Reviewed by augustofretes (Currently owns)
The Samsung Galaxy S II was probably the best Android smartphone when it launched, and it can still hold a fight against the newer top tier devices. The screen and the lack of fast updates are its only (albeit important) flaws. The Super AMOLED+ screen looks good, but its pixel density is not high enough, and Samsung obsession to oversaturate makes it suffer from banding.
Software updates have been relatively smooth, but no major revision were released in its life time until now, and it seems like S II owners will need to wait until late Q1 2012 to get their hands into a heavily skinned version of ICS: TouchWiz is among the best (or less bad) Android skins, simply because it's smoother than any other launcher (ICS on the Nexus included), and some other TW additions are fairly welcomed, like an impressive video codec support, or the smoothest web browser.
The internal hardware is still unmatched, the build quality is good (despite having a "cheaper" feeling, it's an extremely endurable device, it's hard to break), there's little reason to upgrade to a Galaxy Nexus, unless you are tired of the screen resolution, can't wait for ICS, and don't care about camera or the GPU, current owners should hold to it until the new avalanche of devices (perhaps the S III) starts coming.
The final score is 8.25, which I think puts the device where it belongs against the newer phone (The Galaxy Nexus, I wouldn't recommed an iPhone 4S over the SGS II or many other devices, since its buid quality is just mediocre, it breaks too easily).
- Design 8
- Display 8
- Camera(s) 9
- Reception / call quality 9
- Performance 9
- Software 8
- Battery life 7
- Ecosystem 8