Samsung Epic 4G Touch Review
Introduction:

Lamborghini began shipping the Aventador this year to replace the Murcielago. Ferrari recently made the 458 Italia more track ready with the 458 Italia GTC. In June HTC released the EVO 3D, last month Motorola launched the Droid Bionic and now Samsung is here with the Epic 4G Touch, a Galaxy S II device for Sprint. Just as these Italian supercars compete for supremacy on the track, Android superphones are competing for pocket space. Samsung has upped the ante even from the original Galaxy S II by giving the Epic 4G Touch a 4.52” Super AMOLED Plus display to go along with a 1.2 GHz dual core processor, 8 megapixel camera with 1080p video capture and 16GB of on-board memory with an 1800mAh battery, all wrapped in a package that’s just 9.6mm thin.

Design:

The Epic 4G Touch is similar to the Galaxy S II we reviewed back in May. The most notable design change is the increased screen size - it now sits at 4.52”, up from 4.3”- and now has four capacitive buttons at the bottom instead of two and a physical button. It is about 1mm thicker, a difference that goes relatively unnoticed in the hand. With the screen size even bigger than the HTC EVO 3D and Motorola PHOTON 4G you’d think the Epic 4G Touch would be bordering on too large. To the contrary, it actually feels pretty comfortable in our medium-sized hands and it nearly gets lost when we slide it into our front pocket.




You can compare the Samsung Epic 4G Touch with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.

That extra millimeter of thickness means that the antenna hump on the back of the phone is virtually non-existent and the camera housing sits nearly flush to the battery door. The door isn’t soft touch, but is textured to give it a bit more grip. We’ve come to expect a plastic feel to Samsung phones and the Epic 4G Touch is no exception, but there is a better feeling of quality than with the original Epic 4G. Of course the use of plastic over metal housings found on other high end devices means that the Epic 4G Touch comes in at a scant 4.6oz, significantly lighter than its HTC and Motorola counterparts. This combination of thin and light are what allows us to carry the Epic 4G Touch without noticing it.



The 4.52” WVGA Super AMOLED Plus display is as bright and as vivid as it gets. As with previous Super AMOLED panels the color saturation is cranked up to 11, which makes the colors pop against the deep blacks but also makes it unnatural at times. Everybody has their own opinion about the technology, but the large, bright screen is a joy to look at. The viewing angles are extreme and even in bright sunlight we were able to use the phone with no issues. The 480x800 resolution on the 4.52" inch screen results in 206ppi, which is rather on the lower side these days.



The power and volume rocker are the only two physical keys and offer good feedback to let you know they’ve been pressed. Though the volume rocker is one button, there is a noticeable gap between up and down to distinguish between the two functions. Still, it is rather small especially on such a large phone and we would have liked to see a larger button. A physical camera button is as conspicuously missing on the Epic 4G Touch as it is conspicuously present on the EVO 3D. With so much empty space around the side there really is no reason the user should have to rely on on-screen controls. Still, the Epic 4G Touch is a well-designed phone overall and we would love to have it in our pockets.



Samsung Epic 4G Touch 360-degrees View:


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104 Comments

125. tha.fox

Posts: 100; Member since: Nov 30, 2011

haha whos phone is in those pics with contacts the Oracles?

124. Non_Sequitur

Posts: 1111; Member since: Mar 16, 2012

Best phone ever. Rapes iPhone 4S.

122. IdleRage

Posts: 2; Member since: Feb 08, 2012

* BUMP * I know this thread's been dormant for a few months, but I find myself in a position to get a new phone from Sprint and I was hoping to get some input from the [apparent] wisened folks that post to PhoneArena (like Thump3rDX17, remixfa, and SuperAndroidEvo to name a few). That said; I'm on the fence between the Samsung S2 (Epic 4G Touch) and the Motorola Photon 4G. I have read TONS of reviews and they are both an aggregate 9 of 10. What I am looking to gleen from some advice is what is a better "out of the box" experience between the Dual 1.2 GHz Exynos of the S2 and the Dual 1.0 GHz Tegra of the Photon. I have 20/15 vision so the qHD/AMOLED comparison as it pertains to zooming and text size is moot (for me). I am looking for maximum shelf life between upgrades... which one is going to get me there? I'm an I.T. contractor so I use my phone for work and play... it just has to be reliable. I am not interested in rooting provided that the out-of-the-box UI is not too much of a hindrance (it seems TouchWiz has the advantage over MotoBlur -- please confirm). I have a friend who works at Sprint who says the Photon is better based on the HDMI output and all that. But can't the S2 do the same thing via the microUSB to HDMI adapter (sold separately)? Don't get me wrong, I'm all about hi-def, but I will most likely never hook my phone up to my 46" 1080p TV which houses my PS3 and 360 (no apparent need). I am mainly an email (3 accounts), moderate app user, who makes a lot of calls and texts more than anything type of user. I use Facebook, Hootsuite, Foursquare, Evernote, and Pandora (so multi-tasking is what I am mainly interested in). So back to the root question... what's going to get me the most bang for my buck where display is only a minor consideration -- the dual Tegra or the dual Exynos? Reply here or direct message me on Twitter @IdleRage (please say "PhoneArena" in tweet so I know what the tweet is in reference to). Thanks in advance, Idle Rage

123. kshell1

Posts: 1143; Member since: Oct 05, 2011

i had the epic 4g touch and it was the best phone ive ever had by far

120. EvoHero

Posts: 38; Member since: May 15, 2011

Mine powers off every time I set it down or tryng to push something on the screen. Not hard at all.

119. GeekMovement unregistered

Nice phone. Have it and I did experience some lags (not a heavy user, more low-mid), but nothing serious for now. Did not experience any signal issues as of yet like many complained and the screen is beautiful. Like the design on the phone too. Simplicity is best. The only thing I'm not sure about is that the battery seems to get hot rather quickly. Don't know if that is normal with average usage, but oh well just let it cool down. Battery last the whole day if not longer, so that's a great plus.

110. Bhavik36 unregistered

Great Phone

98. Sniggly

Posts: 7305; Member since: Dec 05, 2009

I'm beginning to suspect that Phonearena is using these ridiculous cons and deflating scores to 9s out of 10s just so they can claim almost no cons and give the iPhone 5 a 9.5 when it comes out. After all, I think last year's crop of superphones had bigger cons and were all given 9.5s.

99. Thump3rDX17

Posts: 2160; Member since: May 10, 2010

i bet it's the wait times for all these phones that's souring the scores. we've been aware of the Galaxy S II and the Droid Bionic for over half a year so they're not very exciting to the critics anymore in fact i bet they're sick to death of them and they're glad it's finally over.

121. IdleRage

Posts: 2; Member since: Feb 08, 2012

* BUMP * I know this thread's been dormant for a few months, but I find myself in a position to get a new phone from Sprint and I was hoping to get some input from the [apparent] wisened folks that post to PhoneArena (like Thump3rDX17, remixfa, and SuperAndroidEvo to name a few). That said; I'm on the fence between the Samsung S2 (Epic 4G Touch) and the Motorola Photon 4G. I have read TONS of reviews and they are both an aggregate 9 of 10. What I am looking to gleen from some advice is what is a better "out of the box" experience between the Dual 1.2 GHz Exynos of the S2 and the Dual 1.0 GHz Tegra of the Photon. I have 20/15 vision so the qHD/AMOLED comparison as it pertains to zooming and text size is moot (for me). I am looking for maximum shelf life between upgrades... which one is going to get me there? I'm an I.T. contractor so I use my phone for work and play... it just has to be reliable. I am not interested in rooting provided that the out-of-the-box UI is not too much of a hindrance (it seems TouchWiz has the advantage over MotoBlur -- please confirm). I have a friend who works at Sprint who says the Photon is better based on the HDMI output and all that. But can't the S2 do the same thing via the microUSB to HDMI adapter (sold separately)? Don't get me wrong, I'm all about hi-def, but I will most likely never hook my phone up to my 46" 1080p TV which houses my PS3 and 360 (no apparent need). I am mainly an email (3 accounts), moderate app user, who makes a lot of calls and texts more than anything. I use Facebook, Hootsuite, Foursquare, Evernote, and Pandora (so multi-tasking is what I am mainly interested in). So back to the root question... what's going to get me the most bang for my buck where display is only a minor consideration -- the dual Tegra or the dual Exynos? Reply here or direct message me on Twitter @IdleRage (please say "PhoneArena" in tweet so I know what the tweet is in reference to). Thanks in advance, Idle Rage

109. RORYREVOLUTION

Posts: 3131; Member since: Jan 12, 2010

I agree completely Sniggly. I love my Epic 4G Touch, easily my most favorite phone. I loved it way more than I loved my Droid X even when it first came out. I have no doubts about it that the next iphone will get a 9.5 or higher despite only really getting some updates that android has had since the begining.

95. Thump3rDX17

Posts: 2160; Member since: May 10, 2010

saw a real one today. VERY nice phone. it's THE one on Sprint.

92. pauooisdasdas unregistered

That'sbyfarthemostbeautifulversionofthegalaxysII!

91. Thump3rDX17

Posts: 2160; Member since: May 10, 2010

i got to see a dummy Epic 4G Touch today while i was at Radio Shack getting Gears of War 3 and it's a very good feeling phone. i liked it a lot.

96. bolaG

Posts: 468; Member since: Aug 15, 2011

God I want that game so bad.

101. Thump3rDX17

Posts: 2160; Member since: May 10, 2010

it's pretty great but sawed off shotguns have kind of spoiled the revival of grand shotgun fights from Gears 1 days. T~T

83. ecml490 unregistered

And yet the iPhone, Droid X2, and lots of high end smartphones don't have a dedicated camera button and didn't get a con for it...

81. att gs2 unregistered

LTE? Upgradeable? Att has said their 4g would fall back on hspa+ so it would have to have both. " Inside the Galaxy S™ II, there's a dual core processor tirelessly keeping things moving. You'll have a full 1.2 GHz of computing power. The Galaxy S™ II keeps your movies moving. Games and apps run smoothly. Websites load almost instantly. And jaws drop even faster. As for network capability, it's specifically engineered to run on AT&T’s state-of-the-art 4G network." -from samsung.com on the GS2 att page. What do you think?

76. henrickrw

Posts: 408; Member since: Sep 16, 2011

Cmon Bryan. You better than anyone knows that the Samsung Epic 4G Touch is far better than the HTC EVO 3D and Motorola PHOTON 4G. I´m the owner of a GS2 & it´s simply the best phone on the plante for now. Nuff said...!!!!! I forgot to say that it seems that there is a lot of you guys that are Apple Fanboys....

77. ngo2dd

Posts: 896; Member since: Jul 08, 2011

Shut up about the fanboy stuff. You are the fanboy here. No phone is perfect and what is best is subjected. I like realistic color with higher resolution. When you do a lot of reading then you will see a different. Right now AMOLED color are overly saturated. The white are not pure white as well. So Nuff said. Guess what some people don't like plastic feeling phone. It is a 9/10 so what? Deal with it. Every phone has a market.

74. looky here unregistered

As someone who in the past 25 days had the evo 3d then, the photon, then the blackberry bold 9930 and now the epic touch 4g, (my local sprint store probably hates me) I must say the epic touch 4g blows them all away easily the sound quality,camera+video quality, speed and over all snappyness of the phone are not comparable i have spb3d shell running, with live wallpapers, facebook, two e-mails, go chat, and 7 home screens filled with widgets all while running espn radio, and zero lag and i mean ZERO, the evo 3d got returned because the sound was terrible i could not here it in my pocket, the bold slows down once you get alot of messages and emails on it and the battery sucked. I absolutely loved the photon and thought is was the best phone i ever used until i got the epic, its better in every catagory, except maybe the sound it maybe a tie or slight advantage for the photon but putting all the widget and sbp 3d on it with live wallpapers would cause lag.....there is zero lag on the epic 4g touch

65. Sdota85 unregistered

really? those are the cons? This phone should be a 10. NO CONS what's so ever

55. vette21man

Posts: 351; Member since: Apr 06, 2011

Pros: - Powerful, fast processor - Good battery life - Good still camera, 1080p video Cons: - Low display resolution Pro or Con (based on personal preference): - Huge display size - Display saturated with color - 4G WiMax - No physical keyboard - TouchWiz UI - Not an iPhone

66. RORYREVOLUTION

Posts: 3131; Member since: Jan 12, 2010

Maybe I just have looked at too many Motorola's pentile displays and not HTC's Sensation and EVO 3D but I really can't tell the difference between that and a 480 by 800 display like found on this phone. There isnt a big enough difference to make it a con IMO. The Pros clearly outweigh any petty complaint about this phone and this is the best android....no this is the best and most powerful cell phone period.

70. ngo2dd

Posts: 896; Member since: Jul 08, 2011

It is clear as day when you are reading text, WVGA on a 4.52 screen compare to an HTC qHD or the Iphone and you will see that there is a different

75. pro unregistered

I have both phones here, Iphone 4 and the 4g touch, and I can't notice any different at all.

78. Thump3rDX17

Posts: 2160; Member since: May 10, 2010

you notice how everything like icons and text is jumbo sized on the Epic 4G Touch's home screen? that's because there's less pixels on the screen. on webpages if you try to zoom it out really far then the text becomes indistinguishable whereas on a qHD screen you can zoom it out even further and there will be enough pixels to compensate.

46. RORYREVOLUTION

Posts: 3131; Member since: Jan 12, 2010

I'm pretty much convinced at this point that 9.5 is only reserved for the next iphone. Those cons aren't even cons at all, just personal grimes. When nearly 90% of all android phones don't have camera buttons now, it's really no big deal. And also, you can easily turn Touchwiz off and use a nearly stock android skin or you can simply download one off the android market place. Touchwiz has improved a lot and with all the pros, this phone deserved easily a 9.5. But leave it to iphonearena to purposely lower the score for no reason at all. Give reasonable cons if you aren't going to give it a near perfect score.

31. bolaG

Posts: 468; Member since: Aug 15, 2011

Is the hdmi output mirrored or just for media?

48. RORYREVOLUTION

Posts: 3131; Member since: Jan 12, 2010

It's mirrored, during the samsung press conference one video on youtube I saw they were showing a demo of the mirrored hdmi.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

Epic 4G Touch
  • Display 4.5 inches
    800 x 480 pixels
  • Camera 8 MP (Single camera)
    2 MP front
  • Hardware Samsung Exynos 4 Dual, 1GB RAM
  • Storage 16GB, microSDHC
  • Battery 1800 mAh
  • OS Android 4.1.2

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