The Samsung Galaxy S4 is the most eagerly anticipated smartphone of 2013 thanks to a wealth of new features that are said to transform the device into a â€˜life companionâ€™.
One of the key areas the Korean manufacturer has focussed on within its latest offering is health and wellbeing, and the new S Health suite of apps aims to help users get fit and keep on top of their exercise regimes.
A recent study conducted by market research firm Lab 42 discovered 51% of smartphone consumers use their mobile devices during workouts. While the majority of those used their phones for listening to music, 43% said they were a handy tool for tracking distance.
Samsung has clearly seen a gap in the market and by combining smartphone technology with the latest fitness apps and accessories; it makes for a very appealing proposition. Whether youâ€™re a fitness guru or gym novice it seems that more and more people are starting to turn to their smartphone in their battle to shed the pounds.
The survey also found that 72% of respondents felt technology encourages them to workout. But, what is it about S Health that leads Samsung to market the device as one that is always â€œthere for youâ€?
S Health Suite from Samsung…
Well, the S Health suite is made up of three key areas, but to ensure that these work as accurately as possible you will first need to enter details such as height, weight and age so the app can tailor results to your physical frame and abilities.
Using the handsetâ€™s accelerometer Walking Mate records the number of paces you make each day, tracking the steps as you go and adding up the number of calories youâ€™ve managed to burn. Simply leave the app running and put it in your pocket where it will tally your steps until you press stop.
Here the bulk of your exercise details can be entered and anything from aerobics to running can be put into the app, as well as the amount of time youâ€™ve spent doing that particular exercise. The app then calculates the number of calories that youâ€™ve managed to burn, displaying this figure as a percentage of the total amount it thinks you need to work off.
This is great for keeping a record of everything you eat and whatâ€™s more see if and where you could be going wrong. Snacks and meals can be selected from an extensive pre-loaded list of foods, from here the app will then determine how many calories youâ€™ve consumed and subsequently the amount of exercise youâ€™ll need to do to burn off any calories over your daily recommendation.
If youâ€™re not keen on entering details manually thereâ€™s also a feature which allows you to take a picture of a meal so the app can calculate its calorie content. However, this doesnâ€™t work quite as well as promised and the firm now claims it only reads recognisable foods such as a McDonald’s Big Mac. That said it doesnâ€™t take a smartphone giant like Samsung to tell you through an app that eating too many burgers isnâ€™t the ideal way to lose weight.
Another great thing about S Health is that it saves users time and money downloading various third-party apps. Having all your vital statistics on the main S Health Board homepage means that information is instantly accessible and each of the apps mentioned above are just a click away.
More than just an app
Later this summer a range of new accessories will also be launched to enhance all the elements of S Health even further. These include an S Band, for the times when you donâ€™t want to carry your smartphone, wireless scales to keep track of your weight and a heart monitor, all of which can be connected to the S4 via Bluetooth so you can ensure all your data is recorded with accuracy.
The Korean manufacturer has recently announced that it has now sold 10 million units of the Galaxy S4, just one month after its launch. And, with plans to take the device to an additional 95 markets across the globe by the end of June even more users will be able to reap the benefits of S Health, and all the other great features the Galaxy S4 has to offer.
S Health is a clear indication that Samsung has really pulled out all the stops to make the firmâ€™s latest flagship the perfect â€˜life companionâ€™. Many industry watchers are calling the Galaxy S4 the â€œbest Android phone of 2013â€ and S Health shows that this is a handset that can do much more than simply just provide your favourite music tracks in your mission to get fit.
Written by Sarah Hazelwood of Dialaphone, the home of great smartphone contracts on Orange, Vodafone and many more.