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The Samsung S5620, or Monte, was the closest thing to a smartphone that I owned before my current Galaxy Ace. I can't in all honesty call it a smartphone, as, although it runs a full OS and has true Internet access, the platform doesn't have the extensibility or versatility of a full smartphone. It's a pity, as it has the potential to be so much more, if only Samsung would open up the platform.
The Monte, as I'll call it for convenience, is a little black plastic oblong with two curved sides and a curved back. It has a bulky plastic surround containing its volume buttons, headphone jack, and micro-USB connection port, which can be either orange or black. It's not exactly a pretty phone; it lacks the grace and visual cleanliness that one would expect from a 2010 smartphone. It's also heavy, coming in at over three ounces.
The TFT capacitative touch screen, despite its 3" size, displays a measly 240 x 400 pixels. I haven't been able to find the processor architecture or clock speed, or RAM specification, but I suspect that they're relatively humble, as the Monte takes its time about loading up. Three buttons at the bottom of the screen control the phone's major functions - confusingly, the "back" button is the middle button, not a side button, which makes the phone quite unintuitive and awkward to use. Not the best of design choices, Samsung.
The Monte packs an at first impressive 3.15 megapixel camera, but its white balance veers towards the blues, regardless of the lighting, and the picture blurs horrendously if your hand shakes ever so slightly.
Internal storage comes in at a mere 200 MB, so it's a good thing that the OS doesn't take up very much space. Contacts and texts alone soon dominate the space, and you'll regularly find yourself deleting texts to make room. The music player feature is practically redundant due to the lack of space.
Still, this is a budget phone, so it's important not to whine too much about the low specification. One thing that increases the reliability of this phone is its moderately good battery life - with infrequent calls and regular texting, I find that the Monte lasts around two days before in need of another shot of mains juice.
The Monte is one of the few phones to run Samsung's Bada OS, the company's attempt to create an OS for budget smartphones, bridging the gap between feature phones and their big brothers. However, it has one crippling shortcoming: Samsung's unwillingness to open up the platform to external developers. It's apparently impossible to write and run new apps for Bada.
The Monte comes with a handful of apps - Twitter, Facebook, the Dolphin browser, a note-taking app, and so on - and a few widgets, including a clock, Google search, and a news ticker. Samsung offers a small "app store", but it contains only extremely rudimentary apps, such as counters for diets or pregnancy. There are no external apps.
Bada runs quite sluggishly, despite its light memory weight, and multitasks like a Tyrannosaurus rex wearing a one-man band kit. It simply doesn't have the efficiency needed to sustain multiple apps simultaneously without significant slowdown. You can hear algorithms groaning as they're calculated at snail's pace.
The Dolphin browser is one of the major features of the phone, but, without such basic features as copy and paste or a competent zoom - there's no multitouch here, so zooming is achieved by long tapping - it's little better than some feature phone browsers. It all too often runs out of memory to load a page, freezes completely with no warning, or simply refuses to open up. I'm sure that an external developer could write a better browser, but Samsung clearly disagrees.
The Facebook app has a mediocre search function, barely, if ever, returning results, and lacks the ability to click through to individual status updates. It also refuses to display new chat messages unless the app is exited and restarted, which makes it fairly close to useless for chat. The Twitter app has similar flaws - the inability to access individual tweets to see replies and to retweet or favourite; the inability to edit one's profile; the terrible, terrible performance in direct messaging; and an inexplicable absence of copy and paste.
=Use as a Telephone=
The Monte's in-call sound quality, both with and without speaker-phone activated, is clean, crisp, and easily audible. It does crackle and break up when reception is poor, but no more so than any other phone when reception is poor.
One unforgivable flaw in the Monte is that it can only display individual text messages. There's no way to display a thread of a conversation in texts, something that many feature phones today can pull off with aplomb. This makes conversations sometimes very difficult to follow, especially if, say, you leave off a conversation one night and attempt to revitalise it in the morning.
Media messaging performance is not the greatest; presumably to save on data, videos and pictures in MMS are only displayed on demand, and they load very, very slowly. Another MMS-related niggle is that, rather than open a consecutive SMS, once the SMS word limit is reached, the system prompts you to switch to MMS. This could lead to rather large texting bills if you aren't careful to decline the Monte's courteous offer.
In 2013, Android phones are becoming progressively more affordable. However, in 2010, there was a desperate need for a budget smartphone. Bada ran a serious chance of filling that gap, but, due to its lack of extensibility and versatility, it, and quasi-smartphones like the Monte, fell woefully short.
This is a phone with great potential. With phones such as the Monte, smartphones could one day become universal, with even the poorest able to access the full Internet, a wealth of information, and social networks from their palms. I'm sad that Bada was such a flop, and I'm sad that the Monte has so many flaws.
I was stuck with this phone for a good few years, a didn't have a problem once with it!
This mobile is affordable and comes with a great variety of features. You can download and place widgets on the phone, even Facebook, Twitter and Bebo (if you still use it).
As for the design, lets just say, yes, the front does look pretty nice! Turn it to the side, it isn't the thinnest of mobiles, which ruins the design! The screen resolution is just 420 x 320 pixels, so doesn't really compete with larger companies such as Apple. But still, that isn't bad for a phone that's slowly getting old!
The camera is pretty depressing on this phone also! It is only 3.15MP with no focus or flash. So don't but this phone thinking you're going to get professional snaps, because you're not.
Also, with this phone, you'd expect some sort of virtual QWERTY keyboard. That's not the case too. You get a simple, virtual alphanumeric keyboard instead. Which actually seems to be fading from the mobile phone industry now as technology advances.
You can insert a microSD card, expanding the memory up to 16GB. This allows you to build a nice music library to listen to on the go.
Battery life is also superb in the Monte. It has a large 1000mAh battery, giving a battery life that can last for quite a while!
As for connecting to the internet, this phone is great for that too! It has both 3G and WiFi capabilities, so stay connected to the internet pretty much 24/7.
The Samsung Monte although it is a mid range phone it boosts a plethora of features, unfortunately the phones interfaces does seem sluggish at times the touch screen unresponsive and it lacks the ability to multi task which can be a pain, However the design is good aesthetically and the screen is easy to see unless in direct sunlight. A disappointment with this phone is Samsung's lack of on-line widgets/resources why put a widget interface on if no widgets are being produced for the phone and the ones that are available are very limited? I purchased this phone as a replacement to my LG Renoir, for the most part i was happy with the it however if i had the phone in my pocket and walked anywhere it would sometimes phone people or delete telephone numbers, For social networking i really could not fault the phone for uses such as facebook i found the experience to be near perfect although the update sometimes took a little time. For all its Fault the Samsung montes Pro's definatley out weigh its con's i would recommend this phone to some one on a tight budget looking to purchase a touch screen . It is a truly well rounded phone not the best by no stretch of the imagination but certainly not the worst!
I got this phone as part of my virgin contract on the £10pcm package.
It's OK. I remember the days when phones had dials and were attached to the house with wire on a table in the hall. So mainly I want to phone people, and you can do that quite successfully.
The touch screen technology is very unpredictable. My husband has the same phone, he is a gardener and keeps his in his pocket. He frequently finds he has accidentally phoned somebody, deleted the all the A's in his phone book, or it's trying to log onto the internet. Even keeping it in my bag I had some problems. I bought a cover for mine in the end which has helped.
Apart from doing things you don't want it also sometimes fails to do the things you do want to do. It's particularly temperamental when it comes to switching off the alarm in the morning. It can take several attempts to do that, which is particularly annoying.
It has lots of functions, most of which I don't use. I find the diary very useful though. If you spend a lot of time surfing the net from your phone this probably isn't the one for you. On the rare occasions when I have wanted to access the internet from my phone I've found it extremely difficult to use. A smart phone it is not! Having said that a lot of smart phones seem quite large by comparison so if you mainly want to phone people and want something neat and small this is better.
The radio is good, the camera is reasonable for the money. It's got things like an image editor but to be honest if you are that keen on fiddling with your photos, buy a proper camera.
All in all it's not a bad phone for the money but if I'm offered an upgrade at the end of this contract, I will be seriously considering it.
Lets start off by saying no one should expect this to match an iPhone or a HTC! Its around £100 which compared to a half decent or high end smart phone is NOTHING in cost terms. Firstly, I find the menu system to be intuitive and easy to customize! The edit button in the top left corner allows you to add, remove and move icons all over the menu system. I did however find I was executing a move from page to page by mistake a lot at first. The main screen of the phone is simple and yet again customizable with 3 different front screens, each of which you can choose a background for and put widgets on. The widget system on the phone is a pain to use quite frankly as it is hard to find compatible widgets and the ones built in a far from exhaustive. The touchscreen is as a whole nice and sensitive unlike flipping the phone from portrait to landscape which I often find responds VERY slowly! The lock and unlock feature can be hard to use in the dark but overall isn't bad although an expansion of the gesture unlock system would have been nice. The call volume can be a bit low in loud environments but the sound quality is reasonable enough. It isn't the best phone to browse the web with but for the money what do you expect? The camera is absolutely terrible in this phone and it has real trouble metering for a good exposure. The fixed focus also doesn't do the camera any favours! I personally find the phone adequate for my needs although they are rather basic! I just wanted a bigger screen with more pixels to show photos on really and a phone that can text and this fulfils that.
I have owned the Samsung GT-S5620 (Monte) for over a year now and overall it is a good phone for the price. However, do not mistake this for a smart phone because you will be disappointed.
- Good size, weight and is easy to hold.
- For the most part the touch screen is responsive and works well however when playing with some of the widgets it will lag a little.
- Over all the preloaded software works well and is simple to use.
- The 3.2MP camera is good however there is no flash and so does not work well in dark rooms.
- The MP3 Player is basic but has all the standard features and the sound quality is good. Additionally, you can use your own standard headphones this was a big plus for me as I hate the usually terrible headphones that come with handsets (Samsungs headphones are no exception).
- The phone has a good quality radio.
- Battery life is average nothing grate.
- Cheap handset with quite a few useful features such as the: Dictionary and Currency/Weight etc converter.
- When the phone is turned on its side you do not get a QWERTY keyboard. This will be a must have for my next phone I really miss this. Disappointed!
- Sound quality is always good on my end however people have complained of a bussing sound coming from my end. I have tested this and yes it is the Samsung GT-S5620 and when it happens it can be deafening. Only happens sometimes though, strange!
- Useless on the web! I could not watch a small Youtube clip and it takes far too long to load a webpage. I have been told that I can download a new browser which may improve things however I have not done so.
- I primarily bout this so I did not have to carry an MP3 player with me and it is good at being an mp3 player however you will need a memory card as the phone only comes with 50MB of memory.
- The screen is good however in sunlight you will get an awful amount of glare.
- Loud speaker is average at best. At full volume it is not all that loud and can become a crackly.
Overall as a standard phone and for the price it is a very good phone but as a Smartphone it is a complete failure. Personally, I did my research and got this knowing it was not a Smartphone and I am quite happy with the phone but I still want a QWERTY keyboard!
As a standard phone: 18/25
As a smart phone: 13/25
I was offered this phone as part of an up-grade to my contract three months ago. I am no expert on phones, sending a text message involves a lot of concentration on my behalf, but I had just got used to my little pink house brick and was managing quite nicely until it broke. I was pleasantly surprised to be offered a new phone from Vodafone on my contract, especially as I only phoned them to see if they could fix the one I had. The sales guy convinced me to have the Samsung GT S5620, he told me it was a lovely little phone with loads of extras and a touch screen which I would get used to and would never want to go back to my old house brick! Well, I can tell you that three months down the line I am no closer to loving this phone. It is true to say that I panic every time it rings or when I get a message. I can't seem to control it. The touch screen facility is hit and miss, you literally have to hit it to make it do anything and most of the time you miss what you wanted!!
It is very pretty though and the camera is quite good.
I have asked a number of my friends who are experts in the phone world to have a go on my phone to prove that it is my own inadequacies that are causing the problem, but no, they all agreed it is one of the worst phones they have ever tried to operate. Oh, and the Wi-Fi doesn't work!
I got this phone as part of an upgrade less than a year ago, because of this price wasn't an issue, I don't know if I would have thought differently about it if I were to have paid for it.
The first thing I noticed about this phone was the inability to calibrate the touch screen, this would be a much larger problem if it wasn't already set up to a satisfactory level.
The phone came with plenty of applications such as facebook access and a handy little one that identifies music by recording a small section of it. The promise of more apps off of a store was misleadingly limited; such as weather stations or love match rubbish.
The phones signal was never incredible but this could be down to my network and not the arial.
Dropping this phone caused it to burst into at least 4 pieces, this has happened a few times, causing the back, battery and sometimes even sim to shoot out.
Camera on this phone was surprisingly good, along with audio and video recording. Unfortunately mine failed to work and i'm yet to get this sorted.
Overall this phone looked amazing and worked smoothly it may not have all the features that phones have these days but it's served me well so far.
Battery power never let me down, charged fast and lasted a while.
I've now had a Samsung Monte for a few weeks, after getting it on offer at £59.99 reduced from £129.99. Firstly, let me say that for £60 this phone is a brilliant buy - but having bought it expecting "smartphone" features to warrant the RRP, I'm quite disappointed with it.
I like to browse the internet on my phone, and this is where it really is a let down. It's incredibly slow despite having 3G, but a bit better when using Wi-Fi (though not much). It is however, very easy to access Facebook etc. but for browsing other sites you'll be waiting for pages to load for several minutes - if indeed they load at all.
As a basic mobile phone - that is to make calls and texts - I'm very happy with it. The sound is crisp and clear, and I personally find the touchscreen and text function fairly easy to navigate. There are more responsive touchscreen phones out there though - the LG Optimus GT540 for example, which I had previously (and which my husband now uses, a swap I regret!).
The handset itself is very stylish looking. I have it in "romantic pink" which is a very pretty metallic rose colour (although the housing is plastic). It feels nice in the hand and the screen is a good clear size. The call and menu buttons are set sleekly into the unit, and it's generally very ergonomic and fairly expensive looking.
It has a reasonable 3.2mp camera, which has produced some very nice shots in the right conditions. There is no flash so it won't be able to replace your standard compact digital camera like some phones. The camera button is conveniently located on the side of the phone so it's easy to get it up quickly so you don't miss a shot. There is also a slot on the side for a microSD card, which unfortunately wasn't included (not even a 1gb). In addition to the camera is a very good mp3 player and FM radio. I have used the phone to record music from the radio and the sound is excellent. There's a standard size headphone jack on the top of the phone next to the charging point, so you can use your own headphones if the included ones do not suit you.
A couple of minus points for me are the lock button - again located on the side just above the camera button - as it makes it too easy to knock/press inadvertently and lock your phone when you don't want to, or indeed possibly unlock it without realising if it's pressed in a bag or pocket. Also the games are all demos, which I think is perhaps a standard thing these days - but the absence of Android means you can't get any free games or other apps.
Basically I think this is a glorified basic phone. It's pretty, it's touchscreen and you can browse the web on it (albeit slowly), but aside from that it's mainly a phone for calling and texting - which it does very well! However if you are looking for a "smartphone", get either an Android phone or an Iphone.
I've had this phone for about a year now, and i've not really had any problems with it. It does seem out of date now, especally with everyone walking around with iphone and smart phones etc... my phone doesn't have all the fancy gizmo's those ones have!
It is pretty easy to use and function and has a camera, which tbh isn't that great and video quality is very poor. It does have wifi, but i've never used it.
a downside is that the phone comes with no games, you have to download (and pay) for them.and also when you turn the phone off and on again it can take up to 5mins for the messages to be accessible, you cannot write a message in this time either which is frustrating.
One thing that does annoy me is the texting, you constantly press the wrong button, or change the language when you dont mean too! but has a nice sleek, black design and its a pretty tough case, i've dropped it down the stairs a number of times and it's never cracked!
I did have some problems with my phone randomly turning itself off for no reason and sometimes in my pocket (even though it's locked) it manages to unlock itself and has deleted and added random contacts which is also very annoying! I dont think I would buy another Samsung Phone, has enough of them now!
This is most definately not a smatphone but a feature-packed phone. The design itself it actually quite nice and can come in several different colours:
Black and grey
Black and orange
The operating system on the phone (Touchwiz) is very laggy at time and is generally poor. The design of the operating system is very nice though.
The main "homescreen" has 3 different panels where you can add different widgets to each and swap between each of them by swiping either left or right. More widgets can be downloaded from Samsungs online site, although this must be done on the phone. When going into the menu you will get a grid view of all the different items available. This also has 3 different panels of items to choose from and is navigated in the same way. Its all very nice and clean save for poor performance.
Price wise this phone is very good value for money and its very durable. I've dropped it a couple of times and the pavement has probably come off worse when you clean the dirt off of the phone. Another good thing is that i always seem to be able to get a very good connection where my other friends on the same network (O2) cannot. I dont know how this works whether its the design or the reciever in the phone, i don't know.
Overall; its a good phone for a first time user or someone who isnt technically adept with phones. Its lasted me over a year and i am yet to have any technical issues with it.
When I first got the phone I thought it was fantastic and really fast. However after the first two months you find that it is not.
It quickly becomes slow and unexciting. Especially slow, its taken me 25 attempts to load the facebook and twitter apps on the phone without it shutting down. Plus the touchscreen is slow and unresponsive.
The texting is okay. However if you get another text through as you are typing then the phone freezes and you have to wait for 5 minutes before you can continue your message.
The battery life is okay. But after a while it does start to need to be charged for longer.
The wi-fi connection is okay, but a little slow at times. The bluetooth connection however is really fast and reliable. The web browser is really unreliable, quite often you shall be told that the page is to big to load, when you may only be loading facebook or even google.
I would only recommend this phone if you want a touchscreen phone to text and call on as the apps are unreliable.
My first touchscreen mobile, and a lot cheaper than getting an iphone. The touchscreen is really easy to use (just be careful about putting your ear against the screen when talking to people because you can find yourself deleting a contact or sending a text!).
Got it as part of a contract and love the mp3 feature - I have micro SD cards with music which I put into the phone when I use it as an mp3 player. Has a lovely option of having quick links on the main screen but it's a shame that I've not managed to get any apps downloaded and seem unable to remove any of the apps which I don't use!
The kies feature which comes with the mobile is excellent for saving text messages (which is a big advantage for me epecially with the extra message memory which is much larger than my last phone).
Google maps can be tempermental and I've only managed to get it to work once. The camera is decent for a mobile and really easy to use.
I got this phone as my provider offered it as a free upgrade on my old handset after 6 months of my contract. It's not that this is a bad phone, there are just many better products out there. First lets talk about the positives. The screen resolution is good and the touch screen is good to use for texting. Unfortunately thats all the good points, so onto the bad. The menus often have a 1-2 second delay once you have touched the screen which can get very frustrating. The 3G internet is useless and rarely connects when your out and about and the speakers are poor quality. Also the phone has none of the cool Apps or games that are available on other handsets (most notably the iPhone) so there is little enjoyment to be had from the product outside calls and texts. If you are looking to buy a new phone, there are a large number of superior products on the market.
I'm a bit surprised about the high rating on this phone but then I guess it depends what you've had to compare it too. I got this as the contract was very cheap on it and it seemed to have all the features I needed.
I am a basic mobile user - text and phone calls only - but I enjoy using touch screen phones. I found everything very long winded with this phone. Nothing is particularly quick or easy. An example of that is when you make a call if automatically locks so you have to press the unlock button before you can access the keypad or put it onto speaker phone. Texting is also not as simple as it could be with no quick access to symbols or numbers. It also comes with very little included on the phone - no games and suchlike.
On a plus side the battery lasts ages and it does its job while looking decent enough. This is certainly not for people who want something high tech and efficient and whilst I probably wouldn't bother with it again it is good value for money. Not the best on the market but it does the job.