With brands rolling out revamped versions of their phones every year, the race to upgrade one’s smartphone has become somewhat a hobby for tech fans. But is there really a point to buying every new phone that’s out? Now, if you’ve been following the geek version of the arms race, Android users have been getting ahead of Apple’s iOS because of the fluidity and versatility that comes with Android customisations. One of the forerunners of the Android bandwagon, South Korean tech giants Samsung, has built itself up to be a dominant force in the smartphone market.
March last year saw the brand release its Samsung Galaxy S4 to much fanfare. Its specifications were a step up from the S4’s predecessor, the S3 and was poised to be Samsung’s flagship smartphone alongside the Note 3. It’s an arguably fantastic phone and was listed on several sites as one of the top phones of 2013. This year, Samsung has launched the updated Galaxy S5. Now, it’s important to remember that tech-fans have had a field day before the launch, speculating on the updates and changes that would come with the S5. Unfortunately, based on what we’ve seen, the phone hasn’t really pushed the boundaries that Samsung has come to be known for. We break down why you shouldn’t be looking to cash in your Galaxy S4 just yet.
Samsung has decided to keep with the plastic casing on its phone, a point of disappointment after the Apple iPhone 5S’ flashy metal casing. One would think that Samsung would have jumped on the material change immediately. It’s not to say that the S5 has no differentiating factor. The dimple effect on the back panel, presumably to aid grip, gives a rugged feel to the S5. In addition, its size has been upgraded to give the phone a larger feel but not encroaching on “phablet-size” territory. The 142 x 73mm is four percent larger than the only slightly smaller S4, which measured at 137x70mm. Though the S5 makes up for in size, pixel density in the phone is smaller than the S4 (the brand has opted to keep the same 1920 x 1080 resolution) leaving rest to the rumours that a 2K resolution was imminent.
On the inside
The S5 does however boast Qualcomm’s newest Snapdragon 801, a faster variant of the Snapdragon seen in Android phones like the Nexus 5 and the LG-G2. For the tech-geeks, this means better power and ridiculous speeds for the phone (probably the most important aspect of the new S5). The increased pattery power is the only rumour that was realised ahead of the launch. Samsung’s Galaxy S5 will have a 2800mAh battery, a jump from the S4’s 2600mAh. Because the handset features removable batteries, users need not worry about having to charge on the go, another plus point on Samsung’s side. Another interesting feature will be the Ultra Power Saving Mode. According to Samsung, the phone will turn itself into a black and white mode while shutting down other applications to maintain critical power, a must if you’re constantly on the go.
In truth, Samsung’s Galaxy S5 is hardly a bad phone. It’s got the best processing power needed in the arena of smartphones today and the looks to back it up. If you’re looking to convert over from the Apple side of the fence or you’re still holding on to a phone that’s two years old, the S5 is a great step. Other than that, maybe hold on for a little longer and see what this year’s smartphone race will yield.