Can the Samsung Galaxy S4 live up to the S3?

Samsung will likely unveil its Galaxy S4 smartphone on March 14. But the S4 has some really big shoes to fill. 

Visitors are seen in front of the Samsung stand during the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, on Feb. 27, 2013. A new Samsung phone, likely called the Galaxy S4, will be unveiled next month.

Last May, Samsung took the wraps off the Samsung Galaxy S3, a full-featured, Android-based smart phone designed to compete directly with the Apple iPhone

The S3 – or S III, in the official parlance – received extremely positive reviews, with one critic going so far to argue that the device, with its hulking 4.8-inch HD display and comparatively slim build, was "the Ferrari of the Android circuit."

Consumers seemed to agree. Earlier this year, Samsung announced it was selling an average of 190,000 Galaxy S3 devices a day, good enough to reach the 30 million unit mark in five months, and the 40 million mark seven months after that. 

Now Samsung is poised to release the successor to the Galaxy S3 – a smartphone that will likely be called the Galaxy S4. "March 14. Ready 4 the show? #UNPACKED," reps for Samsung wrote in a Twitter message posted earlier this week. Included in the tweet was a faux-movie poster, with a link to a YouTube channel, and an invitation to "meet the next Galaxy."

The press event will be held in New York, but it will be live-streamed via YouTube. 

"We introduced the Galaxy S III in London last year, and this time we changed the venue [to New York] ... as we were bombarded with requests from U.S. mobile carriers to unveil the Galaxy S IV in the country," Samsung mobile division chief JK Shin has said

Samsung hasn't said exactly what kind of features will be available on the Galaxy S4. (We assume it's going to be called the S4 because of all the "4" branding in the Twitter message. We could be wrong.) But smart money is on a bigger processor, a better – if not necessarily larger – screen, and a more durable build

So let's assume you were already planning on picking up a Samsung phone. Is it worth waiting for the S4 to show up on shelves or should you sate your instant-gratification complex and simply pick up an S3? Well, over at CNET, Marguerite Reardon suggests that S3 prices will likely drop closer to the launch of the S3 – meaning that either way you slice it, consumers would be best served by holding out at least a few weeks. 

"The bottom line is that even if you are not sure whether you will buy the Samsung Galaxy S4 or the Galaxy S3, you should still wait," Reardon writes. "That way you will either get the newest flagship Samsung Android smartphone on the market or you'll get the best deal possible on the slightly older version of the product." The whole thing, she adds, is "a win-win for you." 

For more tech news, follow us on Twitter @venturenaut.

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