Samsung Galaxy S5 + Sony Xperia Z2 + LG G Pro 2 – Flagship SmartPhones MWC 2014

Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2014, the mobile industry’s largest annual event took place in Barcelona. Several flagship models were launched, including Samsung’s Galaxy S5, Sony Xperia Z2, and LG’s G2 Pro, with this year’s releases focusing on incremental improvements in user experience and hardware specifications, but fewer gimmicks or breakthroughs to accelerate high-end replacements. Samsung’s innovations improved on design (dust/waterproof/colours/icons, camera upgrades, processing and connectivity and better fitness / health tools while Sony made a more modest upgrade from its six-month old Z1 with a slightly larger display, better processor and improved camera features.

Flagships, including Samsung Galaxy S5, Sony Xperia Z2 and LG’s G2 Pro, only made incremental user experience and hardware improvements on 4G, processor, camera, fitness tracking and security, but we see no upside catalyst to stimulate accelerating high-end replacements, although leave the door open for an Apple recovery with iPhone 6

Flagship SmartPhones in MWC 2014
A number of devices upgraded rear camera to 13 MP at the mid-tier and 16/20 MP at the high-end and front camera up to 5 MP, with vendors also pushing on depth of field (DoF), improved HDR and faster autofocus to improve the camera experience.

Samsung Galaxy S5’s Noticeable Features
Heart rate monitor on the back LED flash, IR blaster (remote control) and the water proofing of the device up to 3 feet submerged in water for 30 minutes. Fingerprint ICs are also proliferating now on the Galaxy S5. This could expand military use in conjunction with Knox security software, etc Some streamlining of OS, particularly a better job on adding its own Tizen interface interlaced on top of Android 4.4 (Kit Kat).

Broadly, we think Samsung went for safety and cost control as opposed to a radical design change plus metal casing, which would have caused the BOM cost to rise substantially. A lot of copies are being made of Samsung designs among the Chinese handset makers. The company needed to run away from these design copies.

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