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Samsung SGH-E630 GSM Phone Review


Impressions and Conclusions

The Samsung SGH-E630 holds true to all reception quality, speech quality, and ring tone reviews we made of other models based on Suwong platform. In three words – everything is OK. 64-chord polyphony is quite melodious, though it's a tad quiet, the vibra alert is noticeable.

Battery life is up to 4 days, which is not bad for this compact model. Note that Samsung phones have recently started to resolve the problem of insufficient battery life, it's mostly connected with the usage of new lithium-polymeric batteries.

We have mixed impressions of testing this phone. We liked the phone visually and functionally: it's small, nice looking, and neat. Features of the Suwong platform are more than enough for an image product, its software is convenient to use and sufficient for an average user. Especially we want to note an excellent voice recorder, which is not always implemented in Samsung phones.

These advantages are counterbalanced by disadvantages – bad ergonomics of the slider and relatively weak display. Both things are unexpected, as its well known concerning the former that Samsung has always tried to use successful designs (in this case – automatic opening mechanism) and has practically never given them up, until something better is not invented. It's clear that the complex mechanism in this model is sacrificed to the reduction of weight and dimensions. The latter issue is still more confusing: Samsung manufactures ones of the best phone displays and has always used proprietary displays of the latest generation in its models. What we see in the E630 reminds rather of the displays, which Samsung sells to other phone manufacturers (that is of the older design). Probably the usage of this display is dictated by the same miniaturization reasons, but the display is obviously worse than TFT displays in other Samsung phones.

The situation can be logically explained only in one case – if the E630 is the cheapest slider in the series, its price difference from the next model being not less than $50-70. But its current price is only slightly lower than that of the E800 so far. So for now the E630 is only a niche solution for those who need a maximally compact slider. There are already several such models announced, and the new phone from Samsung will obviously have to compete with them. The E630 looks great here, being a high quality and functional product from a recognized manufacturer. On the other hand, its price is high. At a tad higher price you can buy the E800, for example, which is devoid of drawbacks of the E630.

Note that the ideology of the E630 resembles such model as Siemens SL55. At least the Samsung product clearly demonstrates the same compromise between the hardware features and the strict limitation of weight and dimensions. It's practically time that the SL55 should be completely out of date. And the fleet of these phones is rather large – it used to be actively bought by women because of its compact dimensions and original design. Will the Samsung SGH-E630 be its replacement?

Ivan Melnichuk (ivan_melnichuk@ixbt.com)
January 11, 2005

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