The screen embedded in the front fascia is superb. It isn’t vast – I measured it at 2.2 inches corner to corner. But its 320 x 240 pixels and delivers its 16 million colours with great clarity. Samsung really does know how to get mobile phone screens spot on.
And while we are here, let’s mention one of the software tweaks. The default wallpaper on my device showed an image of the Houses of Parliament. It was adorned with animated birdlife in the sky and at night the sky turned darker and darker blue to emulate realtime. I said it was frivolous, but it is high quality just the same.
There is no lip to use to slide top and bottom sections of this phone apart, but in this case its absence is not a problem. The slider mechanism itself is nicely spring loaded and you don’t need much of a push or pull with the thumb to get it to jump into action.
Open the slider and the numberpad is revealed. Its keys are responsive and I had no problems number dialling. Frivolity number two: as you dial a number the digits appear on screen as if written by a fountain pen on paper, complete with scratchy nib sounds.
One of the key selling points of this phone is its 5-megapixel camera. The last time I saw one of these in a mobile was Nokia’s N95, and the only other was reviewed at the tail end of last year – LG’s KG920, so 5-megapixel phone number three has been a long time coming.
The lens and its tiny LED flash are hidden away under the back of the casing when the phone is closed to afford them protection. There is a macro mode and autofocus. You can fiddle with the ISO settings which range from 100 to 800 or leave the camera to decide what to do automatically, which is what I did.
The coloured dish, photographed under normal household lighting is clear and sharp. Outdoor shots were also rather good. The shallots were photographed using the macro mode, with the lens about 10cm from the subject and the shot is pretty sharp. The apple is another macro mode photo and is pretty good too.