A Review of the Samsung s8500 wave
The Samsung Wave launched in Canada this month on Bell’s and Rogers’ networks. It’s available for for $299.95 without a contract from Bell and for only $29.95 on a 3 year contract while it will cost you $395 at Rogers and $79.99 on a 3 year contract. This is the first device from Samsung on its new operating system called “Bada” which incidentally means “ocean” in Korean – quite appropriate if you ask me to have the first device named “Wave” on an Ocean platform.
This device is a smartphone that feels like a feature based cell phone. Samsung’s regular guy smartphone or revved up feature phone – the phone is inexpensive like a feature phone with the full fledged features of a smartphone. Being the first of a future series of “Bada” phones I believe I was sceptical when I first took alook at this device – first isn’t always great but this cell phone did not disappoint me, in fact I was pleasantly surprised.
This is what I liked!
The phone is sleek, slender, light and has a great feel to it and comes in a rather impressive 10.9mm thin metal body and scratch resistant glass surface. This smartphone has the best screen display of any smartphone I’ve seen in market today – incredible display, the colours are incredible vivid and crisp and its has one of the best visibility’s outside with its enhance AMOLED screen. Here are the key features that wowed me:
- The wave comes with a 3.3” 16M colour Super AMOLED touch screen with multi-touch input support and display supports TouchWiz 3.0
- A 1GHz processor with quad band GSM/HSPA dual band 7.2 Mbps support
- WiFI 802.11b/g/n connectivity with tethering app support – it also comes with a feature which turns the phone into a mini hotspot so that your notebook can connect to it remotely (now this is nice)
- Built in GPS receiver with A-GPS support, digital compass, along with Samsung’s Mobile navigator
- A 5 MP camera with touch focus, LED flash, geo-tagging with face, smile and blink detection
- 720p high definition recording
- Stereo FM radio with RDS, FM recording
- Great social media integration with YouTube client, Facebook and Twitter integration – its contacts list tells you which social media connections your contacts have with nice symbols next to their names (facebook, twitter, email etc)
- It comes with 390 MB of user memory, 1GB of storage for Bada apps and 550M of messaging space but there is a microSDHC card slot for expansion
- This phone comes with the Samsung Dolphin Browser 2.0 which supports full flash support, but it didn’t seem to connect very nicely to a website with flash support – maybe it was just me
- Impressive audio quality
- Overall this phone impressed the hell out of me. It had a nice overall feel to me nice smooth scrolling and included Android like features like drop down notifications of WiFi and volume settings.
Well, this is what I didn’t like!
As this is the first Bada OS device from Samsung you would expect a few quirks here and there and there are a few that requires a mention or two – here is my list of things that I find Samsung can certainly improve:
- The number one issue is the limited number of Bada applications with less than 100 apps available the Bada operating system has some growing to do to truly maximize the benefit of this interface – this is just the beginning so hopefully Samsung can grow its ecosystem of applications
- The built in Navigation system is limited and could do with some work
- Quite a few quirks with the usability of the operating system for example the search function isn’t quite optimal the keyboard screen doesn’t alway pop up smoothely which makes it difficult to type in your search parameters
- RAM issues – this device could certainly use more memory 390MB doesn’t seem to cut it – there are several memory full notifications with a limited set of applications running
- USB connection to the device disables applications and the screen goes blank – this process needs to be better
The Samsung wave is an impressive start for the Bada based operating system. It has one of the sharpest screens in the market rivaling the iPhone 4 and many Android cell phones. It has an impressive array of features with great social media integration and comes with all the key features you would want in a feature rich phone but lack the applications availability typically associated with Bada’s smartphone contenders like Android, Apple and BlackBerry.
In Canada this phone is available on Rogers and Bell’s networks. Leverage the myCELLmyTERMs portal to get competitive bids and compare cell phone plans to get the best deal available.
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