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Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini review

The S4 gets shrunk and we put it through its paces

Battery life

A smartphone is only as good as its weakest elements. It would be impossible to have an amazing phone with only enough juice in the battery to power it for 10 minutes. Take a look at our HTC One review, for instance, to see that it only achieved the 5-star status after getting an update to address battery problems.

Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini review

The problem with writing this section of the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini review is that just about every user of every device will be using it for different reasons. That said, we reckon that the 1900mAh that is packed behind the battery cover is more than sufficient.

The dual-core innards go some way to keeping the battery life under control. The larger quad-core processors tend to drink a lot more juice, so thinking that the smaller 1900mAh battery won't cope as well would be a mistake. The smaller screen also uses a lot less power.

Battery life is an area that Samsung has really given some thought to. The quick settings that sit in the notifications bar have been around for as long as we can remember. They really help save the battery life, giving you the ability to turn off battery-draining services such as Wi-Fi and GPS.

We threw the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini through its paces, and we were pleased to say it lasted on a standard day. Checking emails occasionally, and sending the odd text message, as well as taking quite a lot of photographs, we were glad to see that by bed time we still had more than 30% left.

Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini review

Even our standard battery test proved quite decent, with our 90 minute HD video only draining the battery by 19%. It might seem like a lot, but we have seen a lot worse.

Connectivity

Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini review

When it comes to connectivity, modern smartphones are getting more and more connected. Even the entry-level handsets that we have used are coming with things such as NFC.

Being a mid-range phone, the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini comes with all the standard bells and whistles that you might expect. Wi-Fi, GPS and GLONASS, Bluetooth, NFC, 4G. Yes, double yes, yes yes, oooh.

Having 4G onboard also puts it square against the Sony Xperia SP, with 4G slowly making its way to the mid-range smartphones. It's nice to see that fast mobile internet technology is slowly making its way down to cheaper devices, because this will only increase the number of users taking it up and push the technology further.

Wi-Fi is supported to a/b/g/n standards (as well as Wi-Fi Direct onboard), and Bluetooth 4.0 and A2DP support are also available.

Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini review

DLNA streaming is also built in to the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini, as we mentioned earlier. We also mentioned the IR blaster earlier, which turns the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini into a remote control.

We should also mention in this section that the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini includes what Samsung has termed Group Play.

It is an app that connects the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini to other modern Galaxy smartphones, so you and your mates can turn your phones into a sort of surround sound system, with music being played through all the external speakers.

Connection to the PC is done via a micro USB port, which also doubles itself up as the charging point, as it always has done on Galaxy devices. This sets the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini up as an external drive, meaning that the usual drag and drop features on the desktop are still present.

Samsung also has its proprietary Kies software, which the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini can connect to via the micro USB cable, or via Kies Air (if both devices are connected to the same Wi-Fi network).

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Input MethodTouchscreen
TouchscreenYes
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBYes
Contract TypeSIM-free
Maximum Memory Card Size Supported64 GB
Built-in Memory8 GB
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA, HSUPA, HSPA+, UMTS
SAR Value0.33 W/kg
GPS ReceiverYes
Multi-SIM SupportedNo
Near Field CommunicationYes
Integrated TV TunerNo
Product FamilyGalaxy S4 Mini
Cellular Generation4G
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 850, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 1900, WCDMA 2100, LTE 800, LTE 850, LTE 900, LTE 1800, LTE 2100, LTE 2600
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Rear Camera Resolution8 Megapixel
Number of SIM Card Supported1
Front CameraYes
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD
Phone StyleBar
ColourWhite Frost
Operating SystemAndroid
Brand NameSamsung
Battery Talk Time12 Hour
Product ModelGT-I9195
Screen Size10.9 cm (4.3")
Screen Resolution540 x 960
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)107 g
Processor CoreDual-core (2 Core)
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Processor ManufacturerQualcomm
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11a/b/g/n
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 4.0
Operating System VersionAndroid 4.2.2 Jelly Bean
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), Email, MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Instant Messaging
USB StandardUSB 2.0
Pixel Density256 ppi
Front Camera Resolution1.9 Megapixel
Height124.6 mm
Width61.3 mm
Depth8.9 mm
Radio TunerYes
Battery Standby Time300 Hour
ManufacturerSamsung
Product NameGalaxy S4 Mini GT-I9195 Smartphone
Processor Speed1.70 GHz
Processor TypeSnapdragon 400
Product LineGalaxy S4 Mini
Screen TypeOLED
Sensor TypeAccelerometer, Gyro Sensor, Proximity Sensor, Digital Compass, Ambient Light Sensor, Magnetometer, Health Sensor
Manufacturer Part NumberGT-I9195ZWABTU
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.samsung.com/uk/
Marketing InformationThe Galaxy S4 Mini is a powerful, compact version of its bestselling smartphone, the Galaxy S4. The Galaxy S4 Mini delivers the superior performance, intuitive ease-of-use and sleek design of the Galaxy S4 in a portable chic and compact design.

With a 4.3" qHD Super AMOLED display, the Galaxy S4 Mini offers stunning images and content. At just 107g, the lightweight and compact design enables you to carry and use the device easily with one hand. The Galaxy S4 Mini also boasts powerful performance, equipped with a 1.7GHz dual core processor and supports many of the same intuitive features as the Galaxy S4, designed to enhance different aspects of life.

Capturing Memories
The Galaxy S4 Mini allows you to capture important moments in life with an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera as well as a 1.9-megapixel HD front-facing camera. Special features include Sound&Shot, which stores sounds and images together, Panorama Shot which allows you to take a full view of what you are seeing, and Story Album, which automatically arranges photos in a smart format - photos taken by Galaxy S4 Mini are automatically gathered and saved according to your timeline, geo-tagging information or specific event, to create a photo album. You can also receive travel assistance and information services through the S Travel preloaded app which can even recommend a new trip and provide destination guides.

Sharing and Connecting
The Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini means you can share content with others around you easily. Simultaneously listen to the same music and play the same games as your friends with Group Play, and chat with multiple friends with animations, video and voice recording added to messages using ChatON.

Environment Features
The Galaxy S4 Mini features S Translator, for instant translation using text or voice on applications including email, text message and ChatON. You can also control your environment through WatchON's IR remote which transforms the device into a remote to control your home entertainment systems including TV, set-top box and DVD player. Content available includes live TV, cable TV and VOD based on the information provided EPG (Electronic Program Guide). In addition, Samsung Link* will help you share content across multiple Samsung digital devices. *Available in select countries. Previously called AllShare Play.

Wellbeing Features
The Galaxy S4 Mini keeps you up to date with health and wellbeing information. Downloadable from Samsung Apps, S Health enables you to monitor your calorie balance. It can calculate each step taken daily, monitor sleeping patterns, calculate weight and share real time heart rate information**. Adapt Display provides an optimal viewing experience, customised for each type of application, and Adapt Sound offers an optimal level and type of sound, personalised for each user. ** Functionality such as monitoring weight, heart rate and sleeping patterns is possible through the use of fitness accessories which are sold separately.
Limited Warranty2 Year