Samsung Galaxy S II vs Apple iPhone 4: Smartphone showdown

Which is the better phone? Samsung's Galaxy S II or Apple's iPhone 4?

Can Samsung's Galaxy S II Android phone challenge Apple's iPhone 4?

Can Samsung's Galaxy S II Android phone challenge Apple's iPhone 4?

Samsung Galaxy S II vs. iPhone 4: Design

One of the best features of the Samsung Galaxy S II Android phone is its design; this smartphone is just 8.49mm thick, making it thinner than the iPhone 4 and likely the thinnest smartphone in the world. Although it features an all-plastic design like its predecessor, the Galaxy S II has an attractive carbon-like finish on its rear battery cover. In our brief hands-on with the device it felt both well built and extremely light.

The iPhone 4's stainless steel band (which also doubles as the phones antenna) is certainly intriguing, and at just 9.3mm thick, it remains one of the best built smartphones on the market.

The Samsung Galaxy S II Android phone is just 8.49mm thick, making it thinner than the iPhone 4 and likely the thinnest smartphone in the world.

Samsung Galaxy S II vs. iPhone 4: Display

The Samsung Galaxy S II has a 4.3in Super AMOLED Plus display, making it one of the largest on an Android phone in Australia alongside the HTC Desire HD. Samsung's Super AMOLED Plus is a refinement of the original Galaxy S' super AMOLED display and promises a clearer and brighter image, along with enhanced battery life.

Apple's iPhone 4 uses IPS technology (the same used on the iPad, and thanks to its 640x960 pixel resolution it has been described as a "retina" display, due to the human eye being unable to distinguish individual pixels.

Samsung Galaxy S II vs. iPhone 4: Software

The Samsung Galaxy S II Android phone runs the 2.3 Gingerbread version of Google's Android platform, and features Samsung's TouchWiz 4.0 UI overlay. Samsung-exclusive features include Social Hub, Readers Hub, Game Hub and Music Hub, while enhanced corporate and security functions include the implementation of Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync, on-device encryption and Cisco's AnyConnect VPN client. Android 2.3 Gingerbread means the Galaxy S II has a revamped keyboard, better copy and paste, improved power management, and a slicker user interface compared to previous versions of the Android platform.

The iPhone 4 runs Apple's iOS4 operating system. It offers a familiar swipeable home screen enhanced by folders, and the consistent Apple UI look and feel extending across all of the standard applications. If you have never used an iPhone before, you can expect a device that is easy to pick up and use, a well-populated App Store, and excellent multimedia capabilities. The iPhone's iPod integration ensures it remains one of the best music smartphones on the market, while mobile Web browsing is fast and efficient.

The Samsung Galaxy S II runs Android 2.3 Gingerbread.

Though the streamlined iPhone experience has won many fans, Apple's closed platform means the iPhone 4 doesn't offer the same flexibility as smartphones like the Samsung Galaxy S II. The iPhone has an inferior notification system to Android phones, and it doesn't let you customise and display live widgets on your home screen. By the same token, the iPhone interface and overall user experience are far more polished than what is currently on offer from Android phones.

The Samsung Galaxy S II Android phone will launch in Australia in May or June, and should be available through Telstra, Optus and Vodafone. Pricing has yet to be announced.

What do you think about the Samsung Galaxy S II and the Apple iPhone 4? Tell us in the comments below!

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Ross Catanzariti

Ross Catanzariti

PC World
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