Anybody remember Samsung’s Ultra range of handsets? Gordon was getting excited about them as far back as February 2007. I’ve seen a fair few handsets in the range, but the Ultra branding has slipped from consciousness somewhat. It is back here, but in a sort of sideways way. This new Samsung mobile has its official numeric designation of S7220 and a snappy name, Lucido. Look on the box and you’ll also see ‘Ultrab’. OK, then, so this is an Ultra handset, but Samsung isn’t shouting about that.
It does, actually, have the look and feel of a member of the Ultra range. The build is quite sleek, the handset is fairly tall and thin, and for a model that’ll cost you less than £150 SIM-free, it does look something of a charmer. It is perhaps a bit on the rangy side at 114mm tall, 46.3mm wide and 11.8mm thick, but it is light at 88g.
The numberpad is very well made. The number keys are large, and raised towards their bottom edge, making it easy to find and hit them accurately at some speed. The navigation button isn’t huge, but its raised surround again makes it comfortable to use. I do, though, have to whinge about the soft menu shortcut keys. These are inside the Call and End keys, butted right up onto the navigation button. I kept hitting Call or End by mistake when going for them. However, I guess over time you’d get used to the positioning.
The screen is not vast – we are talking candybar handset here, after all. At just 2.2in, it isn’t ideal for data-rich activities. This is a shame, as the 320 x 240 pixel AMOLED screen really shines out at you, the automatic screen rotation worked well, and the HSDPA support to 7.2Mbps downloads means web pages loaded with a good turn of speed.
You won’t want to spend too much time on complex Web sites, but when you do need to check the news, Facebook or whatever, you have the facilities to do so. Downloading Opera rather than trying to live with the provided browser will make things easier.
As a standard candybar handset, the Lucido isn’t a touchscreen model, so you’re back in fairly old-fashioned menu-driven land here. There’s nothing particularly special about Samsung’s user interface, though the theme system is quite extravagant. There are three main themes to choose from. Pick one and you can either use it as is or twiddle with it to the nth degree, changing the background, icons, fonts, colours and, well, pretty much everything.
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