Samsung Galaxy S5 Review


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For the past 4 years, there is an event that most phone geeks look forward to; the announcement of the latest Samsung Galaxy S flagship. Ever since the launch of the original Galaxy S smartphone which was a big success for a flagship device at the time, we have all waited to see what Samsung brings in new every year with the successor to the previous model. Samsung have a history of providing a do it all device with every feature you could imagine packed into a single device. Naturally this year also everyone expected the same.

Each year Samsung manages to sell more and more of it’s flagship device and this year it’s expecting to do the same. However it does have some fierce competition from the likes of HTC and Sony. Only time will tell how it stands against them but let’s take a look at the S5 and how it performs.

Samsung Galaxy S5 Unboxing-2

Unboxing

We’ve already posted an unboxing of the Samsung Galaxy S5 which you can see in the video below. The box contents aren’t any different from the usual. What you get inside is:

  • Sasmung Galaxy S5
  • Battery
  • microUSB Cable
  • Wall Charger
  • Documentation
  • Earphone
  • Extra Eartips

Video Review

Design and Build Quality

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The design and build quality of Samsung Galaxy devices have been one of the most debated topics. At first glance, you won’t find anything different with the S5 either. It has a design that closely resembles it’s predecessor along with cues taken from the Note 3. The S5 isn’t as rounded as the S4 and resembles the Note 3 more in that aspect. The back isn’t glossy anymore as it now has a dotted pattern (similar to the one we’ve seen in an official S II case). You don’t get the faux leather stitch found on the Note 3 but the leathery feel is still there. This is good primarily because the phone is no longer a fingerprint magnet and secondarily because it improves grip and gives a more premium feel. The dotted pattern on the back has received a lot of criticism upon the phone’s release from myself included. It’s quite different from what Samsung have done in the past and that’s probably why we find it a bit hard to digest. But I feel it’s just a matter of getting used to and anyway most of us will end up getting a case for the phone that covers it up.

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Although the device only houses a display thats 0.1” bigger than it’s predecessor, the S5 is over 5mm taller and 2mm wider because of it’s wider bezels. This is quite weird when you take into consideration that Sony has managed to shrink down it’s bezels and make the Z2 which houses a 5.2” screen narrower (although a bit taller) than the Z1 even though the Z1 houses a 5” display. If you take into consideration the G2 which is almost as small as the S4 despite carrying onboard a 5.2” display then things get weirder. However Samsung is still ahead of HTC in the game which is even taller than the S5 despite packing a smaller screen. Another major point to note is that compared to the devices I mentioned above, S5 has hardware keys which means that you actually get more screen estate in reality compared to the others.

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The side bezels are still plastic that has been given a chrome look but they are grooved and provides better grip as well. All these have added greatly to the build quality of the device. Like I said, even though at first glance, it doesn’t look any different, once you hold an S5 in your hands, it is evident that the device is more sturdy and feels more premium. One of the reasons is because the S5 is heavier than the S4 but the S4 was not a heavy device to begin with so the added weight is a welcome change. The weight distribution is also spot on, it’s balanced out well and isn’t top/bottom heavy like some of the other phones we’ve seen in the past from competitors.

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The talks about a water resistant Galaxy S phone had started even prior to the S4 release and the rumours continued even after it’s announcement. Finally with the S5, we have a water-resistant device. This is something I’m really happy that Samsung did. While water-resistance or water-proofing is there for almost every single Japanese smartphone, it is something that was quite rare in the Global scene until Sony’s entry with their XPERIA phones. Samsung is the only maker apart from them that have embraced this. While we have had the S4 Active in the past, it still was a separate device and a device that sacrificed a few features in order to get the water resistance rating. It’s not that every users wants to swim with the device or use it in the shower. Some do want that but for most of us, it’s just the satisfaction knowing that in case your phone falls into water or we spill something on it, it’s going to be fine.

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The S5 is rated IP67 while Sony’s Z2 for example is rated IP 58. This means that Samsung has a rating of 6 for dust compared to 5 on Sony’s Z2. This mean’s that the S5 is better at keeping dust out as opposed to Z2. Z2 is merely dust tight and not dust proof like the S5. Z2 on the other hand has a better rating for water-resistance as compared to the S5. The Z2 has a rating of being submerged in water at a depth of 1.5 metres for 30 minutes compared to 1 metre for 30 minutes on the S5. However for the regular consumer, we consider both of them to be equally good enough.

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Samsung has used rubber sealing to ensure that the water does not get in which is different from Sony’s approach. But the same has enabled Samsung to make the back cover removable and also means the battery if removable. You’ve to be careful to close the back cover properly and also cover the USB 3.0 port with it’s protective flap to ensure that the water does not get in. The protective flap does seem to be quite sturdy but we suggest that you handle it carefully to avoid it snapping off as this will result in the device losing it’s water-resistance. This was an issue with some Sony phones in the past.

 

The battery design has also been changed. While in the past we got batteries that were squarish in shape, this one is quite elongated and rectangular. Not that we’re complaining, doesn’t make a difference to the user. Perhaps they had to change the shape because of a redesign in internal position.

Keys and Controls

I’d like to start off by talking about another major change on the S5, which is the menu key to the left of the home button. It has now been reassigned as a multi-tasking key. For a user like me who has gotten accustomed to Samsung’s usual layout, this is quite confusing. You tend to press the button in order to bring up the menu/options but instead it brings up the multi-tasking menu. However, you tend to get over it in a day or two and you can still access the menu if you keep the left key pressed for long. For users who still find it difficult to get accustomed to, there are third party software out there that will let you re-assign the keys functions.

 

The capacitive keys are as good as ever, easy to use, well lit (there’s a bit of light bleeding in the white variant, but that’s been the case in the previous generations as well). You can choose whether to keep the keys backlit all the time, on for 1.5 seconds/ 6 seconds or turn it off all together.  I personally prefer to actually keep the backlight off at all times.

The feedback of the hardware keys have also been vastly improved. This is something that I felt was an issue with the S4. Samsung had made it better on the Note 3 and have improved it even further on the S5. The home button is now slightly more raised perhaps due to the integrated fingerprint scanner and it’s got a harder click as compared to previous generations. Some users reported wiggly Home buttons on the Note 3 however on the S5 its sturdy as a rock. The power/lock button and the volume rocker has also been improved vastly. Now you get a more satisfying click as compared to the soft clicks of the previous generations. It may get softer over time with heavy use but it’s good to see that Samsung have taken care of smaller things such as this.

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Apart from the volume rocker keys on the left and the lock/power key on the right side, there are a few other controls on the device. On the front top of the device beside the earpeiece, you find the light sensor, proximity sensor, notification light and the front facing camera.

 

On the top of the device, you’ve the IR blaster, a microphone and the 3.5mm jack. The positions of the 3.5mm jack and the IR blaster have been swapped compared to what we find on the S4.

 

On the bottom we find another microphone and the USB 3.0 port which is protected by a plastic flap in order to ensure the water-resistance of the device. Plastic port protectors are often frowned upon because they tend to break off easily and take more effort than just plugging in the microUSB cable directly. But the quality of the plastic used seems good to withstand quite a bit of opening and closing, plus the waterproof feature that such a protector adds is well worth the extra effort taking to plug in a cable.

On the back just below the camera, you have the heart rate monitor housed inside a silver frame along with the LED flash. We’ll discuss more about that later on in the review.

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Fingerprint Scanner

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Although Japanese cellphones have had it for a while now and Apple have integrated it into the 5S and HTC having a go at it with the One Max, Samsung have also decided to implement a fingerprint scanner into the S5. It’s to allow users faster and more secure ways to access their device and accounts. Especially when you take into account services like PayPal, swiping your finger is much faster means to verify rather than typing in your password. But it’s implementation is different from that of the iPhone 5S or even the HTC One Max for that matter. On the One Max, you had the fingerprint sensor on the back. You had to press the unlock bey which was on the right side of the device then swipe over the sensor from top to bottom using anyone of the registered fingerprints. This was quite tricky especially considering the size of the device and the fact that it actually took some time because it was separate from the unlock key.

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With the S5 however they’ve gone for a better approach by implementing it into the home key. You can either press the unlock button or the home key itself and swipe from up to down on the home key. But you’ve to make sure that you start swiping from the bottom edge of the screen itself and that your finger is aligned straight. It does recognise fingerprints still if it’s a bit tilted but sometimes it gives an error message.Swiping with one hand is possible but you’re limited to using just your thumb and it does take a bit of getting used to in terms of knowing how to place and swipe it.

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So while Samsung have improved on speed, they still have to improve the way the fingerprint is recognised. So far the iPhone’s implementation is still superior as you can unlock it regardless of which way your finger is pointed and you do not need to swipe it at all. But with that said, the device did recognise the fingerprint easily once we swiped it correctly and we hardly got any errors with recognition. Accuracy is still great on the S5. Oh by the way, you also have to be careful if your fingers wet. The phone gives you an error message and asks you to wipe your fingers or the home button.

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S5 users can register upto 3 different fingerprints. These fingerprints can belong to different people or different fingers of the same person. In case the fingerprint doesn’t authenticate or some issue arises, you can still unlock the device using a backup password or your Google account. You can also choose to deregister a fingerprint later on if required.

Display

If you look at the specification sheet, the S5 seems like it’s hardly brought any improvements in the display. The screen is just a mere 0.1” bigger than the S4 and the resolution remains the same. But the reality is that the display has been vastly improved. The resolution is still the same and the size is a bit bigger which means sharpness is still excellent and you can barely see any reduction in sharpness compared to the S4.

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The colour reproduction of the display is much better now compared to the S4 and has taken cues from the Note 3 including the different colour modes that are available. Whether you’re a fan of the saturated eye-popping colours that Super-AMOLED can produce or the more natural LCD like colours, Samsung has you covered. You can also opt for an auto adapt display where the phone adjusts the sharpness, saturation and other settings based on the application you’re using whether it’s the gallery, browser etc.

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The display is now much brighter than previous generations and has improved on sunlight legibility as well. But Samsung has worked on doing the opposite as well. They’ve enabled the screen to go to a really low minimum brightness. This is a feature that I personally love since it really helps avoid straining your eyes for instance when you’re in bed with the lights turned off. You don’t need even the bare minimum brightness that you use indoors in such a situation so you end up saving battery as well. Another situation where this helps is in the theatre where the lighting conditions are similar and on other devices, even with minimum brightness, it causes quite a distraction to other members in the audience. The S5 helps to solve that issue with the really low minimum brightness.

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Samsung also has a mode that allows the display to be extra sensitive. In this mode, you can use different objects for input say a pen or a pencil. This can be quite helpful if you want better accuracy especially when using drawing or editing applications. We’ve even tried screwdrivers and knives and they work fine as well but we suggest not using too sharp objects as they may damage the screen. We’ve tried using the phone with gloves on as well and it works perfectly fine but the phone will not be able to read your fingerprint if you’ve set that as your unlock method.

Calls, Connectivity and Storage

Samsung has two versions of the Galaxy S5, the version available in India is a 3G only variant and is powered by an Exynos Octa-Core chipset. The 4G LTE version however is powered by the Snapdragon 801 processor and is what is available in regions like Europe and USA. Samsung has chosen to stick to microSIM standard for the S5 as well. While this doesn’t really change the user experience, we feel that sooner or later they will also be forced to adopt the nanoSIM standard. A lot of companies such as Nokia and HTC are doing this already in order to tempt iPhone users to get their devices as the switch seems more seamless.

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We faced no issues with cell/data reception. The earpiece is loud enough and provides clear audio. The other party was also able to hear us well and the noise cancellation works well thanks to the two microphones. The loud speaker is clear as well but did lack a bit in terms of loudness especially in noisy environments. But the loudness should suffice in most situations apart from the one we just mentioned.

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We also got fast speeds over the data connection even under 3G and got a good browsing experience. Wi-Fi AC is supported now same as on the Note 3 and the phone performed well over Wi-Fi as well.

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USB 3.0 support is a welcome addition and the file transfer are much faster as compared to over USB 2.0. The only bad thing is that unlike the Note 3, Samsung did not include a USB 3.0 cable in the box. Considering the scale of production, we don’t think including one would have affected the pricing much. Anyway considering how USB 3.0 is a common standard now, we expect most users to have one at their homes if not they can always buy one easily at any electronics shop. USB OTG is supported and we were able to copy and write files with ease thanks to the good file manager that Samsung provides. The S5 also features an IR blaster on the top like it’s predecessor.

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The internal storage is 16/32GB and it has a microSD card slot that is expandable upto 128GB. That’s very good to see considering how the 128GB cards have just begun to enter the market. Even if you’re not getting one right now, knowing that your device can support it is a huge relief. We’ve tried a 64GB in the device and it faced no issues handling it even when it was fully loaded with content. The microSD card is also hot-swappable. You still need to remove the back cover even though you don’t need to remove the battery.

User Interface

 The Galaxy S5 comes pre-loaded with the latest Android version Kit Kat 4.4.2 with their own TouchWiz UI on top. This time around the TouchWiz UI has received a major redesign and change. The lockscreen doesn’t support widgets anymore but you do have the security features, the time, date and shortcut to the camera. If the flight mode is enabled you also get a toggle to turn it off.

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The notification area is now redesigned and looks similar to what we find on the Galaxy Tab Pro/Note Pro tablets. The icons are rounded and have a flat design. You still have the same funtions and quick toggles which you can customise according to what you access the most. There’s also a quick brightness adjust slider.

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The Recommended Apps feature shows you a set of apps when you connect an accessory. For example when you connect your earphones, it shows Music player, Youtube etc as recommended apps.

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The settings menu has also gotten a major redesign. It also has the flatter, rounded icons but the layout and location of the settings have been changed. While this looks much better than the regular settings menu, we found it quite confusing and more time consuming. You can choose either a grid view or list view. Most of the other elements of the UI such as the homescreens, app drawers etc remain the same and retains functionality from the older TouchWiz UI.

S Health

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The S Health application is more advanced now than before. Primarily because of the addition of the fingerprint sensor. The step counter keeps a track on how many steps you have covered and the calories you have burned as a result

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The fingerprint sensor allows you to measure your heart rate. All you have to do is place your finger over the sensor below the camera. it lights up in red once you press start and asks you to keep quiet and still. After a few seconds it displays your heart rate. It also shows you the last heart reading that you measure and the date and time of the reading.

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If you press the last reading, you get a full log of all the times you measured you heart rate.

Performance

Whether it is the Exynos Octa-Core processor or the Snapdragon 801 processor, the Samsung Galaxy S5 performs excellently everyday. You will not notice any issues with lag or hanging when you use the device. During my review duration the device didn’t reboot even once either.

On paper the 2GB RAM does seem a bit less considering how Note 3 had 3GB RAM and Samsung usually integrates the same amount of the RAM on the next S flagship as the previous Note. Even Sony have gone for 3GB of RAM on the Z2.

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But this does not translate to bad performance in real life. Out of the 2GB you get around 1.82GB of usable memory and around 1.2-1.3GB GB is available when everything is cleared.

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But we never ran out of memory even when we were multi-tasking on the device. Even with graphic intensive gaming, the device help up its end. Heating was not also an issue. The device did get slightly warm with heavy use but not to an extent where it became unusable.

These are the scores the S5 received during two of the benchmarks that we ran. If you wish to check how well it did for the other benchmarks, you can do so by checking the post here.

Gaming

Like we mentioned above, we also tested the gaming performance of the Galaxy S5. The device had no issues rendering complex graphical elements such as the shadows and reflections. At no time did it slow down or crash during our testing. Below are two gameplay videos of the device running GTA San Andreas and Ashpalt 8.

Music

Samsung have always tried their best to provide a great listening experience to their users. The Galaxy S5 is no exception either. The sound quality is really good and is one of the best we’ve heard on recent smartphones. In terms of loudness, the headphones suffice more than enough and in most cases you won’t need to increase the volume to it’s maximum either. As for the speaker the loudness isn’t as impressive, it’s good enough for a quiet environment but can’t grab anyone’s attention if you’re in a noisy environment. If you’re looking for loudness, you’ll need to get an HTC One or one of their phones with the BoomSound speakers. There’s hardly any distortion at maximum volume be it through headphones or the built-in speaker.

 

The placement of the speaker is the same as on the previous generation S flagship, the S4. It is located on the lower left side on the back of the device. It also has a slight bump on the grille like on the S4 as well. While this bump may seem really small, it helps a great deal in avoiding the speaker getting muffles when placed flat on its back. There is still a slight reduction in volume but it does not render the back speaker useless like on the first production units of the Nexus 4.

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You need good software to complement the hardware and that’s something Samsung has got right from the beginning as well. The music player on the S5 is one of the most feature packed players you’d find on a smartphone. It also supports a wide variety of audio formats, the most notable addition being FLAC support. Together with the great hardware, this allows you to enjoy really good quality audio right from your smartphone.

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You can sort your music in different ways – song titles, folders, artists, albums etc. Music Square is one of the more unique ways to sort music as it allows you to choose the different moods you want: Passionate, Exciting, Calm and Joyful. Each square is a combination of these four and the closer you get to one particular quality, the more it will represent that quality.

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Some of the features come in real handy as well. I particularly like the play speed setting that allows you to choose how fast or slow you wish to play a particular piece of audio. I found it helpful especially when listening to audio books as you could speed up certain parts or slow them down in case you found it difficult to understand. The Music auto off will be helpful to those who love to give a listen before they head off to sleep as you can an interval after which the music stops playing. Smart volume makes sure that all your songs are kept at a the same level of volume. This is especially helpful if you’ve various tracks of different volumes and you don’t want one song to burst your ears after you set the previous one high since you couldn’t hear it well enough.

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The now playing screen remains more or less the same. On top you’ve the all share button, volume button and options button. You’ve the album art below which you have the favourite, shuffle and repeat on/off buttons. Below that you’ve the track length, position and seeking bar. The play/pause, next/forward and previous/backwards buttons. On the left is the quick track list and on the right is the add playlist button. The SounAdlive equalizer is quite advanced and let’s you tweak the settings to achieve the optimal audio effect you desire. In case you’re not so advanced with equalisers, you can choose the presets as well.

Gallery and Video Player

The S5 has quite an advanced gallery that offers various ways to view your images. You can choose to arrange them in order of time or according to albums or events. But it can do more than that, you can choose to filter photos with just people in them and it works very accurately. The same applies to filtering scenic photos and documents and photos of vehicles as well. We found this very helpful when we had a particular photo we needed to find and we knew what the content of the image was. You can choose to change the size of the thumbnails as well.

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The phones supports sharing of images to Facebook, Picasa and Dropbox by default. Photo editing is more powerful now as well and gives you a lot of advanced features that are normally found on third party apps. You’ll also need to use the editor if you wish tochange the focus on photos captured using the selective focus mode.

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The video players hasn’t changed much from previous generation devices but that is not necessarily a bad thing. It still supports almost every format that you’d normally require to use so you dont have to worry about converting the files before copying and playing them on the device. Subtitles support is still there as well. It loads the subtitles automatically if the filenames are the same, if not you can choose to manually select the subtitles as well.

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You’ll be happy to see some of the features that are available in the music player such as playback speed, SoundAlive etc are available in the video player as well although SoundAlive isn’t as extensive here but still gives you a choice in terms of how the audio is processed. If you wish, you can also re-direct the audio over bluetooth.

Camera

 

One of the main highlights of the S5 was the bump in resolution and the new sensor it uses. The S5 packs a 16MP 1/2.6” ISOCELL sensor. It is also a widescreen sensor so shooting in 16:9 resolution, you would still be able to use all the pixels that are on offer. This is much better as compared to previous gens where you lose a lot of pixel when shooting in 16:9 modes.

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The image quality that the S5 offers is really good. It captures quite good amount of detail and also takes quite sharp photos. Although at times the sharpening is a bit much, it’s still good to see crisp photos. The colours are saturated a bit more as compared to other phones but this is something we expect most people want in a camera.

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The low light performance is quite good too with very minimal noise even in photos taken in pitch black conditions. While phones like the 1520 do perform slightly better in low light, the S5 performs remarkably well as compared to previous generations. Autofocus like Samsung claims is one of the fastest that we’ve seen on recent phones, the phone manages to focus and take the snap in not time. Even though the camera does not have OIS (Optical Image Stabilisation) we noticed that most of our shots didn’t have any visible shake. This could be attribute to the fast focusing and shutter.

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HDR mode has changed a bit on the S5. While the phone does a good job at capturing the details in the shadows and highlights better than previous Samsung phones, it has reduced the amount of colour saturation in post processing. While we don’t mind this and in fact prefer the change, we aren’t sure if everyone would agree. The general conception of HDR photos being over-saturated is what most people expect. The S5 also gives you the ability to see what the HDR photo would look like before it is actually captured.

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We were happy to see that the S5 could focus quite close and take some very good macro shots with great detail. The front camera is quite good as well. Captures a good amount of light and not much noise is involved. It also comes with a beauty face option that allows you to choose the amount of airbrushing that’s used. This will be extremely good for people who love to take selfies and will help make the imperfections on your skin (if you have any) disappear.

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The camera interface is quite detailed yet simple enough for even beginners to understand. Users can just launch the camera application and begin shooting photos at once or choose to play around with the various settings the camera has to offer such as white balance, exposure compensation etc.

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The whole interface and buttons change orientation based on the way you hold your phone. By default the mode is set to auto but users can choose other modes including best shot, beauty shot, panorama, surround shot etc. You can even download more modes online.

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The camera shutter key is in the middle and rather than having to switch between video and photo mode, there are two separate keys. The video recording key is located right next to the camera shutter key. The mode button and the photo preview thumbnail is also located on the same side. You also have a quick preview of the flash and mic setting.

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On the other side you have the settings key and the camera switch (that allows you to change between front and rear cameras). In between these two buttons is the customisable area where you can add three quick toggles of you choice from the settings menu for easier and faster access to setting that you regularly. use. By default it is set to HDR mode toggle and the selective focus mode toggles. I personally like to have the flash toggle and the effects options along with the HDR toggle.

The various modes the camera offers is nice as well. The surround shot takes some really beautiful photos and so does the panaroma mode. You can take a look at few of the samples we’ve taken using the various modes and judge the quality yourself.

 

One thing the S5 camera department lacks is a dedicated camera button. Using the on-screen button isn’t as effortless and effective. But a slight relief is that you can use the volume up/down buttons as shutter keys. But it works differently from how a regular shutter key works and can take a bit of getting used to. Initially I kept forgetting to take my finger off the key but after a few shots, I got used to it. Pressing the button kicks in the autofocus and once you’ve focused on the subject, releasing the button takes the photo. One downside however is that we noticed the focusing is slightly slower as compared to using the on-screen shutter button. It isn’t a big difference but it is still noticeable. The reason why I say the volume button isn’t as good as a dedicated shutter key is because on a proper shutter key you press the device and since you’re pressing the key down with one finger and another finger pushes the devices from below, the device remains stable. But with the volume key, there’s ever a slight shake, its minimal but it does make a difference.

The Galaxy S5 is capable of capturing UHD 4K video at 30fps. As you can see from the samples that are included, phone captures really good detail on video and also has good noise control and colour reproduction. There are a few other modes as well such as slow motion, fast motion and smooth motion. Within these modes you can tweak the severity of the effect as well.

You can check additional camera samples of the Galaxy S5 here. Here is the camera review

Battery Life

 

This is one of the most tricky aspects of a phone review. Battery life is very subjective and can vary according to the way one uses their phones. The Samsung Galaxy S5 packs a 2800mAH battery which is 200mAH juicier compared to the S4 yet packs a marginally 0.1” bigger display. This means that we should be getting slightly better battery life out of the S5 as compared to the S4. And in reality we do.

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I like to judge the battery life based on the amount of screen on and call duration that a phone can handle. These two aspects are two major battery drainers on a phone. According to my usage, I was able to get around 4 hours of screen on and around an hour of calling out of the phone by the time it reached 15%.

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This is an improvement over the Galaxy S4. The Galaxy S5 offers battery life quite similar to the Note 3, which is quite good to say but is definitely not a leader in the battery department. I personally love my LG G Flex for the battery life. If you’re coming from a similar phone then you will find the S5 battery life disappointing, if not then it’s good enough. Samsung could achieve better results with better software optimization.

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Whether it will last you a full day or more depends on how you use your phone. The standby battery drain is very minimal. So if your phone screen remains on for 5 hours within a span of 15 hours or 10 hours, it’ll end up consuming almost the same. Give or take 5%. The phone charges quite fast and you can use a USB 3.0 cable or a 2.0 cable to do so. There’s no difference in charging times between the two but you can choose either depending on your convenience.

We’re glad to see that Samsung still provides a removable battery even with the waterproof capabilities. Not many manufacturers do that today even if they don’t have the excuse of waterproofing their phones. Having a removable battery makes sure that the user can easily replace the battery in case it dies or even makes it easier to buy 3rd party batteries and accessories.

Conclusion

Overall the Samsung Galaxy S5 is a good flagship device. Whether or not it’s worth upgrading to depends on what phone you are using and what exactly you are looking for in an upgrade. For example a user of the S4 might not see the S5 as being a significant upgrade on paper solely by looking at the specifications but perhaps after reading this, you might have a better understanding and will help you make a decision.

Pros

  • Sharp and vibrant screen with good sunlight legibility
  • Great audio quality
  • Good build quality
  • Waterproof and dustproof
  • Great camera quality
  • Fingerprint Scanner
  • Good performance
  • Expandable memory (Upto 128GB)
  • Removable Battery

Cons

  • No dedicated camera key
  • Loudspeaker is a bit low on volume
  • The back cover pattern may not impress everyone
  • Above average battery life

Siraj Hassan, Srivatsan and Bharadwaj also contributed to this review. 🙂


Author: Sandeep Sarma

Sandeep Sarma is a blogger and a freelance photographer. Apart from gadgets and phones, he also has a passion for movies and cars. He currently uses the S7 Edge as his main phone. Catch him on twitter at @sandeep9sarma