A Samsung mover and shaker has seemingly conclusively killed off hopes that the Galaxy S5 could debut at Mobile World Congress next month, meaning would-be upgraders have some months to wait until they can get their hands on the next kit in the Galaxy S range.
Last week, Samsung’s loose-lipped Vice President and Head of Design Strategy Dong-hoon Chang seemingly rubber-stamped rumours that the handset would tip up at the tech expo next month when he said the reports of Samsung’s plans were “about right”.
We should probably note here that his remarks were purportedly made at a New Year’s Eve party, where we’re assuming drink was taken.
However, today in the cold, sobering light of a Thursday morning in London his claims look a bit less credible. Especially after Samsung’s executive vice president of mobile Lee Young Hee has since told the very serious-minded business site Bloomberg not to expect the Galaxy S5 until March or April.
Naturally, the more formal circumstances of Bloomberg’s Q&A mean it’s Lee’s statement that we should probably set store in.
He said: “We’ve been announcing our first flagship model in the first half of each year, around March and April, and we are still targeting for release around that time."
Interestingly, Lee also admitted that Samsung had made mistakes with the underperforming Galaxy S4 and promised a “back to basics” approach for the next handset.
That rather suggests to us that they’ll be less in the way of fussy gimmicky TouchWiz features and more in the way of meaty spec-sheet improvements.
Said Lee: "When we moved to S4 from S3, it’s partly true that consumers couldn’t really feel much difference between the two products from the physical perspective, so the market reaction wasn't as big.
"For the S5, we will go back to the basics. Mostly, it’s about the display and the feel of the cover."
And rounding off the revelations from the Samsung exec was his disclosure that the next flagship Galaxy S handset will be accompanied by a second edition of the Galaxy Gear smartphone. That's another device where, by common consent, Samsung also made more than a few mistakes.
"When we release our S5 device, you can also expect a Gear successor with more advanced functions and the bulky design will also be improved,” he revealed.
Concrete news about Samsung’s plans comes after it yesterday announced an 18% year-on-year slide in profits in the last quarter, amid narrowing profit margins on smartphones.
Tougher operating conditions were rumoured to be behind chatter that Samsung was planning to move the phone’s release date forward from the March/April window previously marked by the arrival of new Galaxy S handsets.