It’s nearly the end of the year and everyone is on holiday except I am sitting here working on this review. I shouldn’t really call this work as I actually enjoy what I do but none the less I am happy my last work for 2014 involves playing around with the Samsung Galaxy S5.
Since the days of the S1 or even the Galaxy Star, I knew Samsung were onto something great. To this day, they haven’t proven me wrong!
Samsung aren’t playing around with the S5. With a Quad-core 2.5 GHz and 2 GB RAM, the S5 is well equipped and it competes really well with other flagship devices. Apps and games load up quickly and everything runs smoothly. If you want to do some serious multitasking, this is the device to do it on. I did some image processing as well as video uploads and the S5 managed really well.
The S5 comes loaded with Android v4.4.2 KitKat but Samsung have confirmed that the S5 will be upgradable to Android 5.0 (Lollipop). I know there are loads of comments about the Samsung TouchWiz which is the UI on all Samsung devices. I actually find the user interface easy to use. I have used a few Samsung devices before and I have always found the TouchWiz UI easy to navigate as well as pleasant on the eye.
The S5 comes in two versions, a 16GB and a 32GB version and supports a microSD card up to 128GBs. All I can say here is space should never be a problem!
The 5.1 inch AMOLED display with 1080 x 1920 pixels is certainly beautiful to look at. Colours are rich and images are sharp. Watching videos on the 5.1 inch display is a pleasure. Gorilla Glass 3 will keep scratches off the screen but a screen protector is never a bad idea just for precaution.
Picking up the S5, this is certainly one high quality phone. Weighing in at 145 g, compared to my Xperia M2 Aqua, this is actually a light device. The M2 aqua weighs 149 g and it has a 4.8 inch screen and the S5 has a bigger screen but is lighter! It was rumoured that Samsung were going to release a device in a exotic metal but they decided to stick to a metal casing with a plastic back. The plastic back comes in a sort of leathery finish and is removable so you can access the battery. This is a huge win if you want to replace the battery or keep a spare with you. On the left of the device you have the volume rocker which is positioned near the top of the device for easy access without having to adjust your grip. On the right hand side you have the power/unlock button. Unfortunately there is no camera button so you will have to use the on screen capture button. The front of the device is the same as all Samsungs with the unlock button at the bottom of the device and a front facing camera at the top. Depending on how you hold the device the centre unlock button may be more convenient than the power button when you want to quickly unlock the device.
Like its rival, Apple, Samsung have included a Fingerprint sensor in the S5 which is probably one of the major differences between the S5 and the S4. If you are security conscious like me, using your fingerprint to keep your device secure is a big advantage. Even if someone does manage to get a copy of your fingerprint, they will still need access to your phone.
The S5 is IP67 certified dust and water resistant up to 1 meter and 30 minutes. Having a waterproof device removes the stress of worrying about liquids getting near your precious phone and saves you money as you don’t need to buy a waterproof camera. You can take photos and videos underwater!
With a 16 MP camera with 5312 x 2988 pixels and a led flash, you can really leave your DSLR at home. Using the nifty phase detection autofocus feature helps ensure that the subject is in focus. At my graduation recently, I didn’t want to bring my DSLR with as no one would be able to use it properly. So I brought the S5 with and even my parents took some amazing photos. The camera interface is easy to use with settings easily accessible.
Gone are the days of Full HD, the latest craze is 4k, though not many people have cameras that can shoot video in 4K nor do many have 4K screens. If you want to get the taste of shooting videos in 4k, the S5 shoots videos in 4k UHD at 2160p.
Battery life on the S5 is amazing. With a Li-Ion 2800 mAh battery you are looking at a day of use before another charge is needed. Samsung have put a bigger battery in the S5 than what was used in the S4. The screen is also much more efficient so this helps save important juice.
Samsung grabs our attention with the release of every new device and the S5 was definitely one of them. The only brand besides for Apple that manages to attract support like a bee is attracted to pollen is Samsung. When Samsung releases a new device, those that can afford it will get the latest model even if their previous model is perfectly fine. I know many people that did that with the S4. Overall I am really happy with the Samsung Galaxy S5. The device is fast, the camera is excellent and the battery life is really good. These are the things that matter these days. I would be happy to use the S5 as a daily driver. The S5 was definitely one of the top phones of 2014.