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Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint Kill Off Galaxy S5 Download Booster Feature

Download Booster on the Galaxy S5 from Samsung was one of the cooler, flagship features introduced on the device. The feature allows users to simultaneously utilize the 4G LTE and WiFi connectivity on the device when downloading files, cutting download times significantly, as advertised on the official Galaxy S5 page from Samsung.

Unfortunately, anyone buying the device on AT&T, Verizon, or Sprint won’t find it anywhere on their phones. In an interesting move by these carriers, they have opted to remove the feature, possibly trying to help users save on their capped data plans. 

Representatives for both Sprint and Verizon confirmed the omission of Download Booster on the GS5, while a few AT&T customers receiving their Galaxy S5 units can confirm that the feature is not present. However, anyone getting the phone from T-Mobile still has reason to smile, as the company has not removed it, even promoting the Download Booster feature on the device.

Any users of Verizon may know that a carrier removing features is nothing new, as Verizon was known for removing the Blocking Mode from Samsung devices last year.

No exact reason was given by the carriers as to why the move was made, but it does seem rather shady.

Via: Fierce Wireless
  • kelly1519

    Morgan Stanley is the latest of the sell-side
    analysts to raise Verizon’s outlook for 2014, pegging its target price at $52, Here
    is why http://bit.ly/1eGzqGR

  • Stephen D

    Seriously? This is one of the coolest new features. Makes me glad I’m on T-Mobile.

  • JayEvans

    I’ll relate a story that may answer why. I had a mid 90s’ model of a car, where the oil pressure gauge was fully functional. Needle changed with RPM. Bought a new model in 2002 but the oil pressure gauge was really nothing more that an Idiot light, the needle registered either you had oil pressure (needle in the middle) or you didn’t (0).

    When I asked Mazda why the change, suspecting cost as the issue, they said it was because too many customers complained of low oil pressure at idle! Well duh, that’s how it works!

  • Lee Long

    Shady? Saving cap space is shady? Not really. Should they have left it up to customers with a warning nag? Probably. But shady?

    • needa

      lol. hell yes it is shady.

  • Well that defeats the purpose! That’s one of the main reasons as to why I even wanted the Galaxy S5. I guess I’ll just keep my Galaxy S4 for now. Maybe I’ll just opt for the new note. Smh, I’m so disappointed in Verizon.

    • Steve B

      Are you? Are you really?

    • Lee Long

      Or, you could root it and trust that some Dev will be able to put in back in there…

  • Steven

    Sprint no I’m gonna root my s5 just for that feature back not cool

  • JWellington

    SO glad to be a TMobile customer. Switched from verizon 2 years ago and never looked back.

  • flosserelli

    I bet if the iphone had this feature, none of the carriers would touch it. Samsung needs to grow a pair and stop being the carriers’ little bitch.

  • jg

    Wow — I was ready to buy this phone tomorrow until I read this…

    • The Miz

      Yeah I have no use for the PHONE now…………… Lol

  • a) youth.in.asia

    This would just be a benefit to the network to charge for more buckets of data

  • Kisuk3

    “Help users save on their capped data plans”
    Lol good one. More like, if your in a spot that has WiFi, they don’t want you clogging up their network.

    These companies don’t do anything to help their customers. It’s all about money.

  • Go T-Mobile!! 😀

  • 213ninja

    tmo has been impressive of late….

  • annaarron

    Why the Galaxy S5 Fails to Impress, find here http://goo.gl/avFqfu

  • Marco Mendoza

    Us cellular galaxy s5 has the download booster available on the phone

  • Guest11

    Im sure they will put out a single standalone app apk file for it… who cares

    • Adrynalyne

      It takes far more than an apk for this.

  • Scott in MA

    Reading this makes me kind of mad. I would consider T-Mobile, but they only have 2G where I live while Verizon has 4G even in my basement.

  • John Davids

    Is anyone really that shocked? Of course they are blocking it so you consume more 4G LTE data and thus pay more. Duh.

    This is why I refuse to ever purchase a phone that I do not have the power to modify the ROM on. Paying hundreds of dollars for a piece of hardware and being 100% chained to the whims of my carrier on what features I get, when I get updates, which updates I get, etc.

  • ravenofdoom

    … Just when I thought I was being clever buying the phone retail with my Verizon unlimited data plan to use this feature + wifi to get 100+mbps speeds. If they ever do formally kill unlimited data, I bet you’d see this “feature” reappear

  • Elizabeth harville

    thanks for sharing its really helpful for me

  • SVem26

    T-mobile is kind of the the opposite.. they remove the Mobile Data notification toggle.. Its as if they want you always use Data.. On the unlimited plan and loving it.. the least I’ve seen yet is 17mbps

  • roxyperez001

    Just because it has a dual core doesn’t mean it is the same as those other phones you mentioned. Newer processors are more efficient than their predecessors, and .http://goo.gl/iwD8Pf

  • lol fail

  • Reallytho

    Hell to the yeah!….I’m so glad I left vzw for T-Mobile… No issues with data or phone calls and its wayyy cheaper than vzw even with my discount from my employer

  • Victor Amador l

    Check this out. it does the same thing. been on XDA already.

    Super download
    Wifi and lte dual download app


  • Pdewet

    I don’t understand how companies like Samsung allow carriers to change features on their phones as they see fit. If you ask me carriers have too much power. This is also evident with updates. There are certain things a carrier should not have control over and should not have a say in. They did this with google wallet, blocking mode and now this. Total BS

  • mcdonsco

    This has nothing to do with concern for users, it has everything to do with concern for carriers.

    I was not looking forward to this for faster download speeds, I was looking forward to it for smoother transition from wifi to 4G and vice versa.


  • gintoddic

    It will actually cost them more support money from people complaining there data is being utilized too much. Basically, this will give verizon a headache if enabled.

    • flosserelli

      No, this would actually give Verizon potentially more revenue for data overages. All that should be necessary is a warning such as “You may exceed your data cap more quickly. Tap ‘Accept’ or continue or ‘Decline’ to disable this feature” and leave it up to the user.

      Personal responsibility is becoming virtually nonexistent in today’s society.

  • Trevor

    I’d understand turning this feature off by default, but not removing it completely. Also, they’d need to make sure there was some sort of warning about using a lot of data when turning the feature on (because you know morons will burn through their data in no time then bi*ch up a storm to their provider).

  • LionStone

    Doesn’t the S5 have 5GHz wifi anyway?

    • middlehead

      The frequency of the wifi is irrelevant.

      • LionStone

        If it has 5GHz, shouldn’t that be sufficient download speed?

        • TylerCameron

          If you have the internet speed to back it up…

        • Adrynalyne

          Phones have had 5ghz forever. The speed is still capped low though.

        • flosserelli

          WiFi frequency has no bearing on transmission speed.

        • middlehead

          Frequency is not speed. Frequency is not relevant to your download capacity.

  • All the more to love TMobile

    • Scott in MA

      I want to go with them. But they only have 2G service all around where I live.

  • Matt Blake

    Somebody port this! Probably the only Touchwiz feature I’d consider putting on an AOSP ROM

  • Gideon Waxfarb

    I don’t know if I’d want this on anyway, esp as I am not on an unlimited data plan. If I’m on wifi, I want to stay on wifi.

  • tomn1ce

    This seems worst then vzw taking away the ability to add widgets on the Note 3 lockscreen, those bastards.

    • crazed_z06

      You can add widgets to Note 3 lockscreen on Verizon

      • tomn1ce

        I have looked all over the damn setting and don’t see such a thing on my vzw Note 3…I watched a video on youtube and my settings options were different then the ones on the video. One major difference the lockscreen widget option is missing on my Note 3.

  • nkd

    Why the he’ll would you want this on capped data plan anyways. It’s not shady at all, they don’t want people calling and bitching about how they ran out of data when they were connected to wifi the whole time. Am I the only one who thinks this is a good move by them if you are on capped data? I wouldn’t want some stupid booster using up my 4G data when I am connected to wifi. If your on unlimited that’s a different story.

    • Garrett

      Even if you’re on capped data that doesn’t mean you’re going to run into your limit by using this feature. Taking away something I am able to do by default on a device I purchase makes no sense. It should be my choice to use a tech, not theirs.

  • JayEvans

    ” Verizon was known for removing the Blocking Mode from Samsung devices last year.”

    Huh? My Verizon S4 is from last year and Blocking Mode is fully functional.

    • Adrynalyne

      Note 2 did not, thanks to Verizon.

  • Mordecaidrake

    Ah Verizon you make me even more sad. The only reason I’m still there is because I have a ‘dumb phone’ on my family plan that I continue to do upgrade swaps with so I can keep my unlimited data and still get phones at a discounted price.

  • Of course…

  • Raven65

    Yeah, I’m SURE it’s because they’re looking out for their customers and trying to help them stay within their data limit . ROFL! What. Ever! It’s much more likely that they’re trying to come up with a way to charge an extra FEE for this “service”.

    • Justtyn Hutcheson

      They don’t need to charge an extra fee. You would eat through your data faster, which means you either move to a higher tier or are charged overages. Either way, they get more money.

  • Droid Ronin

    I’m sure the XDA folks will have a hack that will enable this again.

    • bigL.

      Yep, T-mobile Note 3 Hyperdrive rom has this feature!

      • Jason Bittner

        T-mobile never killed the feature to begin with, of course its in a T-mobile ROM

  • Abgar Musayelyan

    is there an app that does this on all phones?

    • Intellectua1

      Samsung exclusive bub

      • Abgar Musayelyan

        is it a hardware restriction that forbids a similar app to work on all devices?

  • Intellectua1

    I have 10gbs of data it’s impossible for me to go over it. This is a feature I was really looking forward to

    • Abgar Musayelyan

      try torrenting on your phone. I can do 10 gigs in a morning without even trying to break that limit..
      its not impossible.

      • Intellectua1

        I do torrent but have my network settings on wifi only. Even though I have 10gbs I still don’t get reckless. I really only use it for streaming Milk and Tune In radio

      • Sean Plantz

        Do that many people really do that on the phone? I just can’t see any real good reason to. And I use my phone for almost everything.

        • Intellectua1

          I probably shouldn’t say this because the NSA is listening but music and books I do because when I download it I don’t have to transfer it to my device. I also torrent movies but move them to my hard drive that’s attached to my projectors

          • Sean Plantz

            Ahh, was just wondering, I use the client to make my home computer download torrents when im away just never am away long enough to consider torrenting on the go.

    • TylerCameron

      I don’t even torrent on my phone and I easily use 15GB/month.

  • jimt

    Love Tmo. Haven’t ever looked back to Verizon since 12/15/13 Verizon freedom day.

    • Ajmobileguru

      Lol! on T-Mo it will show wifi as 20 Mbps and LTE as 2 Mbps! just kidding 🙂

      • jimt

        My Tmo is faster than my wifi and my comcast cable.

  • Medicdad73

    How am I not truly surprised? Why would they remove this feature, makes no sense

    • The Miz

      Unlimited is coming to an end soon at big red. Employees are getting internal docs now. Volte

  • g2gsr

    Yet another reason to go Nexus

    • Derek Duncan

      because the Nexus has this feature?? :-/

      • g2gsr

        No, because Google wouldn’t let features be removed. Honestly, I’m surprised Samsung would go for this.

        • Derek Duncan
          • g2gsr

            I don’t use tethering so I was not aware of that. No need to be so smug about though.

        • Intellectua1

          Because the Nexus doesn’t have any cool features

          • g2gsr

            Nothing that a few app downloads can’t change. It’s all a matter of opinion though. I’d rather download a few apps to get the features I want rather than be forced into using them, or not using them, by the bloated UI that is using all the resources on my device.

  • MikeSaver

    People think I’m a person, but really I’m a dinosaur.

  • Michael Tate

    Those of us still on our VZW Unlimited Data plans are not fond of this news!!

    • K

      Verizon sure is cause they know the small unlimited crowd would really use the hell out of it 🙂

      • BobButtons

        That’s why I assumed they took it out.. not to ‘help’ people but to take data load off their network from those who don’t mind using data to boost downloads.

        • K Hung

          Exactly, why would they “help” customers when they can charge insane overages for people with data caps?

    • Jason Downing

      Or you can just stick it to them and NEVER use wifi

      • androidkin

        Did that for a while towards the end of my contract on Verizon. After the contract expired, I moved to T-mobile and never looked back.

      • eagletrippin

        With my unlimited data plan I bought an HTC One m7 off contract last month in new condition, and immediately started pounding Verizon by downloading 5.5 GB of data in one day 😀

        • michael arazan

          Don’t give them any lube either

    • Eric R.

      I’m thinking that my Verizon M8 won’t get power saver, just like the DNA

  • Derek Duncan

    I’d rather have the download booster removed than have the huge ‘S Finder’ and ‘Quick Connect’ buttons in the notification bar every damned time.

  • hkklife

    Samsung & the carriers removing the 32GB GS5 is more of an annoyance to me personally.

  • Carriers taking away cool features? Color me surprised -_-

  • Cael

    The only blazing fast speeds the carriers want you to experience is the data you pay them for. lol

  • Joe Bertolino

    This is disappointing. Still dropping VZW next week for AT&T.

    • K

      Wish I could but I’ll just hold off on until my contract runs out instead of paying an ETF. So many devices to choose w/ GSM.

  • Jason Downing

    I don’t think removing it is the answer. Putting a disclaimer or a little notification that let’s you know that your data will be used would be nice. That coupled with the ability to toggle it on or off.

    • tyguy829

      but carriers aren’t allowed to do logical things…

    • David Mann

      You’d be amazed at how stupid some people are. Read the Verizon Wireless customer support forums sometime, you’ll see what I mean.

    • You can toggle it on or off. It’s not automatic. It also doesn’t turn on unless you are downloading something over 30MB.

      • Jason Downing

        Right. I can see the toggle in the notification bar. I’m just saying add a notification to go with it.

    • Intellectua1

      People will somehow get stupid and still blame the carrier and Samsung for overage charges.. It’s just how the game goes, guess it’s more like protection for the non tech savvy.

      • Jason Downing

        Yeah… I guess Microsoft should just disable all downloads to Windows…. That way users can’t get viruses. Ignorance shouldn’t be a problem for everyone.

        • Intellectua1

          Whole different ballgame. You don’t get charged per virus and you having a virus don’t affect Microsoft because you know it’s your fault. But I get what you’re saying. Stupid protection shouldn’t be extended to the crowd with a brain.

          • Jason Downing

            Exactly. I always use extreme analogies to make my point haha. Definitely not the same, but you got where I was going with it.

        • Justtyn Hutcheson

          False equivalency there.

          This is a feature whose usage is difficult for the average person to understand. That confusion only makes it more difficult to explain why they have a $500 data overage, and why they were charged when they had their wifi turned on.

          Note, they aren’t doing this to keep people from getting higher bills, they are doing it to prevent their CS department from being flooded with complaints.

          • Jason Downing

            I understand that, but there are ways to remedy it without completely getting rid of the feature. I used to get a notification on my g2 when I turn off wifi saying that I may incur data charges because I was not using wifi anymore. Same thing applies here. “You may incur data charges while using this feature because it uses your data connection+wifi”

            If people don’t understand that, that’s their problem.

  • Jeb Barrett


    • Guy Pierce

      Yes of course they are……………………………….. Trying to help them spend more money that is…… HAHAHA!

    • michael arazan

      Got to love how Corporations are always thinking for their customers and there never is a shady self centered reason for them doing this.

      Corporations, hindering innovation is S.O.P.

      • Champloo

        I mean, people are looking at this cynically, but it really makes sense.

        The vast majority of consumers are going to want to avoid using their limited amounts of data when they have access to wifi. It would probably just confuse most users anyway. Have to remember that those of us posting here are atypical.

  • rawr

    I wish I could T-Mobile… You’ve done everything right to get customers, you just need the most important part now… A network outside of city limits.

    • Intellectua1


    • Sean Plantz

      Seriously, Nearly every good thing they have done is negatively offset by the nothing network they have.

      • Justtyn Hutcheson

        That’s the point though. If they had the network and were roughly even with AT&T or Verizon, does anyone seriously believe that they would have any of their new programs?

        • Sean Plantz

          Def not. Its easier to be generous with your network when there is very little stress on it.

          • The Narrator

            They aren’t Verizon.

          • Sean Plantz

            hence why the company name is T-mobile. Wait, was this some clever way of saying Verizon is the root of all evil? Did I miss something?

        • Exactly, they need to be different to bring customers over to their smaller network

      • joder

        Get us root and we can figure out how to get this working on the phones.

      • Aaron C

        I love T-Mo so much after having Verizon for 12 years that I just bought a refurb Galaxy Note II just so I could have wifi calling at my desk. Other than that, coverage has been excellent for me, speeds have been MUCH faster than AIO (which I tried before T-Mo), and faster than Verizon LTE most places. I am sure they’ll be rolling out that 700Mhz as quickly as possible.

    • The Narrator

      Or you can just not leave /s

    • KingofPing

      “A network outside of city limits.”

      Overly-generalized = wrong. (Why don’t more people know this?)

      New Prague, MN.
      Jordan, MN
      Elko, MN

      …farm towns, every one; and at least 30 minutes from anything resembling a major city. (Look at a map if you don’t trust me…)

      Heh…guess what? All have great LTE coverage from T-Mobile.

      So yeah – while I know T-Mobile’s coverage sucks for a lot of you, at least try to be somewhat rational in your angst… 😛

      This area, at least, is served quite well by T-mobile and everyone I know using it (obviously in this area, so…grain of salt…) loves it.

      I guess what I am really trying to say is that while it may suck in your area, don’t make the mistake of assuming it sucks everywhere. (..and I’ll try and not assume it’s great everywhere because it’s great here)


      • T4rd

        Try not to take things so literal. There will always be exceptions.

        • or… and call me crazy…

          How about I read it as it is written.

          How about people write what they mean.

          I know. It’s asking a lot…

          • T4rd

            Or you just not argue for arguments sake and sound like a moron.

          • LiterofCola


          • KingofPing

            Arguing against the over-generalization of something for increased negative emotional response is neither pointless nor hard.

            At least, no more pointless than trolling someone for merely correcting an over-generalization….are you really that bored? Nothing better to do?

          • T4rd

            Except it’s not an over-generalization. It’s a valid generalization that you choose to argue against with a few exceptions.. For every cow town that has T-Mobile’s LTE, there’s at least 50 that don’t.

            And I lol’d at the irony of trying to call someone out for having nothing better to do than “troll” an internet blog’s comment section. You must be new here.. (and to debate in general).

          • KingofPing

            It is the definition of an over-generalization. Any statement intended to oversimplify reality.

            I corrected that. Shame on me…you’d think I’d insulted your sister.

            Sorry you feel it’s “valid” to say “it only works here” when it is demonstrably false. Not even being facetious here. It’s marketing, its false, and it leads people to make decisions based on incorrect assumptions.

            “For every cow town that has T-Mobile’s LTE, there’s at least 50 that don’t.”

            Then say it. Is it that hard? Doesn’t have “a network outside of city limits” is no harder than “has little network presence out of most major cities”. Hell, it sure as heck won’t spark this debate and isn’t that alone worth it? (Yes – yes, it is.)

            I’m not denying their coverage outside major POPs is bad. I mentioned it in my original response. I don’t want people to think T-Mobile coverage is great everywhere. It isn’t. I also don’t want them to think it doesn’t exist outside of major cities. It does.

            Making statements implying that it does not does everyone a dis-service. Don’t feel it’s important enough to comment on? Odd…you sure seem to think it’s important enough to comment *against*…

          • T4rd

            This goes back to my original statement. What you said is something everyone (with a little intuition and common sense at least) already knows, you just took it literally and felt the need to argue a few exceptions just for the sake of arguing. But I’m going to let you keep writing paragraph long rebuttals defending yourself while I keep you going with a sentence or two. 😉

          • KingofPing

            “everyone (with a little intuition and common sense at least) already knows”

            People will believe anything, if it is repeated often enough.
            -Abe Lincoln (President of Madagascar, 1986)

            (short enough for you?)

            …for the sake of clarity and understanding.

          • T4rd

            Well I guess it’s good that you’re here for all the ignorant people of Droid Life!

          • KingofPing

            Wow. Just…damn.

            *shakes head*

            Well just f*ck me for giving a crap, right?

          • T4rd

            Welcome to the Internet! I will be your guide..

          • KingofPing

            I’m sure you won’t mind at all if I just opt out of accepting that kind offer, but thanks anyway.

          • T4rd

            You’re quite welcome! I’m always happy to oblige. 😉

        • BSweetness


          Coverage always varies, so one has to find out what a carrier’s coverage is like in their area.

          That said, rawr’s “over generalization” isn’t really that off as far as generalizations go. I travel around the country extensively for work, and I consistently get poor service on the T-Mobile phone that I have when I venture outside of a metro area. It’s happened so often that there’d be no way to count up the times I’m somewhere with a very strong LTE signal from Verizon but 2G or nothing from T-Mobile.

          I would love to move my personal account to T-Mobile, but there’s just no way I could do it. The signal frustration would outweigh any savings I would get.

      • wcjeep

        No Deal. I live near their headquarters. The service is spotty in the metro areas. Useless outside city limits.

        • Awwww, well shucks

          Sucks to be you..

      • Danny


        • KingofPing

          I am certain your eloquence is superior only to your intellect…

          • Danny

            Oh word?

      • Androidtech

        The whole Texas Hill Country around The Kerville area and beyond is 2g only and that is why I can not get T-Mobile.

    • Brian Barcus

      Speaking from my experience in the St. Louis metro region, T-Mobile didn’t do like Sprint and create a huge crappy network. Where TMO has coverage (at least the areas I know) it is really good. While Sprint customers move in and out of coverage through their day T-Mobile either covers your area or it doesn’t. I have been very impressed how far my TMO coverage goes into the rural areas around here.

  • bobbyp

    Any reason the carries would give would either be a lie or half truth anyways.

  • stacky

    XDA will have it soon.

    • Kyle

      Yep they will….Next Headline on Droid-Life: How to turn on Download Booster if Rooted

      • MichaelFranz

        Continuing the King of the Hill….

        ….Yep (sips beers)

        • Jonathan Williams


      • Noble Star

        True Daaat brother!

      • KingofPing

        For any device….

    • Intellectua1

      Exactly, I’m not worried..

    • josuearisty

      I hope this feature is added to cm!