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Samsung Galaxy R (GT-I9103)
The Samsung Galaxy R (or the Samsung GT-I9103) is a slightly cut down version of the Galaxy S II, and it's available for sale now in certain European countries.
In Samsung's new naming convention, an "R" handset is a high-end device that comes just below the "S". Made from slightly less expensive components, but still a very desirable smartphone, the Galaxy R has a suggested retail price of €450, but in reality it is likely to sell for closer to €400 when it gets to retailers.
This is a dual-core device with a 1GHz ARM A9 CPU, 4.2" 480 x 800 pixel display, a 5 megapixel camera on the back with 720p HD video capture, a 1.3 megapixel video calling camera, FM radio and all the usual Android features such as WiFi, 3.5G and GPS. With specifications like this, the Galaxy R is easily more powerful than most rival smartphones apart from ultra high-end handsets.
We suspect that most Mobile Gazette regulars would tend to go for the Galaxy S II rather than the Galaxy R, but there's an interesting twist to this tale.. because right at the moment, Apple effectively has a European-wide injunction blocking the sales of the Samsung Galaxy S II, Galaxy Ace and the original Galaxy S. As far as we know, the Galaxy R is not covered by the injunction.
Originally the Galaxy R was going to have quite a limited release in Europe, but with an obvious gap in their product range it may well be that Samsung will ramp up production. Of course, the Galaxy R is very close in design to the "banned" phones and it may only be a matter of time before Apple try to block this too.
The Galaxy R measures 126 x 67 x 10mm and weighs 132 grams. The large 1650 mAh battery is quoted as giving nearly 10 hours talktime and 23 days standby time. We're quite pleased to see that Samsung are fitting larger capacity batteries as Android handsets can use a lot of power.
At the moment, countries that appear to be getting the Galaxy R include Russia, Turkey, Norway, Romania and we guess other Nordic and Eastern European countries. It could well be that the Galaxy R will become more widely available given other recent developments.
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