Everything we know about Samsung Galaxy S5 so far

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It has been nearly 9 months since Samsung unveiled the Galaxy S4 via a disastrous theatrical performance in New York. In another couple of months, we will once again see the company go all out for announcing its 2014 flagship handset and the Galaxy S4 successor — the Galaxy S5.

Thanks to quite a few leaks and rumors, we known quite a lot about the Galaxy S5. Below is a round-up of all the information and what one can expect the Galaxy S5 to pack.

Display

Various rumors, leaks and tips suggest that the Galaxy S5 is going to come with a 5.2-inch Super-AMOLED display with an insanely high resolution of 2560*1440. If true, this will give the Galaxy S5 a PPI of 565, which is nearly 1.75x times of what the iPhone 5s offers.

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With such a high resolution, the clarity of the Super-AMOLED display on the S5 will be unmatched by any device. Even if Samsung decides to go with a PenTile sub-pixel layout to achieve such a high resolution, it should not be noticeable to anyone.

The AMOLED panel on the S5 is also expected to have higher brightness compared to its predecessor, which has always been a weak spot for AMOLED displays. The bezel surrounding the Galaxy S4’s display was already pretty less but expect Samsung to reduce it even further on the Galaxy S5.

Build Quality

At this point, it is not really clear if the Galaxy S5 is going to come with a metal body or the same plastic bodies as its predecessors. While rumors in December last year suggested that Samsung will be once again going with a plastic casing for the S5, a tip to SamMobile from on of their “insiders” in early-January suggests otherwise.

Apparently, Samsung will unveil two versions of the Galaxy S5 — one with a plastic body and the other with a metal casing. While specs of both the devices will be similar, the metal version will come at a premium price of nearly 200 Euros.

A major change that we might see in the Galaxy S5 is the company ditching the capacitive and hardware navigation button combination for on-screen navigation keys. If not, Samsung will definitely have to ditch the hardware menu key since Google has deprecated it in Android 4.4 KitKat.

Processor/Specs

Samsung has traditionally always introduced two models of its flagship handset – one with LTE and another for non-LTE regions. The non-LTE variant uses its own in-house Exynos processor while the LTE variant uses the latest and greatest chip from Qualcomm.

The Galaxy S5 is going to be no different and will come with either an Exynos or Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, depending on your market region. The LTE version will come with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 processor which consists of four Krait 450 cores clocked at 2.5GHz and an Adreno 420 GPU.

Details about the Exynos processor is scarce but a leak indicates an 8-core Exynos processor with ARM’s big.LITTLE implementation as seen on the Galaxy S4. It is not yet known if the Exynos processor will be 64-bit in nature or not but the probability are looking pretty bleak.

It is not yet known if Samsung will be including a fingerprint sensor on the Galaxy S5 ever since Apple released the iPhone 5s with Touch ID. Even if it does, the implementation and execution in the software needs to be flawless as well for the feature to be appreciated by users.

Other specs of the Galaxy S5, as indicated by rumors and leak, include 3GB of RAM, 16/32GB of internal storage, a microSD card slot and a bunch of radios and sensors.

Camera

According to SamMobile’s insider tip and KGI’s prediction, the Galaxy S5 will come with a 16MP camera. If you have been following the mobile industry for sometime, you will know that its not the resolution but the sensor and the pixel size that matters. Samsung got away by not including Optical Image Stabilisation (OIS) on the Galaxy S4 and Note 3, but it will be nothing short of stupidity from the company to not use an OIS sensor on the S5.

OIS dramatically helps in reducing blur and improving low-light images, which has always been an Achilles heel for the small sensors found inside mobile devices. Personally, I’d like to see Samsung go with a 13MP camera for the Galaxy S5 with a bigger sensor and OIS that should help in improving the image quality drastically.

Software

A couple of leaked images from @evleaks suggest that Samsung is testing a new UI for its upcoming smartphones. Samsung has always been criticised for the usability disaster that TouchWIZ is. The leaked screenshots suggest that the company is working on something completely different, which is more in line with the new Holo cards look that Google has embraced in Android.

However, hoping that Samsung will add less of the gimmicky software features on the Galaxy S5, as seen on the Note 3 and S4, will be expecting too much. Samsung has always preferred quantity over quality and the Galaxy S5 will be no exception, at least in terms of gimmicky software features.

Until and unless Google releases a new version of Android, the Galaxy S5 will come with Android 4.4.2 KitKat out of the box.

Availability

It is not yet confirmed as to when or where Samsung will unveil the Galaxy S5. Rumors have indicated New York, London and even Barcelona as the possible places but there has been no evidence to back this rumor up.

Samsung has always been quick to release a device after its initial announcement and the Galaxy S5 is going to be no different. My bet is that Samsung will announce the Galaxy S5 sometime in early April with the device being available in most of the major markets by the end of the month.

Updated (February 18th):

evleaks has tweeted full resolution test photo taken using Samsung Galaxy S5. The sample confirms that Galaxy S5 will feature a 16-megapixel camer.

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