Samsung Galaxy S5 30 Day Challenge, Day 1: Design

Evan Selleck
Contributing Editor from  Arizona
| May 14, 2014

Last week, I was asked to divulge what I'm using for a device as my daily driver. I'm sure it surprised more than a few people that it happened to be a Samsung Galaxy S5 and not an iPhone. It surprised me, that's for sure. Well, it turns out that due to a mishap with Apple's iMessage (which so many people have experienced over the years -- and I've had happen to me multiple times myself) I was missing quite a few text messages, so I had to go back to the iPhone for a little while.

Now, I'm back on the Galaxy S5, all my troubles figured out with that other device's features, and ready to dig into another one of our 30 day challenges. This Day 1 is a bit different than in previous challenges, due simply to the fact that I had already used the device for more than a day the week prior. So, instead of an introduction to the challenge itself, I'm just going to dig in.

Having switched back to the iPhone for a brief stint, only to come back to the Galaxy S5 reminded me of how much I actually like the back of the larger device. I may be getting used to plastic devices, simply because I don't have a choice, but I still don't prefer them. With that being said, the Galaxy S5's plastic, dimpled back cover isn't terrible, and it's certainly better than the greasy plastic cases of past devices. Samsung's moving in the right direction, I think, with the continued evolution of their flagship handsets, so we'll just have to hope that the next Galaxy S premiere device really stands out.

Overall, with the 5.1-inch display, the Galaxy S5 still feels pretty good in the hand. I wouldn't normally use a handset with a display this big on my own terms, simply because I'm just not a fan of the size, but the design of the device can play a big role in making the experience better or worse. Thanks to the lightweight construction, the Galaxy S5 isn't a pain to use.

What's more, it hasn't slipped out of my hand and threatened to dent my face (yet), so that's something.

There are two things that annoy me quite a bit, though.

First: the door that blocks the charging ports on the bottom of the handset. It's designed to make sure to fill in all the nooks and crannies just in case you spill water on your device. It's one of the many parts that makes the Galaxy S5 a water-resistant handset. It's great in theory, but it drives me crazy having to open it just to charge the device. It's necessary, but it's still annoying.

Second: removing the back cover, for any reason at all, will give you a big, in-your-face pop-up when you turn on the device next that you need to make sure the cover is in tact properly, to make sure that the device is properly resistant to all that water. It doesn't matter how many times you take the back cover off. The notification will show up. It'd be fine if they had a "don't show me this message again" option, but they don't, so it just keeps happening.

Sure, most people (presumably) won't be opening the back cover all that frequently, but if you do, to get a microSD card or whatever other reason you may have, it's an annoying warning. It isn't at first, but it quickly becomes one.

So, that's it for now. At a very basic level, the Galaxy S5 is a decent device. I may not prefer plastic and there are some design choices that I just don't agree with, but overall it isn't terrible. I like the Galaxy S5 more than I've liked any previous Galaxy S device in a very, very long time, so that has me looking forward to the days ahead.

Did you pick up or have you checked out the Galaxy S5? If so, what do you think of Samsung's flagship device? Let me know!

Products mentioned