The last Samsung handset I looked at was the 8-megapixel toting Pixon. This latest Samsung mobile doesn’t boast such a fancy camera, but it is still somewhat different from the norm, being Samsung’s second stab at an Emporio Armani branded mobile.
It isn’t often I spend precious words describing packaging, but in this case I want to make an exception. Sitting inside the cardboard box is a zipped case which, in Russian doll style, contains a smaller soft pouch whose two pockets have room for the phone, mains charger and all provided accessories.
Right, then, onto the phone itself. It is not a super expensive handset, being free on contracts starting at £20 on Vodafone. So you shouldn’t expect a huge amount from it in terms of specifications.
This is a music-centric phone with generally middle of the road specifications. Quad-band GSM with HSDPA to 3.6Mbps (and thus not able to take advantage of the full 7.2Mbps on offer from Vodafone), a 3-megapixel camera with side-button, front camera for two-way video-calling, FM radio and music player.
Physically, it is a little tall at 114.9mm, though its width and thickness at 47.4mm and 12mm respectively make it an easy hold. At just 90.2g it is no bother to carry. The slightly rubbery backplate assists with grip. The shininess around the screen is countered by a brushed metal look to the flat number pad.
The number pad is responsive, and the keys are nicely spaced. The navigation button is a bit of a star feature. It is raised from its surround and relatively big. Its silver frame adds a little sparkle to proceedings.
The main screen is a delight to look at. Small at 2.2 inches, it is an active matrix OLED (also known as AMOLED). It’s superbly clear, sharp and bright so I had no complaints.
However, if all that sounds like this is a nicely designed phone, there is one thing that lets the side down terribly. The Emporio Armani branding is far too ‘in your face’. The backplate of the phone has the logo emblazoned at a huge size in silver against a black background. The logo is also on the front between the screen and keyboard, and on the left edge of the phone. Overkill, you might think, but it doesn’t stop there.