Samsung Galaxy R: The Younger Brother of the Galaxy S II

 10 Aug 2011 - By Omar Yesid Mariño+

Just a few days ago, Korean company Samsung confirmed the existence of the Galaxy R,  a high-end smartphone that complements the line where the Samsung Galaxy S II is, apparently, the flagship product of the company in the current mobile industry (at least regarding mobile phones). Well, now Samsung is also confirming, through an official press release, some features of this smartphone and the availability in Europe. However, the Korean company has not indicated a list of specific countries where it will become available this fall.


Anyway, let’s talk about some of the features, which is the important part for readers of this blog.

The Samsung Galaxy R has a dual-core Nvidia Tegra 2 processor which works at a speed of 1 GHz. Also, it features a 4.2-inch Super Clear LCD screen with a maximum WVGA resolution of 800 x 400 pixels.

Regarding multimedia capabilities, the smartphone comes with a main photographic (rear) camera with a 5-megapixel sensor and ability to record HD video (720p). A second camera is located on the front side; it has a 2-megapixel sensor and is perfect when you need make video calls.

According to Samsung, this gadget has an internal memory of 8GB that can be extended up to 32GB by using microSD cards.

A curious thing is that the phone is already available in Sweden with another name: Samsung Galaxy Z. There, it costs approximately US$ 630, or “for free” with a two-year contract of about US$ 47 per month.

When compared to the Galaxy S II, this mobile could be seen as a little less sophisticated, but actually it  has very powerful features too and becomes a really interesting choice. Let’s see:

Comparison with the Samsung Galaxy S II

The dual-core chipset created by Nvidia and targeted to mobile devices (Tegra 2) is the heart of the Galaxy R. That is a main difference between this gadget and its elder brother Galaxy S II, which uses a Exynos processor instead (by Samsung itself). In theory, Samsung’s processor has a better graphics processing unit (GPU) and a more modern design but, to be honest, it is unlikely that average users perceive a huge difference since the Nvidia Tegra 2  is also a very powerful choice in the current mobile processors market.

As said before, another important difference is the use of a Super Clear LCD screen instead of a Super AMOLED plus. And what does it mean for users?

Well, in simple terms, an AMOLED screen produces richer and lively colors since it uses LEDs to display content (in fact, AMOLED means Super Active-Matrix Organic Light-Emitting Diode) but, honestly, nowadays the differences have become almost undetectable (unless you are obsessive with some really small details); on the other hand, a Super Clear LCD screen is made of liquid crystal display like those screens used in a wide range of applications.  So, does it mean that the Samsung Galaxy R has a poor screen? Not at all. Actually, the Super Clear LCD has a well-known advantage: It has better visibility under the sunlight (though Samsung has worked really hard to fix this issue in the models with AMOLED screens).

Here, you have a great video review made by the folks of

The rear camera has a lower resolution (5 megapixel against 8-megapixel of the Galaxy S II), which could be a little disappointing if you are one of those people who like to capture every remarkable moment in your day with a better resolution.

As for the power source, it comes with a 1650mAh battery that, according to Samsung, allows up to 550 minutes in standby mode and 580 minutes of talk time. Generally speaking, I think the battery lifetime is not poor at all if you keep in mind the type of screen.

Regarding the size, this smartphone is a little bigger than its brother:  125.7 x 66.7  x 9.55mm (compared with 125.3 x 66.1 x 8.5 mm).

As for the software, this is really similar to the Galaxy S II. That is to say: Android Gingerbread 2.3 as operating system, Samsung TouchWiz as touch interface, and “typical” hubs for Samsung’s sophisticated phones: Social Hub,  Game Hub, Readers Hub (to read about 2.3 million books, 2000 newspapers and 3000 magazines), and the Music Hub where you can access about 14 million songs.


For more features, please check the following list:


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