Samsung B5310 CorbyPRO review: Type and go
TouchWiz the Corby way
Lively, colorful and pleasantly thumbable - the TouchWiz interface feels right at home on this touchscreen messenger, where fun and ease of use are key.
The B5310 CorbyPRO offers three different homescreen panes that you can alternate by sideways sweeps. The current selection is indicated by three small bars at the top of the screen. The whole thing works in both portrait and landscape: the screen rotates automatically when you slide out the QWERTY keyboard.
You can fill up each of those homescreens with as many widgets as you like. The different wallpapers are actually three parts of a single panoramic desktop, just like on the Samsung S8000 Jet for example.
In case some of you have missed it, widgets are nifty mini-apps that reside on your home screen. Some of them seem to have more purpose, such as the calendar and world clock, image gallery or the mp3/radio players, while others range from fun to pointless.
Traditionally, all the widgets are stored in a tray running down the side of the screen, which you can pull in and out as needed.
You can pick which widgets to display by simply dragging them onto the display and placing them where you want. If any need to be removed, you simply drag them back to the tray. The nice accelerometer-based option to auto-align widgets by shaking the handset is at your disposal too.
So, the B5310 CorbyPRO interface is typical Samsung (or at least the latest revision seen on the Samsung S3650 Corby). You have a tab at the bottom of the display which holds the three or four contextual keys with varying functionality based on the currently active menu. There are also some nice animations and transition effects throughout the interface.
The main menu displays as a 3 x 4 grid of icons, while sub-menus appear as lists. Listed submenus are scrollable with the arrow keys on the QWERTY keyboard too.
The main menu itself stretches over three different screens and is sweep-scrollable sideways. The reason that so much more space was needed is the fact that almost all apps are now brought to the main menu, arranged in a flat iPhone-like structure. You will only need to dig deeper for the settings.
The Samsung B5310 CorbyPRO also supports multitasking, which means that Java applications can be minimized to run in the background. A long press on the center button brings up the task manager.
Samsung B5310 CorbyPRO also has the Smart unlock feature, previously known as Gesture lock. Smart unlock allows users to simultaneously unlock the phone and open a menu item, application - even dial a contact - just by drawing a letter on the unlock screen.
Each letter from A to Z can be set as a gesture by the user to perform the various actions in question. For instance, you can use it to start apps like the music player, messaging menu, the web browser, Java apps or the dialing keypad.
The B5310 CorbyPRO sports a cute little theme designed especially for the young audience. You've already seen it in the original Corby. The Cartoon UI has neatly drawn icons and hand-writing font in the list menus.
The phonebook of the Samsung B5310 CorbyPRO has it all. Up to 2000 contacts can be stored with multiple fields. It can display the names on the SIM card, the phone memory or both at once. Searching is done by gradual typing of the desired contact's name.
Quite a number of different fields are available for each contact. You can store up to 5 numbers, 4 email addresses, URLs and so on. Each contact can also be assigned a specific ringtone and picture, as well as a note. You can even set a video as "caller's image".
Telephony, video calling included
The Samsung B5310 CorbyPRO is excellent at its main job - making calls - we experienced no reception or voice quality drops for the time of our review.
There's not much to say about the dialer. You dial just like you would on any touch phone. There are three virtual buttons - phonebook, more and back. When you type a number or look it up in the contact list, by tapping More you can access options such as voice call, video call, send message or add to phonebook. Of course you have the hardware call buttons too.
The handset has smart dialing, which only works though with numbers, not names.
While the dialer itself is not very interesting, there's a flashier way to dial. The Photo Contacts are shown as a stack of pictures. Tapping on a photo brings up a menu with options to start a voice call or send a message.
As for loudspeaker performance, the B5310 CorbyPRO scored a very good mark. Here it is alongside some of the other devices we have tested. You can find more details about the test itself as well as the full list of tested devices here.
|Speakerphone test||Voice, dB||Ringing ||Overall score|
|Nokia 6760 slide||67.7||66.2||75.1||Good|
|BlackBerry Curve 8520||69.8||68.7||76.0||Good|
|Samsung B5310 CorbyPRO||75.8||69.7||81.1||Very Good|
|Samsung S5230 Star||77.1||75.7||82.0||Excellent|