Hands-On With Samsung's Galaxy S5 And Gear 2 Live At Unpacked

Today we were on hand at Samsung's Unpacked press event in New York City to see the live unveiling of the upcoming Galaxy S5 smartphone, and Gear 2, Gear 2 Neo and Gear Fit smartwatches.  If you haven't already seen our coverage of the original announcment, the Samsung's upcoming flagship features a 5.1-inch (1920x1080) Super AMOLED display and a quad-core 2.5GHz SoC paired to 2GB of RAM, 16GB or 32GB of storage, and a microSD card slot that supports up to 128GB of additional storage. Right out of the box, the Galaxy S5 will run Android v4.4.2 (KitKat).

We had a chance to get a little hands on time with the Galaxy S5 and the Gear 2 and have some video of it in action as well. Take a look:
On the surface, the Galaxy S5 has a similar appearance to the Galaxy S4, though the S5 has a slightly larger screen and the back cover has a dimpled texture. Though the device's were tightly tethered, we'd say it felt good in the hand--it's definitely a premium device. In our limited time with the S5, we'd say the screen was probably the most striking update. Not only is it a bit bigger than the previous generation, but it's brighter too. It doesn't really come across well in the photos, but the contrast ratio and color balance of the display are really nice too.  Images just seemed to pop, even under strong lighting. In addition,  working with Samsung's new 16MP rear-facing camera offered a very responsive feel, with lightning-fast auto-focus.

The global launch for the Samsung Galaxy S5 is slated for April 11, though availability in the U.S. will be somewhat later in the month.  As is the case with previous-gen Galaxy S devices, there are an array of accessories coming to complement the S 5, including different colored back covers, flip covers, fitness accessories and wireless chargers as well. Samsung would also like users to snatch up one of the new Gear 2 smartwatches too, one of which we have pictured below.


Samsung Galaxy S5 and Gear 2

A couple of the other new features of the Galaxy S5 is a biometric heart rate sensor, which is visible right under the camera sensor, next to the flash. We should also note that the S5 has a fingerprint scanner incorporated as well, but that's harder to see--it's actually part of the main screen on the front of the device. The fingerprint sensor is situated in the bottom section of the screen, just above the home button.

We'll have more details and a full review of the Galaxy S5 in the not too distant future.