Samsung I9003 Galaxy SL review: Through different eyes

GSMArena team, 2 February 2011.
Pages: 123456789»

Introduction

Success breeds imitation and we have the next Galaxy S remake to bear witness. But make no mistake about it – the Samsung I9003 Galaxy SL is not just another clone. This time changes aren’t just skin deep.


Samsung I9003 Galaxy SL official photos

We are talking a new screen, a new CPU and a different battery here. Although it’s actually hard to notice a difference on the outside, save for a slightly thicker body. Basically most of the internals have been replaced, which may have or may have not resulted in a significant change in the user experience.

Key features

  • Quad-band GSM and tri-band 3G support
  • 7.2 Mbps HSDPA and 5.76 Mbps HSUPA support
  • 4" 16M-color Super Clear LCD capacitive touchscreen of WVGA (480 x 800 pixel) resolution
  • Slim 10.9mm profile
  • 1GHz Cortex A8 CPU, PowerVR SGX530 GPU, TI OMAP 3630 chipset; 478MB of RAM available to the user
  • 5 MP autofocus camera with face, smile and blink detection
  • 720p HD video recording at 30fps
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b, g and n support
  • GPS with A-GPS connectivity; Digital compass
  • 4GB/16GB internal storage, microSD slot
  • Accelerometer and proximity sensor
  • Standard 3.5 mm audio jack
  • Secondary video-call camera
  • microUSB port (charging) and stereo Bluetooth v3.0
  • Android OS v2.2 (Froyo) with TouchWiz UI customization
  • FM radio with RDS
  • Adobe Flash 10.1 support for the web browser
  • Document editor
  • File manager comes preinstalled
  • Samsung Apps brings a few nice apps for free
  • Battery has increased capacity (1650 mAh) over the original Galaxy S (1500 mAh)

Main disadvantages

  • Super Clear LCD is somewhat inferior to SuperAMOLED
  • Camera lacks flash
  • No dedicated camera key
  • The all-plastic body is a real fingerprint magnet
  • Feeble loudspeaker
  • Increased thickness (10.6mm), height (123.7mm) and weight (131 g) compared to the original Galaxy S (9.9mm, 122.4mm and 119 g)
  • Less capable GPU compared to the original Galaxy S

The Samsung I9003 Galaxy SL is a victim of timing. It couldn’t have been less fortunate to follow in the footsteps of the original Galaxy S – knowing it will never be able to catch up. At least Samsung should know perfectly well what to expect.

This is not the first flagship they’re forced by circumstances to replace. Much like the S8530 Wave II, the I9003 is more of a substitute, rather than an upgrade. You can think of the I9003 SL as a way to make sure there will be enough AMOLED panels for the Galaxy S2 without the need to discontinue the original Galaxy S altogether.

Samsung I9003 Galaxy SL Samsung I9003 Galaxy SL Samsung I9003 Galaxy SL
Samsung I9003 Galaxy SL at ours

The AMOLED shortage is to be felt for at least another while and Samsung are trying hard to work their way around it. We’ll have to see how this next attempt plays out. The I9003 has many people to convince that it’s a good enough replacement. Users have every right to be skeptical. It will take a good deal of persuasion to keep them from spending their cash elsewhere.

So let’s see if there’s life after SuperAMOLED for the Galaxy SL.

Next Page »

Pages: 123456789»

 
Reviews > Samsung I9003 Galaxy SL review: Through different eyes