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Up close and personal with Samsung’s Galaxy S Android Smartphone.

In another first this week, I had a chance to get up close and personal with Samsung’s Android Galaxy S (Model: GT-I9000) smartphone during the Samsung Africa Forum 2010 in Johannesburg (South Africa). The handset is simply stunning and marks Samsung’s first commericial foray using the wildly popular Android mobile operating system. I got a first hand look at the handset and tinkered around with it. There are so many things about it that make it a major milestone for Samsung in its wide arsenal of smartphones. It has a gorgeous Super AMOLED display and the intelligence as well as the userbility of the device come shining though with flying colors.

Having spoken to a good number of executives from Samsung regarding their plans for the Samsung S, I secured reliable information that they intend to launch it in Kenya sometime in September or October 2010. Earlier this week, also as reported on this blog, Huawei and Safaricom launched the first Android smartphone in Kenya which is expected to retail for around Kes. 30,000.00 when it hits the marketplace. The Galaxy S would therefore be the second Android handset to come to Kenya on this basis.

The Galaxy S which has not yet been launched anywhere in Africa yet already has over 100 mobile networks globally who have signed up to launch the much lauded device before the end of the year. In the US, the Galaxy S is already causing waves following its launch recently under the name “Captivate” with AT&T. Many mobile networks worldwide are planning to use the Galaxy S as a linchpin for smartphone market penetration owing to its formidable capabilities.

“The Android-powered Samsung Galaxy S will set a new standard for smartphones, and the excitement we’ve seen from operators and retailers for this device is testament to that,” said JK Shin, president and head of mobile communications business. “The Samsung Galaxy S is the perfect device for people in all corners of the world who want that extra edge; to be more effective, productive, better connected, and in tune with their smart life – both personal and professional – all in a very easy and simple way. We’re extremely confident that this device is going to be very successful in every market.”

As part of Samsung’s drive to democratize the smartphone market, the Galaxy S will be the flagship model of the smartphone range Samsung will introduce this year. It will also offer enhanced opportunities for developers and new revenue streams for operators. JK Shin continued, “Everyone is going to benefit from this revolutionary new device: from the consumer with the phone in their hand, to application developers and the many global operators who have signed up to support the Galaxy S. This truly is a phone for the whole ecosystem.”

Featuring Samsung’s dazzlingly bright 4-inch Super AMOLED screen and a 1 GHz application processor, the Android™-powered Samsung Galaxy S is designed to provide immersive, intelligent and integrated experiences, with the power to enrich people’s lives through best-in-class services and technologies. It will introduce people to the concept of the “Smart Life” – a smartphone experience that is simple, organize and integrated; one that enriches the lives of users.

The Galaxy S features Samsung’s super-fast TouchWiz 3.0 user-interface (UI), giving users instant access to their mobile lives. Smart Life is further enabled through intuitive, integrative features, including the Swype text input service, the rich augmented reality browser, Layar, and advanced Location Based Service (LBS) capabilities.

More than 50,000 applications from Android Market and Samsung Apps will allow users to extend the benefits and excitement of the smartphone experience even more. Users have access to Google mobile services, such as Google Search, Gmail, and Google Maps. Some of the key features of the Galaxy S are as follows:

  • eBook: Provides best-in-class reading experience on the phone. Customizable fonts, easy text search, and intuitive book list management offers convenient and customized reading experience.
  • HD Video: Super fast 1 GHz processor enhances HD video playing and recording features on dazzling Super AMOLD screen.
  • Daily Briefing: Offers instant access to weather, news, stocks, and the scheduler.
  • AllShare: Enables inter-device connectivity via DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance) technology.
  • Augmented Reality: Shows users’ surroundings and displays information on camera-view. Tele-Atlas POI provides richer information than ever.
  • Swype: Provides fast and easy way to input text on screen while on-the-move.
  • Write and go: Jot down an idea first and later decide on a format such as SMS/ MMS, email, calendar or memo.
  • ThinkFree: Apps to view and edit Microsoft Office 2007 documents.
  • Smart Alarm: Wakes up with a natural alarm sound and automatically turned-on display light.

In addition, the specifications for the Galaxy S are as follows:

Network

  • 2.5G (GSM/ GPRS/ EDGE) : 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 MHz
  • 3G (HSDPA 7.2Mbps, HSUPA 5.76Mbps) : 900 / 1900 / 2100 MHz

OS: Android 2.1

Display: 4.0” WVGA Super AMOLED (800×480) with mDNIe

Camera: 5.0 mega-pixel camera + VGA Video Telephony Camera,  Auto Focus,

Self shot, Action shot, Add me, Stop motion, Cartoon shot, Smile shot,

Panorama shot.

Video: HD([email protected]) video playing & recording

Codec: Mpeg4, H.264, H.263, H263Sorenson, DivX/ XviD, VC-1

Format: 3gp (mp4), WMV (asf), AVI (divx), MKV, FLV

Audio: MP3, AAC, AAC+, eAAC+, WMA, OGG, AMR-NB, AMR-WB, WAV, MID, AC3, IMY, FLAC, XMF.

Value-added Features

  • Android Marketâ„¢ and Samsung Apps for more applications and contents
  • A-GPS
  • Augmented Reality with Layar Reality Browser powered by Tele Atlas POI
  • 1 GHz Application Processor
  • SMS/ MMS/ Email/ Video Messaging/ Exchange ActiveSync
  • Sensor: Accelerometer, Digital compass, Proximity, Light
  • Offline & No SIM Mode, RSS Reader, Mobile Widgets

Connectivity

  • Bluetooth technology v 3.0
  • USB v2.0 (High-Speed)
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n

Memory: 16GB / 8GB storage, 512MB RAM, external memory slot (upto 32GB)

Size: 64.2 x 122.4 x 9.9mm, 119g

Battery: 1500 mAh

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10 Comments

  1. July 24, 2010 at 11:21 am — Reply

    sounds like the phone to take Kenya by strom. Android OS based phones are clearly the next big thing in mobile telecommunication.

  2. Mkenya Fulani
    July 26, 2010 at 3:12 pm — Reply

    I can’t wait to lay my hands on one of these Android-based babies. I could have opted to go for the just-released Huawei, but Safaricom ordered the older U8220 instead of the newer U8230. At least the Galaxy S is still hot off the production line. Let’s hope it comes soon and is reasonably priced.

  3. Barasa
    August 2, 2010 at 4:37 pm — Reply

    Steaming hot! Can’t wait. Will save every penny for this! 🙂

  4. August 6, 2010 at 1:46 am — Reply

    Am still waitin on ya babe/hail samsung and hail technology

  5. Mark
    August 19, 2010 at 7:12 am — Reply

    I think this will be one of the best phones to hit the market. I expect it to be fairly priced considering that the O.S Android that will run is being offered as open source. I thinks it will be worth the wait instead of the Huawei.
    I wanted to upgrade my very old phone but let me wait abit and see.

  6. Lydia
    October 29, 2010 at 9:08 am — Reply

    Already got the Galaxy s. Its simply exciting, its pricey though but worth every cent. Still exploring it..

  7. DG
    November 28, 2010 at 7:43 am — Reply

    Still no word on the galaxy s but in the meantime the samsung wave is serving me well and if the OS gets good upgrades might stick with it but where is the galaxy

    • November 29, 2010 at 3:41 am — Reply

      The Samsung Galaxy S is in Kenya. Its retailing for 49,999.00. Check Fone Express at the Nakumatts.

  8. March 8, 2011 at 7:31 am — Reply

    At safaricom it goes for 43999/=

    • March 8, 2011 at 3:53 pm — Reply

      This is the new rate. Its getting cheaper since it launched.

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