The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra (left) and Galaxy S21 (proper)

Sarah Tew/CNET

Samsung’s Galaxy smartphones are getting a facelift that ought to make their software program feel more seamless and more customizable. It may additionally feel acquainted should you’re switching from an iPhone

Samsung detailed its forthcoming One UI 4 software program update throughout its annual developer convention on Tuesday, the place it additionally outlined its technique for the good residence, Tizen TVs and Bixby voice assistant. The new smartphone software program has been out there in beta since September, however the tech large offered a detailed have a look at its new options through the convention’s opening keynote. The update will launch on the finish of 2021 starting with the Galaxy S21 sequence earlier than rolling out to different Galaxy units. 

Design is a main focus in One UI 4. You’ll be capable to match your phone’s system theme to your wallpaper, and sure actions like setting an alarm or utilizing the system’s fingerprint sensor will set off haptics and sounds. But a number of different options coming within the update feel very iPhone-inspired, particularly the more constant widgets and new privateness choices. It’s one other signal that the hole in options between iOS and Android is beginning to get smaller as smartphones have matured during the last decade. 

For occasion, One UI 4’s widgets function corners which are more rounded throughout the board, whether or not they’re made by Samsung or third events.

Based on what we have seen in Samsung’s presentation, that appears a lot like the iPhone’s residence display widgets.


The new widgets in Samsung’s One UI 4 will all have rounded corners, whether or not they’re third-party or Samsung widgets. 


Here are the iPhone’s widgets for context.



When it involves customization, you may additionally be capable to set your AR emoji as your profile picture for Samsung accounts. This is much like the way in which iPhone homeowners can set their Memoji as their iMessage and Apple ID picture.


In One UI 4, you may set your AR emoji because the profile picture in your Samsung account. 

And here is how Apple’s Memoji sticker seems when set because the profile picture for an Apple ID.


You can set your Memoji sticker as your Apple ID picture. 

Screenshot by Lisa Eadicicco/CNET

One of the most important adjustments to return to the iPhone 11 in 2019 was the addition of QuickTake within the digicam app. This function permits you to change from picture to video mode more simply by simply holding the shutter button after which dragging it to the correct. Samsung system homeowners will get a comparable shortcut when One UI 4 launches. The update will allow you to transfer from picture to video mode just by dragging up from the digicam shutter.

Here’s the demo Samsung showcased throughout its developer convention.


Samsung’s One UI 4 update will make it simpler to change from picture to video mode within the digicam app, a lot like the iPhone. 


And here is the iPhone’s QuickTake function.


One UI 4 will additionally assist Samsung units catch as much as the iPhone when it comes to privateness. Galaxy smartphone homeowners will be capable to select whether or not they wish to share their exact or approximate location with apps, an possibility that Apple launched final yr in iOS 14.


Samsung is including new privateness controls in its One UI 4 update. 


Here are the same privateness choices out there on the iPhone. 


Screenshots by Jason Cipriani/CNET

Apple and Android system makers have been locked in a race to introduce new options and capabilities to their cell units first for the reason that daybreak of the smartphone. It’s a competitors that will by no means have a straight reply, and the correct alternative for most individuals will largely come right down to the working system they’re most comfy with.

But all through the course of smartphone historical past, there are a few areas during which the iPhone has pulled forward of Android and vice versa. The iPhone paved the way in which for the fashionable smartphone by popularizing touch-centric interplay on cell units whereas the trade remained fixated on tiny keyboards. In more current years, Apple has usually been more forward-thinking in the case of client privateness. 

But Android system makers pioneered many features of right now’s cell person interface, providing staple options like widgets and quick-settings pulldown menus lengthy earlier than Apple did. Companies like Samsung additionally launched smartphones with bigger screens years forward of the iPhone 6 Plus launch in 2014. Now Samsung, Motorola and Microsoft are experimenting with foldable designs whereas Apple has but to say the potential for a bendable iPhone.

Check out the video under to be taught more about Samsung’s One UI 4 update. 

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