A couple of days ago Samsung’s new flagship smartphone, the Samsung Galaxy S5, hit stores in 125 countries including my own. Me being a huge Android fan and obviously a writer on an Android news website decided that picking up a new Samsung Galaxy S5 would be a smart and interesting thing to do, so I did just that. At the time my daily driver was a Nexus 5, Google’s latest smartphone, so the jump to a Samsung device would be like night and day, Nexus devices are known for their stock Android and Samsung devices are known for their heavily modified version of Android known as TouchWiz. This being the case, a couple of my Nexus loving friends told me that I would rue the day I traded my Nexus 5 for an S5, I almost agreed with them and almost didn’t make the purchase…almost.
When the employee at the T-Mobile store first handed me my shiny new Galaxy S5 I was impressed, I had never held or seen one in person and it surprisingly felt good to hold, its back cover had a leather/rubber feel to it that made me feel confident that I would not be dropping this phone. After returning home and inspecting the Samsung phone more closely I realized how pretty the phone was, yes I said it, the “band-aid phone” was pretty in person, I liked it, its dimpled back and shiny silver band going around the entire side of the phone.
While I loved the Galaxy S5’s physical appearance I surprisingly also found TouchWiz to be pretty decent and even better than stock Android in some ways. Some of the nice features Samsung has added into TouchWiz that stock Android doesn’t have is for instance the ability to make folders in the app drawer, the ability to have five apps as opposed to four in the app tray on your homescreen, and a much more configurable and robust quick-settings section in the notification pane. Of course all these features and much more that Samsung crams into it’s TouchWiz OS comes at a price, almost half of your internal storage gets taken up by TouchWiz (about 7GB on my T-Mobile variant) and a bit of lag here and there that has forever plagued Samsung devices.
Last but certainly not least I wanted to touch on the two most impressive factors of the Galaxy S5, it’s screen and camera. The display on the Galaxy S5 is a Super AMOLED disaply with a pixel density of 432 ppi and it’s flat-out beautiful, much brighter and better looking than my Nexus 5. And as for the camera, it blew me away. When I first snapped a picture with the Galaxy S5 I was very impressed, the image was super clear and even zoomed in all the way the camera still took clear images. You can really tell that the Galaxy S5 has a 16MP camera.
So does it bother me to switch to a polar opposite phone? Actually no, not at all. I have been using the Galaxy S5 for a couple of days now and it has grown on me tremendously in those couple of days, all of the features, the great screen and camera, they have me loving this phone. I used to look at Samsung users as people who didn’t know a lot about smartphones just buying the one that was advertised everywhere, but maybe there is something more to it then that, maybe people buy the new Samsung flagship phone every year because they actually like it. Regardless, the S5 has changed my opinion of Samsung and it’s followers and made me a little less of a Nexus fanboy.
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