Samsung Galaxy S5 Is Something New, Just Not at a Glance

By Michelle Maisto  |  Posted 2014-02-24 Print this article Print

The Wall Street Journal's Joanna Stern tweeted an image of the gold GS5 alongside a Band-Aid and it was retweeted 3,500-plus times. There's no denying the resemblance.

Still, anyone who has been appalled by the warm, slimy feeling of a hard-working, plastic-cased GS III will rejoice that the GS5 is a Galaxy flagship that finally feels good in the hand.

(One wonders why Samsung didn't just go with the inoffensive leather datebook look the Note 3 received—perhaps the need for novelty was too great.)

To offer a few more, though less-thrilling specifics, the GS5 runs Android 4.4.2 (KitKat); measures 5.6 by 2.9 by 0.32 inches; weighs 0.32 pounds (or 5.11 ounces); runs a 2.5GHz quad-core processor; comes with 2GB of RAM and 16GB or 32GB of internal memory; has a microSD slot supporting up to 64GB of additional memory; and has a 2-megapixel front-facing camera.

Samsung will begin shipping the phone around the world April 11.

"We fixed customer pain points, and we added exciting new features," David Park, a Samsung marketing head, said during the presentation. He said it about the Galaxy Gear 2 smartwatches, but he may as well have been talking about the GS5.

Samsung Galaxy Gear Fit

The Galaxy Gear Fit is clearly an attempt to capture users of Fitbit and similar devices—or at least those considering them.

"It redefines the category," said Park. "It's not like any fitness band out there. It features the first curved AMOLED touch screen on a wearable device."

The Gear Fit's display is 1.84 inches, with a resolution of 432 by 128. It's also a module that pops out of the hypoallergenic rubber band. This is so people can change colors (options are orange, black and brown), says Samsung, but hopefully it's also to give the bands a wash, considering all the physical activity they're likely to accompany.

When a user snaps the Fit onto her wrist, a heart-rate sensor quickly shows her BPM (beats per minute). On top of the expected fitness band features, such as a pedometer, the Fit offers notifications for incoming calls, emails, SMS, alarms, planner information and data from many third-party apps. An app called Coach, for example, focuses on five key areas: exercise, food, sleep, stress and weight.

At launch, the Fit will be compatible with 20 Samsung phones, and like the GS5, it's water- and dust-resistant.

"We've worked out the workout," smiled Park.

Pricing for the devices is one secret Samsung has managed to keep.

Follow Michelle Maisto on Twitter. 



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