Samsung Galaxy S5: ATT
As we expected, the Samsung Galaxy S5 for AT&T is here. It's almost no different at all from the version you can buy on other carriers all over the world, but there are few things that make the AT&T model different.
First, aside from the branding and log on the back, there are the bulk of AT&T apps. These apps are not-so-lovingly called bloatware or crapware, and for good reason. It's rare that you'll ever use any of those apps at all - there are always better Android counterparts.
The apps that AT&T includes are Messages, Mobile Hotspot, Mobile TV, myAT&T, AT&T Locker, AT&T Mobile Locate, AT&T Navigator, Caller Name ID and AT&T Family Map. As you can see, that is a lot of useless apps.
You'll find that the Samsung Galaxy S5 for AT&T requires a minimum of 4.51GB to run the system or OS. That means the 16GB model we have really only has less than 12GB usable space, which is paltry. Luckily, the Galaxy S5 does support micro SD cards.
We really do wish that AT&T didn't stuff all its garbage apps into the Galaxy S5, but that's to be expected now. The last thing we need are these apps that no one uses eating up our precious resources.
AT&T is always bragging about its network being the biggest and most reliable in the nation, but it's no longer the fastest. T-Mobile is actually much faster wherever T-Mobile's LTE is available, and that's not in very many places, unfortunately.
In our tests, we averaged 6.4Mbps down and 2Mbps up between San Francisco and South San Francisco, along with the East Bay.
Those speeds aren't very fast at all when compared with other LTE networks. In fact, they're more inline with 3G HSPA+ speeds (or what AT&T now likes to call "4G" when you're not in an LTE zone).
If you're thinking of picking up a Galaxy S5 for AT&T, you're going to get a rather solid handset. It's a great iterative improvement over the Galaxy S4 - it still has that good ol' plastic feeling that Samsung is well known for - and the display, battery and camera are solid.
Network speeds are good enough, and pretty great if you happen to be in an area where AT&T LTE is blazing fast. Your speeds and call quality will largely depend on where you are, but you can count on the Galaxy S5 not being at fault for any call quality or speed issues.
You can buy the AT&T Galaxy S5 now starting at $199.99 with a new two-year contract.