The one phone to rule them all has just been ousted by his big brother who's come a-calling for the throne. When I decided to order my Samsung Galaxy S II and make that my go-to phone for the next year, I firmly believed I was getting the best phone available to me. Just over a month later, the Galaxy S II Skyrocket was released with better specs than the original, not to mention it is one of the first LTE phones on AT&T's network. I was disappointed that I couldn't have it, to say the least! I looked forward to when we would be getting our review unit shipped to the store and it has finally come. I've now been using it for the last few days and have put it through some tough tests. What did I think of it? Does the extra $50 pay off? Find out in the full review.
|Showing off that amazing camera and the branding that makes|
these phones so popular!
- 8 MP camera with LED flash, 1080p HD video (ties with the original Galaxy S II for best camera)
- 2 MP front-facing camera for video chats
- 1.5 GHz Dual-Core processor(!)
- 1 GB RAM
- 4.5" Super AMOLED Plus screen
- Up to 7 hours of talk time
- 16 GB internal storage (with a Micro-SD card slot, expandable to another 32 GB)
- 4G LTE(!) enabled
- Samsung headphones with microphone come in box
- Optional Swype keyboard
- Available in white or black
- AT&T Visual Voicemail for Android
|The familiar 4 Android buttons on the bottom of the phone|
-Very slim profile (for an LTE phone)
-Vibrant screen, as we've come to expect from Samsung
-Even while connected to HSPA+ (not LTE) this phone has the fastest data speeds on all the speed tests I've performed at my house (so far)
-The original Galaxy S II has a security hole. If you put a security lock on the phone, it can be bypassed by anyone by simply letting the security screen time-out and then accessing it again. This security hole does not exist in the Skyrocket.
-I was about to list battery life here, but considering the processor and the LTE antenna inside, it's pretty amazing how long the battery lasts
|The original GSII on the left and the Skyrocket on the right|
|The original GSII on the bottom and the Skyrocket on the top|
|The back speaker is the one that's used for music and|
speakerphone. It's pretty stinkin' loud.
|The volume rocker button on the top left side of the phone|
The cameras (front and back) performed very well... just as well as the original GSII. Nothing to complain about here.
The battery, considering the hardware it's supporting, is still very good. It's not as good as the Infuse or the original GSII, but with more demanding processor and an LTE antenna that is to be expected. It still gets me through the day even with medium use and with a small partial charge in the middle of the day it can support gaming and video as well.
|The Skyrocket taken apart to show the batter cover and battery|
|Folders make me feel all warm and|
Internet pages open easily and quickly on the Skyrocket. The combination of the outstanding processor and the fast data speeds allows things to just happen instantly. Facebook pictures load as if they were on the phone's album, not data that needed to be fetched from a server somewhere. The phone is responsive and delivers even with multiple applications running in the background.
Over-all, the phone is a great compliment to the AT&T smartphone portfolio. In most ways it is better than the original GSII. For me, however, the lack of a native voice-dialing feature, as well as the form factor and the slightly decreased battery life don't make me wish I had one over my origianl GSII. I love the Skyrocket, and the extra $50 is well worth it for most users since most users are not as picky as me. Plus, LTE will make some serious advances in the next two years and if you opt for a non-LTE phone you're going to be missing out on some seriously fast data speeds if you don't snag an LTE phone for your next upgrade. If I were the everyday consumer, I'd pocket one of these right away.
Update: The Skyrocket is available in White now as well as black and it still has the silver lining around the edge so it's pretty stinkin' fancy lookin'!
Be sure to check out the added pics below. I had fun taking them!
|The screen size from the original GSII to the Skyrocket is not immensely different|
|The lock/power button|