The sheer amount of choice you get in the Android smartphone market is overwhelming. Even if you stick within a single manufacturer like HTC, there are several releases to juggle all of which happen in a very short period of time. Below is a list of just the HTC Android phones that have come out in the past 12 months:

Hero, Click, Bravo, Legend, Incredible, Espresso, Supersonic/EVO 4G, Buzz and Liberty.

And that’s just in the past year! Then we’ve got Android phones from Sony Ericsson, Dell, Motorola and LG. You can’t argue that there is a lack of choice in the Android market, but the vast majority of these phones aren’t perfect. In fact, it feels like every subsequent Android phone we touch comes closer to perfecting one aspect of the platform while leaving another neglected.

The EVO 4G brought us a unique form factor, but poor performance and battery life. Dell gave us our first 5-inch Android tabletphone, but coupled with an ancient version of Android it’s just not prime for its 2010 release. And seemingly all Android phones suffer from varying amounts of stuttering when scrolling around app lists or web pages.

It’s easy for a reviewer to get excited about every new Android release, but it must be hell for someone actually looking to buy one of these things.

The good news is we’re getting closer to the perfect Android smartphone. I don’t believe we’re there yet, but every single manufacturer has contributed something to the platform that someone else will eventually copy and wrap into one device.

The latest in the list of attempts at perfection is Samsung with its Galaxy S. And I must say, Samsung’s take on Android is quite possibly the most unique I’ve seen. Unique compared to other Android vendors that is.

Vectors of Innovation

Samsung innovates along three vectors with the Galaxy S. You get a new screen size (4” vs. 3.5/3.7” or 4.3”). The 4” screen size is a near perfect combination of productivity boosting screen area and portability. You get a new screen type with Samsung’s Super AMOLED that really fixes a lot of issues I had with AMOLED displays in the past. To top it all off, Samsung continues to innovate by equipping the Galaxy S with the fastest GPU in any shipping smartphone: the PowerVR SGX 540.

There are four versions of the Galaxy S, one for each of the major US carriers. There’s the Captivate on AT&T, the Vibrant on T-Mobile, the Epic 4G on Sprint and the forthcoming Fascinate on Verizon.

Easily Influenced
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  • Chaitanya - Tuesday, September 7, 2010 - link

    GPS receiver on almost all Samsung phones is bad. Its no surprise that Epic 4G is an epic fail when it came to GPS performance.
  • medi01 - Tuesday, September 7, 2010 - link

    The Apple fanboism in anandtech's articles is getting more and more annoying... :(

    "The move to Super AMOLED is key. With Super AMOLED the Epic 4G improves outdoor usability significantly."

    To bad we can't see it on the pictures you've made.
  • Anand Lal Shimpi - Tuesday, September 7, 2010 - link

    I believe this shot illustrates the huge improvement over standard AMOLED displays:

    Glare/reflections have been reduced significantly.

    Take care,
  • pervisanathema - Tuesday, September 7, 2010 - link

    noticed this on page 2:

    "The back cover snaps off with relative ease revealing the 1500mAh battery, a microSD card slow."

    I'm sure you mean slot instead of slow. :)
  • Anand Lal Shimpi - Tuesday, September 7, 2010 - link

    Thanks for the correction :)

    Take care,
  • DoubleVanos - Tuesday, September 7, 2010 - link

    Battery life seems fine on my AT&T Captivate to be honest. It can easily go on for a full day with a lot of usage. It must be a Sprint thing I guess.
  • MaxMax - Tuesday, September 7, 2010 - link

    WTF !

    I don't know why always Sprint and Verizon gets the best Android phones comparing to T-Mobile and AT&T !!

    This one have flash LED while the other galaxy s doesn't !!
  • Anand Lal Shimpi - Tuesday, September 7, 2010 - link

    Haha yep, fixed! Thank you!
  • vision33r - Tuesday, September 7, 2010 - link

    There's a very good reason RIM and Apple have lower clocked CPUs, Apple's A4 processor is running only at 60% of it's full clock speed.

    Battery life.

    Remember smartphones are still phones and talk time is more important than mhz.

    Most Blackberrys still run under 500MHZ and they do email, web browsing, and light apps just fine.

    Why would Android need 1.2GHZ just to run apps? What apps need 1.2GHZ?

    That's just not efficient design for mobile apps.
  • bplewis24 - Tuesday, September 7, 2010 - link

    I guess I'm one of the lucky ones. I must own the only Android phone that is just as fast as my girlfriend's iPhone3GS or my colleagues iPhone4 with no more in the way of choppy animations and stuttering than they have.


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