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Hands-On With Samsung Ativ S

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The Windows 8 operating system lends itself beautifully to phones as well.  Its mobile phone operating system, Windows Phone 8 is growing in popularity for its performance and results. The Samsung Ativ S is the first handset to run with the mobile operating system and it is a treat in more ways than one.

Apart from the coolness of the operating system, the phone comes with a 1.5GHx dual-core processor, 1GB RAM- there will be 32GB and 16GB versions too-, houses a microSD card slot and supports NFC for rapid sharing of information. There’s connectivity in the form of HSPA+ and a massive 2,300Ah removable battery to give all this enough juice to last. This is by far the largest battery we’ve seen on a Windows phone and it has the potential to become the best battery among the phones.

The camera deserves mention too. Microsoft has worked very hard to ensure that devices with its operating system also have very nifty cameras. There’s an 8 megapixel main camera and a 1.9 mega pixels front facing one. The camera works fast and comes with LED flash and autofocus. There is a camera button on the lower half of the screen, to the right. Options pop up easily, once you’re ready to take a picture- switching between cameras, video shooting or making flash adjustments are all a breeze.

It is a lovely phone to look at, with a brushed- metal finish that is one of its kind. Making full use of the Start menu, the 4.8” AMOLED, Gorillas Glass 2 protected screen- the largest in Windows phones- on the Samsung Ativ S is bright and responsive and a pleasure to play around with. The phone is large- it is 2.78 inches wide and 5.40 inches tall. It is a thin phone, despite the dimensions, at a diminutive 0.34 inch. This makes it the thinnest Windows 8 handset yet. It is not an easy phone to hold, being large in size, so the earphones might be a good option.

The Ativ S looks a lot like its counterparts, the Galaxy siblings and it can be assumed that like them, it will help further the reputation of Samsung too. If we are splitting hairs, the AtivS is a tad longer than the Galaxy phones. Also it has an actual Windows button and search keys, something we’ve seen in all the phones sporting the operating system. There is talk that the 16 and 32 GB versions will also come with cool Samsung applications like Media and Music Hub.

There is a lot that we liked in the Samsung Ativ S. Windows 8 has such an interactive and gorgeous display anyway and the Ativ S shows it all off to perfection. You can see a lot and do a lot and it is a treat to use. While people may quibble that the absence of quad-core slows down performance, we must keep in mind that dual-core is no small fry either and does the job quite well. Also, having dual core means better battery life and more consistent performance for the Ativ S. By keeping battery life paramount, Samsung scores big with us.

We also like the clean lines on this phone. The aluminum finish is modernist and has universal appeal. It is a large phone but slim enough to fit into your jeans or bag and then be forgotten. Especially when compared to the other phones in the segment from Nokia and HTC, the Ativ S shines, for sheer aesthetic value.

The Samsung Ativ S looks like a phone that can give its established contemporaries a run for their money. It is already making news for its looks and performance and it is only a matter of time before it dominates headlines.

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