Android Lollipop promises tons of new features and functionality when it comes to a device near you, but as we wait, it's almost painful to see the screenshots and demo videos from Nexus devices and how downright pretty the new operating system looks.
Sharing files has always been one of Android's greatest strengths. A system of "share intents" allow apps to freely exchange data with each other, making it possible to take a picture with your favorite camera app, then send it over to your choice of photo-sharing apps, for instance.
With AirPlay for iOS, Chromecast Screen Mirroring, and even third-party PC-pairing apps to play around with, getting your devices to interconnect could not be any easier than it is today.
Many Android games use large, storage-heavy OBB files to store supplemental data. Generally, games with high-end graphics download these extra files when you install them from the Google Play Store.
Now that all variants of the Galaxy S5 have finally been rooted, we can start exploring all of the tweaks and hacks that Superuser privileges open up to us.
Whether it's embarrassing pictures and videos on your smartphone, or files you just don't want anyone reading, there are plenty of ways to hide them. For most devices, that means installing third-party apps like Gallery Plus - Hide Pictures, Sectos - Photo & Video Vault, TimeLock, or Hi App Lock.
There are many different reasons that you might want to revert your Samsung Galaxy S5 back to stock. The main one would probably be that you need to return your device to the manufacturer for warranty purposes. And if you've used root to modify system-level files and components, you'll need to undo those changes before you send the phone back.
One of the coolest features of the Galaxy S5 is its IP67 certification. This means that the S5 is internally impenetrable to dust and can be submerged in water for thirty minutes at a depth of one meter. It's definitely a handy feature for folks who've lost a phone to a toilet in the past.
Depending on who you ask, internet connectivity should be a basic human right. With Google recently embarking on a project to provide internet capabilities to remote corners of the world using balloons and satellites while Facebook attempts to do the same with unmanned drones, the concept of free web access is steadily gaining steam.
Samsung makes some wonderful phones, but one thing I've noticed is that battery life can start to degrade over time, causing the phone to die a lot faster than it used to. If you've been experiencing this issue, and have asked yourself, "Why does my Galaxy S5 die so fast?" there are a few likely causes—and we've got you covered with troubleshooting tips and simple fixes below.
Before your carrier got its grubby little hands on your Galaxy S5, there was less bloatware installed and more functionality offered by the Samsung flagship device. Case in point: the GS5 that Samsung designed was capable of recording phone calls, yet the one that you own probably isn't.
With a root bounty of over $18,000 up for the taking, developers were highly motivated to get the AT&T and Verizon Wireless variants of the Samsung Galaxy S5 rooted. Legendary hacker George Hotz, aka Geohot, has won the race and can now step up to claim his prize.
When you send an emoji from your Android device to someone that uses an iPhone, they don't see the same smiley that you do. And while there is a cross-platform standard for emojis, these don't work the same way as unicode-based smilies or dongers, so not every operating system displays these little guys the same way.
Because of Android's massive array of supported smartphones that carry vastly different display sizes and resolutions, the operating system uses a value known as DPI to determine the size of icons and visual assets that will best suit a given screen.
An app can request a wakelock to prevent your Android device from entering sleep mode so that it can sync data in the background. This obviously drains your battery, because instead of running in low-power sleep mode, your processor is fully activated while it performs its tasks.
The Galaxy S5 comes with an awesome feature for those times when you're running low on battery life with no charger in sight. Ultra Power-Saving Mode allows you to cut back on non-vital services and convert your phone's display into a juice-saving grayscale mode to greatly extend that last bit of charge.
When you're on a limited data plan, bumping up against your monthly cap is a major concern. Overage fees are incredibly high these days, and being throttled down to 2G coverage almost renders a smartphone completely useless.
Whether you use a third-party keyboard or the stock offering, your Samsung device keeps a history of the last 20 words you copied on its clipboard. Samsung added this feature to Android to help make multitasking a bit easier, but if you use a password manager like LastPass, this feature quickly becomes a gaping hole in security. While you're copying and pasting your various passwords, the last 20 of them become freely available to anyone that gets their hands on your device.
When Google released Android 4.2, a new feature was introduced for tablets that allowed for multiple accounts to be used on a single device. In order to create a unique experience for each user, apps and personal data were kept separate, and switching between users became as simple as tapping your profile photo from the lock screen.
The Galaxy S5's camera is amongst the most capable smartphone shooters on the market. With a 16-megapixel sensor that is capable of recording 1080p video at 120 frames per second, the stat sheet was officially stuffed when Samsung brought this device to market.
If you've ever noticed that the stock launcher on an Android device seems to just feel faster than any third-party home screen replacement app, this is not a placebo effect. Most manufacturers, Samsung included, force their stock launchers to reside permanently in your phone's memory, thus reducing the risk of redraws.
If you work at a large office or have a multi-story home, you're probably familiar with Wi-Fi range extenders. Since one hotspot isn't always enough to cover an entire area, Wi-Fi repeaters are generally set up in larger areas to capture and rebroadcast the original signal.
Your phone's volume panel is one part of the user interface that usually goes unnoticed to themers and developers. With themes capable of changing the look and feel of the fingerprint scanner, keyboard, and other system apps, this central aspect of the UI seems to get lost in the shuffle.
Before you purchased your smartphone or tablet, the device had already embarked on quite a long journey. From product development to manufacturing, your Samsung Galaxy device had already developed a rich history prior to your ownership.
One of the few areas where Android lags behind iOS is a comprehensive backup solution for apps. Root tools, such as the popular Titanium Backup, are capable of backing up all of your apps and their data, but not everyone wants to root their device and potentially run into issues with voided warranties.
When you try to install third-party applications (meaning apps not found in the Google Play Store) you'll be met with a warning that notifies you that your device currently blocks installations not obtained from the Play Store. Enable Unknown Sources
Having a dust- and water-resistant phone is truly useful, but it comes with a price. In order to achieve this functionality, Samsung had to literally plug up any holes in the Galaxy S5, and this included the charging port.
There's a common bug that affects many Samsung Galaxy S5 users, myself included. The software that drives the fingerprint sensor can randomly fail to load, leaving you without one of the most unique features of your beloved smartphone.
Even with the highest-tiered data plan available, there are times that your phone or your carrier might downgrade your connection to 3G or even lower. This usually occurs when you've made a phone call, or you've switched cell towers while traveling.
Most Android devices allow you to simply replace a ZIP file in your /system/media folder if you want to change your boot animation. Unfortunately, though, this isn't the case for the Galaxy S5, as it's been buried deep in Samsung's TouchWiz skin.
Android 5.0's Material Design is truly a sight to behold. With beautiful transition animations and brand new system menus, Android has never looked better.
These days, most of the hardware components in smartphones evolve at a breakneck pace. Batteries gain capacity while decreasing in size, displays continue to get sharper as graphics rendering steadily improves, and processors clock higher speeds at every generation.
As the largest wireless service providers in the United States, AT&T and Verizon Wireless carry some serious clout. Sadly, they use some of this power to heavily modify the Android phones that they offer.
Greenify is a terrific app that allows you to put battery-hogging apps into "hibernation." Effectively closing the problematic apps and preventing them from running until you explicitly launch one of them, hibernation is a great way to save battery life while you're not using your phone.
It's one hell of a device, but the Samsung Galaxy S5 is still susceptible to the many hazards that other smartphones are prone to: theft, cracked screens, poor battery life, and particularly, overheating.
If you pay close attention, you might notice that the screen on your Android begins to flicker or pulsate when you lower the brightness past a certain point. This is a result of the AMOLED technology Samsung, among other manufacturers, use in their displays, and the way that these types of screens operate.
If you've ever used a custom ROM on one of your devices, chances are it had a built-in feature that allowed you to kill any app by long-pressing the back button. This function comes in handy quite often, especially in situations where an app is acting up, since it stops all associated processes and clears the app from memory.
Certain files contain sensitive data that you don't want being shared with just anybody. Even still, it would be nice to be able to send such a file to a certain confidante without fear of it falling into the wrong hands.
When it comes to added features, no manufacturer out there can hold a candle to Samsung. Whether it's a remote control for all of your electronics, a heart rate and stress level monitor, or a seemingly-magical stylus, Galaxy devices always have as much functionality as possible packed in.
When Android 4.4 was released, the massive changelog led to some awesome new features getting lost in the virtually endless list of new tweaks. One such change was the ability to set a default text messaging app, which streamlined the existing process of installing a third-party SMS client.