When the new pocket computer was received, I checked out these features.
Initially I used Samsung's unlocked image of Android 4.4
Later I installed CyanogenMod-12 based on Android-5.0
This is beta level. The first
Stock, gives the
out of the box experience with
very little hacking; the next one is for CyanogenMod-12.
In summary, most of the features that the pocket computer is supposed to have, performed with no hassle out of the box. (You need to install a player app to play streaming audio from outside sources.) These items had issues:
Worksbut DNS and thru traffic routing are misbehaving. Still working on it.
Tap and Goaccount credential transfer succeeded. And it talks to payment terminals. But not productively; more details here.
Details of some of the checkout tests and other miscellaneous items may be found on the Checkout Details page.
out of the box, or after a clean installation of CyanogenMod.
|Conf||It needed editing a configuration file or running a setup GUI.|
|Add-On||Needed additional or patched software: download it; follow instructions to compile and/or install it; it works.|
|Fiddle||As with |
Add-On, but it required some workarounds in the procedure, which might seem minor to an experienced user but which might prevent a newbie from making it work.
|Hack||So you call yourself a guru? This one will challenge your skills. But this guru eventually got it working.|
|Fail||I wasn't able to get this one to work, at least so far.|
|*||A prerequisite did not qualify for the |
Confrating, but once that was set up, the listed component worked with no further hassle.
|Check dimensions and mass||Box||Box|
|Mass (measured, with battery): 142 grams. Battery: 45 grams. Bounding box: 142 x 73 x 8 mm (9mm counting camera). Vendor quotes it as 142 x 72.5 x 8.1mm, 145 grams. Density (based on bounding box): 1.73 g/cc. It will sink like a stone, but the IP67 rating promises survival in 1 meter depth of fresh water for 30 minutes. (Not tested.)|
|Does it charge OK?||Box||Box|
|Using the 2 amp USB charger that comes with the phone, it took 80 minutes for 0% to 86%; 40 minutes more to 100%, total 2 hours.|
|Battery life under excessive load: With all 4 cores maxed out doing SHA512 sums, it ran for 2.5 hours, 100% to 4%.|
|Link to details of the battery test.|
|Does it boot at all?||Hack||Hack|
|Yes. On first booting the stock image it got stuck in the welcome screen and could not be powered off. I pulled the battery, then booted into recovery and did a factory reset; that took care of it. Then I was able to go through the usual setup procedure. The procedure to install CyanogenMod is of course rather more extensive and fraught with peril. But after careful research, I was able to get it right on the first try, so the pocket computer booted into CyanogenMod-12.|
|Processor (details tested on CM-12)||Box||Box|
|Voice chat (T-Mobile, GSM or LTE)||Box||Box|
|Cellular Data (T-Mobile, GSM or LTE)||Box||Box|
|Wi-fi in Master Mode||N.T.||Setup|
The Wi-fi driver for the Galaxy S5 can be put into master mode, allowing your pocket computer to act as a Wi-fi access point. In documentation this is referred to as Wi-fi Tethering. Check your cell plan's terms of service carefully to determine if you need to pay extra to do this.
You need to configure it: Settings - Wireless & Networks (More) - Tethering - Set up WiFi Hotspot. Tell it the SSID, access control type (open, WPA PSK, WPA2 PSK), and the pre-shared key (password). It does not broadcast its SSID so the client doesn't show it when scanning. Configure these parameters in the client, and it will be able to connect. Nowhere do you specify the channel or the IP range; for me it used 192.168.43.x (RFC 1918). Nor does it ask for the DNS server; presumably it's using the carrier's server, though I have my own recursive DNS server.
Hardwarewise, Bluetooth worked out of the box on both the stock image and CyanogenMod. Pairing worked the first time, following standard procedures for the devices. Partners tested: 66 BT Sport headphones, ThinkOutside keyboard. Follow the link for details of what was tested and for how to pair with these devices.
|Audio digital signal processor (DSP)||N.T.||N.T.|
It's hard to prove that the principal audio codecs (Vorbis, MP3) are running on the DSP.
|Play streaming audio||Box||Box|
Music by Google and ES Media Player were the players tested, and the formats used were Ogg Vorbis, MP3 and M3U (list of URLs or files). Both players play all three formats if they are local files on the pocket computer itself. But streaming from a remote site (pure HTTP, or an Icecast or Shoutcast transport stream), both players do MP3 and neither plays Vorbis or M3U. The Firefox builtin player can perform a Vorbis track or stream, but MP3 is handed off to your choice of app, and similarly for M3U but the app can't play it. See here details of the multimedia checkout.
|The device can send HDMI via its USB port, to be converted by an adapter sold separately, that I didn't get.|
|NFC (Near Field Communication)|
|Connecting to Galaxy S3 which has NFC (CM-12 used NFC to import my Google account.)||Fail||Box|
|Payment (Google Wallet): Talks to terminal, but transaction is refused. Details here.||N.T.||Not Really|
|IRDA (Infrared remote control)||N.T.||Box|
|Tested with ...|
|Use Settings - Personalization - Finger Scanner to register fingerprints.||Box||Fail|
| Use fingerprints to unlock the lock screen.
It takes a fair amount of practice to get the finger to be recognized reliably. CM-12 does not have any API for this.
|It's hard to get calibration data for the
magnetometer, but all three axes do function. +X is east, +Y is north, +Z
is to the front, and the indicated side of the device has to be facing
terrestrial magnetic north for the axis to read a positive value. The
magnitude of the magnetic field is about 45 uT and is fairly consistent
on the three axes. Remember
that magnetic north is underground in the northern hemisphere, quite a
lot even in Los Angeles (32 degrees north).
The magnetometer is at the northeast corner about 1cm from each edge. Iron objects, like a screwdriver or masonry reinforcement of course will affect the readings.
|On the Terran surface the reported magnitude of
acceleration is between 9.75 and 10.05 m/s2; correct value is 9.8.
When I turn the device 180 degrees, the magnitude typically shows a zero
offset of 0.04 m/s2; e.g. north up shows 9.75, south up shows
9.83, half the sum is 0.04 m/s2. This is pretty good
performance for a consumer-grade accelerometer. Values are similarly
consistent among the three axes.
The axis sensors are reasonably aligned with the chassis. As seen by the Phone Tester app, +Y is south, i.e. in portrait orientation with the speaker (north) up, Y will be about plus 9.8 m/s2. Remember that gravity is downward on Terra. +X is east (east edge down gives plus), and +Z is rear (display up gives plus).
|Proximity (face) sensor||Box||Box|
|When you're making a voice call and the phone is close to your face, the display and touch screen are deactivated. When you take it away, they return. This seems to work reasonably, and can be useful since you don't want your fat jowls to activate the dialpad. It's controlled by one of the optical sensors above the 'G' in SAMSUNG, probably the left (west) one.|
|The indicator LED is in the northwest corner. Some of these need to be turned on in the settings. In CyanogenMod-12 you can adjust the color and brightness of the battery notifications.|
|Battery full (when charging; starts at 90%)||Green||Green|
|Battery very low (15% or below)||Red flash||Red flash|
|Boot and Shutdown||Blue pulse||Off|
|SMS or similar message waiting||Blue flash||Blue flash|
|Ambient Light Sensor||Box||Box|
It works, and influences the display brightness if turned on. Above the 'G' in SAMSUNG there are two holes, and the right (east) one is the light sensor. See here for ambient light sensor details. The largest value seen was 140000 lux in direct sunlight. Low light is in steps of 1 lux, but anything under 3 lux is reported as zero. Sensor is advertised as being in color; does this do anything?
|Rear camera with flash||Box||Box|
|Rear camera works?||Box||Box|
|Subjective image quality: looks good even at 3 lux and no flash.|
|Auto focus: Works effectively.||Box||Box|
|Resolution: Text 12 arcmin high is clearly readable.|
| Flash: Testing in a dark closet. Default is no flash; you need
to turn it |
on; auto-flash didn't flash in the dark closet. Once this was done, it turned on the lamp in flashlight mode, auto-focused, and then fired the flash. Picture came out good. Same behavior for CyanogenMod's camera app.
|Color rendition: Depends on the software; CyanogenMod camera does a good job.|
|Low light performance: Good enough for barcode scanning at 16 lux.|
|Photo Gallery, taken with the camera.|
|Video capture (not tested yet)|
|Front camera (needs more testing)||Box||Box|
|Tested with ipwebcam, which obtained and transmitted the image normally.|
|Front camera works?||Box||Box|
|Color rendition: decent.|
|Video capture or video chat: Testing with IP Webcam.||Box||Box|
|Subjective impressions are that the Galaxy S5 is frugal with energy. At work with games or book reading during breaks and evening, I use 30% in a day. On a day of intense development (preparing this web page) I used 70%. See the battery detail section for more objective data, and here are some suggestions for power saving.|