79

Anything this media player can do, your smartphone can do better

79

While there isn't much wrong with the Galaxy Player 4.2, we feel Samsung could have tried harder. One hundred percent of the functionality here is available in any recent smartphone. Therefore, for this device to shine, its core features should be outstanding. They're not. If the music player had been exceptional, or the screen wonderfully crisp, then we could see how this might stand alone as a media player. But Samsung chose not to do any of those things, and instead turned out something that sadly feels like the spare parts left over from various phones. Given that the 8GB model stands shoulder to shoulder with the iPod touch in terms of price (the latter being older, granted), you would have thought there'd be a few additional features to help recommend it. As it happens, it really comes down to whether you prefer Android, want GPS and how much you care about expandable storage.

Unlike dedicated music players, even those offering basic video playback, the Galaxy Player has two thorns in its side. Firstly, smartphones will make this a superfluous purchase for most, and secondly, there's the competition. Not only from Apple, but also companies like Cowon, who have the advantage of specializing in this area. But perhaps the most frustrating thing of all is that it's not even terrible. It does everything just fine –- certainly for a mainstream user –- and that's almost worse than if it were just plain bad. Enough time and effort went into making it perform to this level. If only Samsung could have tweaked something, or thrown in a killer feature, then it could have a corner of the market to call its own. As it stands, however, it'll blend in with its Galaxy Player colleagues, doing very well at not offending you. We suggested earlier that this device was heir to Samsung's PMP throne, but the truth is the market has become more of a democratic republic than a monarchy.

Critic reviews

7.1
10 reviews
  • Sound quality
    8.2
  • Video quality
    7.0
  • Ease of use
    7.0
  • Portability
    8.8
  • Battery life
    7.8
  • Media support
    9.0
  • Capacity
    5.2

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User reviews

8.0
2 reviews
7.0
Engadget Jun 20, 2012

100 percent of the functionality of this device is available in any recent smartphone. Therefore, for this device to shine, it really should smack its core features. It doesn't.

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8.0
PC World Jun 6, 2012

The Galaxy Player 4.2 is a good all-around performer with a nice big screen, strong audio and video performance, solid gaming options, and passable rear- and front-facing cameras.

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7.0
CNET May 31, 2012

The bottom line: When it comes to competing with Apple's iPod Touch media player, the Galaxy Player 4.2 is Samsung's best effort yet, but it's still playing catch-up.

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7.0
PC Mag Jun 12, 2012

A viable Apple iPod touch alternative, the Samsung Galaxy Player 4.2 is a great way to run Android apps without buying a smartphone.

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7.0
Laptop Magazine Jul 9, 2012

We still prefer the iPod touch for its sharper screen, more premium design and superior app selection. But if you're looking for an Android-powered alternative with better sound, the Galaxy Player 4.2 is a worthy alternative.

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9.0
SlashGear May 28, 2012

If I had to choose one Galaxy Player from the whole lineup released or announced thus far to work with, this would be it... Here at $199 this may well be the best deal on the mobile market if you’re not in the market for a tablet-sized device.

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7.0
TrustedReviews Jun 5, 2012

It has better speakers than most phones, an attractive design, great audio and video support plus access to plenty of Google goodies. These days you can get an Android phone with similar specs for the same money and its video skills are held back a bit by the single-core 1GHz processor.

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7.0
TechRadar Jul 31, 2012

For those squarely in the niche, the Samsung Galaxy Player 4.2 is a capable media player, offering a decent mix of style and expandability at a competitive price – particularly for users not tied into the iTunes ecosystem.

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6.0
T3 Jul 6, 2012

Furthermore, the device fails to offer users any reason to opt for it instead of saving pocket space and a not inconsiderable sum of money and simply utilise the music player features on their latest high-end smartphone.

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5.0
phoneArena May 30, 2012

We definitely appreciate the larger display and better build quality of the Galaxy Player 4.2. In the end, though, it’s still lacking the value that’s found with some of the sub-$200 priced prepaid Android smartphones out there – so yeah, you’d better invest in one instead.

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8.0
jpatrick408 jpatrick408

I love the fact that the Galaxy Player 4.2 plays lossless audio codecs. It doesn't have the strongest processor in the world, but it does what it needs and does it without failing. If want something that's mainly used only for playing audio files and don't want to pay the price of a iPod Touch,...

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