Samsung Galaxy Portal

Samsung Galaxy Portal

The Galaxy Portal's 3.2 in TFT screen is impressively responsive, due to its capacitive technology which makes clicking and swiping simple.

3 Direct

Our Rating: 80%

Our Samsung Galaxy Portal Review

Samsung’s Galaxy Portal will inevitably be compared to its older brother, the Galaxy and come out as a sort of Galaxy-Lite. Missing are some of the Galaxy’s features, but without this comparison, the Galaxy portal stands up pretty well on its own.

The Galaxy Portal's 3.2 in TFT screen is impressively responsive, due to its capacitive technology which makes clicking and swiping simple. Its HGVA resolution is quite remarkable for a phone in this price range. Beneath the screen, there’s a diamond-shaped, five-way navigation key, plus keys along both sides for camera and volume control. It can be quite tricky at first to pick up the phone and not telling it to do something by accident.

There are three homescreens under its Android operating system. This could be one too many to some people or not nearly enough for others. One for social networking, one for work and one for fun would seem to be ideal.

Not only are the homescreens fully customizable, you can of course download apps from the Android Market to improve on some of the rather drab default settings, especially the dreary clock. But why does it only come with Android 1.5 and not the latest version. This makes it seem dated almost as soon as its out of the box. Hopefully, updates should soon be available. For a SIMfree phone costing around Ł300, this seems at best an unfortunate oversight.

The handset feels chunky in the hand, but not irritatingly. Its thickness is 13.2mm, compared with the previous Galaxy’s 11.9mm. Its 800mhz processor means it performs well with comparable handsets when browsing or messaging. It comes with only 180mb of internal memory, but you can boost that to 32Gb with a MicroSD card.

The general look of the Portal is definitely function and not fashion. It’s a budget Android phone and doesn’t try to pretend to be anything else. But you wonder what is the point of including a 3.2 megapixel camera, a downgrade from the previous Galaxy’s 5 megapixel shooter. It doesn’t do much for the manufacturer’s reputation or that of the handset as a whole.

What We Liked

The ease of use of the screen is by far the Galaxy Portal’s most impressive feature and really is a joy to use, compared to the frustrating alowness of some other handsets on the market. Battery life, for a touchscreen phone, was impressive and it took around 48 hours of usage for the bars to start disappearing.

What We Disliked

The 3.2 megapixel was a bit of a letdown. There’s no flash, so taking snaps indoors produced mostly disappointing results, at best hit-or-miss. Plus, its autofocus option takes a long time to do its one and only job.

Our Final Verdict

The Galaxy Portal, for all its good points, feels as though there’s something missing. Features from the previous Galaxy have been omitted, the camera downgraded, but for ease of use and fantastic screen colour, it’s a winner.

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General

Form Factor Candybar
Dimensions 115 x 57 x 13.2 (mm)
Talk Time 577 mins
Standby Time 448 hours
Weight 124 g
Quad Band Yes

Photo and Video

Integrated Camera Yes
Camera 3.20 megapixels
Video Player Yes

Phone

Polyphonic Ringtones Yes
Internal Memory 1GB
Memory Card Type MicroSD (max 32GB)

Messaging

Instant Messaging (IM) Yes

Screen

Colour Screen Yes
Screen Resolution 320x480 pixels

Connectivity

3G Yes
Bluetooth Yes
HSDPA Yes
WAP Yes
Wi-Fi Yes
GPS Yes

Music and Radio

MP3 Player Yes

Additional Content

Downloadable Content Yes
Downloadable Games Yes
Downloadable Ringtones Yes

Samsung Galaxy Portal Full Specification

General

Form Factor Candybar
Dimensions 115 x 57 x 13.2 (mm)
Talk Time 577 mins
Standby Time 448 hours
Weight 124 g
Quad Band Yes

Photo and Video

Integrated Camera Yes
Camera 3.20 megapixels
Video Player Yes

Phone

Polyphonic Ringtones Yes
Internal Memory 1GB
Memory Card Type MicroSD (max 32GB)

Messaging

Instant Messaging (IM) Yes

Screen

Colour Screen Yes
Screen Resolution 320x480 pixels

Connectivity

3G Yes
Bluetooth Yes
HSDPA Yes
WAP Yes
Wi-Fi Yes
GPS Yes

Music and Radio

MP3 Player Yes

Additional Content

Downloadable Content Yes
Downloadable Games Yes
Downloadable Ringtones Yes
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