The competition in mobile technology gets tougher every time, with these two biggies at the center of the arena-Apple and Samsung-continuously trying to outshine each other. In fact, Samsung just announced the release of its newest flagship, the much talked about Galaxy S5, on Friday.
Consumers have been asking, what's the difference with the Galaxy S4 and if icould surpass its rival iPhone?
Based on initial reviews collated, there seems to be not much difference design-wise between Galaxy S4 and Galaxy S5.
"I was expecting more in terms of the industrial design, but I think Samsung has done a better job in presenting a differentiating experience with the S5 than it did with the S4," said senior analyst Wayne Lam to CNBC.
Though, Samsung has taken on additional steps to power up the features of its latest flagship device.
For instance, the newest model has a Snapdragon 801 processor that's faster than the S4. Enhanced, too, were the camera and Wi-Fi. The display adjusts better in light and dark environments.
Among other features also added are fingerprint scanner, water-and-dust proof capability and heart-rate monitor for tracking personal fitness. However, the fingerprint scanner, which is for a biometric screen lock, is nothing new to the industry since Apple first introduced it. Apple's fingerprint scanner unlocks the unit and pay for music or apps in the iTunes Store. With the S5, owners can do more with their fingerprints than just pay for a few things. For example, the fingerprint can authorize payments on apps or websites accepting PayPal, simply by swiping one finger on the device's home button.
Reports claim fingerprint payments will soon be the trend and be offered on other smartphones in the future. This is where the Galaxy S5 edges iPhone devices, because the former is the first-ever to offer the latest FIDO-based fingerprint system of PayPal that ends reliance on weak passwords.
"Building a smart biometric experience solves both usability and dramatically increases the security level," senior director Joel Yarbrough of PayPal's global product solutions said.
Lam, meanwhile, said the heart-rate monitor seems to make the latest flagship practically like an active companion in health and fitness.
"It speaks to Samsung's broader ambitions of being a lifestyle brand," Lam said.
Other reviews were on the opposing side, saying the heart-rate monitor and fingerprint scanner don't work well as they were supposed to. It also said the fingerprint scanner is tricky and takes time to master, and the heart-rate monitor provides inaccurate results. Further, it also said the interface was not as intuitive and cohesive as expected.
If there's any that these gathered reviews have agreed upon, as the best feature in the S5, though, is its water-and-dust proof capability. As tested by one review, the S5 really adopts to water when submerged and still works thereafter.
It has been reported earlier as well that Samsung beefed up the security of its mobile phones, starting with the S5, by providing "Reactivation Lock" as well as "Find My Mobile" features that can be freely activated. Said features will block any kind of attempt to reset a device, giving thieves a hard time to use or sell it.