Tried the GS5... Returned It... #Unimpressed

animalx

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 1, 2013
270
26
I had to go ahead and return the GS5. I found that the number of compromises were mounting, and I was not going to be happy with it. I think LG has spoiled me at this point lol.

Points of contention:
-Battery Life: While decent, and better than the GS4, it was not to the level I'd find acceptable. It does great with the screen off, but drains a bit too quickly while actively using it.
-Lag: The GS5 lags. There is no other way to put it. A perfect way to see it is to swipe left on the home screen, and watch how slowly it transitions. It also seems prone to lag hiccups much more frequently than a phone with that sort of horsepower should.
-Speaker Quality: In short, the speaker on the GS5 is TRASH. It gets great volume, however it gets quite distorted, and it's worse when you're holding it.
-Charging Port Cover: The charging port cover is a big time annoyance. Every time you want to plug your phone in, you have to contend with that. You need nails to get to it, and as a man (without long nails), it can be a bit difficult pulling the cover off.
-Notification Panel: You have very limited control over your notification panel. S Finder and Quick Connect are permanently taking up a row of space in the panel, whether you like it or not. You are limited in your control over the quick toggles, and which of them show or don't show. This means I'm stuck with a bunch of toggles showing, that I don't even want to be there.
-Remote Control Software: Samsung did a poor job of implementing the remote control software, as far as making it convenient. In LG's software, you can access your remote quickly by swiping down the notification panel and tapping the remote control toggle. With the GS5, you don't have that same level of convenience. Instead you have to actually open the app to use it, or have the remote controls sitting on your lock screen. I do not want my remote control sitting on my lock screen each time I turn my phone on.
-Trimming a screenshot: With LG's software, if I want to trim a screenshot, I simply swipe down the notification panel and tap quick memo. From there, I can just select the part of the screen I want to capture. I can't do that with the GS5. Instead, I have to take a screenshot, open it in a different app, and then crop it. It just lacks the same efficiency and convenience of LG's implementation.
-Magazine Feature: The implementation of this feature was just plain horrible. It's slow, laggy, and it's nothing more than just Flipboard. Fortunately, you can disable it.

Summary:
All in all, I think the GS5 is a pretty good phone, and most people would be happy with it. For me however, it was too much of a compromise, to continue forward with it. I feel like LG has done a better job with their software than Samsung has. Most of the issues I had with the GS5 were small things, but it was one small thing after another. In the end, I found myself looking at a bunch of small things that I did not like about it, and those things add up. The one big thing that irritated me the most about it, was the lag. The amount of consistent lag the GS5 demonstrated was unacceptable, and shows that Samsung really needs to pay more attention to the details. They need to spend less time coming up with useless features (like a heart monitor), and more time fine tuning and polishing their software.
 

Technarchy

macrumors 604
May 21, 2012
6,747
4,885
I've had my S5 for about 5 days now, and came from a 5S.

Responding to lag, I personally don't think the S5 is a laggy device. The S4 was utterly horrible lag filled zoo.

But you're right in saying Samsung is notorious for doing half baked software for dubious features and it cripples performance depending on what you want to do.

So far my experience has been positive. I've still got a few days to decide if it stays or goes.
 

thelookingglass

macrumors 68000
Apr 27, 2005
1,901
300
I picked up one of these today. I like it but it's more Android I'm impressed with rather than the actual phone itself. I'm also not convinced that a 5 inch screen is a good size. It's just a tad too big for one-handed operation.

And above all else, this thing just doesn't have the polish of ios. Just little things from the system font to the way the screen dims when inactive. As great as Android is, I don't think I could give up my iPhone. I'm definitely looking forward to the iPhone 6 later this year.I think the bigger screen will keep a lot of people who were otherwise interested in Android devices and will bring back a lot of former Android users.
 

blackhand1001

macrumors 68030
Jan 6, 2009
2,591
18
I picked up one of these today. I like it but it's more Android I'm impressed with rather than the actual phone itself. I'm also not convinced that a 5 inch screen is a good size. It's just a tad too big for one-handed operation.

And above all else, this thing just doesn't have the polish of ios. Just little things from the system font to the way the screen dims when inactive. As great as Android is, I don't think I could give up my iPhone. I'm definitely looking forward to the iPhone 6 later this year.I think the bigger screen will keep a lot of people who were otherwise interested in Android devices and will bring back a lot of former Android users.
Most of those issues are specific to samsung skin on android. Stock android screen fadeout is very polished.
 

The Game 161

macrumors Core
Dec 15, 2010
19,390
9,505
UK
I picked up one of these today. I like it but it's more Android I'm impressed with rather than the actual phone itself. I'm also not convinced that a 5 inch screen is a good size. It's just a tad too big for one-handed operation.

And above all else, this thing just doesn't have the polish of ios. Just little things from the system font to the way the screen dims when inactive. As great as Android is, I don't think I could give up my iPhone. I'm definitely looking forward to the iPhone 6 later this year.I think the bigger screen will keep a lot of people who were otherwise interested in Android devices and will bring back a lot of former Android users.
Going to need Alot more than just screen size to bring users back

Will still have no

Sd card
Removable battery
No back button
No customisation
No range of widgets

So for me I doubt I will be lured back..
 

animalx

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 1, 2013
270
26
I've had my S5 for about 5 days now, and came from a 5S.

Responding to lag, I personally don't think the S5 is a laggy device. The S4 was utterly horrible lag filled zoo.

But you're right in saying Samsung is notorious for doing half baked software for dubious features and it cripples performance depending on what you want to do.

So far my experience has been positive. I've still got a few days to decide if it stays or goes.
Coming from the Flex (and Nexus 5 and HTC One before that), the lag in the GS5 is pretty noticeable. A perfect example is swiping to or away from the magazine page, it will lag pretty badly. I also notice lag when it's transitioning to a different task. It won't do it all the time, but it's definitely there some of the time. Coming from the phones I came from, this isn't something I'm used to experiencing.
 

Technarchy

macrumors 604
May 21, 2012
6,747
4,885
Coming from the Flex (and Nexus 5 and HTC One before that), the lag in the GS5 is pretty noticeable. A perfect example is swiping to or away from the magazine page, it will lag pretty badly. I also notice lag when it's transitioning to a different task. It won't do it all the time, but it's definitely there some of the time. Coming from the phones I came from, this isn't something I'm used to experiencing.
The magazine feature is a laggy mess, agreed. Blink feed it's way smoother. Though I deactivated the feature and just use the Flipboard app as I have always done. The actual app it's more informative as well.

Transitioning tasks hasn't been an issue for me; responsiveness has been solid with the occasional stutter, but the overall UI it's pretty "snappy".
 

animalx

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 1, 2013
270
26
The magazine feature is a laggy mess, agreed. Blink feed it's way smoother. Though I deactivated the feature and just use the Flipboard app as I have always done. The actual app it's more informative as well.
Totally agree. I don't know what Samsung was thinking. To say it is a halfway put together piece of crap, would be giving them too much credit. I too found myself disabling it and just using the Flipboard app. I don't know how they managed to incorporate Flipboard into their homescreen, but have it include less stuff than the actual Flipboard app. What exactly is the point of that? :confused: It's basically a poor man's Blinkfeed. Blinkfeed is ten times better than Samsung's "Magazine". Maybe if they spent more time fine tuning things, instead of worrying about ridiculous "features" like a heart rate monitor, they could have done a better job.
 

Robster3

macrumors 68000
Dec 13, 2012
1,987
0
I noticed the lag, the speaker vibrates and the PITA charge port cover within 2 minutes of using one in store. Looks like the Note 3 is the only Samsung worth buying.
 

animalx

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Apr 1, 2013
270
26
I noticed the lag, the speaker vibrates and the PITA charge port cover within 2 minutes of using one in store. Looks like the Note 3 is the only Samsung worth buying.
The speaker vibrating is ridiculously bad. As if the distortion wasn't bad enough, add to that the vibration, and you have what may be the worst smartphone speaker on the market of the current gen.
 

Robster3

macrumors 68000
Dec 13, 2012
1,987
0
The speaker vibrating is ridiculously bad. As if the distortion wasn't bad enough, add to that the vibration, and you have what may be the worst smartphone speaker on the market of the current gen.
Yep i had a $200 Moto G and it was better.
 

Shanghaichica

macrumors G4
Apr 8, 2013
11,110
7,505
UK
I had to go ahead and return the GS5. I found that the number of compromises were mounting, and I was not going to be happy with it. I think LG has spoiled me at this point lol.

Points of contention:
-Battery Life: While decent, and better than the GS4, it was not to the level I'd find acceptable. It does great with the screen off, but drains a bit too quickly while actively using it.
-Lag: The GS5 lags. There is no other way to put it. A perfect way to see it is to swipe left on the home screen, and watch how slowly it transitions. It also seems prone to lag hiccups much more frequently than a phone with that sort of horsepower should.
-Speaker Quality: In short, the speaker on the GS5 is TRASH. It gets great volume, however it gets quite distorted, and it's worse when you're holding it.
-Charging Port Cover: The charging port cover is a big time annoyance. Every time you want to plug your phone in, you have to contend with that. You need nails to get to it, and as a man (without long nails), it can be a bit difficult pulling the cover off.
-Notification Panel: You have very limited control over your notification panel. S Finder and Quick Connect are permanently taking up a row of space in the panel, whether you like it or not. You are limited in your control over the quick toggles, and which of them show or don't show. This means I'm stuck with a bunch of toggles showing, that I don't even want to be there.
-Remote Control Software: Samsung did a poor job of implementing the remote control software, as far as making it convenient. In LG's software, you can access your remote quickly by swiping down the notification panel and tapping the remote control toggle. With the GS5, you don't have that same level of convenience. Instead you have to actually open the app to use it, or have the remote controls sitting on your lock screen. I do not want my remote control sitting on my lock screen each time I turn my phone on.
-Trimming a screenshot: With LG's software, if I want to trim a screenshot, I simply swipe down the notification panel and tap quick memo. From there, I can just select the part of the screen I want to capture. I can't do that with the GS5. Instead, I have to take a screenshot, open it in a different app, and then crop it. It just lacks the same efficiency and convenience of LG's implementation.

-Magazine Feature: The implementation of this feature was just plain horrible. It's slow, laggy, and it's nothing more than just Flipboard. Fortunately, you can disable it.

Summary:
All in all, I think the GS5 is a pretty good phone, and most people would be happy with it. For me however, it was too much of a compromise, to continue forward with it. I feel like LG has done a better job with their software than Samsung has. Most of the issues I had with the GS5 were small things, but it was one small thing after another. In the end, I found myself looking at a bunch of small things that I did not like about it, and those things add up. The one big thing that irritated me the most about it, was the lag. The amount of consistent lag the GS5 demonstrated was unacceptable, and shows that Samsung really needs to pay more attention to the details. They need to spend less time coming up with useless features (like a heart monitor), and more time fine tuning and polishing their software.

Wow have they really changed touch wiz that much?

I can do all of that on my note 3. I'm not sold on the my magazine feature but I don't use it on my note 3 so it doesn't bother me.
 

Lloydbm41

Suspended
Oct 17, 2013
4,025
1,439
Central California
I picked up one of these today. I like it but it's more Android I'm impressed with rather than the actual phone itself. I'm also not convinced that a 5 inch screen is a good size. It's just a tad too big for one-handed operation.

And above all else, this thing just doesn't have the polish of ios. Just little things from the system font to the way the screen dims when inactive. As great as Android is, I don't think I could give up my iPhone. I'm definitely looking forward to the iPhone 6 later this year.I think the bigger screen will keep a lot of people who were otherwise interested in Android devices and will bring back a lot of former Android users.
System font? IOS and Android have been near identical since iOS 4 and Ice Cream Sandwich. It has been Helvetica vs Roboto, with Apple going to Helvetica Neue Ultra Light font in iOS 7 and Android going to Roboto Light in KitKat. The two fonts are near visually identical. Take a look:

 

Shanghaichica

macrumors G4
Apr 8, 2013
11,110
7,505
UK
System font? IOS and Android have been near identical since iOS 4 and Ice Cream Sandwich. It has been Helvetica vs Roboto, with Apple going to Helvetica Neue Ultra Light font in iOS 7 and Android going to Roboto Light in KitKat. The two fonts are near visually identical. Take a look:

Image
At least you can change the font if you don't like it on android.
 

LOLZpersonok

macrumors 6502a
Aug 10, 2012
711
14
Calgary, Canada
I'd likely take a Galaxy S5 over an iPhone any day, as long as it's more powerful and has a better camera. Once the iPhone comes up to par with powerful Android devices, then I don't know. As for the issues you described, I'm not sure I'm as interested in the device as I previously was.

I always thought the S4 and S3 were pretty snappy myself.
 

MRU

Suspended
Aug 23, 2005
25,312
8,706
Other
System font? IOS and Android have been near identical since iOS 4 and Ice Cream Sandwich. It has been Helvetica vs Roboto, with Apple going to Helvetica Neue Ultra Light font in iOS 7 and Android going to Roboto Light in KitKat. The two fonts are near visually identical. Take a look:

Image
Doesn't Samsung use its own font as the main font and roboto is not on Galaxy devices. (It's wasn't on my GS4 or Note 3 anyway)....
 

Cod3rror

macrumors 68000
Apr 18, 2010
1,745
36
It's hilarious how a phone with that kind of power (more power than 2008 laptop) still lags and stutters.

Android will lag no matter how much power you throw at it.

And now they want to add 2K screens to Android phones.
 

ozaz

macrumors 65816
Feb 27, 2011
1,266
285
UK
Android will lag no matter how much power you throw at it.
What exactly is meant by lag here?

I wouldn't describe my cheapo moto G (the only recent android device I've tried) as laggy.

I suppose it does take about 1-2 seconds for apps to fully launch from cold but it would surprise me if this is the source of irritation.
 

mib1800

Suspended
Sep 16, 2012
2,859
1,240
Not sure about what some of you are talking about. I tried the S5 and there is no lag at all. It has slight stutter when you are doing heavy multi-tasking but that is expected.

Overall speed is still faster than the iPhone 5s. 5s may feel smoother but it is actually quite a bit slower especially with the ios slow scrolling speed.
 

Shanghaichica

macrumors G4
Apr 8, 2013
11,110
7,505
UK
It's hilarious how a phone with that kind of power (more power than 2008 laptop) still lags and stutters.

Android will lag no matter how much power you throw at it.

And now they want to add 2K screens to Android phones.
It's funny that the Apple fan boys still perpetuate the android lag myth and the android fanboys try and blame it all on Samsung.
 

The Game 161

macrumors Core
Dec 15, 2010
19,390
9,505
UK
There is zero lag on the note 3, people need to stop thinking all Android devices lag. There certainly don't. It's a far smoother experience for me than my iPhone 5 ever was
 

Oohara

macrumors 68030
Jun 28, 2012
2,627
1,314
Doesn't Samsung use its own font as the main font and roboto is not on Galaxy devices. (It's wasn't on my GS4 or Note 3 anyway)....
Yes, TouchWiz uses "Helvetica S", where I guess the "S" means Samsung, i.e. an uglier version of Helvetica... It's a tad rounder than the regular Helvetica, which makes it just that little bit less pleasant to look at. Additional system fonts for TouchWiz can actually be downloaded - but they cost $2 a pop which I find quite embarrassing. That can get you a lot of much nicer fonts.

But yeah, the default system font on TouchWiz isn't nice. And I generally agree with anything negative being said about the design of Sammy's OS - if you get a Samsung device, it's certainly not for the beauty of their OS.

Which is why I continue to suggest that anyone not already wholly into Android - particularly fans of iOS who care about the aesthetic aspects of their devices - should start with a Nexus 5 or at least another stock Android device (or failing that a M8 or Sony phone...anything but Galaxy phones really!). If you go Samsung and then whine about the design, you voluntarily made a bad choice and have only yourself to blame. You don't go to McDonalds and then whine that they don't have moules marinières on the menu.

Edit: I should say "their Android skin" instead of "OS" but I CBA to edit now :eek:
 

pmau

macrumors 68000
Nov 9, 2010
1,542
777
I own iPhones and Samsung devices, but my latest is an SG S3.

The only thing I want to add regarding lag is that scrolling "appears" to be laggy because of the Amoled display.

You can clearly see, that the IPS displays seem to "grissle" far less.

The problem is, once you notice it, you cannot unsee it.
Take a website with lots of medium to small sized text and you'll see.

The general lagging debate is probably more prominent because most people I know install loads of crap on their Android devices, making lots of stupid background processes causing context switching.

The more stricter rules of iOS prevent most of that.

From a developer POV, I still prefer iOS to Android.
Which I can argue for few pages, but won't right now.
 

AppleRobert

macrumors 603
Nov 12, 2012
5,637
1,099
The speaker vibrating is ridiculously bad. As if the distortion wasn't bad enough, add to that the vibration, and you have what may be the worst smartphone speaker on the market of the current gen.
One of the first things I warned folks of on the S5 thread as I got a quick look at the device at an AT&T store before most other folks. Nobody cared, they will use headphones at lower volumes anyways so no vibration and distortion.

It does have a Wolfson chip though! :)