Samsung has announced its latest smartphone in the form of the Galaxy S5 mini – a scaled down version of its popular S5 flagship. The device, which features the same faux-leather styling as its big brother, offers mid-range specs in a thin and light form factor, while holding on to stand-out features including a fingerprint scanner and heart rate monitor.
Though it’s flagship devices like the fully-blown Galaxy S5 or HTC’s One (M8) handset that usually grab the headlines, most manufacturers are aware of the importance of catering for the mid-range market. These handsets hit a lower price point than their high-end siblings and offer internals equivalent to those found in flagship devices from a year or two ago.
The Galaxy S5 mini is aimed squarely at consumers looking for a capable and premium feeling handset, but one that’s not going to break the bank. The device features a 720p 4.5-in Super AMOLED display with 326 pixels per inch. For comparison, that’s the same pixel density found on the iPhone 5S.
The device runs on a 1.4 GHz quad core CPU with 1.5 GB RAM with a 2,100 mAh battery. Those specs are a little more capable than those found on the HTC One mini 2, a key competitor for the handset. There are 2.1 and 8 MP shooters on the front and back, respectively, and the handset runs Android 4.4 KitKat, augmented with Samsung’s polarizing TouchWiz UI.
As you would expect from a smartphone in 2014, there’s LTE tech on board as well as the same IP67 water and dust resistance that we saw in the company's full-sized flagship. Being a Samsung device, the handset includes the company’s Ultra Power Saving Mode and S Health features, as well as a heart rate monitor and fingerprint scanner.
The Galaxy S5 mini is a little lighter than some competing handsets, coming in at 120 g (0.26 lbs), 17 g (0.04 lbs) lighter than the HTC One mini 2. The S5 mini is also thinner than that device, measuring just 9.1 mm (0.36 inches).
Overall, the device is looking like a solid mid-range option that’s perhaps a little more capable than competing handsets in this category. The handset will be available in a choice of four colors (black, white, blue and gold) when it launches in Russia this month (July). The handset will see a full global release, though no time scale has been announced for this. We’re yet to receive word on pricing.