Samsung Galaxy five: The Definitive Review

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Overview/Intro

The Android market has grown exponentially during the last 12 months, and this onslaught has been an awful lot attributed to the barrage of devices from hardware providers internationally. Samsung has secured itself as one of the foremost players within the Android device marketplace, battling head-on with phone giants HTC and Motorola. With a slew of superb top rate cellular merchandise below its belt that includes the high-quit Samsung Galaxy S phone and the 7-inch pill Samsung Galaxy Tab, the Korean electronics monolith crashes the low-quit Android birthday party with a brand new access-level touchscreen phone – the Samsung Galaxy 5. This little Galaxy five runs Android OS v2.1 (Eclair). Shame that it isn’t always the whole lot-expected Froyo but truly a step up from v1.6 (Donut) provided by using some available in the marketplace. This puts it head-on with the Motorola Citrus, Sony XPERIA X8/X10, LG GT540 Optimus, and HTC Tattoo. For a sub-USD200 (SRP: RM699) tool, it packs quite a buffet of capabilities. This begs the question – is there such a component as “reasonably-priced and joyful”? Read on.

At first glance, the Galaxy five seems strikingly much like Samsung’s own Corby, except for the extra four hardware shortcut buttons at the lowest. It’s tiny enough to match within the palm of your hand and at a scant 102g, very mild, too. The exterior is sleek plastic, and universal the smartphone does sense reasonably-priced. Having said that, it is quite nice and cozy to hold and convey around. A 3.5mm audio jack is integrated at the pinnacle as general, and the side left contains hardware extent buttons and a mini USB port. At the lower back is a 2MP camera lens sans flash.

Samsung Galaxy five

To get entry to the MicroSD slot, you will want to get rid of the back cover. Be cautious no longer about breaking your fingernails. A 2GB microSD card is covered as preferred (upgradeable to 16GB).

Display

The display screen is a 2.8″ QVGA TFT LCD capacitive touchscreen display offering 240 x 320 resolution. Possibly the smallest display on an Android phone, like the Sony XPERIA X10 mini. For Android fans, you’ll be disappointed as there may be no guide for multitouch. However, it does include Samsung’s Live wallpapers out of the container. Boo. The display’s quality is not much to shout about, although it is decently sharp and brilliant enough, and for the fee, a step up from resistive touchscreens on some competing products.

Having a small display screen on a hint tool may be demanding, particularly on the subject of typing on the touchscreen keyboard. In portrait mode, the keyboard feels, without a doubt, cramped. Typing the QWERTY in portrait may be mistakes-laden (perhaps because of my fat arms). This may be remedied in landscape mode, fortuitously, where the keys are higher spaced out. Users can choose to use Swype for textual content access, which’s pretty innovative, or the 3×4 keyboard. I locate the touchscreen responsive if blunders-ridden with unintended touches. This is not the telephone’s fault consistent with se, more so due to some UI quirks of the Android OS.

Features

Whether it is constructing automobiles or electronics, the Koreans clearly know how to play the price game. The Galaxy five is no extraordinary and is absolutely packed with features. Everything you want in a cell phone is pretty a great deal served at the plate. Zippy 600MHz processor powers the tool. You get excessive speed 2.5G (850/900/1800/1900 Mhz) & 3G get admission to HSDPA (up to 7.2Mbps), Wi-Fi 802. Eleven b/g and Bluetooth v2.1, accelerometer, 2MP constant focus digicam which supports video recording, FM radio, 170MB inner memory with 2GB microSD (as much as 16GB supported), and A-GPS.

The phone comes bundled with Samsung’s very very own TouchWiz interface and Swype (Samsung’s ultrafast text enter feature), not forgetting Samsung’s Social Hub application first seen on its larger brother, the Galaxy S. It’s additionally armed with an HTML5 browser, an augmented fact app from Layar, a guide for MPEG4, H.263 and H.264 video formats, and Samsung’s AllShare platform which permits for clean sharing of media across a full variety of DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance)-certified Samsung devices like notebooks and TVs. You may even use the Galaxy five as a faraway on your Samsung TV or computer. Nifty.

Performance

Before I was given the phone, I subsidized up my contacts/calendars from my preceding cell phone and Mac, then synced to Google. I installed the free double twist laptop app to deal with all media syncing on my Mac. DoubleTwist may be very just like iTunes or even connects to the Android Market. Pay a $1.Ninety-nine top class, and you additionally get wireless syncing via something called AirSync. You’ll be capable of now not simplest download unfastened and paid apps, however also podcasts (restrained, but) and buy tracks from AmazonMP3. Syncing is surprisingly hassle-unfastened with the double twist, and it even acknowledges iTunes playlists. One of the first matters I did after I got the smartphone was installing many of my favorite apps – Twitter, Tweetdeck, Facebook, Opera Mini, WhatsApp, Foursquare, and Angry Birds thru the bundled Android Market app. I also installed Advanced Task Killer to lose up memory manually, as I expected the 170MB base reminiscence’s inadequacies. Downloading and installation are seamless and hassle-unfastened.

Having used it as my primary phone for the past four days, I’ve discovered the telephone generally satisfactory and intuitive to apply, if a bit sluggish. The 600Mhz processor copes pretty well in preferred. It’s no sprint queen for sure and may now and then choke and lag when switching and strolling more than one apps. Typing does have a significant lag, and scrolling through a long touch listing can also take some time. There had been times where the display is pitch black for 15-20 seconds even as the processor attempts to address the weight of switching in between apps. Without a committed GPU, it also struggles with some games, which include Angry Birds.

One important rant could be battery existence. While scouring Android forums, I examine customers getting three days of battery life. Very bold, bold claims. No such luck with mine. With 3G on and the entirety else pretty an awful lot off, the Galaxy’s excellent for six-7 hours tops before I need to plugin. I constantly have a cable with me just in case. I’m now unsure if this is limited to my review unit, but I’m a long way from impressed. Turning off 3G and walking only on EDGE gave me barely greater mileage. I’ve saved strolling apps to a minimum or even tweaked display brightness, heritage records (syncing), and notifications. Tasks include minimum voice calls, tweeting, SMS-ing, and messaging thru WhatsApp and occasional test on Facebook. A penalty for multitasking? Something to reflect on consideration on.

Apps-smart, the whole thing you need to get began is already pre-hooked up – Messaging, Calendar, Write and Go (textual content editor), Maps, Browser, Clock, Email, Music, Gmail, YouTube, Talk (IM), Calculator, Camera, and Market. Setting up domain email and Gmail debts were quite painless. Being a completely ‘social’ phone, contacts lists are unified along with your Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, and something no longer you’ve legal it to sync to. I do respect the unified-sync-to-the-cloud-kind-aspect and the ability to show/now not show contacts based totally on your desire.

The 2MP camera is not whatever to shout approximately. No autofocus, no flash. Teleports me again to old function phone days. It’s a respectable digicam, even though, do not assume award-prevailing images. Forget approximately capturing in low light conditions, as with most if not all cameras with the comparable spec, at risk of predominant noise and distortion. Audio excellent is above average, and reassuringly loud—no complaints about call quality and reception.

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Summary

All in all, the Galaxy 5 is a small, lightweight, and reasonably-priced access-level Android telephone. If you may get skip the small, restrictive display screen and slightly gradual overall performance, it is quite an awesome introduction to Android, particularly if you’re upgrading from a feature smartphone. It’s one of the most inexpensive Android telephones obtainable, characteristic-packed, and gives extraordinary bang-for-greenback. Telcos ought to effortlessly provide this phone away without spending a dime, bundled with an agreement. Does “cheap and cheerful” exist? Personally, I’d spend a little greater (good enough, a lot extra) for a better spec-ed Android tool because I tend to equate cheap to crap, which I sense, in the end, dilutes the Android enjoy and emblem. I am still not completely satisfied that reasonably-priced is the manner to head, and I’ll go away that discussion for another day. For now, the Galaxy 5 may be the nearest to “reasonably-priced and joyful” as you can get.