The Android marketplace has grown exponentially during the last year and this onslaught has been a great deal attributed to the barrage of gadgets from hardware companies worldwide. Samsung has secured itself as one of the essential players in the Android tool marketplace, combating head on with cellphone giants HTC and Motorola. With a slew of marvelous top rate cell merchandise beneath its belt that consists of the excessive-quit Samsung Galaxy S phone and the 7-inch tablet Samsung Galaxy Tab, the Korean electronics monolith crashes the low-give up Android birthday party with a new access-level touchscreen smartphone – the Samsung Galaxy five. This little Galaxy 5 runs Android OS v2.1 (Eclair). Shame that it isn’t always the plenty-predicted Froyo yet however truly a step up from v1.6 (Donut) being presented by using a few 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) device, it packs quite a buffet of functions. Which begs the query – is there this kind of component as “reasonably-priced and cheerful”? Read on.
At first glance, the Galaxy 5 appears strikingly similar to Samsung’s very own Corby, besides for the additional four hardware shortcut buttons at the bottom. It’s tiny sufficient to healthy within the palm of your hand and at a scant 102g, very mild, too. The outside is smooth plastic and overall the telephone does sense cheap. Having stated that, it is pretty best and at ease to maintain and carry around. A three.5mm audio jack is included at the pinnacle as standard, and the aspect left incorporates hardware extent buttons and a miniUSB port. At the lower back is a 2MP digital camera lens sans flash.
To access the microSD slot, you may need to dispose of the again cowl. Be cautious not to break your fingernails. A 2GB microSD card is included as widespread (upgradeable to 16GB).
The screen is a 2.8″ QVGA TFT LCD capacitive touchscreen display presenting 240 x 320 resolution. Possibly the smallest screen on an Android telephone, just like the Sony XPERIA X10 mini. For Android enthusiasts, you will be dissatisfied as there’s no support for multitouch. However, it does include Samsung’s Live wallpapers out of the box. Boo. The quality of the display screen is not a lot to shout about although it is decently sharp and shiny sufficient, and for the price, a step up from resistive touchscreens on a few competing products.
Having a small display screen on a touch device may be annoying particularly in terms of typing at the touchscreen keyboard. In portrait mode, the keyboard feels clearly cramped. Typing the QWERTY in portrait may be blunders-encumbered (perhaps because of my fats arms). This may be remedied in panorama mode, fortuitously, wherein the keys are higher spaced out. Users have a choice to use Swype for text entry that is quite innovative or the 3×4 keyboard. I locate the touchscreen responsive if blunders-ridden with unintentional touches. This isn’t always the fault of the telephone according to use, extra so due to a few UI quirks of the Android OS.
Whether it is building motors or electronics, the Koreans surely recognize the way to play the cost recreation. The Galaxy 5 is no distinctive and is really packed with capabilities. Everything you need on a smartphone is quite a good deal served on the plate. Zippy 600MHz processor powers the device. You get excessive pace 2.5G (850/900/1800/1900 Mhz) & 3G get right of entry to with HSDPA (up to 7.2Mbps), Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g and Bluetooth v2.1, accelerometer, 2MP constant consciousness camera which supports video recording, FM radio, 170MB inner memory with 2GB microSD (up to 16GB supported) and A-GPS.
The cell phone comes bundled with Samsung’s very personal TouchWiz interface and Swype (Samsung’s ultrafast textual content enter feature), no longer forgetting Samsung’s Social Hub software first seen on its larger brother the Galaxy S. It’s additionally armed with an HTML5 browser, an augmented reality app from Layar, assist for MPEG4, H.263 and H.264 video codecs, and Samsung’s AllShare platform which lets in for easy sharing of media across a full range of DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance)-licensed Samsung gadgets like notebooks and TVs. You can even use the Galaxy five as a remote on your Samsung TV or laptop. Nifty.
Before I even was given the smartphone, I subsidized up my contacts/calendars from my preceding cell phone and Mac, then synced to Google. I installed the loose doubleTwist computer app to handle all media syncing on my Mac. DoubleTwist may be very similar to iTunes and even connects to the Android Market. Pay a $1.99 top rate and also you also get wi-fi syncing thru something is known as AirSync. You’ll be capable of no longer handiest download unfastened and paid apps, however additionally podcasts (restrained, but nevertheless) and purchase music from AmazonMP3. Syncing is exceptionally trouble-free with doubleTwist and it even acknowledges iTunes playlists. One of the first matters I did when I got the smartphone was deployed some of my preferred apps – Twitter, Tweetdeck, Facebook, Opera Mini, WhatsApp, Foursquare and Angry Birds through the bundled Android Market app. I also set up Advanced Task Killer to unfastened up memory manually, as I expected the inadequacies of the 170MB base memory. Downloading and set up is seamless and problem-loose.
Having used it as my number one telephone for the beyond four days, I’ve observed the cellphone normally high-quality and intuitive to use, if a bit gradual. The 600Mhz processor copes pretty properly in general. It’s no dash queen for certain, and might from time to time choke and leg whilst switching and walking more than one apps. Typing does have a great lag and scrolling through a long touch list can also take some time too. There had been instances wherein the screen is simply pitch black for 15-20 seconds whilst the processor attempts to address the burden of switching in between apps. Without a devoted GPU, it additionally struggles with a few games along with Angry Birds.
One principal rant could be battery lifestyles. While scouring Android forums I examine of users getting 2-three days battery life. Very ambitious, bold claims. No such luck with mine. With 3G on and the whole thing else quite tons off, the Galaxy’s good for 6-7 hours tops earlier than I want to plug in. I constantly have a cable with me simply in case. I’m now not positive if that is restricted to my review unit, but I’m some distance from impressed. Turning off 3G and running most effective on EDGE gave me barely more mileage. I’ve saved walking apps to a minimal or even tweaked display brightness, historical past facts (syncing) and notifications. Tasks encompass minimum voice calls, tweeting, SMS-ing and messaging through WhatsApp and occasional check on Facebook. A penalty for multitasking? Something to think about.
Apps-wise, the whole lot you need to get started is already pre-installed – Messaging, Calendar, Write and Go (text editor), Maps, Browser, Clock, Email, Music, Gmail, YouTube, Talk (IM), Calculator, Camera, and Market. Setting up domain e-mail and Gmail money owed was pretty painless. Being a completely ‘social’ cell phone, contacts lists are unified with your Facebook, Twitter, Gmail and something not you’ve got legal it to sync to. I do recognize the unified-sync-to-the-cloud-type-thing, and the potential to reveal/no longer show contacts based on your desire.
The 2MP camera is not something to shout approximately. No autofocus, no flash. Teleports me returned to vintage function cellphone days. It’s a first-rate digicam, although, just do not count on award-prevailing pix. Forget about taking pictures in low mild situations, as with most if now not all cameras with similar spec, vulnerable to main noise and distortion.
Audio high-quality is above average, and reassuringly loud. No proceedings approximately name pleasant and reception.
All in all, the Galaxy 5 is a small, light-weight and cheap entry-level Android cellphone. If you may get pass the small, restrictive screen and slightly slow overall performance, it is pretty an amazing creation to Android, in particular, if you’re upgrading from a feature smartphone. It’s one of the cheapest Android phones accessible, characteristic-packed and gives top notch bang-for-greenback. Telcos may want to without problems give this cell phone away without spending a dime, bundled with a settlement. Does “cheap and cheerful” exist? Personally, I’d spend a touch more (good enough, lots extra) for a higher spec-ed Android tool, because I have a tendency to equate reasonably-priced to crap; which I feel, in the long run, dilutes the Android experience and emblem. Am nevertheless no longer absolutely satisfied that cheap is the way to head, and I’ll depart that debate for any other day. For now, the Galaxy 5 will be the closest to “reasonably-priced and joyful” as you could get