Wednesday, July 18, 2012

My review of the Samsung Galaxy Nexus on Sprint

For the past few weeks, I've had the opportunity to test the Samsung Galaxy Nexus on the Sprint network. As I've been using this device, a question that kept coming up was this: Will Apple's patent lawsuit against Samsung block U.S. sales of the Samsung Galaxy Nexus? I'm not sure that we have a definitive answer here. Currently, the Galaxy Nexus is being sold on most major wireless networks and these networks are also selling the newest member of the Galaxy family: the Samsung Galaxy S III. 

The Samsung Galaxy Nexus has a beautiful screen and the phone is remarkably thin. Previously, I mainly used an HTC Thunderbolt and I recently switched to the iPhone 4S. The Galaxy Nexus was a refreshing change from the iPhone because of the large screen (4.65" vs. 3.5" on the iPhone). Plus, Android 4 (also known as ICS or Ice Cream Sandwich) is much more refined than previous Android versions. There's an updated version of Android called Jelly Bean (it's 4.1).

When it came to using a variety of medical apps on the Galaxy Nexus, they ran beautifully and I found that I was much more productive typing on a larger screen. Multimedia content was delivered richly on the AMOLED (active-matrix organic light-emitting diode) display and the dual-core processor demonstrated snappy performance as I switched between intensive apps that load a lot of data. When you're browsing the web and searching for medical information, you'll feel like you have a small tablet in your hand because of the large screen that facilitates on-screen navigation. 

Also, the built-in camera has no shutter lag, so you can snap photos very quickly and sharing is easy. Do you share medical photos with colleagues using a secure, encrypted service? You'll appreciate the photo and video quality on this phone. 

I missed the fact that the Galaxy Nexus does not have a microSD card slot. Many other Android smartphones include a microSD slot. Then again, the HTC One X also doesn't have a microSD card slot.

Also, battery life on the Galaxy Nexus was adequate, but it wasn't great. This is probably why Samsung beefed up the battery from an 1850 mAh battery on the Galaxy Nexus to a 2100 mAh battery on the Galaxy S III. The Galaxy Nexus is very light (5.1 oz) and rivals the smaller iPhone 4S here (4.9 oz). The Galaxy S III beats both by only weighing 4.7 oz and still having a larger screen and battery. 

Some of the key features of the Galaxy Nexus include:

  • Android 4.0, Ice Cream Sandwich
  • 4.65" HD Super AMOLED Contoured Display
  • Dual-Core 1.2GHz Processor & 1GB Ram
  • HTML Web Browser
  • Camera 5.0 Megapixel
  • 1.3MP front-facing Camera
The Galaxy Nexus won the CNET "Editor's Choice" back in Dec 2011. The most recent CNET winner is the Galaxy S III, so you're still in the same family here. 

Finally, don't get confused with the names "Galaxy" and "Nexus." Both of these terms have been applied to a wide range of smartphones (like the Samsung Galaxy family and the Google Nexus) and tablets (like the Google Nexus 7). In other words, it's easy to mistake the Samsung Galaxy Nexus for another device.

I would highly recommend this phone for anyone interested in a great smartphone with a large display running the latest version of Android but who is also budget-conscious. You can find this phone for $99 to $150 whereas most of the newest smartphones generally start at $200. If you're the type who needs the latest and greatest and you're willing to pay the price, then go with the Galaxy S III because you'll get a phone that mainly has a bigger display (4.8" vs. 4.65"), a better camera (8 MP vs. 5 MP), and longer battery life (2100 mAh vs. 1850 mAh). Beyond these differences, the Galaxy Nexus is very similar to the Galaxy S III.

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