Review: Samsung Galaxy S WiFi 5.0
The Samsung Galaxy S WiFi 5.0 is like the Samsung Galaxy Note except that it’s a bit thicker, runs on Android 2.2 Froyo, has lower specs (including screen resolution), and it has no telephone or 3G functionality. In other words it’s Samsung’s answer to Apple’s highly successful iPod Touch. With the Samsung Galaxy S WiFi 5.0 you get a 5-inch tablet/media player that also gives you full access to all the apps in the Android Market. That means you can play all the games you want as long as the titles are in the Android Market. The Samsung Galaxy S WiFi 5.0 is priced almost exactly like the Apple iPod Touch coming in at around Php14,000 for the official SRP and online stores selling them at around Php12,300. With that price tag you definitely have to think the purchase through considering that the more popular option, the Apple iPod Touch, is almost the same price.
Packaging and Product Build
The Galaxy S WiFi 5.0 comes in the usual white Samsung box with the product photo shot at the front. When you open the box you’ll find the device with the Samsung sticker at the screen. Just like when we first saw the Samsung Galaxy Note for the first time we were a bit amazed once again with the size of this thing. 5-inch screens is not really something that you expect when you’re unboxing a phone or a media player.
It felt very solid, sturdy, and light the first time we picked it up. Unless you have big hands you’ll have a problem navigating the device with just one hand (bane of 5-inchers). This is really meant for two hands (one for holding and one for navigating) unless you’re just watching a movie or listening to your favorite songs.
The Galaxy S WiFi 5.0 has a white plastic back that’s similar to the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.0. You’ll find a 3.2MP camera here which has auto-focus and LED flash. We didn’t bother taking sample shots because it’s obvious that the quality isn’t that nice.
At the right side of the device you’ll find the lock/unlock button as well as volume controls.
At the top is the microSD slot. You can go up to an additional 32GB with this one.
At the bottom is the charging port, microphone and the standard 3.55mm audio jack for your headphones/earphones.
You’ll find the manual, the charger, cable, and the earphones (white) inside the box as well.
Software and Performance
The Samsung Galaxy S WiFi 5.0 has a respectable 1GHz processor that powers the Android 2.2 Froyo operating system (out of the box). The over-all user experience is definitely not that buttery smooth especially when we get into more demanding applications like games and photo/video editing. This device was definitely made for consuming media, doing social networking, and playing casual games. Anything above that will overwork the internals and it might bog down or crash the unit.
The 5-inch display has a screen resolution of 480×800 pixels which results to around ~187 pixel density. It’s not bad considering most entry level smartphones have below ~140 ppi. However you will definitely notice the difference if you put this side-by-side a Super AMOLED smartphone.
As a media player though you’ll have no problems with the Samsung Galaxy S WiFi 5.0, especially if you pop in a 32GB microSD card. You can download various movie players from the Android Market but the default is already pretty decent and it can play most file types. There’s no need to convert it to MP4 and then settle for a small 3.5-inch screen. You’ll definitely have more fun watching your favorite TV series on this because of the bigger screen and less hassle without the file type conversion.
The music player is also robust with features. Album Art, lyrics, and creating custom playlists on-the-go is available.
One of the biggest cons though is the lack of accessories. One thing the iPod has going for it is that third part companies have been creating numerous additional stuff for it like docks, stereos, and even amplifiers (FiiO has a specific cable for the Apple port). It’s sad that you won’t be able to neatly dock this on the Soundfreq Sound Stack or the JBL MX100. You’ll have to settle with the standard audio jack or bluetooth connection.
Verdict, Pricing, and Availability
In the last week that we’ve been using the Samsung Galaxy S WiFi 5.0 it was primarily a music player and a video player in bed. We used it every now and then for checking and updating social networks but we usually do that with our smartphones and laptops more than media players. In all honesty it’s a pretty good product but it’s hard to recommend this over Apple’s more polished and stylish iPod Touch (especially the latest version). If Samsung cut down the price of this by around Php3,000-4,000 then this will probably be more competitive.
The Samsung Galaxy WiFi S 5.0 is now available in different gadget and tech stores. SRP is around Php14,000 but you can find online sellers letting it go for as low as Php12,300.