Nexus S 4G Hands-on

Nexus S 4G Hands-on
What is that you are saying, a phone with the pure Google experience? And this one's on Sprint, and not T-Mobile? Well, yes, Sir!

The Nexus S 4G for Sprint joins the black and yellow ranks, bringing with it the unadulterated "with Google" experience, thanks to its stock Android 2.3 Gingerbread software.

At first look nothing is setting it apart from the Nexus S - same slightly curved shape, light weight, thin plastic profile, and the 4" Super AMOLED Contour display with 480x800 pixels. The default snappy 1GHz Hummingbird chipset is purring inside the handset, and that same 5MP camera on the back winks at us with the LED flash by its side.

It's enough to glimpse at the familiar Android wallpaper, though, and over there at the notification bar of the stock UI you immediately recognize something that sets this handset apart from the original. It's the magical 4G symbol, meaning that the signal it is catching comes not from the EV-DO rev.A equipment in Sprint's towers, but rather from the Clearwire's WiMAX network. That's right, this is phone for the Android purists with a Sprint contract, who will be able to take advantage of all the enhancements Gingerbread brings, and at fast 4G speeds to boot.

Not only that, but for the first time in the history of the universe, you will have Google Voice so tightly integrated into a handset, that you won't even have to port your Sprint digits to use it:

"Sprint Nexus S customers also will be able to easily use their current Sprint wireless phone number as their Google Voice number without having to port their number, avoiding porting charges and potential service disruptions.  Google Voice makes it easy for people to manage and access most of their voice-based communication. It lets users manage up to six different phones through one number with intelligent call routing and advanced features like call screening, blocking and recording...

Now Sprint subscribers can use their Sprint number across their office, home and wireless phones, and personalize settings so calls from friends ring their wireless device and home phone, while calls from the boss only ring at the office.  Google Voice users can receive transcribed voicemails and read or listen to them online."

If that's not enough for you to like the Nexus S 4G, we'd say you are spoiled from all the other excellent handsets that are invading the stage left and right today at the CTIA show, and you will be totally forgiven.

Related phones

Nexus S 4G
  • Display 4.0 inches
    800 x 480 pixels
  • Camera 5 MP (Single camera)
    0.3 MP VGA front
  • Hardware Samsung Exynos 3, 0.5GB RAM
  • Storage 16GB,
  • Battery 1500 mAh
  • OS Android 4.1



20. Lady unregistered

I have the HTC EVO and I love it! I just ordered the nexus s. And i have to admit i am excited to get my hands on it! There is so much talk about which phone is better, but i believe it just depends on ones individual preference. I have had the EVO since it came out and its a great phone but it has its down falls. Personally I'm ready for a change.

19. wackadroid unregistered

I really cannot make up my mind about this, I want the Nexus S 4g but like stated previously it is one year old hardware. However, I havent read a single review that says its slow, its actually the opposite, the reviews say its quick and snappy. PLUS, you get all the google updates early. Nexus S owners already have Video Gtalk, it will take FOREVER for HTC and Sprint to send out that update for the EVOs. MAYBE Evo 3d will launch with that functionality but it wont get the Ice Cream update right away. Its such a tough decision, go for beastly hardware or quicker updates. Any opinions on this??

18. mo unregistered

God bless sprint I was with sprint since they opened up, they really come out foward keeping there customers happy,but one thing on my mind and help sprint get more customers is trying hard for the if it is possible and we all know it is, is they get the Iphone 5 it will be the hottest thing sprint will ever do I hope they would go for the advantage and they will see how many people will switch services go sprint and do do do the right thing love sprint

17. snowgator

Posts: 3630; Member since: Jan 19, 2011

Maybe it is a little old or dull, but if it is the truly droid experience with no overlays from HTC or Sprint, it will have a nice audience. I am excited to give this one a try- never played with a Droid that is purely Droid.

14. TURBOGSX95 unregistered

The EVO 3D is a perfect second edition in my eyes, the EVO is still one of the best selling phones and when this comes out its gonna be a frenzy, dual core, 3D screen and video capture, expandable memory, and, and, you can get it on sprint, with 4G, and we all know sprint is the most affordable carrier...thats a huge bang for the buck. oh and the Nexus seems kinda dull in comparison, just sayin.

9. tuminatr

Posts: 1193; Member since: Feb 23, 2009

i am excited about this phone, however my next phone will be a dual core maybe the Atrix for sprint. good experience device is a big plus but this is one year old hardware I just cant do it

10. tuminatr

Posts: 1193; Member since: Feb 23, 2009

damn spell check that's Google not good

8. belovedson

Posts: 1061; Member since: Nov 30, 2010

evo 3d will be a battery eating monster

13. heezy unregistered

its gonna have the best battery there is out there for a smartphone 1700mah and the screen is different to perserve the battery life as well its gonna b a beast

7. agentoj

Posts: 105; Member since: Oct 29, 2009

Evo 3d. Faster processor expandable memory 3d qhd display. Only downside is that there is not kickstand stupid

6. skymitch89

Posts: 1453; Member since: Nov 05, 2010

I have Sprint and just set up a Google Voice account on my HTC Hero yesterday. I had the choice of using my current phone number; the one I have through Sprint; porting my number over to Google, or getting my own number for Google Voice; of which there were none from my state.

5. boris unregistered

HTC Evo3d or the Nexus S. Tell me what you think and why

4. terry unregistered

I agree wit mark1

3. mark1 unregistered

there's only 2 things i dont like about the Nexus S, no fm radio and no expandable memory

11. steve jobs unregistered

You should get the Samsung Epic 4G which has microSD and has FM Radio. Or maybe get the HTC EVO 3D which will have Dull core processor. I wish Windows phone 7 will have 4G and Front Face Camera soon!

16. corps1089

Posts: 492; Member since: Jan 20, 2010

I cant wait for that! "I wish Windows phone 7 will have 4G and Front Face Camera soon!"

15. corps1089

Posts: 492; Member since: Jan 20, 2010

Yeah, but you have to admit it would be over the top with a dual core processor and QVGA resolution!

2. Gustav091 unregistered

It would be really cool if sprint gat the iphone 5, since competitionm just gat a little tighter

1. shynepo

Posts: 39; Member since: May 21, 2010

Man sprint is on a roll, but I hope they put any bloat or any of that sprint id crap on here. Nice to see cdma get a "pure" google experience.

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit for samples and additional information.
FCC OKs Cingular's purchase of AT&T Wireless