The release last week of Apple’s iPhone 4 appears to have unleashed a wave of faster smart phones that could help accountants stay in touch with clients, including by mobile video conference.

One of the iPhone 4’s most heavily touted features is its FaceTime video chat program, which leverages the iPhone’s front- and rear-facing cameras. That feature could enable accountants to hold video conferences with clients and other contacts, though the other party would need to have an iPhone 4 as well. The phone also apparently needs to run over a Wi-Fi network for now as the AT&T network’s 3G speeds reportedly still aren’t quite fast enough for video conferences on the new phone. At least not yet, though that’s expected to change soon.

Apple’s rivals don’t want to be left behind, and one of them is Samsung, which launched its line of Galaxy S phones in New York on Tuesday evening. The Galaxy S leverages Google’s Android operating system, and features a high-resolution screen for watching and recording high-definition videos, and a “Social Hub” that integrates social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter with the user’s contacts, calendar, e-mail and text messages. A big plus on some networks will be the ability to run at 4G speeds. The phone will first launch on T-Mobile, but will eventually run on Sprint’s 4G network, as well as on Verizon and AT&T.

The touch screen seemed very responsive when I tried it out, and the resolution and colors stood out clearly. The phone uses something called a Super AMOLED display, which sounds a little too much like something you might eat for breakfast.

Still, the Galaxy S could give the new iPhone 4 some new competition in a rapidly evolving field.