Buy advice: 1520 or S5

Max(IT)

Suspended
Original poster
Dec 8, 2009
8,550
1,640
Italy
I have an opportunity from my carrier, at basically the same price, to choose between a Lumia 1520 and a Galaxy S5, and I'm undecided ...
I'd like to try the Samsung 's flagship, for sure. But it has many flaws, so I'm not 100% sure.
It's Samsung, and that means it is bloated with crappy apps and its awful TouchWiz UI. Other than that, its build quality is quite poor, and its back cover is just orrible.
But it has a great display, a very good SoC, a very good camera and a fantastic battery.
On the other end, the 1520 use WP 8.1 that I love, has a great battery too, and it could perhaps be an acceptable substitute for both the Lumia 925 and the nexus 7.
But the Lumia is huge, a phablet, and a big one, and the Windows Store surely is not as good as Play Store.
I have a few days to decide, and I don't know what to do ....
 

jamezr

macrumors G5
Aug 7, 2011
12,552
10,053
US
I have an opportunity from my carrier, at basically the same price, to choose between a Lumia 1520 and a Galaxy S5, and I'm undecided ...
I'd like to try the Samsung 's flagship, for sure. But it has many flaws, so I'm not 100% sure.
It's Samsung, and that means it is bloated with crappy apps and its awful TouchWiz UI. Other than that, its build quality is quite poor, and its back cover is just orrible.
But it has a great display, a very good SoC, a very good camera and a fantastic battery.
On the other end, the 1520 use WP 8.1 that I love, has a great battery too, and it could perhaps be an acceptable substitute for both the Lumia 925 and the nexus 7.
But the Lumia is huge, a phablet, and a big one, and the Windows Store surely is not as good as Play Store.
I have a few days to decide, and I don't know what to do ....
I would recommend the S5 only on T-Mobile. The reason is the devices bootloader can be unlocked. You can root and flash roms and get ASOP on the S5 that way. It would eliminate all the heavy TW stuff and give you a pure Android experience. But either way they are bot great phones.....
 

eddiec312

macrumors 6502
Jul 19, 2008
360
7
Miami, FL
Since you seem to like WP and don't mind the size go for the Lumia. I wouldn't be able to stand WP so I would never choose the Lumia.
 

Max(IT)

Suspended
Original poster
Dec 8, 2009
8,550
1,640
Italy
I would recommend the S5 only on T-Mobile. The reason is the devices bootloader can be unlocked. You can root and flash roms and get ASOP on the S5 that way. It would eliminate all the heavy TW stuff and give you a pure Android experience. But either way they are bot great phones.....
In Italy phones are unlocked ...
I could flash a GPE rom when available, but I don't like the idea of buy something with the need of flash another rom to have a good device.
D like to have a GPE s5

----------

Since you seem to like WP and don't mind the size go for the Lumia. I wouldn't be able to stand WP so I would never choose the Lumia.
Actually the problem is that I don't know if I don't mind the size ....
 

MRU

Suspended
Aug 23, 2005
25,312
8,706
Other
I've been using my M8 as my daily driver for last two days and I actually miss a lot of what the Lumia 1520 offers. I actually think windows phone keyboard is exceptional, auto correct is fantastic too. The bigger dimensions may mean its a two hander, but I find that sometimes makes things like messaging and writing emails more accurate.

Mobile internet browsing is also a much more pleasurable experience on a 6" screen over a 5" one.

Yes windows App Store doesn't have as many apps or the variety of Google play store, If your the type of person who once has all their app bases covered can settle - then you'll be alright.

The 1520 camera is fantastic, and wireless charging built in is great too. Another mention must be that the screen on the device is fantastic in regards to scratch proofing (gorilla glass 3) and the outside daylight viewing with a combination of great screen, great auto brightness and nokias software optimisation for daylight use means even on a bright day you can use the phone without problems outside.


The S5 is no slouch, you know at this stage what you are getting. Basically if you feel you are tied to Android marketplace and don't mind Touchwiz and it's idiosyncrasies then you likely wouldn't have any regrets with that either.

Either is a great phone. Windows 8.1 just feels a little more fresh at the moment if your in the market for change, but if your after familiarity and lots of apps - especially games - the S5 is a solid phone.


Two nice devices ...
 

Max(IT)

Suspended
Original poster
Dec 8, 2009
8,550
1,640
Italy
I'm a little worried by Lumia 's dimensions , but you are right: even 5" aren't good for one hand use, so maybe once you pass the 5" barrier , it doesn't matter anymore
 

MRU

Suspended
Aug 23, 2005
25,312
8,706
Other
I'm a little worried by Lumia 's dimensions , but you are right: even 5" aren't good for one hand use, so maybe once you pass the 5" barrier , it doesn't matter anymore
Yeah there may be some truth to that. The size difference from the Note 3 to the 1520 was unnoticeable to me ...


Do you drive and use the phone in the car ? Just some other observations..

One other thing for me in favour of the 1520 is the driving mode. When paired to bluetooth in my car the way the Lumia will tell you you have a text message and ask if you want it read to you, and then allow you to respond is really great. We know we shouldn't; but we've all texted or attempted to one handed whilst driving, with the 1520 I'm never tempted to.

I have no trouble pairing my S4 GPE or HTC M8 to my car, but the Nokia does do it better, and must say as a Sat Nav with Nokia Drive - the 6" screen and great visibility makes it a stellar Sat Nav (And it's free) and one that is better than Google Maps as you don't need internet connection as map can be downloaded fully.
 

AppleScruff1

macrumors G4
Feb 10, 2011
10,010
2,871
I have an opportunity from my carrier, at basically the same price, to choose between a Lumia 1520 and a Galaxy S5, and I'm undecided ...
I'd like to try the Samsung 's flagship, for sure. But it has many flaws, so I'm not 100% sure.
It's Samsung, and that means it is bloated with crappy apps and its awful TouchWiz UI. Other than that, its build quality is quite poor, and its back cover is just orrible.
But it has a great display, a very good SoC, a very good camera and a fantastic battery.
On the other end, the 1520 use WP 8.1 that I love, has a great battery too, and it could perhaps be an acceptable substitute for both the Lumia 925 and the nexus 7.
But the Lumia is huge, a phablet, and a big one, and the Windows Store surely is not as good as Play Store.
I have a few days to decide, and I don't know what to do ....
Support the underdog and be daring, different and non conforming. Buy the 1520. Everyone has an iPhone or Galaxy. Don't be a follower, be a leader. :D
 

Max(IT)

Suspended
Original poster
Dec 8, 2009
8,550
1,640
Italy
Support the underdog and be daring, different and non conforming. Buy the 1520. Everyone has an iPhone or Galaxy. Don't be a follower, be a leader. :D
I followed your advice and bought the 1520 :D

Seriously my final decision went to the Lumia after a long morning in the shop.
Build quality of the Samsung is just mediocre , no matter what Samsung's apologizers say. I held it, I used it for a while ... the impression is to keep a cheap phone, and I don't like it. And touchwiz is still something I don't like too. It is surely better than what I saw on my wife's S4, but still a mess.
Yet I was undecided about which one to buy .... because the S5 has a more modern hardware (and I'm a tech geek) and a more pleasant form factor.
I finally bought the Lumia because of WP 8.1, something I don't want to lose at this time.
 

jamezr

macrumors G5
Aug 7, 2011
12,552
10,053
US
I followed your advice and bought the 1520 :D

Seriously my final decision went to the Lumia after a long morning in the shop.
Build quality of the Samsung is just mediocre , no matter what Samsung's apologizers say. I held it, I used it for a while ... the impression is to keep a cheap phone, and I don't like it. And touchwiz is still something I don't like too. It is surely better than what I saw on my wife's S4, but still a mess.
Yet I was undecided about which one to buy .... because the S5 has a more modern hardware (and I'm a tech geek) and a more pleasant form factor.
I finally bought the Lumia because of WP 8.1, something I don't want to lose at this time.
Good for you Max....be sure to write back and lets us know what you think of the 1520. It is a great phone!
 

Vegastouch

macrumors 603
Jul 12, 2008
5,443
383
Las Vegas, NV
I have an opportunity from my carrier, at basically the same price, to choose between a Lumia 1520 and a Galaxy S5, and I'm undecided ...
I'd like to try the Samsung 's flagship, for sure. But it has many flaws, so I'm not 100% sure.
It's Samsung, and that means it is bloated with crappy apps and its awful TouchWiz UI. Other than that, its build quality is quite poor, and its back cover is just orrible.
But it has a great display, a very good SoC, a very good camera and a fantastic battery.
On the other end, the 1520 use WP 8.1 that I love, has a great battery too, and it could perhaps be an acceptable substitute for both the Lumia 925 and the nexus 7.
But the Lumia is huge, a phablet, and a big one, and the Windows Store surely is not as good as Play Store.
I have a few days to decide, and I don't know what to do ....
What carrier are you on and what will you do with your Lumia 925? Im looking to pick one up but dont want a new one from the store. Looking to just buy it. Im on T-Mobile.
 

tbayrgs

macrumors 604
Jul 5, 2009
6,511
3,435
What carrier are you on and what will you do with your Lumia 925? Im looking to pick one up but dont want a new one from the store. Looking to just buy it. Im on T-Mobile.
Considering he's in Italy, may just want to look up the specs of the international version to verify compatibility with T-Mobile. ;)
 

mclld

macrumors 68020
Nov 6, 2012
2,204
1,195
I thought I have seen you complaining about Samsung and the GS5, why would you even consider it if so?
 

sracer

macrumors G3
Apr 9, 2010
8,357
8,718
Prescott Valley, AZ
I followed your advice and bought the 1520 :D

Seriously my final decision went to the Lumia after a long morning in the shop.
Build quality of the Samsung is just mediocre , no matter what Samsung's apologizers say. I held it, I used it for a while ... the impression is to keep a cheap phone, and I don't like it. And touchwiz is still something I don't like too. It is surely better than what I saw on my wife's S4, but still a mess.
Yet I was undecided about which one to buy .... because the S5 has a more modern hardware (and I'm a tech geek) and a more pleasant form factor.
I finally bought the Lumia because of WP 8.1, something I don't want to lose at this time.
Congrats! I'm very impressed with my Lumia 520 and looked at the 1520 but couldn't justify the cost. (I'd buy it at the unsubsidized price).
 

AppleScruff1

macrumors G4
Feb 10, 2011
10,010
2,871
I followed your advice and bought the 1520 :D

Seriously my final decision went to the Lumia after a long morning in the shop.
Build quality of the Samsung is just mediocre , no matter what Samsung's apologizers say. I held it, I used it for a while ... the impression is to keep a cheap phone, and I don't like it. And touchwiz is still something I don't like too. It is surely better than what I saw on my wife's S4, but still a mess.
Yet I was undecided about which one to buy .... because the S5 has a more modern hardware (and I'm a tech geek) and a more pleasant form factor.
I finally bought the Lumia because of WP 8.1, something I don't want to lose at this time.
Spoken like a true rebel! I'm interested in hearing your thoughts on the phone, performance, screen quality, etc and also on the size and how you carry it. Enjoy!
 
Having tried WP on the move, as a business traveller, I've concluded it's not quite there yet. It's good, but not without issues. It's multi tasking model seems to make instant messaging (I'm a big Skype user, when on the move) problematic. Some of my customers operate in jurisdictions that block Skype, so the lack of Google Hangouts can be a problem. OTOH, the email, calendar, phone functions, web browsing and so on are very good. I guess it depends on now you use it.

Windows Phone 8.1? I have the highest hopes.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
63,853
30,369
Boston
I followed your advice and bought the 1520 :D
Congrats, its a nice phone, I was playing with one at a Microsoft store. I like my Icon but the 1520 is nice because of its size. WP8.1 is really a great improvement as well :D
 

Max(IT)

Suspended
Original poster
Dec 8, 2009
8,550
1,640
Italy
What carrier are you on and what will you do with your Lumia 925? Im looking to pick one up but dont want a new one from the store. Looking to just buy it. Im on T-Mobile.
I'm on Vodafone ...
I'm going to sell my 925 once I'll return to Italy in a week. And I'm not happy since the Lumia 925 is a very good phone, especially with 8.1

----------

I thought I have seen you complaining about Samsung and the GS5, why would you even consider it if so?
Because after all I'm quite open minded, and I'd like to try it for a while, awaiting the iPhone 6 .... But it really disappointed me

----------

Spoken like a true rebel! I'm interested in hearing your thoughts on the phone, performance, screen quality, etc and also on the size and how you carry it. Enjoy!
I'll let you know in about a week, when I'm going to take it once in Italy again

----------

Having tried WP on the move, as a business traveller, I've concluded it's not quite there yet. It's good, but not without issues. It's multi tasking model seems to make instant messaging (I'm a big Skype user, when on the move) problematic. Some of my customers operate in jurisdictions that block Skype, so the lack of Google Hangouts can be a problem. OTOH, the email, calendar, phone functions, web browsing and so on are very good. I guess it depends on now you use it.

Windows Phone 8.1? I have the highest hopes.
You didn't try it with WP 8.1 .... It is quite a change, believe me
 
Max(IT) said:
You didn't try it with WP 8.1 .... It is quite a change, believe me
Nope - I rarely do previews and betas. I look forward to the OTA update coming to my 720. If it addresses my issues, I'll be happy. Here's an issue for you: When my Nokia 720 is in standby mode, it is in the hands of the gods as to whether a Skype IM will get through to the Windows Phone client. OTOH, if my Nexus is tethered to the Nokia, the Skype notifications on the Nexus are fine.

This is fundamental, BTW. iOS has a similar multi tasking model to Windows Phone, but gets this kind of thing right.
 

Max(IT)

Suspended
Original poster
Dec 8, 2009
8,550
1,640
Italy
Nope - I rarely do previews and betas. I look forward to the OTA update coming to my 720. If it addresses my issues, I'll be happy. Here's an issue for you: When my Nokia 720 is in standby mode, it is in the hands of the gods as to whether a Skype IM will get through to the Windows Phone client. OTOH, if my Nexus is tethered to the Nokia, the Skype notifications on the Nexus are fine.

This is fundamental, BTW. iOS has a similar multi tasking model to Windows Phone, but gets this kind of thing right.
WP 8.1 changed everything....