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HolidayBuyer's Guide

Galaxy Nexus

Super AMOLED HD display

Contoured screen

Thin

Size

No physical menu buttons

Storage

Buttons

Hyperskin

Camera

Video

NFC

Facial recognition

Lock screen

Home screen

Interface

Photos

Google+

Calendar

Gmail

Sort apps

Browse apps

Flick

Monitoring data

Android 4.0.1

Benchmark score

Meet the latest creation from Samsung and Google--the Galaxy Nexus. It's not a bad name, though the original leaked name of the Nexus Prime does is more exciting.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
Inside is a powerful 1.2GHz Texas Instruments OMAP4460 dual-core processor. The handset also sports a large 4.65-inch Super AMOLED HD display, which dwarfs both the Nexus S and iPhone 4S. The screen has a resolution of 1,280 x 720 pixels, which is comparable to current notebooks. The display looks great on the eyes, and colors simply pop out.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
Like the Nexus S (right), the Galaxy Nexus features a contoured screen, and the curved angle is a pretty sight in a sea of squarish and flat handsets.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
The smartphone is 8.9mm (0.35 inches) at its thinnest point, while the Galaxy S II is slightly thinner at 8.7mm (0.34 inches). Do note however, that the edges are slightly thicker when compared to the iPhone 4 and 4S which retain a constant 9.3mm (0.36 inches) depth throughout its body.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
Strangely, the Galaxy S II (foreground) feels like it's almost the same size (it's actually smaller). This is probably due to the thinner bezel of the Galaxy Nexus to accommodate the bigger display.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
Unlike the old Android smartphones of yore, the Galaxy Nexus has no physical menu buttons. Instead it's all virtual, similar to Honeycomb tablets.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
The Galaxy Nexus (right) comes packing 1GB of RAM and either 16 or 32GB of storage. The Nexus S is on the left.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
You still need buttons to power on/off your handset and to control your audio volume. Perhaps in the future this will also be implemented on the software side.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
The rear of the smartphone shows off its creators' branding, and you'll find both Google and Samsung logos on the "hyperskin" battery cover. Under the hood is a 1,750mAh battery.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
Like the Nexus S, the Galaxy Nexus features a 5-megapixel camera. However, compared to the very slow shutter of the Nexus S, the newer smartphone has a very quick shutter, allowing you to snap your pictures much quicker. You can also quickly share the pictures taken via a sharing menu.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
On the front you'll find a 1.3-megapixel camera for video calls.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
The Galaxy Nexus comes with NFC and makes full use of the Google's latest operating system, Android 4.0 for a new feature called Android Beam. This feature lets you share Web pages, YouTube videos and apps via a simple tap.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
Also new to Android 4.0 is the smartphone's ability to recognize faces. Dubbed Face Unlock, this feature will know what you look like and unlock your phone.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
Speaking of unlocks, Android 4.0 comes with a new lock screen.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
The Home screen also looks different and cleaner than before. The search bar gets a much sleeker minimalist look.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
The Phone app has also been redesigned, allowing for a much cleaner interface. You also can swipe to switch pages (like Microsoft's Metro UI).
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
Ice Cream Sandwich also lets you edit your photos, and there are a whole bunch of filters to jazz up your shots.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
Google+ feels more integrated into the operating system and the new People's app will let you update your status without having to open up the Google+ app. You also can add any social network into the People app for updates.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
The Calendar app sports a cleaner interface, and you can now pinch to zoom in and out for an overview of your appointments.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
The redesigned Gmail app takes advantage of the new Roboto font for a clean and gorgeous looking interface.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
You can now sort apps into folders. You can also take screenshots using by pressing the volume down and power button.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
You can also browse a list of frequently used apps, and close them by flicking them towards the sides.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
The same flick gesture is also used for closing the tabs in your browser.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
The new Data Usage app lets you monitor how much data you've been using. You also can set limits and check how much bandwidth individual apps are using.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
Interestingly, the Galaxy Nexus is running on Android 4.0.1. A minor thing, though, and we're guessing this could be due to some last minute bug fixes.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
We've also managed to get our hands on a Quadrant benchmark score, and while the score seems pretty low, we're guessing it may be due to the benchmark not coded properly for Android 4.0. In our hands, the phone was definitely quick and very responsive.
Caption by / Photo by Aloysius Low/CNET Asia
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