The thing that's frustrated me the most over the last year of non-updates is the fact that I'm collateral damage here in Verizon's war against their unlimited data customers.
I'm not on an unlimited plan, nor am I a developer. Instead, I'm just a consumer that saw a phone with the features I wanted (adequate resolution, screen size, ram, etc.), and bought it over a Galaxy S3 because it saved me a hundred bucks.
What I didn't know at the time, of course, is that Verizon would drop support of the phone three months after I bought it. I didn't know it has a software bug that leaks battery charge in the same way a fire hose leaks water. I didn't know that the charging port is incredibly weak and needs to be replaced around the 12-15 month mark. (This one is the most forgivable, as users of the phone were just starting to experience this problem when I bought my toro.) And I didn't know I would have so many bugs preventing me from using my phone properly.
Eighteen months in, and voice commands still don't work on my bluetooth stereo. Well, that's not entirely true. I can give a voice command to call a contact. As long as there is only one phone number for the contact and their name doesn't sound similar to another contact. Otherwise my phone replies "didn't catch that" (regardless of input) and drops me back to my music player. This of course only matters the fifty percent of the time my dear toro even connects to my stereo. I'd chalk these problems up to my stereo, except my wife's freaking Stratosphere 2 pulls these functions off without a hitch. Probably not a coincidence that it runs on bluetooth 4.0.
Eighteen months in, and the battery leak has yet to be fixed. So I just went and bought an extended battery with case (3800mAh), and it still runs dry faster than my friends' Note 3s with the same battery capacity.
Eighteen months in, and I still can't set individual text or vibrate tones for my contacts. Apps crash because they're developed on 4.4 (an OS that's been out for nine months now, only three less than 4.3 itself). The entire OS grinds to a halt with less than half of its ram in use. Heck, it still has the bug where the microphone will stop working once every few weeks until you restart it.
Really, I don't understand why Verizon thinks it's okay to leave a product to languish like this with so many defects when it was on store shelves only 12 months ago. Verizon has been withholding critical updates to their device since before they stopped selling them and hides behind "well it's been more than 18 months since the product debuted," as it somehow makes it more excusable that these problems have existed for three years unaddressed instead of half that time.
And the solution for me is to wait out my contract (aggravating beyond belief, but hey, I've lived with a crippled phone for this long); or buy a new phone at full price (which I can't afford atm). And ultimately, I'm sure the latter would be Verizon's preference. Because if they can't screw me by dumping me off an unlimited plan (because I don't have one), they can still try to yank hundreds of dollars out of me (as of today, a Galaxy S5 is $500 from the Verizon store, plus tax and connection fees of course).