Samsung Galaxy S Smart Phone User Review

The Samsung Galaxy S smart phone was launched recently, and is selling well, but how good is it to use? Read this user review to find out.

With a 4″ AMOLED screen the Samsung Galaxy S seems to be a slightly larger version of the hugely popular iPhone 4, particularly as the designs look similar.

The Galaxy S is powered by the Google Android version 2.1 operating system that provides all the functionality that you would expect of a high end smart phone: Internet browsing, email synching, messaging, a huge range of apps and of course it is basically a mobile phone too!.

A 1Ghz processor makes the Galaxy feel fast and responsive and the Android operating system endows the phone device with a slick and intuitive interface. You are soon zipping around its functionality without having to resort to the user manual.

The whole range of touch sensitive controls are available, literally at your fingertips, as you pinch and stretch screen images, particularly zooming in and out of web pages, and easily scroll through your emails.

The Galaxy display is crystal clear and makes reading text on web pages, emails and text messages very easy to read. Although the iPhone 4 screen may be technically superior, in our opinion you get a better experience when web browsing with the Galaxy because of its larger screen size, particularly in landscape mode.

Battery Life

Short battery life is the bane of the smart phone user, particularly if you are using the more power sapping functions such as mobile Internet, emails and taking still and moving images.

We find that using the Galaxy S for just voice calls and texts, the battery will last about two days from fully charged.

A day out and about making calls, sending and receiving texts, receiving and sending emails, a bit of web browsing and taking a few still photos, hits the battery life hard, although we can still get a full days use from one charge.

So the battery life is no better or worse than the other high end smart phones, although unlike the iPhone, which has an internal battery, you can take another battery with you if you are going to be away from a battery charger for a few days.

WiFi Connectivity

There have been many comments about the ability of the Galaxy S to connect to WiFi. Some users report that wireless connections are dropped within their house.

We have not found any problems with WiFi connectivity at all, even over reasonably long distances. It is very easy to set up WiFi connectivity with the Samsung and it quickly connects to an available network as long as you have provided the right security key.

Multi Media

If you want to play music, listen to the radio, view movies, record video or take photos, then you will find that that Samsung S has all these multi media functions.

Music sound quality is not quite as good as the iPhone, but listening to your favourite music or the radio through the headphones is highly enjoyable. Photo and movie quality is fine too, given the size of the lens and realising that these are not broadcast quality video cameras.

We particularly like the movable focusing area when taking a still picture and the good low light performance even though there is no flash. Having such an easy to use and effective camera built into the is a real plus.

A slight quirk is that you need to have the headphones plugged into the device to also listen to music via the loudspeaker. This seems strange, but maybe we have to go back and actually read the manual to make sure that we are using it properly, after all!

Overall impression

We are not surprised that that Samsung Galaxy S is so popular. It really is an excellent smart phone.

It is cheaper than an iPhone 4 – it comes free with most £35 per month plans, whereas you would have to pay around £149 for an iPhone 4 on an equivalent package – and does everything that you want.

In our opinion, with its larger screen and comfortable feel in the hand, it is better than an iPhone 4. In fact it is so good that it makes us wonder why so many people are desperate to buy the iPhone 4.


  1. Hi
    One of my students has one of these phones but she’s having difficulty getting used to how it works – she said it isn’t as intuitive to use as the iPhone; I wondered whether you found the same?

    • I guess it is what you are used to. We have more experience with the Android operation system in phones such as the Galaxy S, than the iPhone, however we find the Samsung very quick and intuitive to use.

      We didn’t really need a manual and we were soon zipping around its features – setting up WiFi access, texting, synching email accounts, taking photos etc etc.

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