Samsung has the widest range of Android phones, so wide that sometimes their products already overlap within the family. The Galaxy S line welcomes another member once again in the form of this Galaxy S Advance (i9070) which joins the flagship Galaxy S II and Nexus in its dual-core processor phone lineup.
Design-wise, the Advance is almost identical to the S II. One of the most unique features of Samsung’s new phone is the concave Gorilla Glass of the phone. This is Samsung’s way of making the back portion of the phone flat, getting rid of that weird bulge on the bottom part of the phone.
The 4-inch display features Samsung’s vibrant Super AMOLED display, which is really where Samsung blows away the competition developed through its experience in LCD and LED display business. Just by the display is a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera for decent self-portraits and video calls. The S Advance is also equipped with a 5-megapixel autofocus with face and smile detection camera and a powerful LED flash, the camera also supports 720p HD video recording at 30fps.
It comes standard with Android 2.3.6 Gingerbread OS, but being dual-core powered; it should be upgradeable to the latest Ice Cream Sandwich OS that debuted with the Nexus. But I really think it should have come with ICS.
Powering the S Advance is a NovaThor U8500 1.0Ghz Cortex-A9 dual-core processor 768MB RAM and 16MB internal flash memory. A micro SD card slot allows for additional storage of up to 32MB. Despite having less than 1GB of RAM, the phone performs applications with ease and can play videos without much trouble. The phone performed faster than the i9000 and seemed to operate much smoother.
The S Advance has exactly the same 1500mAh Li-Ion battery as the Galaxy S i9000, however battery life is much improved, most likely due to the better power management of the OS as well as a more efficient processor. I was able to get about 15-hours out of a full charge with some data usage.
In the connectivity department, it comes with 3G HSDPA and HSUPA data capability, Bluetooth 3.0 with A2DP, and dual-band wireless-N support with DLNA support.
The price of the S Advance is likely to creep very close into the S II territory, one begs to question as to why is there a need for another similar phone in the market.
Pros: Vibrant Super AMOLED display; 5-megapixel camera; Dual-core processor
Cons: Gingerbread OS instead of the newer Ice Cream Sandwich; High price
Bottomeline: The Galaxy S Advance is just an upgraded Galaxy S but lower than the higher-end Galaxy S II. It’s price is also dangerously close the Galaxy S II that it seems better to just get the higher-end phone instead even if you have the original Galaxy S.