Samsung's new phone - the waterproof Galaxy S4 active

New high-end handset aimed at the "active user", dustproof and waterproof

The latest addition to Samsung’s popular Galaxy range of Android smartphones is the S4 Active, a new high-end smartphone aimed at the needs of the “active user”.

The key point of difference for the Active from other smartphones is its durability. It has qualified protection from both dust and water, and the fully sealed design means the phone can stay submerged for up to 30 minutes at a depth of one meter.

The innards are nothing special for a high-end handset but are more than what’s expected for a quasi ‘specialist’ phone. There’s a 1.9 GHz quad-core processor, a 5-inch full HD screen, and an 8 megapixel rear camera with LED flash.

The screen resolution comes in at a massive 443 ppi – substantially better quality than the 336 ppi found in the iPhone 5, and only a step below the 468 ppi found on the HTC One. There’s also 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal memory – though only 11.25GB of that is usable.

Other additions to make the Active live up to its name include ‘Glove Touch’ (which allows the touchscreen to be operated with gloves); ‘Aqua Mode’, which improves the quality of underwater images; and a water-resistant earphone jack for listening to music in wet environments.

Samsung describe the phone’s ideal user as one “who wants to stay connected while exploring environments from the most rugged mountain trails to the roughest rivers” – though equally the average user might just fancy a bit more protection for their new phone.

As our smartphones become more of an investment, it makes sense to choose models that can stand up to a bit of punishment - Sony released their similarly waterproof Xperia Z in May this year.

The S3 Active will be coming out this summer some time, with Phones4U already confirming they’ll be stocking it. However, there’s no word of tariffs or networks, though more details will emerge, no doubt, at Samsung’s big media event on 20 June.  

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