updated 05:34 am EDT, Wed August 13, 2014
Metal Samsung Galaxy Alpha uses 4.7-inch 720p Super AMOLED display
Samsung has unexpectedly launched the Galaxy Alpha smartphone, weeks before an Unpacked launch event. The rumored smartphone has been revealed as using a metal frame with a soft back cover, a change from the heavily use of plastic in earlier Galaxy devices, with the Alpha's 7mm (0.28-inch) thickness making it one of the slimmest Galaxy smartphones the company has ever produced.
Fronted by a 4.7-inch 720p Super AMOLED display, the Galaxy Alpha houses an octa-core processor, made up of four cores clocked at 1.8GHz and four more at 1.3GHz, with 2GB of RAM. On the back is a 4K-capable 12-megapixel camera with a heart rate sensor, while on the front is a 2.1-megapixel front-facing counterpart and a fingerprint scanner, though the 32GB of internal storage is oddly not supplemented by a microSD card slot. The Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, and NFC connectivity options are joined by LTE Cat 6 cellular radios, giving it a maximum speed of 300Mbps.
Onboard, the device runs Android 4.4.4 with Samsung's interface overlay. Many of the software features from the Galaxy S5 transition to the Galaxy Alpha, including Download Booster, Private mode, and a range of camera modes. The Ultra Power Saving Mode also surfaces, extending the 1,860mAh battery life by temporarily disabling other phone features.
Though a price has yet to be revealed for the device, Samsung advises it will be shipping the Galaxy Alpha from the beginning of September, with the Charcoal Black, Dazzling White, Frosted Gold, Sleek Silver, and Scuba Blue color options varying by market.