Review: Samsung Nexus S
The dialer looks a bit different from previous Android versions, but the changes are only skin deep. Otherwise, the calling and contacts experience on the Nexus S is exactly like previous Android phones. Here is one area where Google is being lapped by its manufacturer partners. Options during calls are useful but simple. There is no auto-respond option to ignore a call and send an SMS message, like you'll find on even basic Android phones like the LG Optimus family. There's no built-in call recording feature. You don't get recent status updates or message conversations when a contact calls, like you do on HTC Sense phones. It's all very basic.
The contact list is also nice, but lacking in any advanced features. Unlike most other Android phones, the Nexus S doesn't integrate social networking into the contacts any deeper than synchronizing basic information and avatars. You don't get status updates, calling and messaging history or photo albums, like you do on other Androids.
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Even calling shortcuts are a bit too simple for my taste. You can plant direct dial or messaging shortcuts on the homescreen panels, but these can be confusing. The shortcut for calling someone's mobile number and sending them a text message look very similar: the person's picture with a big “M” on the icon. Only a tiny, hidden indicator in the corner lets you know which is which. There are no easy calling shortcut widgets, you'll have to dig those up yourself from the Android Market, and manufacturers like HTC and Motorola do a much better job with their own proprietary widgets, unavailable except on those phones.
Hands-On with Google Wallet
A quick tour of Google Wallet in action, using a Samsung Nexus S 4G for Sprint.
Hands-On: Android 4.1 Jelly Bean
The latest version of Android offers a lot of performance upgrades and some new whiz-bang features. Phone Scoop takes it for a spin on the Galaxy Nexus.
Swype and Sprint Giving Nexus S Owners an Exclusive
Swype and Sprint today announced that owners of the Samsung Nexus S will be the first to have access to a new version of Swype's Android keyboard starting today. In addition to a newly revised version of the Swype keyboard, the update includes a custom skin, tap correction, horizontal word choice list, personal dictionary management, and shortcut gestures to perform actions such as select all, or launch Google Maps or Twitter.
Swype Opens Latest Beta to All
Swype has made version 3.25 beta of its Android keyboard software available to all Android users. The beta was previously only available for the Nexus S on Sprint.
Google Wallet Goes Live at More Retail Locations
Google today announced that a larger selection of retail locations are now accepting its Google Wallet-based payment service. The service, which ties a phone-based near-field communications chip to a credit card account, has been up and running at Subway and Walgreens locations in New York City and San Francisco for about a month.
Samsung Nexus S
4" display 480 x 800 pixels
Samsung Hummingbird Cortex A8 processor
1,500 mAh battery
NFC, Headphone Jack (3.5mm)