Samsung, Google To Announce “Google Edition” Galaxy S 4 With Stock Android?

2013-03-14-20.27.44

Hello giant rumor, but this one comes from Russell Holly over at Geek.com, an individual I believe would not post such a rumor just for the sake of getting the internet all riled up. According to Russell’s tipster, the “Google Edition” Galaxy S 4 is pretty much exactly what it sounds like…Galaxy S 4 hardware with stock Android software, right out of the box. The device is being developed as a way to address a group of users out in the wild that prefer stock Android on a smartphone that isn’t a Nexus.

The device is expected to be available sometime next month and available with…wait for it…drum roll…T-Mobile bands. In fact, T-Mobile is specifically stated in the source article as the carrier of choice:

This Google Edition S4 is expected to be made available starting in June and will be available on T-Mobile bands.

There’s no clear picture as to who will sell this and where, or for how much. It’s true that you can accomplish stock Android on the Galaxy S 4 with a simple install of CyanogenMod, but there’s still a niche willing to shell out the cash to get stock Android right out of the box.

Fingers crossed we see this announced tomorrow.

Geek.com

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  • i’d be interested but to be honest I like the features on the S4 .. keep the features and give me stock default and i’m sold.

    • Dakota

      Me too. Sounds like they’d lose all the s4 advertised features and it still might not get updated quickly. The average person doesn’t even know what stock Android is

  • cielomoreno127

    I might just get this! I shouldn’t but I just might.

  • Pair-Of-Noia

    Wow. Just Wow. I never thought I would see the day where I would actually consider buying a samsung device again. Samsung without touchwiz and straight android would be wonderful. Well except for the nagging worry in the back of my mind since they have consolidated with the Bilderburg group in controlling information. Choices, choices…..

  • Gdm Laz

    Like the article says just install CyanogenMod on your GS4 and BOOM you have the GOOGLE EDITION Gs4 lol

    • Julian C. Taborda

      yeah but this stock version would be fresh from google. I love cyanogenmod but to be on the bleeding edge like 4.1.2 then theres going to glitchs and bugs that would not be present in something pushed from google

    • zifnab

      Yeah except, you know… CM isn’t stock android, and rarely comes bug free if you want the latest version of Android. And you would have to go manually update on your own when you want a new version. All things that make it not a google edition s4.

    • Hoggles

      CyanogenMod ALWAYS has some sort of problem…bt, tether….(and it has a horrible camera app). CM for the S4 is far from perfect. No NFC, no sensor support…you name it. This would bring all necessary drivers for our S4. Specifically, hopefully, for the M919 S4 hardware…which is of course our Tmo version currently. So…there is indeed a major difference than flashing a current nightly. It’s great news for Devs and users. Hope it’s true!

      Cheers!

  • If this happens… I’ll eat my hat!

    • ceegii63

      please post in on YouTube

    • Get to eating, and post that video too lol.

  • ceegii63

    this is how you make the S4 revolutionary

  • qpinto

    wait what?

  • Samsung is pulling out all the stops, to make sure they say on top!!! WOW. Take my money…$500 full cost will be a good price! No wait $399 , about right

  • atari37

    Interesting. But who handles the updates? I think the market that this device will target will be very interested in this question.

    • Jose Hernandez

      That is a great question. If Google handles the updates great. But if Samsung is going to be doing it, we should expect some type of delay.

  • Lol. Way to go Sammy. They are bound and determined to stay on top.

  • ceegii63

    heres an idea, sell it at the Play Store for $349-$399

    • Wilma Flintstone

      I’d buy it for that on day 1

  • tranceformer978

    The next G series phone?

  • dethduck

    I find this to be highly dubious. I’ll be surprised if this “rumor” actually pans out, though I doubt it.

    • dethduck

      Well damn, colour me surprised.

  • 21stNow

    This rumor would surface after I bought my GS4. Oh well, I wanted the Touchwiz experience on this device anyway.

    • qpinto

      if its true look for a port. it wont be hard to find.

  • zifnab

    I’d be shocked, but sign me up. I just bought the Nexus 4 last November but i’d consider upgrading to a vanilla s4.

  • Wilma Flintstone

    If this rumor is true, again, I am glad I waited. Also, this version will give more than 8GB if true. Google I/O in a few more hours then I make my decision. :D

  • Jay J. Blanco

    Omfg!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • 0neTw0

    If true, I may just have to get a Samsuck again. I miss the expandable memory that my Nexus lacks.

  • marbo100

    If this is true, you’d probably be able to dump the ROM and load it on a phone from the carrier that originally came with TouchWiz. At least I hope that’s the case.

  • gentleman559

    Oh God WTF, Just after I went back to Verizon. <——— Shoots himself in the head!!!

    • WW

      If a stock android on a GS4 is the reason you’d “shoot yourself in the head”, what does that have to do with Verizon?

      You went back to Verizon for the superior coverage but wouldn’t have, had you known you could get a GS4 with stock Android combined with T-Mobile’s lesser coverage?

  • Joe3243

    pure Google Android>>buggy cyanogenmod>>”carrier vanilla Android”>>crapware loaded touchwhiz

    • Steve Cory

      Buggy CM? Stop running nightly builds then. If there’s one thing I can give props to the CM and AOKP teams, when they release something that is marked as Stable, they are just that, stable.

  • Will

    Not going to happen. Someone just wants to send traffic to their site. Here’s a rumor, Google is giving away stock unicorns to all that go to the conference.

    • ceegii63

      I WANT A UNICORN!!!

    • spup

      I prefer touch wiz unicorns!

    • So when it happens, are you gonna eat your hat like SparklingCyanide too? lol

    • Well, well, well, now that it has been announced, what is next from you? Are you looking in the mirror, if so…you look pretty silly huh? lol

  • Alex v

    Hopefully it it comes with onscreen navigation keys…would be the perfect phone one can dream :3 …or what about and htc one with stock Android and onscreen nav keys. Any of those would be awesome

  • Graham Blackadder

    Good for Samsung. Competition never hurt nobody but I’ll always be nexus all the way!

  • Hoggles

    This is great news.

  • Tina

    I’ll believe it when I see it

    • Jeff Martinez

      I concur.

  • rob

    If it’s coming to T-Mo and it’s stock android but not a Nexus, doesn’t that make it a potential G series phone made by Samsung? What the G2 was to the Desire Z.

  • Samsung Wishfull Thinking Edition

  • gentleman559

    Oh well, Im sure the ROM from this phone will be ported over to all verisons of the S4. I have Sense 5 on my DNA and it runs perfect so I still have hope. But man if this is true T-Mobile people are going to be loving life. Sigh…..LOL

  • Chris

    This would be nuts. I want to believe but I’m skeptical…

  • This will NEVER happen!!!!

    • kalel33

      Never? Glad you were so sure on something that came true that would NEVER happen.

  • jimmiekain

    probably wont happen but if it does… sign me up as long as it has wifi calling im in!

    • MacRat

      You don’t understand what “Stock Android” means.

      It’s not going to have any carrier apps.

      • Alex Zapata

        The current iteration of WiFi calling isn’t an app per se. It’s baked into the os now. That being said that requires a custom ROM since the IMS client that’s available in android apparently takes some tweaking.

  • Josue

    if this is really true then i’m putting my Note 2 on sale lol

  • VG

    If true, then June and July will be very busy at TMo. Lumia 925, Sony Xperia Z, BlackBerry Q10, HTC One, the standard S4, and the iPhone 5 ALL on TMo shelves by June/July … Very impressive lineup of flagship phones (with the added bonus of a potential S4 Google Edition). TMo definitely coming on strong since becoming the Uncarrier!

    Note to The Panther Lady: did you get your purple Xperia Z? Thoughts?

    • thepanttherlady

      Hi VG: Yes, I got it and LOVE it so far! I still need to take some time and play with the camera though. It focused great and color was good when I took pictures of the manicure I did on Sunday…when the flash was on. Tried to take pictures of it yesterday without flash and it seemed the camera had a harder time focusing. I’ll play with the camera this weekend and let you know.

      ETA: The one and only thing I’ve found that I don’t like about this phone is the speaker placement. There is one small speaker on the bottom right side of the phone. Same side as the power button and volume rockers. Usually doesn’t matter which position you hold the phone in, you end up covering the speaker. I’m not sure what Sony was thinking with this but if that’s my only complaint, then we’re good. :)

      • VG

        Cool. I and many others would love to see you post a full review of the phone. Maybe when TMo officially announces their C6606 model of the phone?

        • thepanttherlady

          If they offer it in purple I’ll get the T-Mo version. If not, I’m sticking with the int’l version C6602.

          Not sure about doing a full review (I don’t like writing) but will definitely offer my thoughts on various functions. Also just read this morning that Sony is pushing an update that is supposed to help with camera issues among other things. I haven’t gotten it yet so hopefully I’ll get to test things before it comes and compare it to the update. :)

  • steve1026

    I just can’t see Samsung pushing out a device without touchwiz. This would cut into nexus sales, so that could be the strategy, but just a rumor as of now.

    • kalel33

      At $649 it won’t cut into Nexus sales much.

  • If this happened, I’d probably get rid of my note 2 for it. Stock android would be nice.

    • IRIE4IPIEIR

      Me too

  • steveb944

    Vanilla Android in an S4? That’s the only way I’ll get one. I miss Samsung’s amazing screen but I hate their updates. Win win.

    If this is in a Nexus price range, LTE, and the only device announced in a few hours, I’ll buy

    • Dats

      Samsung has fixed the updates issue.. I still sometimes use my old s2 from tmobile and I just got another update from kies I’m running 4.1.2

      • steveb944

        Updates still release months later, even bigger gap between EU vs. NA markets.
        I’ve been running 4.2.2 for months now on my Nexus 4, the new features make a difference for me. I prefer a clean Google experience over TouchWiz since the Vibrant left a bitter taste for me. Oh and OTA beats Kies any day.

    • Benjamin P

      There is no way this would be in the price range of Nexus… I guess about 599 maybe!

  • FukApple

    How about “Note 2 Google Edition” N2GE..sweeeet!

  • superg05

    even if they did do this it would probably only be available to people who attended the I/O as there give away goodie or be high dollar so don’t get to excited

    • kalel33

      You’re prediction was incorrect.

  • YourDistantCousin

    Someone help me out please …so, would this mean that it would have the nice features of the S4, i.e. the camera functions like “Eraser shot”, or the eye scrolling feature, but all without the Touchwiz UI? If so that’d be pretty sweet, although I still can’t say I’m feeling that plastic body; prefer the Nexus 4 build over that any day.

    • s10shane

      i doubt it. because all those features are part of touchwiz and since this will have stock android, they wont have any of those features. but i do like that feature “eraser shot” it looks awesome.

      • JT

        I could see some people not know the difference and purchasing this phone and expecting all of those features and they aren’t there.

        • s10shane

          that is true. but i think the google version will only be sold in the google play store.

  • Kit Pogi

    might as well make another Nexus device. S4 google version? so, all google features and no Sammy stuff at all? Interesting.

    • Jdog25

      I’m thinking that this is a early leak of the next Nexus that will be based off the GS4 hard ware but that won’t go on sale for a few months. If it is not then I will wait for the new Nexus. One thing that will tell everyone if it is a Nexus is if it has a SD Card slot which Google doesn’t allow in a Nexus phone.

      • kalel33

        HTC Nexus One had a micro-SD card slot.

        • Jdog25

          Yes it did but new Nexus don’t.

  • Brian T.

    I hope a future Android version will allow manufacturers to put whatever skin they want on a phone, but have a reset option baked into the settings to remove it and run stock Android. This is awesome news though. Wonder what the future update schedule will be like and whether they’ll delay updates until the TouchWiz and Google versions are both ready. If this is true, of course….

    • Jdog25

      The Facebook Phone proves that this is possible and I have been saying this for like 3 years but the OEM’s change too much stuff with their skins in the Android Code that it isn’t that simple for them unless they start over and turn them into Launchers.

      • kalel33

        Facebook is just a launcher. The skins are actually framework that is embedded into their version of the OS. You’d have to have two different OSs saved on the one phone, which uses up quite a bit of memory. Facebook phone proves nothing, other than you can use different launchers but even that was done by ADW years ago.

        • Jdog25

          I know and I’m saying that Facebook is doing it the way the OEM’s should. All Android phones would be running 4.0 and up if the OEM’s did the same thing and it would be less work for them to do. I know that the main reason they want skins is to separate themselves from each other but they can make a Launcher and have it to where only their phones (Samsung only or HTC only) could download their custom Launcher.

  • ragumaster

    wait the big question is all the people that have a S4 right now would they be able to get stock android ??

    • David Lebron

      Absolutely – root it :)

  • WW

    I would shell out for it. I prefer it over the Nexus for the removable battery and memory slot.

  • CHKSUM

    Finally a phone with stock Android (no skin, no bloatware, max available user memory, SD card slot, removable battery, USB OTG, LTE, etc. Let’s hope this is true? This phone would be totally better than the Nexus 4. I wonder what the price will be? Hope other manufactures offer a stock Android phone. Sammy deserves some respect.

    • Jdog25

      This shows how good the Nexus 4 is because you are comparing this new rumored phone to one that will be 8 months old when this “phone” is released. Of course then you have the problem that the New Nexus will be coming out 4 months after this phone and it will get the newest update first.

      • Paul

        Nexus phones doesn’t have expandable memory.

        In reference to CHKSUM’s post, Samsung said “For the Galaxy S4 16 GB model, approximately 6.85 GB occupies the system
        part of internal memory, which is 1 GB bigger than that of the Galaxy
        S3, in order to provide a high resolution display and more powerful
        features to our consumers.”
        Nnnaaa, my Note 2 has 16Gb internal available to me as-is.

        This won’t replace the Nexus because the S4 has expandable memory. This is a VERY smart move on Samsung’s part, though. I’d consider this

        • Jdog25

          I know that if it has the sd card slot then it won’t be a Nexus. What I’m thinking now is that this will be an exclusive gift for IO attendees.

        • Paul

          Good call, which would totally blow if the public can’t get them as well. It’s a GREAT idea to sell a device with vanilla android.

        • kalel33

          Right on the first part(not a Nexus name) but it is available to the public.

        • kalel33

          Wrong on the micro-SD card slot. The Nexus One had a micro-SD card slot.

        • Jdog25

          The Nexus One did have a SD Card Slot but after that phone Google changed that. They didn’t want users to keep getting confused on why they didn’t have anymore room to download apps so they made it do that the Nexus phones have all their internal memory combined like an iPhone.

          Also I have owned all 6 Google Phones.

      • CHKSUM

        @jdog25:disqus The Nexus brand has been the best Android experience. However, Nexus seems to going the route of reduced hardware features (no SD slot, no removable battery, etc.) These features do matter to many. What features will the Nexus 5 offer? Probably less connectivity and more cloud based stuff. Samsung seems to be the only major manufacture offering a high end phone with SD slot, removable battery, etc. That said, if the “rumored” Samsung will have pure Android with hardware features similar to the GS4 then we consumers have more choices.

    • Wifi

      These sort of devices typically dont allow Wifi-Calling which is a deal breaker for me.

      • fsured

        I was just going to post this same comment. Wifi calling is built into the framework of the Samsung firmware which is why many romz are missing the feature. Tmobile is hopefully aware of this and working on a standard Android app or something. It is part of their selling point to compensate for weak signal inside of buildings.

        • kalel33

          Yeah, but you can sideload the WIFI calling app just fine. Both my old Mytouch 4G running Cyanogenmod and my HTC Amaze running a custom ROM both have WIFI calling that works by sideloading the old WIFI calling app.

        • fsured

          I will have to do a search for it. I’m using a new rom on my SG2 and people are asking to include it or port over the app from current releases of the software. I haven’t read about anyone trying to use an older version of it with jellybean 4.2 roms. Thanks for the suggestion.

      • Nearmsp

        Agree 100%. I did not go for the iPhone 5 and am back on my SGS2 for the same reason. I am going to wait for some time for the iPhone 5S to see if Wi-Fi calling is added. If not, it will be an Android device with Wi-Fi calling for me.

  • ecdy

    Wish it were the HTC One instead. . . .

  • Dakota

    If this were true, what GS4 features would not be included. That was the GS4 selling point no? I am happy with Galaxy Nexus and was hoping we’d see a new killer device soon… Or at lesst some major key lime pie update. The idea thst only a minor 4.3 is coming is very disappointing… Especially when everyone is pressuring me to finally get an iPhone to go with my MacbookPro. Definitely need a better camera and volume control

    • kalel33

      All the Samsung features would not be there, because it’s Vanilla Android. That is a good thing.

  • alex dorn

    Will the updates be as fast as nexus phones?

  • Xanderalmighty

    Will the updates be fast like nexus phones?

    • kalel33

      Yes

  • Oh my God, Heaven has heard my prayers. My favorite manufacturer building a stock version for my favorite Carrier. Holy shit I just had to make sure I wasn’t dreaming. Please make this be true. Thank You Samsung, Thank You T-Mobile.

  • Pesobill

    Love the idea . Why do we have to have phone with so much ‘stuff’ pre-installed .If we want to why can’t we download apps or features as we desire .
    Sick of bloatware , so pure Android/Google with quick updates would be awesome .

  • Paddy_Tanninger_Caddy_Manager

    I love the concept, but some of these built in Google Apps really take a drain on the batteries! My GN2 was getting killed by Google Maps’ auto pull for my location, even in deep sleep. Come on google, you couldn’t program your apps to detect whether the device is in airplane mode, and if so, it’s fruitless to have the app ping for the location? I’m so mad, I’m ready to fight someone over this, this is a big whoop to me.

    • kalel33

      Google Apps are on all the Android phones, so I don’t know how this would be different with this phone and any other Android phone.

  • BOOM JUST GOT ANNOUNCED…LOL. Google play will sell it in June 21st, $649 WAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY TO HIGH! That’s samsung rapping us on the price, not google!!!

  • Edward351

    Looks like this is real. Essentially a Nexus version of the S4 for 649 from Google and unlocked. Includes LTE and 16GB of memory.

  • i’ll pass .. $649 for 16GB .. c’mon man .. not to mention despite my love for vanilla Android,the S4 has a lot of features i want.

    • Nope, I would rather have it this way, because you are paying the same price through T-Mobile. But you are getting all updates from Google, and it has great hardware!

      • i should add $649 for 16GB without the features of S4.

    • kalel33

      And that’s the big question, do you want all the bloat that Samsung or HTC puts on their phones or go straight Vanilla. There’s no in between unfortunately. I’ll take Vanilla Android or Cyanogenmod over manufacturer bloatware anyday, even if it loses a few features.

  • custom1

    They just announced it and T-Mobile gets it. Everyone clapped until he said $640. This is not Nexus 4 pricing of course but for those who want unlocked boot loader out the door you got it :)

    • kalel33

      Yeah, it really shouldn’t be $649. Samsung’s GS4 with Touchwiz pricing is the same and I understand they need to recoup software development costs but the Vanilla Android had almost no research and the cost savings should be passed on. I could see this as being a test bed, to see if customers prefer the bloated OS with more features or the faster and leaner Vanilla Android OS.

    • custom1

      My bad…$649 not $640

  • bikeryder007

    Everything about this is awesome except the price.

  • Thomas C Montano

    Why has nobody questioned what SoC it will have ? I will ditch my international for this one if the Exynos is used.

    • J-Hop2o6

      Snapdragon 600 is better than the Exynos 5 Quad+Quad. Since this supports American/US LTE bands, this will definitely be the great Snapdragon 600 SoC. This is basically the Tmo version with Stock Android with updates DIRECTLY from Google.

  • mgrexx

    what weather app is on the phones screen???