Galaxy S4 Design Video: Contradictory Nonsense?

Samsung Tomorrow just released this short about the Galaxy S4 design story. It’s looks very nice – we are treated some lovely time-lapse videos, some flattering shots of people looking at phones and what might look like an insight into Samsung’s product design choices. The only thing is, once you look past all the distracting time-lapses and jargon… it’s just a video full of juxtaposed conflicted opinions. The more attention you pay, the more ridiculous it gets!


The design is “Not a radical difference, but more of an evolution” says product designer Hyoungshin Park in the first five seconds of the video. Immediately afterwards, we are rhetorically told by designer JongBo Jung (another product designer) that the Galaxy S4 is “Like nothing you’ve ever seen before”.

At least for the Galaxy S3 “Inspired by nature” launch they went all out on the nature thing, talking endlessly and tautologically about flowing water, pebbles and blades of grass bending in the wind… I mean, at least they were consistent!

In the Galaxy S4 video, we are told in no uncertain terms by Hyoungshin that, whereas the Galaxy S3 was inspired by nature, the Galaxy S4 “Form factor was designed with a more rational approach” (does that mean that the Galaxy S3 design was irrational?!) and the “CMF [colour, material and finish] was created with more emotional elements in mind”. Then JongBo tells us how they were inspired by nature for the “Black Mist” finish – wanting it to look like “countless stars sparkling in the night sky” or “a precious stone glittering in the sky”.

Perhaps it also looks like a disco-ball? Or a block of flats at night? Or… I don’t know… a black piece of paper with holes in it? How far can you go!?

We have a picture of a device’s design which is not simultaneously an evolution of a previous design, whilst simultaneously being something we’ve never seen before… something which was both inspired, and not inspired by nature and is more of a rational design than the Galaxy S3.

Don’t get me wrong – I think the design of the Galaxy S4 is good. Everyone has their own opinion, but it’s hard to call the Galaxy S4 an ugly device. I can’t help but think, however, that it would be more interesting to see some of Samsung’s actual design processes rather than pumped up, quasi-inspirational and elusively contradictory nonsense.

Let us know what you think in the comments below!

Opinion 17

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2 years 11 months ago

I applaud author sarcasm. A beer for Dom A ! This video is too childish, just like the presentation they had for S4 this year.

Eduardo Antonio
2 years 11 months ago

what good the phone is made ​​of aluminum if the majority of people put plastic covers to protect them. Contradiction is that, to speak ill of something and then copy it.

2 years 11 months ago

I have to say that the S4 is slightly less rounder than the S3 but it still looks the same to the mass.

Samsung failed to realize that Samsung customers aren’t as stupid as the Apple customers.

We can see BS when we see it. And the fact that Samsung made a BIG DEAL about keeping the design a secret and hyping the release of the S4, we the people were expecting something different.

Not a soap bar.

2 years 11 months ago

They did not redesign the S4, basically, there is no design planning at all other than the software features and the diamond patterns on the device.

Everything else like form factor is derived from The S3 and Note 2. So what is this? Samsung should at least include an actual metal frame or chassis for this thing.

THIS IS NOT A NEW DESIGN!!! This is why i’m sticking my money in the bank and holding on to my S3. Hope S5 will have a redesign form factor and has real metal frame(minimal).

2 years 11 months ago

I think Galaxy S4 is beautiful cause is different from S3 in dimensions, but i also believe that Samsung must put in design of new Galaxies a bit of Aluminium to make the device more beautiful and different from before.Even only in frames in rear-side e.t.c.

2 years 11 months ago

GS4′s design is more of a refined/subtle version of the GS3.

Many people referred the GS4 as a GS3+, yeah I probably agree but who cares!!

– For the next Galaxy [S5], reduce the rounded corners and add an all-out metal, if not then half-polycarbonate[PLASTIC]/Half Metal chassis design for the GS5.

Still using the GS3 so yeah not sure if I’m going to swap it for the GS4. The best option for me is to wait for the GS5 instead, if not the Note 3.

2 years 11 months ago

LOL, Samsung spent thousands of dollars and hundreds of man hours to make this stupid video?

They could have use that time and effort to release Jelly Bean for the Galaxy Tab 7.7.

2 years 11 months ago

Gave it a test run today not sure about this one! Can’t tell apart from the G3 in terms of use, the only small change is the gimmick.

2 years 11 months ago

Everyone considers S2 the best Samsung phone ever. Don’t know why would start making ugly S3, S4 and Note II. Hope for better design in Note III and FM radio coming back ;)

2 years 11 months ago

Yes atleast FM radio should be coming back……

2 years 11 months ago

right but im afraid note 3 looks like comes with spoon & plate design, Samsung wasting time producing different phone that the people only want its better spec and specially design.

2 years 11 months ago

all i can say is bring back the galaxy S2 design and make it better

2 years 11 months ago

Saving it for the Galaxy S5.

3 years 13 minutes ago

Galaxy s 4′s design is suuper, but its what s3 should have looked like. We don’t want an update on last years design.
It’s not a deal breaker for me, but its a little sad.

3 years 2 hours ago

I don’t see any nonsense and more rational doesn’t mean irrational.
Samsung could make a unibody S4 but I am glad they didn’t. S4 looks and feels spectacular.

3 years 1 hour ago

The article points out the plentiful contradictions in the video. It doesn’t badmouth the design of either phone…

3 years 2 hours ago

I’ll drink to that!