We’ve already written numerous articles about the highly anticipated, “new-and-improved” Motorola Droid Bionic that is soon heading to Verizon. Regular readers may recall the Bionic was postponed for ‘enhancements’ and, most recently, gave you a sneak peak at its upcoming specs. Of course, many of you smartphone savvy types are likely asking yourselves two questions: when is it coming, and will it be enough to for you to refocus your techno-lust away from what is looking to be the best smartphone ever made – the Samsung Galaxy S II? Well, I’ve been hard at work putting together a comparison of these two excellent superphones – the Motorola Droid Bionic and the Samsung Galaxy S II. Additionally, we’ve finally uncovered some legitimate leaks that reveal a potential release date for the Motorola Droid Bionic – early July! Looks like things are going to heat up soon, folks. So sit back, relax, and grab some snacks – this is going to be a long one.
4.3 Inches of 4G goodness!
Earlier on, there were questions about whether the Droid Bionic would be released with a Tegra 2 dual-core processor, clocked at 1Ghz to 1.2Ghz, or an OMAP processor from Texas Instruments. The leaks we have uncovered reveal a PowerVR SGX 540 GPU, which matches TI’s OMAP 4330 and 4440 dual-core processors, the latter of course being faster and technically superior. Check out the benchmarks below of the Droid Bionic. You will find it hit an average of around 35.9 frames per second, which is decent, but pales in comparison to the performance of the Samsung Galaxy S II, which hit an average of 59.52 frames per second. To be fair, the SGS II has a lower resolution, and as such, has to work less hard to output. Either way, TI’s OMAP SoC”s are considered powerful, and are great for data processing. However, if you’re a 3D game fanatic, then you’ll likely get more mileage out of the Samsung Galaxy S II.
If you really want to get impressed, look at what some people have been able to clock their SGS II's to. 1.7Ghz? Yes please.
With 4G LTE connectivity, a large, high resolution 4.3 inch qHD SLCD display, a powerful dual core SoC, 1080p HD video capture via an 8MP camera, as well as the latest version of Android – 2.3.4 Gingerbread, the Droid Bionic is sure to be a compelling device. The Samsung Galaxy S II / S2 has its own merits, and is indeed equally, if not moreso compelling. So far, the benchmarks have demonstrated that it is currently the most powerful smartphone in the world. Additionally, it features 16GB/32GB of on-board memory, and has a display that is likely to make your eyeballs unable to turn away, with amazing viewing angles. With an 8MP camera, a 2MP front facer’, its incredible Super AMOLED Plus 4.3 inch display, and excellent battery life, we have to say we just love the SGS II for so many reasons. It’s going to be a difficult call for consumers this year, but we have a feeling that Samsung has created something here that is likely to sell past 10 million units in the U.S. alone – without so much as lifting a finger.
Motorola Droid Bionic's 4.3 Inch Super LCD with qHD resolution vs the Samsung Galaxy S II's incredibly vibrant Super AMOLED Plus Display at a lower 800x480 resolution
The Droid Bionic caught quite a few people off guard at this year’s CES. Firstly, it had a massive 4.3 inch screen, at a very respectable 960×540 qHD resolution – the largest and highest resolution of any Android phone at that time. Of course, the qHD space has become a bit more competitive recently, with newcomers like the HTC Sensation and HTC EVO 3D coming to the qHD party. Still, these displays are basically higher resolution LCD panels, and do a marvelous job of displaying text, and arguably, don’t have the same issues with regards to aliasing in the browser, so things like text and high resolution images will always look great and display in spectacular fashion. The high resolution is the real advantage here for the upcoming Droid Bionic, and as we know, is getting really close to the ‘Retina’ display territory of the iPhone 4.
This is the design and look of the old Motorola Droid Bionic revealed at CES 2011
The likely drawback to these qHD LCDs are that they still rely on LCD technology, but with an increased resolution. The black levels, while good in most situations, have a difficult time coming through when the backlight on the LCD is pumped up to compensate for bright environments, like being outside, or in a brightly lit room. This is when people typically start to notice that blacks start to take on a blue-ish hue. Viewing angles on standard LCD;s vary from pretty good to noticeably bad. Still, looking at the Motorola Atrix, we have to say we are impressed with the viewing angles, and it’s likely that Motorola sourced the same display manufacturer for the newly revamped 4.3 inch screen of the Motorola Droid Bionic. Motorola has developed a good reputation for choosing great panels that offer excellent off ff-axis viewing, so there’s less of a concern here.
Ultimately, the display is one of the most important components that goes into any mobile device, and we have no doubt that the display of the soon to come Motorola Droid Bionic will be awesome. At the same time, I have yet to discover a person that isn’t amazed by a SUPER AMOLED Plus display. More on that below.
Super AMOLED Plus is the latest iteration of AMOLED (Active Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diode) and really, brings all the best things about its predecessor, and tackles its most significant problem. The new display we’ve already witnessed on the Samsung Galaxy S II is nothing short of absolutely stunning; Jaw dropping, in fact. Soon, come the beginning of July, you’ll get a chance to see for yourself.
Super AMOLED Plus panels offer best-in-industry black levels, contrast, vibrant colors, and some amazingly sharp images thanks to the new sub pixel elements. Sunlight readability, while excellent, still isn’t quite where we’d like it to be, but represents a marked improvement. Additionally, Super AMOLED Plus displays are capable of putting out a much fuller color gamut, which is sure to delight anyone with that can see. The newer manufacturing processes employed by Samsung also make the screen 14% thinner, enabling the Samsung Galaxy S II to be one of the thinnest phones in the world. Slimmer devices are always good, and potentially result in bigger batteries. Everyone – including myself– that has seen it for themselves can’t stop talking about how impressed they are with the latest Super AMOLED Plus from Samsung.
No matter what phone you have your heart set on in the next few months, it will probably have a great display. It’s exciting to see Motorola taking the next step and bumping up the resolution for Android phones. We really like AMOLED technology, and Samsung’s improvements in their Super AMOLED Plus panels are intriguing as well. If you like Motorola’s build quality, don’t feel left out with SLCD. These are certainly capable screens, and are a proven technology now. What kind of screen has you most interested?
We’ve got to say that Motorola’s UI is definitely improving in terms of looks. That being said, it’s difficult to say if people will be willing to make the mistake of buying a phone with a locked bootloader again. Additionally, it matters not what we say, because the truth of the matter is quite simple: most people don’t care, and don’t know about such things. ‘Unlockability’ is not the first thing on the mind of the average consumer, and the carriers know this. I already wrote extensively about why rooting scares Google, and now, we have Virgin Mobile going on the public record, saying that people who use their (borrowed) network aren’t allowed to root the devices they own.
So where does this bring us to today, with regard to the upcoming Motorola Droid Bionic and the Samsung Galaxy S II? Well, we know first off that Motorola has promised unlocked bootloaders in the future, and has given us a time frame of “late 2011”. That being said, the latest phone debuted from the big M, the Motorola Photon, comes locked down like Fort Knox. On the other hand, we know that Samsung sent a whole batch of Galaxy S II’s to the Cyanogenmod team so they could start developing ROMs immediately, which represents a bold move for a company as public as Samsung, and bodes well for all us, most certainly.
Who would have thought?
Ultimately, it’s all about dollars and cents folks. In all likelihood, the Motorola Droid Bionic will feature a locked bootloader, and it will be very interesting to see what Samsung does with their device. If their actions are any indicator, then the Samsung Galaxy S II will come unlocked. Unfortunately it’s too early to say. Remember, the carriers are the biggest purchasers of phones in the world, and as such, get to dictate the terms. Motorola Mobility, as it stands, is not in a position to negotiate financially, if you’ve paid attention to their financials, and as such, will likely acquiesce to the desires of their biggest customers. Samsung, on the other hand is in a much stronger position, and holds the crown of ‘most popular Android smartphone of 2010 – the original Samsung Galaxy S. It knows that it has made an amazing piece of technology, and it knows that people want it bad. Even from reading the comments on our site and the comments on other prominent technology sites, it seems that people are even willing to change carriers to get their hands on the Samsung Galaxy S II, so it makes for an interesting scenario, and hopefully one that will pan out with us – the users and consumers – being the beneficiaries.
Sample shot taken by the Samsung Galaxy S II
The Samsung Galaxy S II has an excellent camera, and the Motorola Droid Bionic does too. So close are they in fact that we think they could potentially be sourced from the same component manufacturer. Considering that both are 1080p capable, and have LED flashes, there’s no reason to recommend one over the other. Still, time will tell which one captures the shots that really matter – night time shots.
This was taken by the Motorola Droid X2, but according to our sources, has the same image sensor as the upcoming Motorola Droid Bionic
The Motorola Droid Bionic will have the same Webtop functionality of the Motorola Atrix
Looks pretty close right? Poor consumers, blessed with such incredible technology.
There’s no doubt about it – the Bionic has to be one of the most highly anticipated Verizon phones to date. Unfortunately, we can almost guarantee that will have a locked bootloader, Moto-(whatever-they-want-to-call-it), and an inferior, PenTile Matrix based, Super LCD display, albeit with a higher resolution. Still, it’s almost a sure thing it will receive LTE connectivity, and will offer blazing fast mobile data speeds as such. On the other hand, the Galaxy S II will feature a slightly smaller, but better, more vibrant Super AMOLED Plus display. Additionally, it will most likely come with an unlocked bootloader, but strangely, may not come with a 4G LTE radio. Considering that Verizon hasn’t ironed out all the kinks in their 4G LTE network quite yet, perhaps it could be a blessing in disguise.
Either way, you’re the boss of you, and so at this stage, it’s a toss up between these two uber-phones. Both are amazing devices – make no mistake. At this stage, we’re just nit-picking, but that’s something we like to think we do well. Is the lack of 4G LTE a deal-breaker for you? Or, are the culmination of an unlocked bootloader, an amazing display, and an incredibly powerful processor too much to pass up? Let us know guys! As I always say, you would be surprised at how much influence your comments can actually have. I know for a fact that all the major manufacturers do a ton of market research before, during, and after phones are released to better plan their future devices. So let them and us know! What’s it going to be? The Samsung Galaxy S II or the newly revamped Motorola Droid Bionic? Thanks for checking out Android Authority!
Which phone is better?
Via: NenaMark (Benchmarks) & Droid-Life
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I am torn between which to choose. I will be anxious to see “true” quandrant scores when Galaxy S2 is in U.S. and when Droid Bionic is actually tested on the Verizon 4G. Speed is very important to me. That and battery life will be the deciding factors. I won’t buy either until I see the comparisons side by side.
I say buy American and forget the Korean Apple copycat. You will get better Android updates, better support and better build quality. Also, did I mention Samsung is one of the worst Apple copycats out there?
I agree with 8paq 100%!!! Truth always gets negative comments.
I live in the states and one of the reasons our economy is the shits because we don’t support American companies ! Now, if bunch of teenagers who don’t have the first clue about economy don’t understand this, they will once their parents are out of work and they cannot afford their fancy phones any longer! Then, they eventually will understand in 20-30 years!!! But, I don’t blame them, I was one of those teenagers once and I thought I know it all!!! Little did I know.
What? Copycat? Please explain me how it’s a copycat?. Like for real. Just because has one button in the middle? You fail horribly. Your just some troll who say’s nothing more then Pizz.
First off – This breakdown kicks some serious ass. Second of all – the Galaxy S II has HSPA+ connectivity, so just buy it unlocked, and go to whatever carrier you want. It will get bad ass download speeds. The hardware is so ridiculous, and I know Cynaogen is going to make the device GOD LIKE.
The Droid BIonic is a massive phone, and will be pretty good, but NO PHONE has ANYTHING that can EVEN TOUCH the SAMSUNG GALAXY S II.
Thank you Android Authority! Nobody else covered this yet, and it’s the toughest call we smartphone addicts have gotta make this year.
SGS II FTW
Unlocked bootloader is an upcoming important factor to me and great battery life has to be one of the biggest deal breakers for me.. LTE I can do without as I’m not sure if I will get LTE close enough to me for me able to use. I’m leaning more towards the SGS2
Tough to get past the low res and samsung’s poor android update reputation.
I want a nexus but I wonder if phone manufacturers are actually working against giving google the latest hardware in an effort to keep their phones a step or two ahead of google.
The wife has a samsung device now and its not yet a year old and i must say…it sucks. i do not think we will go back to that brand name for a while
Haa….. I’m not a fan of either… But i’m still saying that.. GAlaxy s II IS OVERRATED
WHAT’S THE CRAP OF BEING NOT A 4G PHONE……
Samsung has proven that, it can play with the feelings of their buyer… Huh….
They were claming about the galaxy tab 10.1, equiped with an 8 mp camera….
But when the folks get… They realize.. It’s a 3 mp
does a locked bootloader affect a great extent ………
Who’s the moron wanna mess with the original software & hardware by killing it’s warrenty…..
What’s the heck display….
Put the same theme on both… Then compare……….
Hey guys… Always choose the bigger one….. That’ll keep u longer with the device….. See ya..
Dude, if you are going to call out anyone on intelligence and do so while using a complete and utter lack of grammar and complete thoughts, you are doing yourself a disservice.
Why don’t we know the connectivity of SGS II ? It’s out already for a long time I owe one and so i didn’t find anyhting that would tell me i got a nfc chip.
What’s bout the GPU OF BIONIC
The possible lack of an LTE radio in the Samsung Galaxy SII is the ONLY reason I am considering the Bionic.
Similar situation here. If the S2 has LTE then its an easy decision but because it likely doesn’t I might end up getting the Bionic.
Bionic’s gonna be the best Android phone…
Coz it..comes with a tough hardware, 4G
& A MASSIVE 4.5 INCH SCREEN……. Wow…
It seems partly tablet & partly smart phone.. Lol
Both look good, but I WANT MY QWERTY!!!
No need to be confused….. If internet speed is the matter…. Then go with the Bionic…
We can say bionic can do the same function as samsung galaxy s II…
But can’t say the vice versa……
Why not to choose a device that comes with all features
Y’all are idiots
I almost bought a Droid Charge. Good thing the Bionic is comming out. After reading many articles this was the best one. Thanks!
Thanks for the kind words! Worked very hard on this one. Definitely – hold out for the Bionic or the Galaxy S II. They are as good as it gets, next to the HTC Sensation and HTC EVO 3D.
You lucky man.
They gotta get the samsung galaxy s II FOR UNLOCKED BOOTLOADER
but from the article… It’s clear that It hasn’t been confirmed… Yet….
ha ha ha
lol lol lol
I own a Droid X. Its locked boot loader and having to endure the MotoBlur junk for as long as I had before decent ROMs changed things made me vow never to go locked boot loader again.
So based on that alone, I’d be going Samsung Galaxy S2.
Since I’ll be stuck with this phone for two years (darn Verizon for getting rid of the one year contract option), I do have some concern if the Galaxy S2 turns out not to support 4G, but, then again, I have no idea if 4G is going to be that big of a deal in over the next two years.
I believe you got AMOLED wrong. It stands for “Active Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diode” and not “Active Matrix Oxygen Liquid Electric Diode” (??) as you mentioned. It started with Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs), then Organic Light Emitting Diodes (OLEDs), AMOLED (on phones like the Nexus One and HTC Desire), Super AMOLED (on the original Galaxy S) and now Super AMOLED Plus.
Thanks so much. So many late nights of writing, reading, and breathing Android… Thanks for the correction, i’ll fix it right now. Also, thanks for checking out our site!
I hate when two devices are being reviewed(Head 2 head) and the conclusion read something like this. “Its up to u consumer’s”, “personal preference”… It’s clear who the winner is so just go ahead and say it. You can’t please everyone, just do ur part and leave the rest to readers. Don’t get me wrong, it’s an awesome review but not satisfactory in the sense that u leave reader still wondering…
If u ask me, I think Galaxy S II is a clear winner in this battle. Why?
*Super Amoled+ display
*1.2Ghz Exynos Soc with Mali 400MP GPU(dual)
* Thinness: 8.49 mm thin
Am i missing anything else?
because at the end of the day, you’re going to buy what you want, and if a single comparison changes your mind, you weren’t real sure to begin with.
yeah, that’s why I read the article though, I am unsure.
4G LTE is the deal winner
Tough call dude. SII does not have a 1080p monitor. Its also a smaller screen. The bionic has a 1.2Ghz(dual) like the SII. The question is do you want an unlocked phone that you can root? We have to just wait and see if the Bionic is unlocked.
Almost forgot, another source says that the phone has been delayed again to Sep 3 to allow a 3D upgrade like the Evo 3D.
Yah u missed that its not going to have the latest operating system the front facing camera can’t record like the bionics can and the battery isbetter on the bionic the scrren is the only thing samsung has that’s awsome other then that there the same thing
I will take the one that comes out first. I am just tired of waiting.
Well said sir,well said…moto fan though
I AM LEANING TOWARDS THE 4G FROM VERISION…LEAVING TMOBILE AFTER MANY YEARS
Does anyone know for sure if the Motorola bionic has an FM radio? That will be the deciding factor for me and I don’t know if I should wait or just get the Samsung S2 on the first day.
@Marcia – The Droid Market has a fine radio app called Tune-In.
That shouldn’t be your deciding factor, imo.
4G LTE is a MUST for me. Everything the android operating system does relies on data from the internet. We don’t have 4G yet, so I will wait for both phones to be released and see the final specs and comparisons to decide.
If these specs on the Bionic are accurate, I think I am sold on it. I have been using the GS2 for a while for testing purposes, and it is “ALL THAT” for everything *except* GPS. The GPS on the galaxy S2 is atrocious. My 20mo-old moto droid locks much faster and reaches 5-10x better accuracy than the GS2 (not exaggerating here, really).
Moto has been coming out with so many phones that lack gyros, so I am glad to see mention of gyros in the specs. This is the first, right? I hope it works well – for augmented reality apps the gyros are essential, so it’s great to see them! And, glad to see the RAM finally pushed up to where it should be – a full gig!
Just got my S2 here in Canada and it is running on a 4G network and it takes my breath away it is so fast and the display is better then the Iphone4. I just sold my Iphone4 this morning I am glad it is gone. This S2 is the best phone I have ever owned. Just for opticsfun the gps locks on withen 6 meters of the phone this is the most accurate of any phone. The Bionic is a good phone but lacks in so many areas as the specs are now. I decided that 6 million people in the world can’t be wrong so i bought the S2 and I am happy I did. ( 6 million Samsung S2 units sold world wide withen 3 months.)
the s2 is great….
im using it n its the best uptodate…
For a while now I’ve only been talking of the GS II but in a strange twist of fate I’m leaning more towards the Bionic. I’m in love with the new design. I’ve always wanted a Droid X and when Big Red dropped the X2 without an LTE radio I was broken. This will be my Droid X on steroids. I want to have some feeling of uniqueness. The Bionic will most likely be a VZW exclusive whereas the GS II will be released cross the board. Icing on the cake? …the Droid branding.
I want whichever phone comes out first with wireless charging. I heard rumours this may be the case for the Droid though…
Hi Darcy and http://www.androidauthority.com, Thank You for the article! I’ve shared it on the Computer Accessories, Hardware, Software – India http://www.facebook.com/pages/Computer-Accessories-Hardware-Software-India/133086803441061 Facebook page.
Which ever one is smaller is the one I am getting. I’m looking for a smartphone not a freakin mini-tablet!
agree with T-Rez. smartphones are getting prohibitive to comfortably pocket. 4″ screen should be just about right, if that. anything more is just getting bulky. galaxy s2 was going to be my pick, with its extreme thinness, but now that it’s not going to be on Verizon anymore…. I don’t know… I just hope the Bionic is not as thick as it seems
Very helpful. Now that the Samsung is out of course and is 4G, that comparible is of no concern. I noticed you didn’t mention anything about the front facing camera (at least in laymen’s terms). I heard the Bionic will have one and the Samsung doesn’t? Is that right?
I own the Galaxy S2 and itt does have a 2MP front facing camera.
Really couldnt be happier with my Droid X, so Motorola has made me a fan. But the Galaxy just sounds too tempting. I am going to figure it out a little later on once I can actually hold the phones in my hand.
I’m still astounded by my Droid x, and I’m not highly motivated to upgrade to either, but I like knowing what’s happening out there. Thanks for the review! Having said that, I really like the service verizon sells me so I wouldn’t change carriers. I don’t live in an area that’s likely to see 4g in the near future and I don’t know anything about a locked boot loader. The “X”is my first smart phone and it’s performed flawlessly, so it would take a real deal breaker for me to abandon motorola. Love to see the competition.
Is Verizon ever going to get a phone with a really big screen? By really big I mean 4.5 inches +. It seems like every phone they offer is 4.3 and under. These new phones coming out like the HTC One X & Samsung Note look awesome. I wish VZ would get on the gargantuan phone bandwagon.