Our friends over at Samsung have sent us the T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S Blaze 4G for us to review. This was the device that was announced at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show and they gave us almost no info on the device. And in March they gave us the low-down, and now the device is on the market. This device is replacing the Galaxy S 4G, and it brings come new changes and keeps us with some old changes. Those being that is has a 1.5GHz Dual-Core Snapdragon Processor and it runs on T-Mobile’s 4G HSPA+ 22 Network. This is T-Mobile’s fastest network yet, so while it is not a total premium device it may be the star in the middle price range for the network. One thing that may surprise is you the design, it feels like a BlackBerry. Now, let’s dive right into the full review of the T-Mobile Galaxy S Blaze 4G!
Now, I personally like the design of the Galaxy S Blaze 4G! It feels exactly like a BlackBerry, from the back of the device to the dimensions. The camera is located on the top of the back device and it has a chrome outline around the top. It feels as if RIM’s QWERTY keyboard could be located right on the front of the device. Keep in mind that it is a nice design, I was just a little surprised to see that Samsung took some design elements from BlackBerry. The device comes in at .44 inches thick, so it is not too thick but it isn’t that thin either. However, it does feel comfortable in your hand as it only weighs only 4.5 ounces. There is an aluminum finish going all the way around the device. Your 3.5 mm headphone jack can be found on the top of the device. The bottom is home to you microphone and your micro USB port. On the right hand side you will find the power/sleep button and your micro SD card slot. They decided to put this on the side of the device and they added a door that closes it. The volume rocker is located on the left hand side. The back is home to your “Galaxy S” logo, 5 mega-pixel back camera with LED flash, and speaker. The back cover comes off very easy, however it does feel a bit flimsy after you take it off. Keep in mind that it is one of the plastic back covers. Once you take the back cover off you will find the T-Mobile SIM Card and the 1750mAh battery with built-in Near Field Communications built-in. Above the screen you will find the earpiece, 1.3 mega-pixel front facing camera, and T-Mobile logo. Under the screen you have the Samsung logo, and menu, home, back, and search touch capacitive buttons.
Hardware And Network Performance
Let’s move onto the hardware inside of the Galaxy S Blaze 4G. Samsung is known for their screens and they have included a pretty good one on this device. It has a 3.97-inch touchscreen featuring Super AMOLED Display with a resolution of 480 X 800. If you have the brightness all the way up, the colors look great and are super vibrant. Viewing angles are great and the colors still stay super vibrant through most of the angles. The Galaxy S Blaze 4G has speed, both on the network and on the inside. This device packs a punch with a 1.5GHz Dual-Core Snapdragon processor and it shows. The device boots on and off quite quickly and general use with the operating system is a great. Keep in mind that this device has the same processor as the Galaxy S II. Now, T-Mobile also made sure that this has a great network connection. The Galaxy S Blaze 4G is running on T-Mobile’s 4G HSPA+42 Network. This means that you can get up to 42Mbps speeds of data connection. In our area of testing we had around 2-4 bars of service throughout the day. We tested out the data speed using the “SPEEDTEST.NET” application. You can see our speed tests results here:
NJTechReviews T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S Blaze 4G Speed Test Results
As you can see in the speed test above we had some pretty good speeds. Our fastest download speed was 12.53Mbps, our lowest was 7.76Mbps. So, we were getting some very fast speeds on their 4G Network. In fact these are some of the fastest speeds that I have seen on T-Mobile’s network. In terms of upload they could have been better, our fastest speed was 2.77Mbps and our lowest was 1.53Mbps. So, I would have like to seen faster upload speeds but, I was okay with them. Now, on to the amount of storage you get out of the box with the Galaxy S Blaze 4G. Internally you get 4G of space and 4GB microSD card out of the box. If you need more space that micro SD slot can hold up to a 32GB micro SD card slot. On the back you have a 5 mega-pixel camera with LED flash. On the front side you have a 1.3 mega pixel front facing camera.
Yet again, we see another device that is not launching with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. The Galaxy S Blaze 4G is running on Android 2.3.6 Gingerbread with Samsung Touch Wiz as the user interface. To make everyone happy, the Galaxy S Blaze should receive the Android 4.0 update sometime in the future. T-Mobile didn’t stop there, they added a ton of pre-loaded applications that do not always come in handy. You also get some widgets from them, like Bonus Apps, Highlight, Family Life Organizer, and more. However, some people may enjoy the applications; If you’re not one of them the good thing for you is that they are removable. This device comes pre-loaded with many applications like 411 & More, AllShare, GameBase, LookOut, More For Me, Music Hub, My Account, My Device, Netflix,
Android Market Play Store, T-Mobile Mail/Name ID/TV/Video-Chat, TeleNav GPS Navigation, Task Manger, Visual Voicemail, Yelp, Zinio, YouTube, Google App Suite, and more. Thankfully some of these are removable, however some of them you may want to keep like AllShare, Netflix, and some others depending on your needs. The good thing is that all of the bloat-ware/pre-loaded apps do not slow the operating system down. The 1.5GHz Dual-Core Snapdragon processor keeps this thing flying, the processor and speed of this device may be the best part.
I was very surprised when I first saw the spec’s of the Galaxy S Blaze 4G. This device only has a 5 mega pixel back camera, not an 8 mega pixel that is found on the Galaxy S II or the HTC One S. I truly believe that Samsung missed a huge opportunity with not including that camera. With that being said the camera is good, when you are not in heavy light conditions. As you can see in the video camera test below, the top of the pink bush is very washed out. This also shows up when you are taking still photos. So this is not the best Samsung camera that I have seen. The camera on the back records in 720pHD quality, the sound is pretty good for the most part but, the microphone can become overwhelmed if there is too much noise. On the front you have a nice 1.3 mega pixel camera that you can use to video chat on the go or take “selfies”.
The T-Mobile Galaxy S Blaze 4G is a good device. If this came out last year, it definitely would have been an all-star device. If only Samsung and T-Mobile got this project done a little quicker. That being said, this is a good device that falls into the middle of their device lineup. The pricing for this device is not the best either, with a 2-year contract it is $149.99 after a mail-in-rebate. This is a tough device to sell, after the HTC One S just launched on T-Mobile. However, if you want a removable battery and micro SD card slot and you don’t mind the price the Galaxy S Blaze 4G is the device for you. For More Info On The T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S Blaze 4G, Please Click Here. Currently (5/5/12), T-Mobile Is Offering The Galaxy S Blaze 4G For Free If Purchased Online. It Is Free With A Mail-In-Rebate Card, The Deal Is Online Only. It Will End On May 6, 2012(5/6/12). We would like to thank Samsung for providing us with a copy of the “T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy S Blaze 4G”.