Samsung Nexus S
Samsung Nexus S
3:55

Samsung Nexus S

Phones
-Hi, I'm Kent German. I'm a Senior Editor here at CNET.com. Today, we'll take a first look at the Samsung Nexus S. Now, this is one of the most anticipated Android phones of the autumn season. That's because it's the follow-up to the Nexus One. This phone offers largely the same concept. It does have a different sales model. You can buy it at Best Buy, so you can actually go in to the store. It's also sold for T-Mobile, and it's sold without a T-Mobile contract. But like the previous phone, both phones are unlocked, so that's a great thing. But there is a catch and, of course, there is always a catch. It is compatible only with T-Mobile's 3G network, at least here in the United States. You can use it on AT&T's voice network, so you can make a call and send text messages. But you can't use it on AT&T's 3G. Another thing you need to be aware of: It doesn't work with T-Mobile's HSPA Plus Network. So, they say it's 4G. It's not really 4G. But it's not compatible with that really high-speed network, and that's really disappointing considering just an anticipated device. It has almost everything else you'd want. So, we don't really understand why they didn't do that. Just describing the design, you can see it is a simple candy bar phone. It looks a lot like some of the Samsung Galaxy S devices. So, it's very thin. It's pretty light. It has a super AMOLED display. So, it has about 16 million colors, a great pixel resolution. Everything looks really good. I'll compare it here with the Nexus One to show you they're somewhat similar as far as the candy bar shape goes. But, certainly the Nexus S is a little slicker. It just has a little more of a futuristic feel. Suddenly, the Nexus One feels a little weightier. A couple of things to note about the Nexus S design: It does have a contour display. And what's that supposed to be is the display is supposed to be curved. It actually is, just very slight. You have to look at it very closely. I'm not sure I see that at all. I mean, I don't notice the difference when I hold it against my head, and I think if you really wanted to match it, you'd have a pretty small head. It has a front-facing VGA camera in addition to the camera on the back, and there's also a flash in the back; also has an NFC chip. Now, that's a technology that isn't used much here in the United States yet, but it would allow you to actually use your phone as a wallet and buy certain things and deduct money from a mobile account. Not all the merchants have really caught on to that technology. So, we'll see that development, but it does have the capability. Also, you'll be able to do VoIP calling, and it is the first Android phone with Gingerbread, which is the latest version of the Android operating system. Now, Gingerbread brings a few things. I'll show a couple of them to you. It does bring a different keyboard. So, the virtual keyboard, it doesn't look that much different. And also, the cut-and-paste is a little easier to do. Now, with Gingerbread, you can actually select only the word that you're touching if you have a block of text. So, if you just wanna select one thing, that you can do. Also, Gingerbread gives you new little arrows that allow you to move the block of text which you'd like to copy back and forth these here. It's just a little better than having to move the line with your finger as you did before. Now, you get a little arrow. So, it's nice. I really like it. Gingerbread also makes the wallpapers a little different, and it offers a few other features. But, that cut-and-copy-paste is one of the biggest and one you'll probably notice right away. One of the important thing to point out with the Nexus S is it does not have a micro SD card slot. Now, it does have 16 gigs of internal memory. So, that's a lot of space. Of course, even if you wanna use more than 16 gigs and there's probably some of you out there, you won't have that option. So that's disappointing. One other thing that's missing is an HDMI out slot. So, we're hoping that this phone had a little more features than it does. Compared with the Nexus One, as I said, a lot of the features are similar. It does add some new things. Of course, Gingerbread's a huge one. But, at the end of the day, the phone isn't that much of an advancement over its predecessor. So, that's a bit disappointing. But it does offer that unfiltered access right to Google applications you'd expect. So, if you're a real hardcore Android phone, probably a decent phone for you. As I said, you can get it unlocked. You can get it for $529 and that's without any kind of contract. Or you can get it at $199 with a T-mobile 2-year contract, but that phone is also unlocked as well. So, it's a good thing. I'm Kent German and this is the Samsung Nexus S.

Up Next

Camera Comparison: The Galaxy S24 Ultra Takes On the iPhone 15 Pro Max
240219-yt-vs-iphone-15-pro-max-vs-camera-comparison-v03

Up Next

Camera Comparison: The Galaxy S24 Ultra Takes On the iPhone 15 Pro Max

See How the Galaxy S24 Ultra's Camera Compares to the Pixel 8 Pro's
240216-site-galaxy-s24-ultra-vs-pixel-8-pro-3

See How the Galaxy S24 Ultra's Camera Compares to the Pixel 8 Pro's

Tips and Tricks for the Galaxy S24 Ultra
240216-site-galaxy-s24-ultra-tips-and-hidden-features-2

Tips and Tricks for the Galaxy S24 Ultra

Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra Review: More AI at a Higher Cost
240123-site-samsung-galaxy-s24-ultra-review-4

Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra Review: More AI at a Higher Cost

Everything Announced at Samsung's Galaxy S24 Unpacked Event
240117-site-samsung-galaxy-unpacked-supercut

Everything Announced at Samsung's Galaxy S24 Unpacked Event

Samsung Reveals Its New S24 Series Phones and Their AI Chops
galaxy-s24-series-cnet-00-00-10-05-still006.png

Samsung Reveals Its New S24 Series Phones and Their AI Chops

What to Expect from Samsung Unpacked 2024
240112-yt-samsung-unpacked-v04

What to Expect from Samsung Unpacked 2024

TCL's New Phone Has a Paperlike Screen
240107-site-tcl-mobile-phone-first-look-v2

TCL's New Phone Has a Paperlike Screen

The Big Vision Behind These iOS, WatchOS Updates
231207-vision-pro-mindset-v03-b

The Big Vision Behind These iOS, WatchOS Updates

CNET's Best Smartphones From 2023
cnet01

CNET's Best Smartphones From 2023

Tech Shows

The Apple Core
apple-core-w

The Apple Core

Alphabet City
alphabet-city-w

Alphabet City

CNET Top 5
cnet-top-5-w

CNET Top 5

The Daily Charge
dc-site-1color-logo.png

The Daily Charge

What the Future
what-the-future-w

What the Future

Tech Today
tech-today-w

Tech Today

Latest News All latest news

Camera Comparison: The Galaxy S24 Ultra Takes On the iPhone 15 Pro Max
240219-yt-vs-iphone-15-pro-max-vs-camera-comparison-v03

Camera Comparison: The Galaxy S24 Ultra Takes On the iPhone 15 Pro Max

Pulse Elite Review: PlayStation's New Gaming Headset
240219-site-sony-pulse-elite-wireless-headset

Pulse Elite Review: PlayStation's New Gaming Headset

What to Expect from Mobile World Congress 2024
mwc2024site-00-01-26-10-still001

What to Expect from Mobile World Congress 2024

See How the Galaxy S24 Ultra's Camera Compares to the Pixel 8 Pro's
240216-site-galaxy-s24-ultra-vs-pixel-8-pro-3

See How the Galaxy S24 Ultra's Camera Compares to the Pixel 8 Pro's

Tips and Tricks for the Galaxy S24 Ultra
240216-site-galaxy-s24-ultra-tips-and-hidden-features-2

Tips and Tricks for the Galaxy S24 Ultra

New iPads in 2024: What We Expect (OLED, M3 and Beyond)
240214-yt-omt-new-ipad-what-to-expect-v04

New iPads in 2024: What We Expect (OLED, M3 and Beyond)

Most Popular All most popular

First Look at TSA's Self-Screening Tech (in VR!)
innovation

First Look at TSA's Self-Screening Tech (in VR!)

Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra Review: More AI at a Higher Cost
240123-site-samsung-galaxy-s24-ultra-review-4

Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra Review: More AI at a Higher Cost

'Circle to Search' Lets Users Google From Any Screen
circlesearchpic

'Circle to Search' Lets Users Google From Any Screen

Asus Put Two 14-inch OLEDs in a Laptop, Unleashes First OLED ROG Gaming Laptop
asus-preces-00-00-25-11-still003

Asus Put Two 14-inch OLEDs in a Laptop, Unleashes First OLED ROG Gaming Laptop

Samsung Galaxy Ring: First Impressions
samsung-galaxy-ring-clean

Samsung Galaxy Ring: First Impressions

Best of Show: The Coolest Gadgets of CES 2024
240111-site-best-of-ces-2024-1

Best of Show: The Coolest Gadgets of CES 2024

Latest Products All latest products

See Adobe Lightroom on the Apple Vision Pro
adobe-lightroom-00-02-58-03-still006-1

See Adobe Lightroom on the Apple Vision Pro

This $400 Cane Has a Built-In Phone
p1022441-mp4-15-35-32-23-still001

This $400 Cane Has a Built-In Phone

Apple Vision Pro: Unboxed and Set Up
vlcsnap-2024-01-29-14h38m03s627.png

Apple Vision Pro: Unboxed and Set Up

Samsung Galaxy Ring: First Impressions
samsung-galaxy-ring-clean

Samsung Galaxy Ring: First Impressions

Samsung Unveils Galaxy Ring Designed for Health Tracking
samsung-debuts-galaxy-ring-for-health-tracking-00-05-13-09-still001

Samsung Unveils Galaxy Ring Designed for Health Tracking

First Look at Rabbit R1 Mobile AI Device
rabbitr1cms

First Look at Rabbit R1 Mobile AI Device

Latest How To All how to videos

Tips and Tricks for the Galaxy S24 Ultra
240216-site-galaxy-s24-ultra-tips-and-hidden-features-2

Tips and Tricks for the Galaxy S24 Ultra

TikTok Is Now on the Apple Vision Pro
tiktok-on-vision-pro-clean

TikTok Is Now on the Apple Vision Pro

Get Your TV Ready for the Big Game: Super Bowl Setup Tips
superbowl-tv-settings-thumb1

Get Your TV Ready for the Big Game: Super Bowl Setup Tips

How to Use a Quest 3 Like the Vision Pro
240202-site-spatial-computing-on-meta-quest-3

How to Use a Quest 3 Like the Vision Pro

How to Make a GPT in ChatGPT-4
howto-createyourowngpt-clean

How to Make a GPT in ChatGPT-4

Tips and Tricks for the Galaxy Watch 6
231120-site-tips-tricks-and-hidden-features-v2

Tips and Tricks for the Galaxy Watch 6