Galaxy SII Launched in Kenya

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Samsung yesterday launched Galaxy SII, a phone which at the moment stands a mile ahead of its rivals. The only comparisons can be drawn with  yet to be launched iPhone5, and that means its the best phone in the world at the moment. After getting a hold of one , it is right to say that there is nothing to dislike on the Galaxy SII. The phone is special and gauging from the number of people who attended the Launch yesterday, you can tell that many people  have been waiting for it. But it is not cheap. It is retailing at Ksh.61,999 at Fone Express , which now has enough stock to last more than 3 months.  Another distributor will be Safaricom which normally subsidizes cost for the phones in Kenya but we are yet to confirm the prices with them.

So here is the quick hit of what i have seen so far:

Samsung Galaxy SII comes with exciting specs, features  and stand out performance. The web browsing quality is amazing and super fast, both on WiFi and Safaricom 3G network. I am yet to test on the other networks like Orange, Airtel and Yu

Package

The phone is packed on a compact box and when i opened it, at first i thought there is no phone inside. It  is super slim and light. Even those with skinny jeans can still get somewhere to slip it in, in their pockets. The box contains a charger, a one-piece headset, a microUSB cable, user guide(one on the language i don’t understand and the other one in English).

Design

The back has finely textured plastic surface although i still wish Samsung will do a way with the plastic cover. But since any kind of metal will add on the wight, I am not complaining on that. Talking about the wight, the phone weighs only 116g. Still on the back, at the top there is slightly protruding 8 Megapixel camera with an LED flash. The bottom of the device bulges out towards the back and holds a mono loudspeaker.

The front follows the same pattern as other Samsung Smartphones, occupied mostly by the screen with a physical home button at the bottom, bordered by menu and back keys.

And Finally on the sides, the left hand side of the device has the volume button. For the music lovers, movie addicts the volume button comes in handy for  adjusting the device volume.The right hand side of the device  has power/lock key. Nice placing of the power button, better than the top according to me.

Speaking about the top, you find 3.5mm jack for plugging headphones, while the bottom of the device holds a solitary microUSB port, which can also be used with the HDMI connector to connect to an HDTV.

Size: 125.3 x 66.1 x 8.5 mm

Screen

My favorite part  of S2 is the 4.3-inch 800×480 screen, which incorporates Super AMOLED Plus technology according to Samsung. Those who still think tablets have a future would better start showing me where that future is..As said with the direction the smartphones are taking, tablets are just a passing cloud. The larger screen size makes watching movies on the device a joy to behold. . I transfered two movies which i always wanted to watch , Horrible Bosses and Friends with Benefits and yeah, detail is sharp and action smooth. Wonderful…

Operating System

The Samsung Galaxy S II runs Android 2.3.3 Gingerbread out of the box with TouchWiz 4.0 customizations. That is latest Android software available on the market. You get up to 7 screens to populate with widgets. If you are not already Andorid user the blank screens could be confusing when you first turn on the phone. Screen after screen for icons and widgets but nothing on them. The good news is, you don’t need to be  a techie to set the screens up just the way you want them to be.

To start, you hold your finger on a black area of a home screen, a menu pops from somewhere at the bottom from which you can select whatever you want to have on the screen.. widgets, shortcuts and folders.

To remove something from the home screen, hold your finger on them for a second, and, when an icon of a bin appears at the bottom of the screen, drag them down.

The Galaxy S II has four buttons  at the bottom of its home its home screen, and they are like fixed .  You can remove or change them except the home button.

 

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Key Features

Weight The Samsung Galaxy S2 weighs 116grams approximately.

OS Android 2.3(Gingerbread).

Display 4.3-inch Super AMOLED Plus display which is made up of Gorilla Glass.

Memory 1GB RAM, Internal Memory 16GB/32GB, microSD slot – supports up to 32GB (8GB Card Included).

Camera 8MP autofocus camera with LED flash. 2MP Front-facing camera.

Processor Dual-core 1.2GHz ARM Cortex-A9 Proccessor.

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Camera

The 8MP Rear with LED flash featuring Autofocus is far better than what i saw on Galaxy S1, probably the best across Android devices.  With no  physical camera button on S2, all the controls are on the screen. Let the finger do the walking and tapping.

The S2 also has a 2 Megapixel front facing camera.

Processor and Storage

This phone is a mini laptop, comes with 1.2GHz dual-core processor. When you use the phone, it feels insanely quick . For the memory, you have the choice of 16GB or 32GB of internal memory. 16GB for Apps and the other 16GB for storing your own file..movies, music , docs. There’s also a microSD slot that comes with an 8GB card in it,and it does not stop there. It accepts up to 32GB memory card.

Battery ( Li-Ion 1650 mAh)

I am yet to test the battery life properly  but it can easily lasts a day with good use and can stretch out to 2 days with mostly calls and texting.

What is your opinion on the topic?
Kennedy Kachwanya
Lead Blogger at Kachwanya.com
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Kennedy Kachwanya is a technology blogger interested in mobile phones both smart and dumb, mobile apps, mobile money, social media, startups ecosystem and digital Savannah. New media must not forget the strength of old tech.
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