5 Reasons to Skip the Galaxy Note 5

The Samsung Galaxy Note 5 launch is all but confirmed for later this week on August 13th in New York City, and it will be one of if not the best phone ever released by Samsung. That said, here we want to go over five reasons why we think many buyers should skip the Galaxy Note 5.

At this point we know almost everything about the new Galaxy Note 5. Over the past month the device has leaked time and time again, including a massive leak this weekend days before the launch sharing every last detail, and even showing the box and full specs.

Read: Galaxy Note 5 Release: 5 Things to Expect

While the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 looks and sounds like a great smartphone, and it will arguably be the best smartphone released in all of 2015, it has lots of changes that some buyers need to be aware of. Below are five reasons I’ll be skipping the Galaxy Note 5.

Galaxy Note 5 leaked image
Galaxy Note 5 leaked image

For years Samsung has been criticised for the use of cheap plastics in its smartphones. Rather than using premium materials like aluminum and glass seen on the HTC One series or devices from Apple. However, that tried and trusted plastic design worked for years, and made Samsung the most popular smartphone manufacturer on the planet.

Samsung’s Galaxy S and Galaxy Note devices have always employed the latest and greatest technology with top-tier specs, great cameras, big batteries that could be removed and replaced, and expandable storage with a micro-SD slot. However, this year Samsung abandoned everything they’ve done for five years and switched things up.

Screen Shot 2015-08-10 at 10.58.14 AM

As a result the new Samsung Galaxy S6 is the best Galaxy S smartphone ever. It’s made out of a beautiful brushed aluminum frame with curved and chamfered edges, glass on the front and the back, and just looks and feels like a premium device that one would buy instead of the iPhone 6. But with all those changes came a lot of compromise, something that was acceptable for the Galaxy S6, but not for the Note 5.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 5, from all the leaks we’ve seen so far, looks like the best Note device to date. It has an excellent 5.7-inch Quad-HD (2k) resolution display, a blazing fast and powerful 8-core processor with 4GB of RAM stronger than many 2-3 year old laptops, a great 16 megapixel camera with optical image stabilization, and much much more. It’s a great phone, but a great phone lacking too many features to justify the massive $700 price tag that will likely come with it. Especially in a market with awesome similar 5.7-inch phones for hundreds of dollars less, with more features.

Samsung’s new Galaxy Note 5 will most likely be announced in a few days, and we’re hearing it will be released before the end of August. The company will sell millions of them, and users will love it. For me though, it’s missing a few key features that has me looking at the 2015 Moto X Pure Edition, the new Nexus 5 or Nexus 6, or even waiting for the Galaxy Note 6 in 2016. Here’s a few reasons why I will skip the Galaxy Note 5.

No Micro-SD for Expandable Storage

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No Micro-SD for Expandable Storage

This has been a topic of debate for months and months on end, and a few reports even suggest that at least one version of the Note 5 will have a micro-SD slot. That said, all signs are pointing to this extremely important feature being left out.

In an effort to make a thin, sleek, sexy all glass and aluminum smartphone Samsung needed to change a few aspects of the phone, just like they did with the Galaxy S6.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 5 is all about content consumption and creation. It has a massive 5.7-inch screen and a new spring-loaded S-Pen stylus for drawing, taking notes, giving presentations, and just being the most powerful do-it-all smartphone on the planet.

But it will only have 32GB of storage, with about 15GB of that wasted on the operating system. From what we're hearing it looks like the Note 5 will come in 32GB, 64GB and 128GB options all priced slightly higher, and there will not be a micro-SD slot. Every other Samsung Galaxy Note and S device has came with 16 or 32GB of storage, and users can toss in a micro-SD card.

My Galaxy S5 has 32GB of storage, and I have a 128GB micro-SD card I bought on Black Friday full of photos, music, movies, and more. That won't be an option this year. You'll have to settle for 32GB and cloud storage, spend $700-$800 for the 64GB model, and likely almost $900 (or more) for the 128GB Galaxy Note 5. That's just absurd. Approaching iPhone absurd.

There is a small chance Samsung has a micro-SD slot hidden somewhere inside the Galaxy Note 5 users can enjoy, but that's doubtful at this point. If you want the Galaxy Note experience with expandable storage, you'll have to get the Galaxy Note 4, or wait for the Galaxy Note 6 and hope the backlash makes the company changes their approach.

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14 Comments

  1. Jet

    08/10/2015 at 12:17 pm

    NEXUS DEVICES.. Learn from my experience and DON’T BUY A NEXUS DEVICE. Here is why….

    I bought a Nexus 5 a little more than 1 year ago. I updated my device with the latest update to Android 5.5.1 about 3 months ago. Now my phone crashes/shuts down every 5 minutes and it won’t successfully reboot until it is plugged it into a power source. And then it would go through an “app optimization” phase that would take 15 mins to complete before the phone would reboot. This makes the phone basically unusable and certainly not a mobile device. So one year after I spent $440 on my Nexus phone it is useless to me today. (By the way this is WIDESPREAD problem…More than 1,100 post todate on the Nexus 5 product forum regarding this issue ALONE….not to mention the thousands of other post regarding other issues users are having with the Nexus 5(.

    It was clearly a software problem as this problem started the day that I and many others upgraded to 5.1.1. Also this same problem has been reported on other Nexus devices (e.g., Nexus 6, Nexus 7, Nexus 9) and even on the Moto X product line.

    So I contacted Google Support. The sad part is that Google Support has ABSOLUTELY no interest in diagnosing the problem or providing any support for this issue. Even though I could consistently reproduce the problem within 5 minutes of use. They just told me to call LG Support. When I asked them how LG Support would be able to fix a software issue…given that this was a vanilla version of Android running on my phone…they would just repeat the same statement (You will need to contact LG support) as if they were a robot. Not getting anywhere with Google support. I contacted LG support. I explained the problem to them. To which LG support said that sounds like a software issue and pointed me back to Google Support. I told them that Google Support had just told me to call LG Support….to which LG support said we are just the hardware manufacturer and we have no capability to fix a software issue”…remember this is “vanilla” Android.

    What I learned is that neither Google Support nor the hardware manufacturer will take ownership of a problem when you have one with a NEXUS device. And believe me if you look through the Google Product Forums for Nexus devices you will see that problems with the Nexus devices is very common. So while you think you might be getting a good deal by buying a Nexus device…believe me you are not. Again I spent $440 slightly more than 1 year ago and today i’m left with a phone that will only work if it is plugged into a power source. Not exactly what I bargained for when I purchased the phone. And believe me Nexus devices are no bargain. As a consumer I’m left holding the bag.

    I hold Google responsible for this situation. After multiple escalations with their Support team, it’s clear that they couldn’t care less….even though the problem is clearly a sofware issue. I offered to help them troublshoot the problem…send them my phone so they could diagnose the problme. They couldn’t be bothered. All I got was the same “robotic” responses. I’ve gotten more compasionate responses from an automated phone system.

    Anyway…. I wanted to take the time to warn all potential Nexus customers what you will be getting into if you purchase a Nexus device. #FingerPointingNightmare, #LeftHoldingTheBag, #NoSupport. I’m shocked that the news media hasn’t picked up on this issue (given how widespread the problem is with Nexus users). I’ve tweeted every major technical publication and so far little responses. Maybe their too busy..but to me this is important news. Google as really f’d up Android with the Lollipop release….like humpty dumpty can they put it back together. Given their indifference to Sev 1 problems…I seriously doubt it. They seem content to put their head back in the sand and ignore their long term customer base.

    If I save one person from experiencing the hell I’ve experienced with my Nexus phone, it will have been worth the time and effort I’ve put into trying to get resolution to the problem and the effort I’ve put in trying to bring this issue to light.

    Here is hoping that the media will pick up on this issue.

    Cheers

    Reply

    • Cory Gunther

      08/10/2015 at 3:44 pm

      did u ever try a factory data reset?

      Reply

      • Jet

        08/10/2015 at 6:24 pm

        Cory, thanks for the suggestion. I did…I wiped the cache and did a complete factory reset. This didn’t help my situation or anyone else with this problem. The only thing that has helped others is to downgrade to kitkat. Lollopop has been an unmitigated DISASTER.

        Cheers

        Reply

  2. GOAT78

    08/10/2015 at 1:14 pm

    Great article. As a Note 4 owner, the only thing that could make me upgrade to a Note 5 is if the price drops substantially. After switching from the iPhone 4 to the Galaxy Note 2, I swore off Apple. I thought the Note series was always going to be my phone. I have upgraded every year and was impatiently awaiting the Note 5. Needless to say, my wait was met with huge disappointment. Yes, folks will argue that you can use cloud storage and having a removable battery is a thing of the past. I figured I could live with that but then the leaks came that there would be a smaller battery and that the same processor in the S6 will be used in the Note 5. Using a similar design as the S6 was a bad decision. That is when i checked out. The Note 5 is a S6 with a stylus and an extra GB of RAM. Yes, I love my Spen but that is not enough for me to give Samsung $800. Samsung, you fell for the Apple fans complaints and thought that making a closed phone would get them to leave Apple. Unfortunately, Samsung, you were wrong. Not only will Apple fans not buy the Note 5, a lot of Note 2, 3 and 4 fans/owners will not buy it either. Your Q3 sales will be awful. Chances are, Q4 will be as well.

    Reply

  3. uktechguy

    08/10/2015 at 4:32 pm

    I didn’t upgrade from my Note 3 and was waiting for the Note 5 as I didn’t think the Note 4 was worth the expense of what I already had on the Note 3. Sadly, for the reasons mentioned in the article, it looks like the end of the road for me and Samsung. Looks like I will be moving to Motorola or LG. Really can’t understand why Samsung devices had so much going for them that they have now stripped away to make their devices into iPhone “wannabes”. Madness!

    Reply

    • stacie

      09/04/2015 at 7:51 pm

      I completely agree with everything you’ve just stated. I’ll hold my awesome note 3 til something more – not less, comes along.

      Reply

  4. formerSamsunUser

    08/11/2015 at 9:47 am

    If I wanted an iPhone, I would have bought an iPhone. But why buy an iPhone wannabe when you can just buy an iPhone for same cost. I bought a Samsung because it was not like an iPhone with flexible microSD slot. Now that that’s changed, time to just get an iPhone.

    Reply

  5. Dick Hertz

    08/15/2015 at 4:04 am

    Non-removable battery & gutting the removable micro SD card are foolish decisions. I was awaiting my Note 3 to Note 5 upgrade but that is no longer an option. After many years of Samsung phones I will be jumping ship.

    Reply

  6. John

    08/31/2015 at 11:23 am

    Had a Note 2, 3, 4 and was planning on a 5. Not anymore. removable battery is complete deal breaker. i would want the SD slot as well but the swap-able battery is a must. Looks like the note 4 needs to soldier on till note 6 or someone else takes up the void.

    Reply

  7. Abu Shaheed Sa'id Abdul-Rahman

    09/01/2015 at 9:41 am

    I’ve had every Note Samsung has made. I’m skipping the Note 5 because they have ditched everything that makes a Note a Note. People will claim that the changes are either moving with the times or not deal breakers, but the fact is that the Note series appealed to Note enthusiasts because of the very features that Samsung has now scrapped. I hope sales reflect our feelings and forces Samsung to rethink this horrible strategy.

    Reply

  8. Chad H

    09/04/2015 at 6:28 pm

    No removable battery and no MicroSD slot… sounds like iTrash to me. Put it back Samsung or goodbye.

    Reply

  9. Clarity2016

    09/08/2015 at 10:47 am

    Echoing the same sentiments. Note 3 user who was planning on upgrading to the 5. But with no removable battery or SD slot you can forget it.

    Reply

  10. Miguel Marques

    09/21/2015 at 3:09 am

    I can live with no removable battery, but not without an SD card slot! I´ll wait for the note 6 and just hope it will be water proof and have an SD card slot

    Reply

  11. Ximno

    01/19/2016 at 5:35 am

    Any Note 6 rumours yet?? My wife’s phone is dead and I was to pass my Note 3 to her and update. Note 5 would be a waste of time. Removable battery, MicroSD and IR should be left in there.. Phablet users are TechNerds and mobile office solutions. Why would you do very obvious moves away from these markets?

    Reply

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