Samsung Galaxy S5: Simple Everyday User Review

I have never written a review on any piece of technology but life is all about expanding, trying new things, so alas lets give this a try.

A bit of background

I am a technology aficionado. I love to read, try, and experience new forms of technology when I can. The latest gizmo is the Galaxy S5.

I started my smartphone life  with the release of the original iPhone. It was really my first phone and it was quite awesome. I loved that thing. I stayed an apple fanboy all the way to the iPhone 4. Then I moved into Android College after I upgraded from my iPhone 4 to the Galaxy S3, two years after that and here we are with the S5.

Although I love technology I am also not one to buy the latest and greatest the moment it comes out. Sure I love trying new products, but buying a new phone every year, every 3 months, is just plain stupid. So after my S3 had been through many drops, two cracked screens, and a slow inevitable death I decided it was time.

Samsung S5: Looks

My first impression of the S5 was, wow, I really like how it feels in my hand. I know most people hate how the S5 looks, but I really like it. I love the softer, more natural feeling backing of the S5. I love the gorgeous screen and how it goes right up to the edge of the phone. I even like the little circular dimples adorning the backside. For such a big phone it fits really well in my hand. I even found it more comfortable to hold then the S3.

The one thing I would change is the raised bevel framing the screen. I can see dirt and small dust particles getting crammed between the edge and the screen. I have already had to use a small piece of paper and floss it through to remove any particles of dust.

Samsung S5: Features

This is in my opinion why, currently, the S5 is the best phone available. It has so many practical features that are great additions. I especially love S Health. The phone tracks how many steps you walked in a current day and shows you calories burned. You can track your food intake, sleep schedule, exercise, and even measure your heart beat. This is a great addition to a phone since it’s what we all carry with us to the gym. No need for a pen and paper to track your calories or workouts, we all know those damn things keep getting lost.

Another killer feature is the fact that you can enhance the storage of the phone up to 128 GB with a SD card. With camera quality getting better and better that means picture and video sizes are also getting bigger and bigger. A phone that has no way to up its hard drive is, in my opinion, a brick. There have been so many vacations where my wife’s iPhone won’t record a video because it’s full and she has to delete pictures to make room. Whereas I can just keep shooting and recording until my heart’s content.

The best feature, is the camera. Hands down it is better than the M8 & the iPhone 5. The quality is crisp, clear, and vibrant. There are so many features in the camera app itself that you can take ridiculously great pictures for your Instagram uploads.

Samsung S5: Battery Life

I am a heavy phone user. I am constantly using maps, taking pictures, editing images, creating graphics for Instagram, and oh yea, making the occasional calls. With all this usage the phone, surprisingly, does really well. I can’t go the whole day without having to recharge again, but like I said, I am on my phone all the time. If you do use it normally it should have no problem going the whole day on a single charge. Even with my extreme usage it does last me almost all day if I go into extreme power saving mode. Which is a feature that turns the phone’s screen into black & white and forces it to do basic tasks, like making calls and taking texts.

Samsung S5: TouchWiz Lag

The biggest problem for me is the fact that Samsung adds TouchWiz on top of Androids OS. It really dims the shine on what is a great phone. The lag, oh the lag. It has been a problem for a majority of Samsung users, and is one of the biggest gripes against it. Now some people really love TouchWiz and those people should all become friends with each other and leave this forum, the rest of us can and should, download another launcher to replace TouchWiz. I opted for Nova Launcher and it has brought back that speed I crave.  Everything from opening apps, to flipping through the phones pages is snappier. I would highly suggest anyone suffering from any sort of lag on their S5 to consider this option.

Samsung S5: Final Thoughts

I know this wasn’t the most detailed review but that wasn’t the point of this. I wanted to give my real world user opinion of the S5. I am not a tech writer and have never reviewed a phone before. I am however a user of the technology we all love and for me the S5 is the best phone to buy right now. It has amazing features, a removable battery, SD card storage, heart beat monitor, water proofing, a gorgeous screen, and a fantastic camera. Its only issue is the lag and honestly after overriding TouchWiz with Nova Launcher I haven’t encountered that dreaded lag. Thats what Android is about, it’s about customizing the phone to how you like it and for me there is no phone out there I would want to customize other than the S5.

– Omar M


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