Samsung Galaxy Gio Android phone is Samsung's jewel of the dial

The Samsung Galaxy Gio gets its name from the Italian word for jewel, and this miniature mobile might well live up to its name, with a pretty chassis and Android 2.2 on board...

Luke Westaway Senior editor
Luke Westaway is a senior editor at CNET and writer/ presenter of Adventures in Tech, a thrilling gadget show produced in our London office. Luke's focus is on keeping you in the loop with a mix of video, features, expert opinion and analysis.
Luke Westaway
2 min read

With a theatrical flourish, Samsung has revealed the Galaxy Gio -- an Android-powered mobile destined for the pockets of beautiful people this April.

Samsung tells us that Gio was chosen as the name because it's the italian word for 'jewel.' We've done some investigative reporting using Google translate, and the facts check out.

The Gio is unlikely to be the jewel in the Samsung crown, thanks to underwhelming specs, but from what we can tell from the press shots, its rounded, glossy black and silver shell is pretty enough.

The hardware won't blow you away but it looks to be a workable mobile -- an 800MHz processor should keep things chugging along smoothly enough, and the 320x480-pixel resolution screen should be clear enough for casual surfing.

Better yet, the Gio is packing the rather brilliant Swype keyboard software, which lets you type out messages without your finger leaving the touchscreen. Clever girl.

You'll also get Google Maps, with Latitude, Places and Navigation, so your Gio can function as a handy GPS. Inside there's an accelerometer, digital compass and proximity sensor.

We're a little gutted to see there's a puny 3-megapixel camera on board, so don't expect to capture any great photographic works using this mobile, and there's only 158MB of on-board storage, which is an insultingly small amount. Still, there's a microSD card slot so you can expand the Gio's memory yourself.

A final (minor) gripe is that Android 2.2 -- aka Froyo -- isn't the latest version of Android -- that honour goes to 2.3 Gingerbread. Version 2.2 will let you play Flash videos in the phone's browser which is cool, but if you want the latest and greatest version of Google's mobile OS, you'll have to wait for an update.

The glittering Gio generally looks like a phone that's going to do a decent impression of high-end mobiles, without the high-end price tag. It will be available in the UK in April, and Samsung has promised to show it off at Mobile World Congress in a few weeks time, so expect a hands-on very soon.