spare charger. The Koreans also have the fastest LTE in the world. Crazy fast speeds everywhere.

    1. With SD Cards getting cheaper and cheaper, there is absolutely no reason to worry about “internal” storage. Yeah I know how fast korea is in terms of network speed, they had the number 1 internet speed in the world for a while now. I think they can stream blueray lol.

      1. There are PLENTY of reasons to worry about internal storage! WTF are claiming? All versions of Android since 3.x have mandated internal storage *only* for apps. No more Apps2SD, for all sorts of reasons previously discussed here and elsewhere.

        I picked up a couple new 3D games on the recent play holiday sales and they weigh in at anywhere from1Gb to 2+Gb in size. Let’s also not forget the considerable performance hit you take when launching from exgernal storage. I am all for still including SD slots in new devices, but I realistically only expect to use it for multimedia and file storage at this stage in Android’s evolution.

        1. not sure what phone you’re using but my Note 2 always has over 7 gigs while all my big apps and games are on my 64gig SD card. Let google do what they want, as long as there are devs, people will have a way to install apps 2 sd.

      2. Unfortunately the SD card can’t be used for app storage on the current Galaxy line without root hacks. I would love more internal storage for all the amazing games I have for my GN2!

  3. I think the sales of the GS3 and Note2 justify keeping the lines separate. I’d like to see the S line get a little smaller (not necessarily screen size) and the Note line keeping its crown in the 5″+ category.

    1. Ditto. Next generation internals, higher screen-area-to-face-area ratio, better materials. There is lots of room for improvement without deviating from the proven success formulas of the GSIII & GNII. How much longer will C|Net and the like be able to pretend AMOLED is not vastly superior (for most) to LCD? To answer my own question, probably not until Apple comes out with it.

  4. Galaxy S4 basically becomes the Galaxy Note 3 specwise, and the official Galaxy Note 3 goes into that 7″ area (but do you remove phone functionality at that point?). Kinda makes sense.

  5. So rumor roundup is:
    Galaxy Note 7.7″ is being tested.
    Galaxy Note 3 may go up to 6.3″.
    Galaxy S4 may go bigger to 5″.
    Galaxy S4 will get S-Pen.

    Make the Note even less of a phone and more of a tablet, make the S even more powerful as a phone. Makes sense for Samsung, just one flagship phone.

    Sure some can argue the Note is a ‘phablet’ and not a phone, so it can’t be considered going head on with brother Galaxy S, but in real world people only sees it in two things, either a smartphone or a tablet. ‘Kill’ the note, make it a tablet, so the S can again be their ultimate tentpole phone.

  6. The way the rumors are going I think Samsung is planning to make a larger S4 (5 in.) to make room for the S4 Mini (4~4.x inch) with similar specifications. The note3 rumored to be 6.3 inches display would fit perfectly to the Samsung high-end line of smartphones. I think it would be perfect plan if it goes this way.

    1. I think this makes sense and is the way to go for Samsung : enlarge the existent phones and make room for a small high end Galaxy S. They just can’t ignore any longer the demand for pocket-size high end smartphones. I would buy a smaller Galaxy SX, certainly not a bigger than S3 one.

    2. I also agree with this…I don’t necessarily want a larger device. A half inch smaller (I have the GS2) is desirable to me, but without losing any current features or power of the GS3/Note 2. If I want a larger device, I’ll just buy a tab.
      I do think something is definitely going on with the Samsung S series as we all read the rumours about the number 4 (as in S4) is bad luck or something among the Korean culture….Samsung could be looking for a way around using the number. Merging devices could be the answer.

  7. If the S4 is bigger than the S3 it’s likely I’ll be passing on it. The S3 seems too big to me at times and when I pick up my (now daughter’s) Epic Touch, I like the way it feels better. The Note 2 is pretty nice but I think if Samsung goes bigger they are going in the wrong direction. I know there are plenty of people on here who’ll disagree but everyone that I talk to that isn’t a fanatic about their phone that is on the fence about getting a S3 always says how big the phone is and wishes it was a little smaller.

    just my 2 cents.

  8. Now it really makes sense. Rumors of note 3 with 6.3 inch or up display is more likely to happen if this rumor is true.

  9. A lot of you seem to forget that 7″ tablets have like a 2″ frame around them making the device close on 10 inches, a 6.3″ note would be WAY smaller than a 7″ tablet.

    1. more like an inch but yes I agree

  10. I’m buying the 7.7″ Note as soon as it drops. Nexus phone and Note tablet, which is the best of both worlds.

  11. Depending on the form factor of the S4 i might get it or the next One X (if it’s available on all 4 carriers). I said i was going to stay away from Samsung after they pounded us original Galaxy S phone with a faulty GPS and super late update but they seem to be on top of their game right now.

  12. if this rumor is true then the size is too damn big for a phone. unless we’re talking about shrinking the stylus to one similar to the nintendo ds lol. unless everyone starts carrying purses, a phone bigger than the current s3 is just not practical.

  13. will never happen, the two lines of devices are separate for a reason, choice and more money, why would samsung slash half of its profits to one by merging both devices, NO it DOESN’T make alot of sense, this writer is dumb.

    1. 101 economics please. Sami doesn’t want to eat its own market agreed. But Others who are desperate will (HTC, RIM, ASUS Padphone etc). So does Sami play the supply/demand game handed them by competition (consolidation for market share or we will walk) FYI this is APPLE’s problem over the long term too. 2-4 years. BTW who uses “Never” anymore?

  14. Samsung could make the stylus a handheld phone receiver. Then you have a tablet and a separate phone to use the same time; all in 1 package

    1. You mean like a bluetooth headset?

      1. he means like the padphone….

      1. much thanks for the link, would even be better if it was holstered into the tablet and charged while docked. hardware vendors (sammi et al) have to be rushing into that at this point. Patents must be all over this. Padphone is still too clumsy an idea to go main stream IMHO

  15. Samsung should make a line of S devices all with the same specs in terms of screen resolution, cpu chipset and ram. Kind of what motorola has done with the new razr series but better.

  16. Oh happy day if this comes to be. I think a 5″ display will be sufficient for many tablet functions. If Samsung focuses the S4 as a serious business and school tool, you’ll be able to smell the rotten Apples within a few months.

  17. Here’s an idea:
    Keep the same screen size as S3, but remove almost all of the bezel :o

  18. I love that the SIV will (well.. allegedly) come with an S-Pen. Many people are seeing the S line as getting larger (5mm difference.. big woop), but I’m seeing it as the Note just got smaller and more in range of what I like. I’ll likely buy one.

  19. I really can’t see the S4 being any larger than the S3 unless they are able to reduce the bezel size. The S4 and Note 2 or Note 3 do not need to compete against each other. They are for different crowds.

  20. I dont think the Note is in competition with the Galaxy at all. Despite being pretty much the same with whatever improvements come within the gap between them the screen of the note just appeals to a different set of people. Both the note and galaxy screens are getting bigger because they have found ways to sacrifice bezel and stick in bigger screens. While the galaxy 4 will probably come in @ 5″ the note 3 will probably be even bigger as well without increasing in physical size – early rumors put it at 6.3 inches once again separating it from the galaxy, but even if it stays at 5.5 that’s still a pretty big difference when your talking about devices with “small” screens in general.

    Also its a matter of looking at the glass half full or half empty. While the note 2 is better then then the SG3, the SG4 will be better then the Note 2 for nearly the same amount of time if they keep the same schedule.

  21. I doubt Samsung is merging two successful brands into one brand, they’re probably just merging their Touchwiz modifications for the Note into a single skin that they can use across all of their devices. I mean afterall, form factor is enough to differentiate their devices, there’s no reason to have devices with unique Touchwiz modifications and fragment their skin and updates unnecessarily. Also, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Note brand just replaced the Tab brand for all devices in the 5+ inch range, so Note 5.5, Note 7, Note 10 etc because the Note brand and stylus has had significantly more success and recognition than their “Tab” brand.

  22. I would say that if they were to combine the 2 devices into one with a 5 inch screen size, they should alter the shape of it to accommodate one hand typing/texting…just an easier way to grip the device without it potentially sliding out of one’s hand while doing so. The idea of the S pen is pretty cool though.

  23. Make like this edge to edge skip home button put soft key like tab were. the where putting your power key there put volume key there ti help to zoom in and out. and sheme side putt camera key.power is putt where putting HTC top side

    1. Put the power key on the top? That’s just stupid and inconvenient in a large device – in fact that’s one thing that’s been consistently criticised about the HTC Droid DNA.

  24. Russia?

  25. Screw this, take the space that S-Pen would occupy inside the body and use it for MORE BATTERY! If I wanted an S-Pen then I’d buy a Note.

  26. i can nearly bet thats never gonna happen . if the s-pen has the be included, the product will be launched under the “note” title . The “s” series are the most selling flagships , so i dont think they will make it much huge and will focus on performance, features , display and the body of the device. what do you think guys ?

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