Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Food + Technology: Testing the Samsung Galaxy S5 for Verizon Wireless

I've partnered with Verizon Wireless of the Philadelphia Tri-State Region to see how certain devices that operate on Verizon's 4G LTE network stand up to the technological needs of a food blogger.

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Samsung Galaxy S5 for Verizon Wireless

In continuing my partnership with Verizon Wireless of the Philadelphia Tri-State Region in which I test devices that operate on their 4G LTE network, known as the "fastest and most reliable in the U.S.", to determine how the right device could improve my blogging endeavors, it's time to share my thoughts about the third device on my list -- the Samsung Galaxy S5.

(To see which other devices I've tested, see here and here.)

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Samsung Galaxy S5 for Verizon Wireless

After testing the HTC One, I got used to using a smartphone with a slim body and was pleased that the Samsung Galaxy S5 was similarly constructed. And despite the sleek design, I didn't have as much trouble holding onto it when it wasn't in a protective case as I did with the HTC One.

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Samsung Galaxy S5 for Verizon Wireless

At just 0.31 inches thick and 5.11 ounces in weight, I was able to easily slip the Samsung Galaxy S5 into my back pocket when I was on the go without worrying about feeling weighed down. Of course, this meant there were occasions when I forgot the phone was in my pocket, triggering several panicked episodes when I worried that I had left it on a table at some restaurant without realizing it.

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Samsung Galaxy S5 for Verizon Wireless

The vibrancy of the colors on the screen was amazing making reading my favorite food blogs on the go quite pleasurable. The photos just popped and I found myself preferring to catch up on my blog reading on the Samsung Galaxy S5 rather than on my laptop. It helped that the 4G LTE network made downloading page after page a breeze. I had no network issues and pages loaded within seconds, no matter where I was trying to access them.

Unfortunately, taking photos with the Samsung Galaxy S5's 16-megapixel camera wasn't as enjoyable an experience for me. No matter what I was shooting -- a plate of food, the listings on a restaurant's menu, our dog -- the pictures came out blurry.

It took a long time for me to figure out how to hold the phone and time the shot to get a picture that was actually crisp (or crisper than what I was getting in the beginning of my trial period). This was especially frustrating since it should take three or four attempts to get a mediocre photo.

So while the other features of the phone received high marks from me, the most essential feature in my eyes -- the camera -- let me down. As a result, I took way fewer photos with the Samsung Galaxy S5 than I did with the other two devices I tested.

Here are some of the photos I took with the phone... What do you think?

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Montclair Rittler

This was one of the earlier photos I took... It required a lot of processing after the fact. Even so, I think it's one of my favorite photos of Monty to date.

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The Hamilton Kitchen - Allentown, PA

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Creamy Parmesan Risotto with Peas

This was the best photo of my Creamy Parmesan Risotto with Peas of the bunch. I had to process it for lighting and for color, but the individual grains of Arborio rice weren't defined as much as I would have liked.

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Osteria Avanti - The Inn at Leola Village - Leola, PA

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Montclair Rittler

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IKEA Wine Rack for Pantry

Three devices later, and I still think I'd go with the LG G2 in terms of choosing a favorite. I really appreciated its extreme usability and solid performance on the 4G LTE network.

Have you tried the Samsung Galaxy S5? What do you think about it? Let me know in the comments below!

Taste As You Go Disclaimer: Verizon Wireless provided me with a Samsung Galaxy S5 to test at no cost to me. I did not accept monetary compensation for this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

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