Samsung Galaxy R Preview

Samsung Galaxy R Preview

The Samsung Galaxy R (also known as I9103) is the first handset to walk in the shoes of the Samsung Galaxy S II. A slightly stripped down version of Samsung's flagship, it wears similar looks, packs an equally powerful core and only downgrades the camera to 5 megapixels. Actually, the Galaxy R is the first of many other versions of the S II that we expect to follow – just as was the case with the original Galaxy S, which got a separate version for each major US carrier. The Galaxy R on its part is said to hit a couple of European markets including the UK, and come with a slightly cheaper price tag.

Packing a slightly smaller, 4.2” display than the S II, the Galaxy R also comes with a new processor – dual-core Tegra 2 replaces Samsung's 1.2GHz Exynos. Additionally, Samsung has done a bit of redesign – while the S II could compete with the thinnest and lightest smartphones in the world, at the same time being made out of plastic, the Galaxy R feels solid, crafted out with both metal and plastic, all coming in a body that's a hair thicker.

You can compare the Samsung Galaxy R with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.

Before we look deeper at the device, though, we should note that we tested a prototype unit, so both hardware and software are subject to change. We've seen renders of the Galaxy R showing that up front the final version might look much like the original Galaxy S II.


The handset looks and feels solid. A 4.2-inch Super Clear LCD screen with a resolution of 480 x 800 pixels dominates the front. When put side to side to the screen of the Galaxy S II you hardly notice the difference in size, but you surely notice the difference in colors. The display on the R looks much brighter, with slightly more natural, less exaggerated colors, but those of you looking for punchy contrasts, vibrant colors and super deep blacks will prefer the Super AMOLED Plus screen on the original S II. With good viewing angles and above average sunlight legibility, though, we were impressed with the screen of the Galaxy R as well.

In the Galaxy R, the phone itself has undergone a redesign. It's a bit thicker adding 0.04” of girth to the its profile which measures at 0.37” total. It's also heavier tipping the scales at 4.76 ounces. The difference in size and weight is noticeable, when holding the Galaxy R you feel the solid body, which is no longer the record beating super slim contender that the Galaxy S II was. A removable brushed metal back plate covers the 1650mAh battery and adds to that feeling, making the device look more premium in comparison to the plastic build of the S II.

Samsung Galaxy R 360-degrees View:

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Posts: 3131; Member since: Jan 12, 2010

Who wants to bet this is the version of the phone the US gets. Ugh SMH

3. megamrambo

Posts: 37; Member since: Jul 19, 2010

Actually that may not be such a bad thing since it looks better than the original SGSII. I know the specs are a little bit watered down and lackluster compared to it but you have to keep in mind that most people who by cell phones are idiots because they have no idea what they are buying. They only want it because of the design or because no one else has it.


Posts: 3131; Member since: Jan 12, 2010

Smaller display, not super amoled plus, only 5 megapixel camera that can only shoot 720 video, and worse of all a much slower processor. No I don't think this is "not such a bad thing". Let's hope its just a cheaper version for other countries.

7. megamrambo

Posts: 37; Member since: Jul 19, 2010

I think it may be cheaper. But knowing Samsung, they will day that its premium build would be a reason to price it more. While it is still a great handset, the differences only drastically change in the camera department. I'm a country kid from Southwestern Georgia where Alltel still operates. lol I would be happy with either handsets.

15. daniel_bargs

Posts: 325; Member since: Nov 27, 2010

as if u can distinguish who's the fastest when both of them are already the fastest... we know in benchmarks... exynos wins... but in gaming it is tegra which is better... but in real life... no significant changes will be noticeable among the 2. if exynos can move mountains... sure tegra 2 can. if exynos can move mountains... tegra 3 can move oceans.

17. Galaxy Player unregistered

For the display, I use Galaxy Player which has Super Clear LCD. I believe although the device is only 4" I think the Super Clear LCD is better compared to AMOLED displays (I use Amoled, Amoled +, Super Amoled and Super Amoled+) Adding on, 1ghz dual core is actually good to use.

5. WM6.5Sucks

Posts: 42; Member since: Apr 06, 2011

Don't say such things!.... :'(

2. Domenico unregistered

Can you tell me what's the kernel version displayed in the Settings->Info menu? Thanks.


Posts: 3131; Member since: Jan 12, 2010

3500+ score on the Q benchmark as a "pretty good score"? That's an understatement of the year. My Dual core Droid 3 can get a max of 2500. That is a REALLY good score.

8. Griphine unregistered

Hey Victor, what was the kernel numer ? Thanks.

9. HTCiscool

Posts: 449; Member since: Jul 16, 2011

Whos gonna take this over the original? I'd rather pay 50 bucks more and get the real deal, wouldnt you?

10. megamrambo

Posts: 37; Member since: Jul 19, 2010

It really wouldn't matter. Both phones are good but just for two slightly different demographics.

11. Alui unregistered

Since I got my iPad 2 I did not download any app from Android Market on my Galaxy S. So now I'm not looking for a better smartphone. I can say that the iPad 2 killed Samsung Galaxy S II or any high performance phone for me:). Why play on a 4-4.3 inch phone screen, when you can play on a 9.7 inch screen? I might be looking for a batter table though in the future:).

14. San Francisco unregistered

You're comparing a tablet with a smartphone? It's the same as saying, why play on a psp when you can play on a ps3. It just doesn't make any sense at all! Try fitting your (overpriced) iPad 2 in your pocket.

12. Spider unregistered

It has Gorilla glass?

13. lixism unregistered

can you put your ipad2 in your pants pocket?
Galaxy R
  • Display 4.2" 480 x 800 pixels
  • Camera 5 MP
  • Processor NVIDIA Tegra 2, Dual-core, 1000 MHz
  • Storage 8GB + microSDHC
  • Battery 1650 mAh(9.00h talk time)

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