With the Samsung Galaxy S5 release date in the United States just a week away, we want to breakdown all of the important information for prospective buyers and take an extensive look at how the Galaxy S5 release in the United States is set to play out.
At the end of February, Samsung kicked off Mobile World Congress 2014 in Barcelona, Spain with an Unpacked 5 Episode 1 event. At the event, Samsung announced the brand new Samsung Galaxy S5, one of the big name devices of the year and a device that will come to replace the Galaxy S4 with a number of upgrades.
Samsung’s Galaxy S5 features a larger 5.1-inch display that offers full HD resolution and a number of other perks that has DisplayMate calling it the best smartphone display in the world. The publication likes it more than the iPhone 5s’ Retina Display.
The Galaxy S5 also comes with an upgraded camera with an extremely fast autofocus, speedy quad-core processor, a brand new premium design that is both water and dust resistant, Android 4.4 KitKat, and some substantial upgrades to the company’s TouchWiz user interface. In other words, this is a device that consumers need to have their eye on.
Samsung Galaxy S5 Release Date Breakdown
Samsung’s Galaxy S5 isn’t out on shelves yet but in a week’s time, it will land for carriers across the planet including here in the United States. AT&T, Sprint, U.S. Cellular, T-Mobile, Verizon and others have confirmed the Galaxy S5 for arrival and they will be battling each other for customers.
Even now, Galaxy S5 release date details continue to surface. And with a week to go and details flying around left and right, we want to take a close look at the Samsung Galaxy S5 release date in the United States and breakdown the most important things that prospective Galaxy S5 buyers need to know.
AT&T Galaxy S5
The AT&T Galaxy S5 release date is set for April 11th. At that point, AT&T will no longer offer the Galaxy S5 for pre-order and will start taking orders that ship out soon after.
AT&T doesn’t have the Galaxy S5 on display in its stores just yet but those that are looking to get a hands on before the release date can do so through Best Buy.
There are around 100 Best Buy stores in the U.S. that have the Galaxy S5 out on display early. Those that can’t wait for April 11th can check this list to see if the local Best Buy has it available. The list is at the bottom of the page.
AT&T is offering a pre-order for its Galaxy S5. Those that order early will see their Galaxy S5 ship on April 8th, three days ahead of the Galaxy S5′s street date, which means that there is a very good chance that consumers will get their brand new smartphone early. AT&T often rewards those who pre-order with an early shipment.
The AT&T Galaxy S5 is up for pre-order through a number of other avenues as well including Amazon, Best Buy, Target and RadioShack. There are some differences between the pre-orders so prospective AT&T Galaxy S5 buyers will want to read the fine print before putting in an early Galaxy S5 order.
The carrier is charging $199.99 on-contract for the 16GB Galaxy S5. Off-contract AT&T charges $650 and that’s the price that buyers will have to pay off should they choose to buy the Galaxy S5 on an AT&T Next Plan. Over 20 months, AT&T Next customers will need to pay $32.50 a month for the Galaxy S5.
One thing to keep in mind is that Best Buy is charging $750 for the AT&T Galaxy S5 without a contract. That’s $100 more than AT&T’s off-contract price tag.
There are some deals for those looking to snag the Galaxy S5. Best Buy offers a $10 gift card to those that pre-order. RadioShack offers $50 off to those that pre-order. And Amazon offers a $10 discount from the $199.99 price tag. We expect the Amazon price to dip much lower after the Galaxy S5 arrives.
AT&T itself is offering a little deal on the Galaxy S5 as well. Qualified Samsung Galaxy S5 buyers will be able to get $50 off of the new Gear 2 or Gear Fit. The deal does require a new two year contract.
Sprint Galaxy S5
Like AT&T, the Sprint Galaxy S5 release date is April 11th. That will be the day that pre-order shift to regular old orders and it’ll likely be the day that we see the Galaxy S5 land in Sprint stores for the first time. Again, those who live in the vicinity of one of those Best Buy’s can go hands on ahead of April 11th.
Sprint, like the other U.S. carriers, is offering up a pre-order for the Galaxy S5. The carrier does not confirm early shipments but does say that it plans to ship out pre-orders as close to April 11th as possible. This leaves the door open for an early arrival.
Sprint’s version of the Galaxy S5 is also available for pre-order through Amazon, Best Buy, Target, and RadioShack which means that those who are headed to the Now Network have an assortment of options at their disposal. Again, we suggest taking a look at each pre-order before pulling the trigger.
Those who agree to a new two year contract can scoop up the Sprint Galaxy S5 for $199.99. Those who are looking to snag it off-contract can grab it for $650. Sprint is currently offering the Galaxy S5 for $0 down to those that pre-order the smartphone provided buyers sign up with one of the carrier’s Framily plans.
Again, Best Buy offers the Sprint Galaxy S5 off-contract but the offer should be avoided, at least for now, because Sprint is offering it for $750. That’s pricier than Sprint’s $650 offer.
Amazon offers the Sprint Galaxy S5 for $189.99, a $10 discount off the $199.99 price. RadioShack and Best Buy both are both offering the same pre-order deals that they offer to AT&T and T-Mobile Galaxy S5 pre-orderers.
Sprint is also offering a deal that entices buyers into its Framily plans. Those that buy the Galaxy S5 on a Framily plan will also get a free Galaxy Tab 3 tablet with their purchase.
T-Mobile Galaxy S5
T-Mobile’s Galaxy S5 release date is, surprise, April 11th. That will be the day that the device comes off of pre-order and emerges in physical retail locations. Again, those that want to get their hands on early will need to check their local Best Buy because it’s the only retailer in the U.S. that has it on hand right now.
The UnCarrier has been offering a Galaxy S5 pre-order for some time now. Unlike some of the other carriers, T-Mobile does not say if it will start shipping its Galaxy S5 early though it does say orders will arrive on April 11th. We would not be shocked if Magenta got deliveries out ahead of schedule.
T-Mobile’s Galaxy S5 is a little harder to find at the moment. None of the aforementioned retailers have it up for pre-order and it’s not clear if the device will land at those retailers after the release date comes and goes. Historically, T-Mobile flagships have been limited to T-Mobile so it’s possible that buyers will need to purchase it directly through T-Mobile.
The carrier abolished contracts last year which means that buyers aren’t going to find a subsidized price. Instead, the device will need to be purchased off-contract. Those who want to buy it straight up will need to throw down $660. Those who wish to go with Simple Choice financing will pay $0 down and $27.50 per month.
T-Mobile called the $0 pricing option a deal back when pre-orders first started so it’s possible that it may require a down payment after the pre-order period ends. Thus far, that’s the only “deal” that we’ve found for T-Mobile’s version of the Galaxy S5.
U.S. Cellular Galaxy S5
Unsurprisingly, the nation’s fifth largest carrier will be pushing its Galaxy S5 live on the same day as everyone else. U.S. Cellular will have the Galaxy S5 stocked alongside the Gear 2 and the Gear Fit.
Yes, U.S. Cellular is hosting a pre-order and has been for some time. Those looking to buy through U.S. Cellular will need to pre-order through U.S. Cellular because major retailers currently don’t offer any pre-orders. Those that do pre-order will see the device arrive in and around its April 11th release day.
The carrier says that it anticipates it will ship out the Galaxy S5 on April 9th. This leaves little breathing room which means that shipments will most likely arrive two days later on April 11th.
The regional carrier is offering the Galaxy S5 for $199.99 on-contract and $660 off-contract. Current customers can use their Rewards Points toward the Galaxy S5.
The only U.S. Cellular Galaxy S5 deal that we’ve seen thus far is one from U.S. Cellular. The carrier is offering a $50 Google Play Store credit to those that pre-order the Galaxy S5. We expect that deal to dissipate once the Galaxy S5 is released on April 11th.
The Google Play Store credit will give those who don’t have an extensive library of apps and content a head start making it a tempting offer for those headed to U.S. Cellular’s 4G LTE network.
Verizon Galaxy S5
Finally, after weeks of suspense, Verizon confirmed the Galaxy S5′s release date for April 11th, just as we suspected. This makes up for last year’s Galaxy S4 debacle that saw the carrier release the Galaxy S4 about a month after its rivals.
Verizon is offering a pre-order ahead of its April 11th release. The device is currently available through its web store and the carrier says that the device will ship by April 11th, its release date.
Big Red is charging $249 for the Galaxy S5, but there is a $50 mail in rebate card available to drop the price down to $199 on a two year contract. The off-contract Galaxy S5 price on Verizon is $599, which is slightly lower than on other carriers who are charging $650 and $660.
RadioShack is offering $50 to those that pre-order the device and we’ve also seen Verizon come out of the gates with a Verizon Galaxy S5 deal of its own.
Verizon is offering a BOGO deal to those that order. What this means is that buyers will get another Galaxy S5 for free. The carrier says that buyers can also get an HTC One M8 or a Samsung ATIV SE for free if the Galaxy S5 isn’t suitable.
We expect Amazon to offer the Galaxy S5 for $189.99 on-contract at some point which will give consumers a $10 discount off the device’s off-contract price tag.
Other Galaxy S5 Carriers
There are a number of other carriers that will be releasing the Galaxy S5. Among them, Ting, Boost Mobile, Virgin Mobile, and MetroPCS. At the moment, none of them have confirmed specific release dates.
Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile both confirmed the Galaxy S5 for Q2 which means that it could arrive any time between now and the end of June. We expect both carriers to offer the Galaxy S5 with competitive pricing. We aren’t expecting a pre-order for either device but given the stature of the Galaxy S5, it remains a possibility.
Ting says that it will release the Galaxy S5 in mid-April but we still don’t know when. Our guess is that it will release the device a few days after major carriers.
MetroPCS’ Galaxy S5 is up for pre-order at Best Buy for $650 off-contract. Best Buy does not give it an expected release date though, as we pointed out yesterday, we’re expecting the MetroPCS Galaxy S5 to land in April. All signs point to an arrival on April 11th as this point but that remains unconfirmed.
Other Important Galaxy S5 Release Details
There are some other important Galaxy S5 release details that consumers need to know about heading into April 11th.
32GB Galaxy S5
First, the 32GB Galaxy S5 remains missing in action. It’s not available for pre-order anywhere and U.S. Cellular tells us that it has no plans to offer the device in the future.
Last year’s Galaxy S4 32GB arrived after the initial release and it could be that we see the 32GB Galaxy S5 arrive in the weeks ahead. At the moment though, a release on April 11th is looking unlikely.
Blue Galaxy S5, Gold Galaxy S5 MIA
As of right now, U.S. carriers are only offering the black and white versions of the Galaxy S5. The blue and gold versions that we went hands on with in February are currently unavailable and it’s not clear when or if they will be making it to the United States. If they do, don’t be surprised if a carrier or retailer gets an exclusive on one or both.
Samsung Galaxy S5 Prime, Galaxy S5 Active, Galaxy S5 Zoom & Galaxy S5 mini
One last thing. As we approach April 11th, consumers need to know that there are three rumored Galaxy S5 branded devices on the way, in addition to a device that many believe is a premium Galaxy S smartphone.
Rumors suggest that a new Galaxy S5 zoom, Galaxy S5 mini and Galaxy S5 Active are on the way to join the regular old Galaxy S5. The devices are likely going to be replacements for Samsung’s current Galaxy S4 zoom, Galaxy S4 mini and Galaxy S4 Active on AT&T.
As for the premium device, a newly leaked benchmark shows us a device called Samsung SM-G906S. The device sports a 5.2-inch 2560×1440 QHD display, Snapdragon 805 processor, and a model number that is higher than the Galaxy S5′s. It also supposedly has an Adreno 420 GPU, 3GB of RAM, and 15.8MP camera sensor.
It’s possible that this is the premium Samsung Galaxy device that rumors have been talking about for months, a device that has been rumored to be coming a few months after the arrival of the Galaxy S5. This is something that buyers need to keep in mind as we get closer to the April 11th release date.