Product Type: Samsung Smartphone
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Galaxy S2 takes you to a whole new world
Samsung i9100 Galaxy S II
Member Name: icetsunami
Samsung i9100 Galaxy S II
Advantages: Screen is awesome, slimline, light, 8Mp cam with 1080p video capture
Disadvantages: Plasticky - the rear cover is fragile in the extreme
Out of the box and in the hand the ramp in screen size is evident though it still feels comfortable to hold and its light too. I popped off the back to put my sim in and gasped at the flimsy rear cover which is more or less about the strength of an After 8 mint paper. This does feel cheap in all honesty, I would have preferred aluminium coated black to match the handset but I suppose this saves weight and lowers the profile.
The fascia is all glass bearing the Samsung logo, front facing camera and earpiece at the top and a physical home button and two touch sensitive menu and back buttons.The glass is tough and although a finger print magnet retains an effortless smooth feel to allow fingers to glide over its surface. To the right is a power button and volume keys are on the opposite side. The phone connects and charges through a micro USB port on the bottom edge, the top having a standard 3.5mm headphone jack. The rare has a speaker at the bottom and a 8Mp camera with dual flash at the top. It is bigger than it's predecessor but still as comfortable.
It's fair to say that first impressions are above what I expected with bright, vibrant colours contrasting against deep blacks. It looks impressive and despite build quality reservations, expensive. The typical Android greeting and first time user wizard see a swift and effortless run through detailed basics to get your phone up and running in no time.
The screen itself is lush and a joy to behold with pin sharp resolution and a speedy, responsive touchscreen of the capacitive variety. Home screens flip effortlessly through and going in and out of the menu is equally fast. Given the dual core processor this is no surprise but basic functions shouldn't challenge the phone anyway. The 480*800 resolution is a little shy of Apple's Retina Display technology but given the much larger display area and the stunning colour reproduction I would say it eclipses the iPhone 4.
The S2 uses Samsung's proprietary Touch Wiz interface, here in version 4.0, to skin the Android experience. Seven home screens are available by default which can in turn be customized with shorts and widgets. The screens can be switched between with various effects and if you wish you can use a 3rd party app from Android Market to completely change the appearance of your phone. The menu gives a 12 icon series of screens with shortcuts to various apps which again can be added to from the Market though it is tempting to simply fill your phone with various junk items you will probably never use.
Settings is the one you will probably access the most as it gives detailed system information, security and access to all the connectivity parameters such as wifi and GPS. You might want to make a desktop shortcut on your home screen for this one though the Android drag down menu gives limited access to these settings.
The rear sensor is a high quality 8Mp supported by a good flash for excellent pictures. Auto zoom, touch zoom and face detection are some of the features supported and if you delve in the menu there are a great deal of advanced settings to tweak. Samsung has included it's own photo editor though Photoshop is available as a free app along side many others both free and paid.
The video capture has also been upped from the 720p on the S to full HD at 1080p and the quality is very good indeed. Playback is smooth and colors are faithfully reproduced. I imported a 30 sec clip onto my iMac and on the HD screen 5 times larger it still looked excellent. The front facing camera does a decent job of video calls and is ok for some fun apps but it is vastly inferior to the main sensor.
The bundled media player is very good for watching your shoots and also plays DivX and Xvid formats if you want to import digital movies onto the phone or a SD card.
Well it makes calls and sends texts too. It does this largely very well but this is always going to be network/area dependent and to be honest this is a major convergence device so it's all about media and internet for me. When I have a reception the call quality is always crystal clear so I have no complaints.
The Processor is a dual core ARM Cortex-A9 and runs at 1.2Ghz though it can be over clocked by those with root access and sense of devilment.
RAM is 1Gb and is supplemented by 16Gb of storage on the handset itself which in turn can be boosted by a Micro SD up to 32Gb. Control freaks will be pleased to know that you can exceed this limit with some tinkering!
The display is Super AMOLED Plus has a resolution of 480*800 and is covered in tough Gorilla Glass.
The 8Mp camera has a LED flash and shoots 1080p video at 30fps. (That's good)
Connectivity gives wifi 802.11 a/b/g/n, GPS, Bluetooth 3.0
It ships with Gingerbread 2.3.3 though 2.3.4 is available. Being a geek I have 2.3.5 on mine.
Any kind of messing with your phones system to make permanent changes WILL void your warranty and if done incorrectly or carelessly turn it into an expensive paperweight.
Top class phone with top specifications inside. The slimline body is plasticky but the display is awesome, turn it up to full brightness and you need sunglasses! Killer 5 star phone for me.
Summary: Simply the best phone on sale today
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