Galaxy S 4 mini set for sale by U.S. carriers in November

Samsung announced a mini 4.3-in. version of the Galaxy S 4 will go on sale in November over four U.S. carriers.


Samsung announced a mini 4.3-in. version of the Galaxy S 4 will go on sale in November over four U.S. carriers.

Samsung's Galaxy S4 mini smartphone.

Though clearly smaller in almost every other dimension, the Galaxy S4 mini is a bit thicker than the Galaxy S 4, by 0.04 inches. Otherwise, the mini's appearance and shape is almost identical to the larger version.

Dimensions of the Galaxy S 4 mini are 4.9-in. x 2.4-in. x 0.35-in. It weighs 3.8 ounces and has a 4.3-in. Super AMOLED touchscreen. The full-sized Galaxy S 4 has a 5-in. display and measures 5.38-in. x 2.74-in. x 0.31-in. The GS4 weighs 4.59 ounces.

"Samsung continues to provide a wide range of products to fit consumers' needs [and] the Galaxy S 4 mini continues that commitment by bringing the paramount features of our flagship Galaxy S 4 smartphone to a smaller, more compact form factor," said Gregory Lee, president of Samsung Mobile, in a statement.

Pricing and the exact dates the mini will go on sale will be announced by carriers AT&T, Sprint, Verizon Wireless and U.S. Cellular. Each will carry the phone in black or white.

Carriers will probably drop the price for the mini below that of the Galaxy S 4, which now mostly goes for $200 with a two-year contract.

The mini runs Android 4.2.2 and has a 1.7 dual core processor with a rear 8 megapixel camera and a 1.9 megapixel front shooter. The mini supports NFC and has a 1,900 mAh battery.

The larger Galaxy S 4 also runs on Android 4.2.2 but has a larger 1.9 GHz quad core processor and a rear 13 megapixel camera and a 2 megapixel front shooter. It also supports NFC, but has a larger 2600 mAh battery.

The display of the mini is rated at only 960 x 540 pixels, or 256 pixels per inch, with the Galaxy S 4 rated at 1920 x 1080, or 441 ppi. The mini has 16 GB of onboard storage, which can be expanded by another 64 GB--the same as with the Galaxy S 4.

Soon after the Galaxy S 4 mini launches, it will be compatible with the $300 Galaxy Gear smartphone watch, Samsung said.

The mini even has an S-View Flip Cover, sold separately, the same as the Galaxy S 4.

Samsung promoted several software features in the mini, which offer the ability to enhance photos with a panorama feature seen in the Galaxy S 4. The mini smartphone can also be used as a TV remote control device or to share files to other Galaxy smartphones via S Beam, which relies upon NFC and Bluetooth wireless.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen, or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed . His email address is [email protected].

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