In terms of performance, Google and Samsung have a winning combination with the 1GHz Cortex A8 Hummingbird processor and Gingerbread OS. During our testing period, the phone always felt very zippy and responsive.
The 5 megapixel rear-facing camera on the Nexus S may not have quite the same resolution as other smartphone cameras, but we were impressed by the quality of images that we got from the camera in the Nexus S. After all, we would much rather have a sharp, usable 5 megapixel image than a less-detailed and more grainy higher megapixel shot (as we've seen on some other smartphones) any day. Overall, the photos taken with the Nexus S were very usable—both in well-lit and in low-light environments.
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Google and Samsung claim you'll get up to 6.7 hours of talk time and up to 17.8 days of standby time while connected to T-Mobile's 3G network. Overall, we were very pleased with the battery life on the Nexus S and had no problems making it through an entire day with moderate use while talking, texting, checking email, and surfing the Web multiple times throughout the day.
As with the Samsung Captivate and other Galaxy S devices, the screen on the Nexus S is absolutely gorgeous. The Super AMOLED touchscreen is bright, colorful, and sharp. Viewing angles are also excellent. As you'll recall, Super AMOLED enables phone manufacturers to make even thinner phones while also providing more vivid colors and terrific viewing angles. The screen did attract a few fingerprints here and there, but the anti-fingerprint coating definitely seemed to make a difference on the Nexus S in comparison to other phones we've tested.
During our tests, we enjoyed clear conversations and did not have any dropped calls. The people we spoke with said they could hear us clearly. We felt the earpiece and the speakerphone were adequately loud.
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