Galaxy S 2 initial impressions

It's a big honkin' phone.

I knew that. I saw the specs. I saw them in the store. Until I started holding it my hand and carrying it around it wasn't something I really appreciated.

Because of the size, I often end up inadvertently activating things when the palm of my hand touches the screen. Using it two-handed seems to be the best way to use it and avoiding messing things up.

So far I've just been getting everything set up: getting apps installed/reinstalled, filling the screens with app shortcuts and widgets and getting things configured.

For some reason Samsung decided not to build the GS2 with a notification LED, which is too bad. I found it very useful on my Cliq.

The only way to wake up the phone seems to be with the power/lock button.

Motion activation features are kind of neat. Flip the phone over to mute incoming calls/music, tilt to zoom.

Played a little bit with voice recognition. Seems to work pretty well so far. 100% accuracy, although I've only tried one short sentence. Still, it works. Was never able to use it on my Cliq due to microphone issues.

T-Mobile does include a lot of bloatware, which is unfortunate. Some of it is useful, but there are a few that are of pretty questionable value.

Not sure how battery life is yet. I was tempted by the case with built-in 1500 mAh battery (to supplement the 1850 mAh battery the GS2 comes with), but I had already ordered a spare battery and charger so I figured there wasn't much point. Like the Cliq, I'm not terribly optimistic.

Visibility of the screen is pretty good in full sunlight. I was pleasantly surprised about that.

Haven't spent any time playing with the camera yet. Planning to spend the weekend doing that.

The GS2 wakes up and notifies you when it's fully charged. Not sure I see the point of that, but ok.

The internal 16 GB is set up as three partitions. There's about 2GB for system storage (apps and such), 11.25 GB as USB storage (acts like a built-in SD card mounted at /mnt/sdcard) and the rest presumably for the OS. If you add in a microSD card, it shows up in the file system mounted at /mnt/sdcard/external_sd. It confused me a little when I went to look for stuff on the SD card and didn't find it where I expected. There's 784 MB of RAM used for running things.

Really liking the phone so far. Way better than the Cliq. It's fast, responsive and has a gorgeous screen. The bluish tint takes a bit of getting used to though.