SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Kevin Benedict, Rich Waidmann, Pat Romanski, Michael Jannery, Javier Paniza

Blog Feed Post

Samsung Galaxy S5 Review

Samsung Galaxy S5

I’ve been using the Samsung Galaxy S4 as my main mobile device for just about a year now (it launched in March 2013 and was made publically available in April 2013) and I like it – but to be as honest as possible, I don’t love it. My main issues with the S4 have to do with the camera, battery life, ergonomics and undeletable Samsung bloatware, but the list is much longer. So, I was very, very excited to get my hands on the new, improved Samsung Galaxy S5. Sadly, my excitement quickly turned to ambivalence. Alas, the S5 only offers small improvements over the S4. It is iterative, not innovative. In other words, if you don’t need a new phone, you don’t need an S5. It’s not a phone you break your existing contract to purchase and there are no good reasons to purchase the phone at full retail price.

Here’s What You Get

  • A plastic phone with a removable back that runs Android 4.4 KitKat and features a very peppy 2.5 GHz Snapdragon 801 quad-core processor.
  • A 16 megapixel rear facing camera with Phase Detection Auto Focus that, by the numbers, looks like it will be the best smart phone camera ever. In practice, it is a minor improvement over the camera in the S4 and it still does not take better pictures (qualitatively, subjectively, ergonomically, or as quickly) as an iPhone 5s.
  • A 5.1” Full HD Super AMOLED® display, wide viewing angles and Multi Window capability that is absolutely best in class.

The rest of the technical specifications will not materially impact your experience with the device, but if you really need to see them, click here.

New Hardware and Features

The S5 has a built-in fingerprint sensor that can be used to unlock the phone and to authenticate and authorize PayPal payments. Interesting, but not awesome.

The 4K video feature is just a parlor trick, and a vicious one at that. 4K (or UltraHD) video has about 4.26 times the resolution of 2K (or HD) video. 4K files are massive, and there is very little chance that you will have anything (like a 75″+ UHD Video Monitor) to play it back on. Unless you are playing 4K back on a monitor over 75″ in size, there’s no point in viewing content in 4K.

Another parlor trick is the Baby Monitor feature. If you also have a Galaxy Gear smartwatch, you can use your phone as a baby monitor, which detects sounds and alerts your Gear that you should check on your child. It’s not the best use of either device – get an actual baby monitor for $30 at Walmart and use your smart phone to play Candy Crush.

I’m a big fan of S Health™4 and the newly integrated platform that lets you track nutrition, fitness and wellness, and includes the world’s first Heart Rate Sensor integrated into a smartphone. But, as you know, there are better dedicated devices, apps and wearables currently available – visit smartphonediet.info for more details.

The Bottom Line

The Samsung Galaxy S5 is a very nice smart phone with excellent features. It is more like an enhanced version of the S4 than a new “rock the house” device. That said, if you need a new phone or if you’ve been waiting for a best-in-class Android 4.4 “plastic” five-incher to come out, you should seriously consider the S5. Why call out “plastic?” Because if you want a metal case, killer speakers and a better camera all wrapped up in an elegant package, you really want an HTC One M8. The S5 wins the plastic phone with a removable back contest, but if you’re an Android person and your “camera” is your primary “smart phone,” the HTC One M8 is the current leader of the pack.

I’m really looking forward to the Samsung Galaxy S6… at least, I think I am.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Shelly Palmer

Shelly Palmer is the host of Fox Television’s "Shelly Palmer Digital Living" television show about living and working in a digital world. He is Fox 5′s (WNYW-TV New York) Tech Expert and the host of United Stations Radio Network’s, MediaBytes, a daily syndicated radio report that features insightful commentary and a unique insiders take on the biggest stories in technology, media, and entertainment.

Latest Stories
“DevOps is really about the business. The business is under pressure today, competitively in the marketplace to respond to the expectations of the customer. The business is driving IT and the problem is that IT isn't responding fast enough," explained Mark Levy, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Serena Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Entuity®, a provider of enterprise-class network management solutions, today announced that it solidifies its position as a market leader through global enterprise customer acquisitions and a refined channel strategy. In 2014, Entuity increased new license revenues in EMEA by over 75 percent, and LATAM by over 125 percent as customers embraced Entuity for its highly automated solution and unified architecture. Entuity’s refined channel strategy focuses on even deeper strategic alignment with ke...
The 3rd International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that its Call for Papers is now open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.
We are all here because we are sold on the transformative promise of The Cloud. But what good is all of this ephemeral, on-demand infrastructure if your usage doesn't actually improve the agility and speed of your business? How must Operations adapt in order to avoid stifling your Cloud initiative? In his session at DevOps Summit, Damon Edwards, co-founder and managing partner of the DTO Solutions, will highlight the successful organizational, process, and tooling patterns of high-performing c...
Technology is enabling a new approach to collecting and using data. This approach, commonly referred to as the "Internet of Things" (IoT), enables businesses to use real-time data from all sorts of things including machines, devices and sensors to make better decisions, improve customer service, and lower the risk in the creation of new revenue opportunities. In his General Session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Dave Wagstaff, Vice President and Chief Architect at BSQUARE Corporation, discuss the ...
“We help people build clusters, in the classical sense of the cluster. We help people put a full stack on top of every single one of those machines. We do the full bare metal install," explained Greg Bruno, Vice President of Engineering and co-founder of StackIQ, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 15th Cloud Expo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
At 15th Cloud Expo, Shrikant Pattathil, Executive Vice President at Harbinger Systems, demos a video delivery platform that helps you do interactive videos. He discusses how Harbinger is accomplishing it in the cloud world, the problems they faced and the choices they made to get around these problems.
"People are a lot more knowledgeable about APIs now. There are two types of people who work with APIs - IT people who want to use APIs for something internal and the product managers who want to do something outside APIs for people to connect to them," explained Roberto Medrano, Executive Vice President at SOA Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at Cloud Expo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
AppDynamics, the application intelligence leader for software-defined businesses, announced the general availability of the AppDynamics Fall '14 Release. Serving the combined needs of IT and business teams across the enterprise, the latest release provides a comprehensive view across all aspects of digital performance in ultra large scale deployments. AppDynamics delivers Application Intelligence by building out advanced capabilities across the key areas of analytics, unified monitoring and D...
CloudBees, Inc., has announced a $23.5 million financing round, led by longtime CloudBees investor Lightspeed Venture Partners. Existing investors Matrix Partners, Verizon Ventures and Blue Cloud Ventures also participated in the round. The latest funding announcement follows earlier rounds of $4 million, $10.5 million and $10.8 million, bringing the total investment in CloudBees to just under $50 million since the company’s inception in 2010. Previous venture investment rounds were led by Ma...
In this Women in Technology Power Panel at 15th Cloud Expo, moderated by Anne Plese, Senior Consultant, Cloud Product Marketing at Verizon Enterprise, Esmeralda Swartz, CMO at MetraTech; Evelyn de Souza, Data Privacy and Compliance Strategy Leader at Cisco Systems; Seema Jethani, Director of Product Management at Basho Technologies; Victoria Livschitz, CEO of Qubell Inc.; Anne Hungate, Senior Director of Software Quality at DIRECTV, discussed what path they took to find their spot within the tec...
We’re no longer looking to the future for the IoT wave. It’s no longer a distant dream but a reality that has arrived. It’s now time to make sure the industry is in alignment to meet the IoT growing pains – cooperate and collaborate as well as innovate. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jim Hunter, Chief Scientist & Technology Evangelist at Greenwave Systems, will examine the key ingredients to IoT success and identify solutions to challenges the industry is facing. The deep industry expertise be...
The cloud is becoming the de-facto way for enterprises to leverage common infrastructure while innovating and one of the biggest obstacles facing public cloud computing is security. In his session at 15th Cloud Expo, Jeff Aliber, a global marketing executive at Verizon, discussed how the best place for web security is in the cloud. Benefits include: Functions as the first layer of defense Easy operation –CNAME change Implement an integrated solution Best architecture for addressing network-l...
DevOps Summit 2015 New York, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that it is now accepting Keynote Proposals. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete...
The Industrial Internet revolution is now underway, enabled by connected machines and billions of devices that communicate and collaborate. The massive amounts of Big Data requiring real-time analysis is flooding legacy IT systems and giving way to cloud environments that can handle the unpredictable workloads. Yet many barriers remain until we can fully realize the opportunities and benefits from the convergence of machines and devices with Big Data and the cloud, including interoperability, ...