The Samsung Galaxy Player is a 4.2-inch Android device that offers the capabilities of Android minus the phone functionality. Targeted for people who want a dedicated media and portable gaming device, the Samsung Galaxy Player is the Korean giant’s answer to Apple’s iPod Touch. Let’s see how the Galaxy fits in today’s multimedia in-demand generation.
At first glance, you might mistakenly identify the Galaxy Player as the Galaxy S II, but upon closer inspection you will see some differences such as the two speakers on the top and bottom of the device, and the slim rectangular-shaped Home button.
The unit is just 9mm thin and 118g light, an ideal dimension when considering something to bring other than your mobile phone. The 4.2 inch screen has a thin bezel surrounded it. Above the screen is a speaker and a front facing VGA camera, while at the bottom is the another speaker and the usual Home button surrounded by the Menu and Back touch icons that lit up when used. The overall design is pretty much the same as other Samsung phones where they keep things simple.
There is nothing to be found on the left side, but on the right side you’ll get the Sleep/Power button and volume rocker. A little bit disappointing that Samsung still did not include a dedicated camera button on this media-centric device. At the bottom you will see the microUSB port and 3.5mm headphone jack which is an odd placement to plug your earphones since it will hamper your gaming in landscape mode.
The back is made of shiny, glossy plastic where you’ll see the lens of its paltry 2-megapixel camera. The cover is removable for easy battery replacement and storage expansion via microSD slot. A big advantage over the iPod Touch where the battery is not replaceable and storage capacity is fixed.
The build is made of plastic to keep the device light, but it still feels solid when handling and you won’t notice any flimsy parts moving even when the unit is held firmly. Overall the design of the Galaxy Player is simple with a nice and slim profile and a solid look and feel.
Display and UI
The Galaxy Player’s 4.2-inch screen has a WVGA Resolution (480 x 800) TFT LCD display with 222 ppi pixel density. Details are nice and can be considered quite above average which is good for the Galaxy Player’s multimedia purposes.
Unfortunately since it’s using TFT LCD, the screen isn’t that bright to be used outdoors, its simply difficult to navigate when exposed to sunlight and viewing angles aren’t that good compared to other screen technologies like AMOLED.
The Galaxy Player runs on Android 2.3 Gingerbread with the Samsung TouchWiz UI. What’s good about the TouchWiz UI is that it has optimizations made especially for multimedia. The music player, video and navigation aspects are all optimized for better experience. A simple example is that when playing videos and if you accidentally hit the Back button, it will prompt you to press back again before going back to the video list.
The Galaxy Player 4.2 is powered by a single-core OMAP processor clocked at 1 GHz, with 512 GB of RAM. Here’s the Quadrant score for the Galaxy Player (1661) which you can say is definitely one of the good single-core processors out there.
In the two weeks of using the Galaxy Player, occasional slight lags were encountered, mostly when transitioning from app to another.
I was quite amazed that even with a single-core processor, running games like Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit and Temple Run went pretty smoothly. However, playing graphics/resource-intensive games like Asphalt 7 and GTA III, the game was noticeably lagging to the point that you won’t be able to enjoy your game.
The Galaxy Player has a 2-megapixel fixed-focus rear camera and 0.3 megapixel front facing camera. Compared to its rival, the camera resolution is still better but considering the trend today, we hoped to have a bit more megapixels like at least 3.2 megapixel at least.
Anyway, here are a few sample shots taken with the Samsung Galaxy Player 4.2:
Nothing impressive with the photo quality and the lack of autofocus makes it impossible to take pictures close up. Guess you’ll have to rely on camera effect apps like Instagram to make your shots more appealing.
Here is a sample video of the Galaxy Player where video capture is only up to 640×480 in resolution. It would be awfully nice if it can do 720p recording since the processor is fairly capable of doing so.
Samsung maximized the space of the Galaxy Player 4.2 by adding one more speaker. It’s louder than the average smartphone speaker, loud enough to watch videos or play games without the need of earphones.
Video playback is snappy, although it can only play up to 720p resolution which shouldn’t be an issue since there’s no point in playing 1080p if the resolution is only WVGA.
Music playback and sound quality is definitely its forte. Compared to smartphones, the audio quality of the Galaxy Player 4.2 gives more range, plus the bundled earphones is above average in quality unlike other stock earphones.
There’s an 8GB built-in storage which should be enough for your music collection and photos. You can still add more for videos and games as the Galaxy Player 4.2 has a microSD slot for up to 32GB memory expansion up to 32GB.
Having a 1500mah battery, battery life is more than enough considering the galaxy player has no telephony functions. I was able to play two 720p quality videos up to 4 hours and 40 minutes using earphones with WiFi off and 40% brightness before it asked me to plug it in. In a moderate-usage scenario, occasional music, video, browsing, FB updates and emails, the battery lasted up to 2 days which is above average in my book.
Overall the Galaxy Player is a solid and nifty Android multimedia device for those who want to keep their phone strictly for calls and text. Having an SRP of Php9,990, we think the price is a little bit steep considering you can already buy phones with almost similar specs and possibly better camera quality at the same price point. However, with its 4.2-inch screen, loud pair of speakers and decent battery life, it’s definitely a device worth considering over other multimedia players like the iPod Touch.
|Samsung Galaxy Player 4.2 Specs:|
|1Ghz single-core OMAP processor|
|4.2″³ TFT LCD (480 x 800 resolution), 222 pixels per inch|
|Android 2.3 Gingerbread|
|512MB of RAM, 8GB internal storage, microSD|
|2-megapixel (1600 x 1200) fixed-focus camera|
|640 x 480 video recording at 24fps|
|0.3-megapixel front camera|
|WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, DLNA|
|Bluetooth w/ A2DP|
|GPS w/ aGPS support|
|Li-Ion 1500 mAh battery|
|124 x 66.1 x 8.9 mm|
Editor’s note: This post is contributed by Eason de Guzman with some slight revisions by the editor. Eason is a technology enthusiast who always try to get the latest gadgets without getting broke. He’s also into KPOP, making a point into dressing like a KPOP artist and usually has a hand on KPOP related events in the country.