Stock Galaxy S5 Firmware Eats Up Almost 8GB of Onboard Storage

February 24, 2014 - Written By Jeremiah Nelson

Looks like the Samsung Galaxy S5 is continuing Samsung’s tradition of bloatware. The Galaxy S5’s on display at Mobile World Congress are showing us some unwelcome information. The amount of storage available on the Galaxy S5 is right around 8 GB. These are 16 GB models on display, which means that the stock firmware on the device takes up almost 8 GB. That’s right. Half of the available on-board storage is eaten up by Samsung’s software and apps.

This is a pre-release ROM, so maybe Samsung will slim things down a bit between now and April when the device is released. We certainly hope so. The S5 will also come in a 32 GB variant, which will alleviate the storage issues a bit. The smartphone also has support for a microSD card. It’s something we don’t see often on our Android phones anymore. Samsung is one of the few remaining manufacturers that bother with putting a microSD card slot on their devices, and this is precisely why. When your stock firmware takes up half the space available on the phone, you have to provide some other way for your customers to store their photos, apps, game data, and other media.

Samsung has gone on record stating they were going to fall in line with the Android that Google has designed. We’re seeing that a bit on the Galaxy S5 with the flattened app icons as well as the white icons in the notification bar. The S5 is also running Android 4.4 KitKat out of the box, so that’s up to date too. Their firmware is as bloated as ever, though.

Some users may not consider this bloatware and those users would probably not even consider this an issue at all. Samsung’s phones come packed with eye-tracking features, fitness software, and camera enhancements, among other additions. In fact, here’s a list of all the S5 features. Depending on your taste, these may be improvements. That’s the beauty of Android and the beauty of having manufacturers competing with each other. Either way, we would definitely recommend opting for the 32 GB version of the Galaxy S5 if you decide this is your next phone. It’ll probably cost you an extra $50 but you’ll need it.