Samsung Galaxy S5
Samsung’s Galaxy S5 excels at what matters — Android 4.4 KitKat OS; a bright, beautiful display; blistering quad-core processor; and an excellent camera experience. In addition, Samsung’s efforts to streamline its own custom interface and reduce pre-installed bloatware pay off.
Design and build quality
The perforated back is stylish and, being the first of its kind, adds a bit of character that’s quite important for a device looking to be the best on the market.
Samsung has received a lot of criticism over the past few years for its unimaginative designs, but things have definitely improved and the Galaxy S5 is just another confirmation. Samsung have even put a flap over the microUSB 3.0 port to mask the rather large hole, which would’ve spoiled the phone good looks.
The build quality is also great – despite packing a removable back cover, the S5 feels solid and gives away no worrying sounds when handled. And the IP67 certification hasn’t resulted in an overly plastic feel either.
The only problem with the new design and choice of materials is that they don’t quite provide the same great level of grip as the Galaxy Note 3. Still, the Samsung Galaxy S5 is still reasonably comfortable to handle.
An awesome display got even better
At first glance it might appear that the Samsung Galaxy S5 is the first Samsung flagship that doesn’t bring a major screen update. After a 5.1″ Super AMOLED of 1080p resolution and 432ppi density sounds virtually the same as the 5″ 1080p Super AMOLED panel that that the Galaxy S4 employed.
But that’s only half the story – while the Galaxy S5 screen is only as sharp as its predecessor (you can’t tell the difference at this point), its panel is completely redesigned. It offers higher brightness and more efficient backlighting as well as lowers reflectivity, which means better contrast when there are strong light sources present.
Improved 16MP camera
The Samsung Galaxy S5 features a 16MP camera and is the first phone to use an ISOCELL sensor. It’s a large sensor too, 1/2.6″. For comparison, the Lumia 1520 / 929 Icon sensor is 1/2.5″ and the Sony Xperia Z2 sensor is 1/2.3″
Better still, it’s a 16:9 sensor so widescreen photos use the full sensor, while the Galaxy S4 camera loses nearly 4MP to cropping. Phase Detection Auto Focus promises very fast focus locks and from our testing it delivers – the Galaxy S5 is both faster and more accurate than the HTC One and iPhone 5s.
The 5.1-inch, quad-core Android 4.4 KitKat machine with a terrific 16-megapixel camera is well worth snapping up. Subtly improved and smartly refined, the Samsung Galaxy S5 is a superior superphone that hits every mark but the sharpest design.
Quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE; quad-band 3G with HSPA; LTE
5.1″ 16M-color 1080p Super AMOLED capacitive touchscreen; Adobe RGB mode
Android OS v4.4 KitKat with TouchWiz UI
Quad-core 2.5 GHz Krait 400 CPU, Adreno 330 GPU; Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 chipset
2GB of RAM
16 MP ISOCELL camera with phase-detect autofocus, 1/2.6″ 16:9 sensor and LED flash
2160p video recording @ 30fps, 1080p @ 60fps, 720p @ 120fps
2 MP front-facing camera, 1080p video recording
Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac, Wi-Fi Direct and DLNA, Download booster
GPS with A-GPS, GLONASS
16GB/32GB of built-in storage
microSD card slot
IP67 certification for dust and water resistance
Fingerprint scanner with PayPal payments support and private mode access
microUSB 3.0 port with USB host and MHL 2.0; Backwards compatibility with microUSB 2.0
IR port for remote control functionality
Standard 3.5 mm audio jack
Accelerometer and proximity sensor
Barometer, thermometer, hygroscope
IR gesture sensor for Air gestures
Smart gestures: Smart stay, Smart pause, Smart scroll
Active noise cancellation with dedicated mic
Ample 2,800mAh battery
Length: 137.9 mm
Width: 69.2 mm
Depth: 8.6 mm
Weight: 130 g
Talk time: 21 hours