We got some hands-on time with Samung’s long-in-the-making Galaxy Player 4 and Galaxy Player 5 this evening. The Galaxy Player devices both run Android 2.3.5 Gingerbread and can be considered Samsung’s answer to Apple’s iPod touch. Both Player devices are entirely plastic, and neither has a terribly expensive feel when you hold it. The back covers are glossy plastic, which is very good at collecting fingerprints. It would have been nice if Samsung included the textured battery covers that have shown up on its recent smartphones. As one might expect, the Galaxy Player 4 is the smaller of the two, with its 4-inch, Super Clear LCD display. It is essentially a Samsung Vibrant 4G smartphone without the phone, as it features a 1GHz, single-core processor and Samsung’s TouchWiz interface on top. Performance was acceptable in the short time I handled the Player 4, and Samsung’s TouchWiz interface did not seem to overpower the processor. The version of TouchWiz found on each Player is the older, decidedly less attractive version than found on Samsung’s newer Galaxy S II smartphone. The Super Clear LCD did look good though, despite it not being a Super AMOLED Plus screen that Samsung is so famous for.
Samsung Player 5
Samsung Player 5
The larger of the two media devices, the Galaxy Player 5 offers much the same experience as its smaller sibling, though obviously presented on a larger display. The 5 is much closer to tablet territory than the 4, and it can be a bit unwieldy in your hands. Nevertheless, typing on such a large screen is a dream, and videos really looked great on the 5-inch, LCD display. I do wish that Samsung opted for a denser pixel resolution than WVGA, though, as individual pixels are certainly noticeable with that resolution stretched to five inches. The Galaxy Player devices are obvious competitors to Apple’s iPod touch, though they could also serve as good Wi-Fi-only VoIP phones. The access to the Android Market opens up endless possibilities when it comes to apps, and the Player’s low cost of entry could be very attractive to some buyers. The Galaxy Player 4 and 5 will be available to purchase for $229 and $269 respectively on October 16.