Broadband Galaxy S5 is fastest phone in world
The Galaxy S5 Broadband LTE-A boasts a data transfer speed of up to 225 megabits per second (Mbps), capable of downloading a 10-megabyte music video in 0.4 seconds, Samsung said.
The current maximum speed for LTE services is 75 Mbps, while LTE-A’s (Advanced) service is 150 Mbps.
The broadband phone takes advantage of the extra bandwidth acquired by the three mobile carriers last year.
The commercial launch of the broadband LTE-A service comes a year after Samsung and SK Telecom started offering the service of the Galaxy S4 LTE-A, making Korea the world’s first country to commercialize the LTE-A service.
Samsung released Korea’s first LTE smartphone, the Galaxy S2 LTE, in 2011, also with SK Telecom. SK Telecom, the country’s largest mobile carrier, is also the first to sell the Galaxy S5 Broadband LTE-A, launching sales yesterday.
The other two carriers, KT and LG U+, are planning to sell it as early as next week.
“This opening of the era of the broadband LTE-A phone proves Samsung Electronics’ leadership in the global mobile market,” said an official of Samsung Electronics.
“We will continue to lead the global market by introducing a variety of products to meet the needs of consumers.”
The initial price of the Galaxy S5 Broadband LTE-A was set at 940,500 won ($923.40). The Galaxy S5 came with an initial price tag of 866,800 won in April.
Samsung said there are other appealing features of the phone beyond its speed.
One eye-catching feature is the quad HD display. The display has a 2560×1440 resolution, which is 1.8 times better than the full HD display featured on the Galaxy S5.
LG Electronics released the country’s first smartphone sporting the QHD display, the LG G 3, last month.
The display of the Galaxy S5 Broadband LTE-A, like that of the Galaxy S5, is also Super Amoled. A Super Amoled display has a wide color gamut, 20 percent better than a liquid-crystal display (LCD) display, the company said.
Standard features on the Galaxy S5, including heart rate sensor, fingerprint scanner and a water and dustproof case, are also featured on the Galaxy S5 Broadband LTE-A. It runs on the Android 4.4 Kit Kat operating system and has a 16-megapixel rear camera and a 2,800mAh battery.
The other improvement over the Galaxy S5 is a 2.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 processor and 3 GB of RAM. The regular Galaxy S5 hasa 2.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor and 2GB of RAM.
Like the Galaxy S5, the Galaxy S5 Broadband LTE-A comes in four colors: cooper gold, charcoal black, shimmery white and electric blue, but sweet pink was added for the rear cover of the new phone. The phone sold through SK Telecom has one more color option: glam red.
Purchasers of the Galaxy S5 Broadband LTE-A will get a premium global app package. They can also download up to 10 movies a month until the end of September.
There is no confirmed plan yet for global sales of the Galaxy S5 Broadband LTE-A, Samsung said. According to industry observers, few other countries have constructed wireless services advanced enough to handle broadband LTE-A services or phones.
“The world’s first commercialization of 225 Mbps LTE-Advanced by SK Telecom will pave the way for Korea to open up an era of 5G in the future,” said Lee Jong-bong, executive vice president and head of SKT’s network division, during a press conference at SK T Tower, its headquarters in Jung District, central Seoul, yesterday.
“With ceaseless innovation of services, SK Telecom surely will elevate Korea’s status as an ICT powerhouse,” Lee said.
SKT said it upgraded the existing LTE-Advanced by applying carrier aggregation technology that binds 20MHz bandwidth in the 1.8GHz band and 10MHz bandwidth in the 800MHz band. However, actual speeds may slow at times depending on the volume of traffic.
“In the case of LTE services, the average download speed was 30 to 40 Mbps and that of the broadband LTE and LTE-A was 50-60 Mbps on average,” said Lee. “Customers will be able to experience an average of 70-80 Mbps speed for broadband LTE-A.”
“Although there are concerns that speeds might decline as the number of subscribers increase, we are preparing for additional frequencies for next year and launching new technologies every year,” said Lee.
BY MOON GWANG-LIP AND KIM JUNG-YOON [email@example.com]