Samsung SGH-i600 Review


Towards the end last year I looked at Samsung’s SGH-i320 – the second time I’d reviewed a handset from Samsung running a Windows Mobile operating system. With the SGH-i320, Samsung had produced a robust design and added some rather nice software extras to the Windows Mobile Smartphone standards.

In a nutshell, the same can be said for the SGH-i600. It has a strong specifications list, and some very useful added software. Certainly if you are looking for a connected Windows Mobile Smartphone it would be worth considering.

Similarly, if you need fast data communications in a Smartphone you will want to give it a second glance. This is a 3G handset with a front facing camera for video calling. It supports HSDPA which means if you’re in a coverage area you can get download speeds up to (theoretically) 1.8Mpbs. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are both built-in as well.

A design quirk that I’m not sure I like is that the text ‘hsdpa’ is emblazoned in white on the right edge of the casing while the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth logos are on the left edge. It is an oddly unsubtle thing for Samsung to have done particularly because the SGH-i600 is an Ultra Edition handset, which means in theory it is based around sleek lines and good design.

If you want Windows Mobile 6 you should look elsewhere as the Samsung SGH-i600 runs Windows Mobile 5.0 Smartphone edition. It is not overly well endowed with memory either having 128MB of ROM and 64MB of RAM. You can add more and the format of choice is the fiddly little MicroSD card. The slot is on the upper right edge and has a protective cover.

There is another covered slot on the left edge, this one is shared by the headphones, PC connection cable and mains power adapter. If you like to use your own headphones or hanker for a smartphone which can share the mini USB connector you may use with other devices you’ll be disappointed as the connector is proprietary.

Overall, this is quite a tall smartphone at 113mm. It is 59mm wide and 11.8mm thick and weighs 105g. The screen is relatively small in PDA terms, measuring just 2.3 inches from corner to corner. It is oriented in wide format and reading e-mails and other longer texts is a bit easier than it is on tall format screens. Its 320 x 240 pixels will not be a surprise to anyone familiar with Windows Mobile Smartphones.

Samsung has done a good job with the bank of buttons that sit immediately beneath the screen. These are relatively large and clearly marked, which makes them very easy to hit successfully at speed. The navigation pad is a not such a huge success. It is a little small and I’d have liked it to be raised a bit more to make it easier to use.

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