Samsung G800 review: Samsung G800

CNET Editors' Rating

4 stars Excellent

Average User Rating

4.5 stars 2 user reviews
Review Date:
Updated on:

The Good 5-megapixel camera with autofocus; 3x optical zoom and face detection; HSDPA.

The Bad Lack of Wi-Fi, xenon flash isn't as bright as we expected.

The Bottom Line This chunky mobile snapper is an attractive slider phone that, although large, is easy to hold and use. The G800's camera comes with all the bells and whistles you'd expect from a standalone digital camera but it's not a complete replacement just yet. The xenon flash just isn't as bright as we'd hoped for and unless you're standing close to the subject it doesn't illuminate the scene that well

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After Nokia launched its N95 8GB , Sony Ericsson its K850i and LG its Viewty , it inevitably wouldn't be long before Samsung joined the 5-megapixel camera phone battle.

You've probably seen the advert for it, showing a man happily taking pictures of heart-shaped objects. Is this photo-centric handset a camera phone love-fest? We took it out for a spin to see if it lived up to the hype.

The Samsung G800 is currently available from several major networks for free on a monthly contract.

Design
For a company that's renowned for making slim phones such as the U700, the G800 is far from ultra thin. It's about the same size as the Nokia N95 and weighs a not-so-pocket-friendly 129g. Looking past its chunkiness, this is an attractive handset with a glossy finish similar to the LG Shine and a reassuring solid casing made up of metal and plastic.

What's obvious about the G800 is that it's heavily influenced by camera design. On the back, there's a simple cover that protects the lens and xenon flash. Once the camera is on, you hold the G800 horizontally -- as you would a standalone digital camera -- and press the easy-to-use shutter button to take pictures and volume rocker to zoom in and out.

On the phone side of things, Samsung has fortunately avoided putting in any touch-sensitive buttons -- the keypad, navigation keys and soft keys are all mechanical. We're also glad to see that all the keys are large and well laid-out, although some may find the keypad a little tough to press sometimes, depending on what you're used to.

Features
In terms of features, the Samsung G800 really takes Samsung's camera phone portfolio to a new level. Combining a 5-megapixel sensor, xenon flash, autofocus, LED focus-assist light, 3x optical (inner) zoom, image stabilisation (digital) and red-eye reduction, it's impressively close on paper to a standalone digital camera.

Once you've taken a picture you can upload it to a blog via ShoZu, store it on a microSD card (up to 4GB) or print it via a USB cable or Bluetooth. There's a basic pre-installed photo editing suite that lets you crop photos and add effects, among a few other things. There's also a relatively comprehensive video editing suite that lets you combine audio tracks, videos and pictures.

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Samsung G800

Part Number: CNETSamsung G800
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