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Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc vs Samsung Galaxy S II

The Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc and the Samsung Galaxy S II (coming this May) are probably the two hottest Android phones that we’ll be having this year. I was able to briefly compare the two phones courtesy of Manila Bulletin’s tech editor, Mr. Art Samaniego, who owns a Galaxy S II (and other drool-inducing gadgets).


Looking at the two, the Xperia Arc has a huge 4.2-inch screen while the Galaxy S II has a tad bigger screen at 4.3-inch. The Xperia Arc has the Mobile Bravia Engine powering its display and the Galaxy S II has Super AMOLED Plus.

Samsung Galaxy S II vs Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc

Which is actually better? While the Super AMOLED Plus screen looks more vibrant, the Bravia display looks more sharper. We can also attribute that to the Arc’s higher 480 x 854 pixel count as compared to the Galaxy S II’s 480 x 800. Anyway, on their own, both have really gorgeous displays! The Galaxy S II has the sought-after Gorilla glass though.

Samsung Galaxy S II vs Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc

If you think the Arc is already slim at 8.7mm, the Galaxy S II managed to be slimmer at 8.5mm. Negligible difference really but it would make for a good trivia. The Galaxy is lighter too by just a gram.

The Xperia Arc follows the design of the front menu buttons from the Xperia X10 but they decided to switch the placement of the Back and Menu button for some strange reason. The Galaxy S II on the other hand has only one button on its front, ala-iPhone. The Menu and Back button are actually activated by touch and only illuminates when used.

Samsung Galaxy S II vs Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc

As for the camera, the Xperia Arc has an 8-megapixel camera using Sony’s Exmor R lens while the Galaxy S II also has an 8-megapixel camera with flash. I wasn’t able to test the camera on the Galaxy S II but I reckon quality would be the same as the Galaxy S which is already good for a mobile phone in my opinion.

Even though the Galaxy S II has a dual-core processor, a single 1GHz processor with a decent GPU (Adreno 205) makes the Xperia Arc very spiffy. Really, I don’t think you would need a dual-core processor on a mobile phone unless you will be doing some heavy video editing on it which is highly unlikely.

I’m still playing with the Xperia Arc here and will give you a more detailed review of it in the near future. Meanwhile, here are the side-by-side specs on both phones.

Sony Ericsson Xperia ArcSamsung Galaxy I9100 S II
1GHz Scorpion processor,  Qualcomm MSM8255 SnapdragonDual-core 1.2GHz ARM Cortex-A9 processor
Adreno 205 GPUMali-400MP GPU
480 x 854 pixels, 4.2 inches, 16m colors480 x 800 pixels, 4.3 inches, 16m colors
Scratch-resistant surfaceScratch-proof Gorilla Glass
Sony Mobile BRAVIA EngineSuper AMOLED Plus
Timescape UITouchWiz UI
320 MB storage (8GB card included)16 GB storage (up to 32GB microSD)
Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspotWi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, DLNA, Wi-Fi Direct, Wi-Fi hotspot
8 MP, 3264×2448 pixels, autofocus, LED flash, Exmor R lens8 MP, 3264×2448 pixels, autofocus, LED flash
720p @ 30fps video recording1080p @ 30fps video recording
No front camera2 MP front camera
HDMI port (HDMI cable included)Mobile High-Definition video Link (MHL)
Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)
125 x 63 x 8.7 mm125.3 x 66.1 x 8.5 mm
117 g116 g
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  • july

    ang swerte naman ni mr. samaniego. prototype reviewer b sya? o trip lng ng samsung bigyan ito ng sgsii?

  • Messie

    Mayaman lang talaga si Ms. Samaniego. Remember the rumors (or true ba?) na he bought an ipad2 for 50k+ just to have the distinction of being the first owner of an ipad2 in the Philippines? Same din ata nung na-release ang ipad. He is one of the reasons why nakaka-appeal pa rin bumalik sa dreams ko to be a journalist. =D

    • ms.? or mr.? most of the gadgets ay bili ng boss nya para sa techlab ng manila bulletin. and the others ay kusang pinapahiram din sa kanila.

  • carlito

    ang arc coming this may pa?…sabi this april….aw

    • yung galaxy S II ang this may. meron na yung arc.

  • magkanu po ung smasung galaxy 2? tska kelan ung release date niya? early may ba? im planning to buy a new phone ksi e. iphone 4 sana bibilhin ko. what do you think? mag samsung gs2 nlng kaya ako o iphone 4 prin? thx

  • jx

    just got my arc last sunday in glorietta 3 at 27790 for cash payment. ang masasabi ko lang wala akong pakialam sa dual core processor kung sobrang smooth and bilis ng single core sa xperia arc ko. sobrang bilis talaga at yung screen sobrang linaw. well done sony ericsson!!! for me Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc is better than galaxy s II, kase naman kapag na ka samsung phone ka sa pananaw ko lang parang iphone wanna be ka hehehe, Para bang di mo afforb bumili ng iphone kaya samsung nalang binili mo 😀 tignan nyo nalnag itsura ng Galaxy Ace sobrang kamukha ng iphone tsk tsk

  • Air21

    Sr., make a contest , will surely win one!

  • razorous

    Nice… I really like the concept of MHL. I hope they price the Galaxy SII well though

  • impressive phones. may bago ang nokia. Nokia x7.

    • yup… just about to post it. thanks!!

  • jx

    i’ll go for sony ericsson arc, ayoko talaga ng samsung mukha talagang iphone eh. kapag naka galaxy series ka ng samsung parang iphone wanna be ka lang 😀 just compare the photos of galaxy ace and iphone 4 parang china clone ng iphone 4 yung galaxy ace ng samsung

    • we dont think so. di kami sang-ayon sa sinabi mo na parang iphone lang ang sgs2…

  • ryanmd09

    how about the build materials? which one is made of metal and plastic?tnx

  • soduhwhatever

    happy with my htc desire hd.. cant wait for the htc sensation though 1.2GHz dual-core processor, records 1080p videos and comes with an even better looking HTC Sense UI. amazing!! just like samsung galaxy s2 except for the UI..

    • so it’s the sensation now? i though the pyramid would be their flagship phone. hhmmm.

    • DJK

      HTC Sensation ( Formerly Pyramid ) — more themes skins scenes UI customization.
      For Samsung Glxy S2 haters: those icons can be moded. amoled plus best clarity so far.
      Xperia Arc, Desire HD — both smooth enuf with 1ghz for simpler usage for now.
      1.2 ghz on HTC Sensation and Galaxy S2 is sumwhat “future proof” for upcoming app n games that demand higher proc n gpu power.
      So far as long as ur cool with LCD u dont have to go after amoled. for simpler usage for now 1ghz is smooth enuf.
      1.2ghz dual core (introductory price mite be arnd 34k more or less) so if u need now buy the narrower lcd xperia arc 4.2″ or wider lcd desire hd 4.3″.
      if u can wait then go for galaxy s2 better gpu, super amoled plus, 1.2ghz dual core or HTC Sensation same specs but SLCD which is also good enuf but not better. all brands have their own unique style/features.
      Motorola & LG also good but not as popular in philippines. dell streak 5″ bigger. just my two cents. — dont hate jus admire

      • ur da man djk! thanks for this informative comment!

        • Dolly

          sir can you help me.. i cant decide what to buy.. iphone4 or wait for the samsung galaxy s2? thx

          • iphone 4 if you’re a casual phone user and wants a lot of gaming apps. galaxy s2 if you’re a power user who wants more control on your phone.

        • Rj

          so which is better? the arc or the galaxy s2?

          • arc on the design standpoint while s2 for the specs. the s2 will probably be more expensive than the arc though.

  • buboy

    Di pwedeng sabihin na you cant afford iphone kaya ka bumili ng Samsung, some spare parts of iphone like chips & LCD are supplied by Samsung. Samsung is one of the supplier of Apple, kaya lumalabas na parang bumili ka lang ng Samsung na nilagyan lang ng Mansanas sa Labas. Im a previous iphone user, but i really appreciate how innovative Samsung is. pero i choose Xperia against Samsung Galaxy S2, due to design halos di naman nagkakalayo ng performance.

  • android

    Sgs2… trying hard and copy cat
    go for arc

  • saiful

    sony ericssion experia arc looks very handsome than any smart phone. simply great