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VIDEOVIEW: Samsung GT-I7500 Galaxy Software Hands-on
Posted by Arne Hess - on Thursday, 04.06.09 - 13:44:44 CET under 08 - Reviews - Viewed 30536x
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Following the previous Samsung Galaxy hardware hands-on videoview, this videoview follows-up with a software hands-on of Samsung's upcoming Android smartphone. Unlike the T-Mobile G1 (aka HTC Dream) and the Vodafone HTC Magic, the Samsung Galaxy isn't a Google experience phone which means Samsung had the flexibility to customize the Android interface the way it like and spice it up with additional applications. However, Samsung decided to keep the Android 1.5 Cupcake platform as it is and hasn't modified or removed anything dramatic. This means that the homescreen looks like a typical Android smartphone and the I7500 features the same Google mobile services as a Google experience phone.

The Google mobile services includes Gmail/Google Mail, Google Search, Google Maps including Latitude, Google Talk, Android Market as well as Google's state-of-the-art Apple WebKit-based web browser. Since the Samsung Galaxy is based on Google's latest Android OS, code-named "Cupcake", the I7500 also features such Cupcake enhancements like the soft input panel (aka onscreen keyboard) which was necessary to wait for since the Samsung Galaxy doesn't features a slide-out hardware keyboard as the HTC Dream did.

The Galaxy hardware plays nicely with the above mentioned Google mobile apps as well as with most programs from the Android Market. The inbuilt GPS receiver works quite good with Google Maps Mobile - now where Samsung made some last minute adjustments on the hardware - as well as the digital compass does. And all applications, except the homescreen, can be used landscape as well, thanks to the auto-rotating G-sensor.
The only disappointment is the camera application. Samsung is well known for its great mobile phone camera user interfaces but unfortunately it was decided to use the original Android camera UI. That one is pretty basic and doesn't gives the photographer too much control.

Altogether, the Samsung GT-I7500 is a pretty complete package and definitely at the same level to other available Android smartphones. While feature-wise it's better than all the others, Cupcake - as it is available today - doesn't unveil all the hardware power yet and hopefully Samsung will start deeper customization of Android soon to get the most out of the hardware/software combination.

Cheers ~ Arne

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Posted by O2 Customer on 05.06.09 - 09:40:26

Great videos Arne, thanks a lot. Now I await the O2 launch. Which Internet Pack are you using? I think I will the the O2O but I'm not sure which Internet Pack is the right one for me.

Posted by Arne Hess on 05.06.09 - 10:37:21

Personally I'm using the Internet Pack L with 5 GB inclusive data but I'm also using it with my Notebooks and Netbooks. Therefore the Internet Pack M with 200 MB inclusive data should be good enough if you are using it with the Galaxy only. On the other hand, if you want to stream a lot of YouTube on the Galaxy, 200 MB might be not enough. It really depends on what you want to do with the device.

Posted by kanni on 06.06.09 - 01:39:22

Please correct me if i'm wrong, but i think the Internet Pack condition changed within the release of the new o2o plan, at least in Germany. The internet pack m now is a Flatrate with limit speed after the first 200 or 300 MB traffic. Don't exactly know the exact amount. Check the O2 website.


Posted by Arne Hess on 06.06.09 - 10:43:15

Yes, but the speed throttling makes it quite hard to use (see the latency of my recently throttled connection which means that server could time-out). Otherwise there would be no reason to go for the L, if M would be sufficient now. And yes, the limit is still 200 MB but there is no extra over-charge anymore. Anyway, a Internet Pack (either M or L) is highly recommended, otherwise you are charged by call/per minute.

Posted by Timo on 10.06.09 - 17:58:47

Thanks for a nice review again Arne !

One thing that came to my mind..was the batterylife. Have you used the device long enough to comment on that ?
WOuld be interesting how long will it last with that 1500mah battery and oled screen.

Posted by Arne Hess on 10.06.09 - 18:47:22

As always it depends on your usage. However, with Google sync on and a regular use of web, Google Maps, SMS and the phone, the battery lasts at least one day. If you just put it powered up on the table, it's something like 3 days or so. At the end, it's quite similar to the HTC Magic.

Posted by annon on 17.06.09 - 03:10:33

Was wondering about the rotation speed as compared to the HTC Magic.  They both use the same processor and the Magic has more memory, however, the Samsung would appear to detect rotation and align faster than the HTC does.  Is this just me or does anyone else see that?

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