Fancy some Samsung Galaxy S4 accessories that won’t break the bank? Maybe a tough case to protect your £500+ investment or some speakers to give your audio a little oomph? You’re in luck, below are our top five Samsung Galaxy S4 accessories under £40, all tried and tested to be Galaxy S4 enhancing.
BeeWi Wireless headphones
If you bought a Samsung Galaxy S4 in a bid to stand out from the sea of iPhone owners out there, it looks like you’re out of luck. In spite of Samsung’s sheep-infused marketing showcasing Apple as the crowd followers’ choice, Samsung Galaxy phones have fast become even more ubiquitous than the ol’iPhone.
To stand out with your Galaxy S4, you’re going to need something loud, you’re going to need something bold, you’re going to need something big and colourful on your head.
Something like the BeeWi Ground Bee wireless headphones. These smart cans can be used with a wire or without and they charge using the 3.5mm headphone jack and a computer or power adapter with a USB port. Compatible with most smartphones, all the music control buttons lie on the left hand side of the headphones.
What makes the BeeWi Ground Bee’s even more fit for purpose when paired with the Galaxy S4 is the fact they can be used for calls and music alike. Shipping with both a regular audio cable for high quality audio and a microphone cable for voice calls, you’ll have everything you need to get started out of the box.
While audio quality isn’t going to please any real audiophiles out there with a slight muffle when listening over Bluetooth, the roughly £40 Amazon asking price is significantly less than most wireless over-ear headphones, sweetening the appeal.
Cygnet WorkMate tough case
In the words of Charles Bukowski, “If you’re going to try, go all the way”, and we reckon the Cygnet WorkMate tough case is ‘all the way’ when it comes to protection.
You certainly pay for the oodles of power inside the Samsung Galaxy S4. In fact, the phone is one of, if not the single most expensive mobile phone on the market right now, so it’s worth safeguarding your investment.
Despite seeing a lot of S4 cases come in and out of our offices, the Cygnet WorkMate is the only one that has made it into our accessory roundup, thanks to its protective quality and standout design.
Available in a range of colours, the multi-tone look is all part of the protective industrial design, with a total of three elements combining for ultimate shock absorption, grip and visual appeal.
While it’s bulkier than most hard plastic cases, the soft touch feels better against the hand, the front edges are more raised to protect your screen and the case even boasts the ability to protect your £550 smartphone from a 10 ft drop.
Yes, we said 10 ft drop. Don’t believe us? Check out Cygnet’s video to see what happens to an S4 and a watermelon when dropped from the same height. Here’s a hint – one goes splat.
While we didn’t quite put our Galaxy S4 under the same pressure, we still used the case in our pockets on a daily basis and dropped it from chest height. This thing strikes a great balance, standout design, manageable thickness and assuring protection. At £19.95 from Cygnet themselves, it’s also well priced to boot.
Panasonic QE-QL201 battery pack
In spite of the Samsung Galaxy S4 offering the best battery life of all 2013’s flagships, it still runs out eventually, which is where portable power packs comes in, and more specifically, the Panasonic QE-QL201.
Anyone who’s searched for portable power packs using either Amazon or Google knows there are oodles of them out there, from a range of manufacturers. We opted for the Panasonic QE-QL201 for a few reasons.
Firstly, it offers up to 5400mAh, enough power for two full Samsung Galaxy S4 charges with a smidgen of juice left over.
Despite being a bagable, and even pocketable size therefore, you’ll be able to go for a weekend away, Panasonic charger in tow with peace of mind that your S4 won’t die on you.
The second reasons the Panasonic QE-QL201 is our choice is down to its two USB ports, and the fact it charges via microUSB.
Charging the Galaxy S4 with one to the USB ports, and your bluetooth headset, work phone or, in our case, Livescribe wifi smarten with the other makes for a convenient solution for any techy with more gadgets than power outlets.
The fact the power pack is charged through its microUSB port is also a huge bonus. This means the same cable used to charge your phone can be used to charge the power pack, and can even be repurposed for data transfer too.
Finally, a frivolous reason the Panasonic power pack is perfect for the Samsung Galaxy S4 – colours.
The power pack is available in both black and white. While not quite the Black Myst or White Frost of the Samsung Galaxy S4, with the high gloss finish of both phone and power pack, side by side, they still look like a well matched pair of gadgets.
Available to order internationally for around £30, the QE-QL should be hitting highstreet shops and local online retailers in the coming months.
QDOS Q-BOPZ Speaker
If the HTC One has anything on the Samsung Galaxy S4 it’s the sound quality from the BoomSound front facing stereo speakers. While Samsung does offer Group Play, it requires multiple Galaxy S4s, so will seldom be a decent sound solution.
Thankfully, the Q-Bopz bluetooth speaker provides a powerful, very portable means of getting more sound out of your Samsung.
Available in a range of colours, the Q-Bopz speaker is a fun, unusual approach to sound. Loaded with a large suction pad on the back, it sticks to any flat surface, including the back of the Galaxy S4, doubling up as a phone stand.
Connecting using Bluetooth, the QDos Q-Bopz blasts audio up to ten metres away from your Samsung Galaxy S4 at a volume that surpasses any smartphone we’ve used, including the HTC One.
The 7-hour battery life means the speaker makes for the perfect picnic companion and with microUSB charging, it makes the perfect Galaxy S4 companion too.
All in all, impressive sound, interesting packaging and Recombu certified to be Galaxy S4 enhancing, so check it out at QDOS Sound, where you can buy one for £29.99.
STK Tempered Shield
Despite the fact we love the Cygnet WorkMate protective case, there’s no getting around the bulk it adds to the Samsung Galaxy S4’s standalone 7.9mm thickness. For anyone who wants some screen protection at a fraction of the size therefore, why not check out the STK Tempered Glass screen protector.
Elegant doesn’t even cover it – you’ll be hard pressed to realise this screen protector is even on your phone thanks to the humble 0.4mm it adds to the overall thickness. Being available in white and black means whichever Galaxy S4 you’ve opted for, the STK Tempered Shield will match it very closely.
Constructed of Japanese grade Asahi glass and packing a hardness rating of 8H, the shield adds even more resilience to the already hardy Gorilla Glass 3 screen of the Galaxy S4. It also offers oil resistant and anti-glare properties, without sacrificing on touch sensitivity.
While it’s tough, the STK Tempered Shield will still break under enough force, but unlike regular glass, it breaks evenly – so won’t shatter. Not only does this reduce the risk of injury, it also means that breaking the protective screen is less likely to crack the Galaxy S4 screen below it – smart stuff.
For the ultimate in protection, you could even couple the Cygnet WorkMate with the STK Tempered Shield, but if you just wanted one, elegant option, the STK Tempered shield would be it. Available from Accessory Village for just shy of £30, if the Tempered Shield can save you a costly screen repair, it’ll be worth every penny.
There you have it, our roundup of Samsung Galaxy S4 accessories under £40. If you want to know more about any accessory mentioned or suggest the best S4 accessories you’ve come across, just comment below.