Last week, Samsung took the wraps off its latest smartphone in the Galaxy Note series, and although the Note 5 flaunts an incredibly gorgeous design and some pretty stellar specifications under the hood, there are still five key features missing that several die-hard Samsung fans around the globe are up in arms about. We’ve already talked about why the Galaxy Note 5 is a good buy, and here are some thoughts on maybe why you shouldn’t spend your hard-earned cash on the 5.7-inch phablet.
First up and arguably the most disappointing attribute that the new Note lacks is a removable battery. I’ve been a loyal Note user ever since the series launched back in September, 2011, and one of the things I’ve greatly applauded the Note 5’s predecessors for has been the ability to switch out a battery when I’m running low on juice.
I travel rather a lot and often find myself turning to my smartphone, not only to provide entertainment for long journeys, but to get some work done, too. Whether I’m responding to emails or planning my next column, it’s all done on my phone.
Ever since its introduction, the Note has been directed towards professionals who could utilise the extra screen space by working on the go without having to take a tablet or laptop in tow, but now with this latest addition to the line-up and its 3,000mAh battery on board, you’re only looking at about 18-hours of intermediate use, which isn’t great if you’re using the device for long periods of time, meaning you’ll probably have to carry a charger or a portable battery pack with you for when that dreaded red icon appears.
The second key feature absent from the handset is a microSD slot. The Galaxy Note 5 comes in two variations – one with 32GB of storage and the other with 64GB. Now, don’t get me wrong, that’s great (especially when you consider you’re getting the fast UFS 2.0 storage), but why should you be forced to pay for more space when you could simply slip in a memory card and max the device out to 128GB? The obvious answer is; you shouldn’t.
This also makes transferring data from your old smartphone a bit of a pain as you’ll be forced to use Samsung’s desktop software’s integrated transfer feature, which is awfully slow at the best of times. It would be significantly easier to copy all your data onto a memory card, which could then be slotted into your shiny, new Note 5 when it arrives.
Next, is the omission of the IR blaster. Now while this may not be an issue for many individuals, it is for people who use their smartphones in the workplace. When Samsung first showcased the built-in infrared functionality in the Note 3, it highlighted just how the hardware could be used in a place of business to scroll from one slide to another during a presentation, and it’s safe to say that it was quickly adopted by many in the UK.
I, however, have used this feature for something completely different numerous times at home on my Note 4. I can’t recall just how many times my phone has rung when I’ve been half way through an episode of The Walking Dead and used the handset to mute my TV by simply scrolling down from the notification pane and tapping the volume off button.
Now, I didn’t really expect to see the next feature incorporated within the Note 5 as it hasn’t been on any earlier models, but it would have been nice to see Samsung include it anyway, and that’s waterproofing. I, personally, feel much more comfortable using a smartphone that I know can withstand a few drops of water in case I do accidentally happen to drop it into a puddle, the bath or, heaven forbid, the toilet.
Last, but not least, I’m focusing my attention on the design of the Note 5. I’m struggling to work out why Samsung has opted for a glass back plate as opposed to something more grippy and durable, like the faux leather material it sported for the past two generations.
Whilst glass may look great and contributes to the more elegant appeal of the handset, it’s not a suitable material to use for a 5.7-inch device as it makes it exceptionally slippery and in the event of a free fall from chest height, it’s more than likely going to smash, which is the last thing you want to happen to your brand new $700 smartphone.
So there you have it, folks. Our roundup of the top five things the Galaxy Note 5 is lacking. Have we left out anything? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
Let’s talk about the Galaxy Note 5’s missing features