Samsung Z500

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Samsung Z500
  • Samsung Z500
  • Samsung Z500
  • Samsung Z500

Pros

  • The smallest 3G phone we have seen, Two cameras, Transflash expansion slot

Cons

  • No FM radio, Low battery life

Bottom Line

The Z500 will be welcome to news to long suffering 3G consumers, who have until now had to put up with bulky sized phones.

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Who said 3G phones have to be big and clunky? Samsungs latest 3G offering, the SGH-Z500 is a compact flip phone that claims the title as the world's smallest 3G mobile. Sleek and stylish, much in the same mould as the E720 and E730, don't let the size of the Z500 fool you, as Samsung have crammed two cameras, Bluetooth support, a memory expansion slot and an MP3 player into the diminutive silver and black case.

We were impressed with the viewing clarity of the 176x220 pixel screen, which supports 262k colours and displays 8 lines of text. The external LCD was only 80 x 64 pixels, a lower resolution than we have seen on other Samsung models, but still bright enough to do the job.

The Z500 ships with 50MB of internal memory, which is ample for basic organizer functions, and allows storage of 1000 phone book entries and 200 SMS messages. However a major improvement to earlier Samsung models is the inclusion of a Transflash memory expansion slot so users can add extra memory to the phone

Transflash memory is ultra small removable flash memory, which retails for just a little more than regular SD cards and is available in 128MB, 256MB and 512MB sizes. The memory slot is a welcome addition to the Z500 and allows users to make full use of the included MP3 player. In our tests, we found the sound quality clear through the supplied headphones, but were disappointed the Z500 lacks an FM radio.

Samsung have equipped the Z500 with two camera lenses, a VGA 0.3 megapixel lens on the inside for video calling and a 1MP lens on the outside, which can take photos at 1152 x 864 pixels in single, multi or mosaic shot modes, although we could not locate a flash. Video capture is supported and video effects include sepia, black and white and night modes. The camera settings on this unit were fairly standard, and users have the ability to choose the quality of photos and videos, as with other Samsung units.

For connectivity, the Z500 supports Bluetooth, Infrared, WAP and caters for SMS, MMS and email. The unit can be synchronized with a PC and Microsoft outlook using a supplied USB cable, although the Samsung PC Studio needs to be installed on your PC beforehand.

The Z500 promises 3.4 hours of talk time, although this drops to only 2.2 hours if used for 3G calls.

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