August 13, 2014 - 19:46 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Samsung has announced a new smartphone with a metal frame that is smaller and thinner than its flagship model, BBC News reports.
The South Korean company describes the Galaxy Alpha as representing a "new design approach".
The firm has previously been criticized for the plastic feel of its handsets at a time when other firms have opted to use materials marketed as having a "premium" feel.
Samsung Electronics saw a 20% year-on-year drop in its last quarter's profit. It blamed "slow global sales of smartphones".
The company recently lost its status as China's bestselling smartphone-maker to Xiaomi, a local rival, according to the research group Canalys.
Xiaomi's latest handset, the Mi 4, also features a metal-framed build.
The new handset has a 4.7in (11.9cm) screen, making it slightly smaller than the Galaxy S5.
Its camera also has a lower specification of 12 megapixels, but it benefits from being nearly a fifth slimmer, measuring 6.7mm (0.26in) deep, and is also lighter, weighing in at 114g (4oz).
Samsung replaced the head of its mobile design team in May, when Lee Min-hyouk took over the role from Chang Dong-hoon.
The move followed several reviews that had praised the Galaxy S5's capabilities while criticizing its feel.
Other manufacturers that had already shifted to offering part or full-metal bodied phones at the time included HTC, Huawei, Apple and Sony.
A spokeswoman for Samsung said it would announce the device's price and shipping date at a later stage.
The company is expected to unveil the Galaxy Note 4, its latest large "phablet" handset, in Berlin on Sept 3 ahead of the start of the Ifa tech show.