Samsung Galaxy Ace S5830 review: Ace in the hole

GSMArena team, 23 February 2011.
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Introduction

The Samsung Galaxy Ace can get far with a name like this but it isn’t going any further than its comfortable midrange spot. You know, if you want the best seat in the house you need to move the cat. The Samsung Galaxy Ace S5830 is a feline droid – the black cat in Samsung’s Android portfolio. And it spells bad luck for the competition – mid-range droids are a force to be reckoned with in the smartphone world.

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Samsung S5830 Galaxy Ace official photos

With the kind of specs, the Galaxy Ace could have passed for a high-end phone a while back. So, if your processing power and screen estate needs haven’t risen sharply during the past year or so, the Ace will serve you well.

In fact, with Froyo on an 800MHz processor, good connectivity and screen size and resolution that were good enough for the first three iPhones, the Samsung Galaxy Ace is looking good.

The only downside to the package is the QVGA video @ 15fps. That may be acceptable on a low-end dumbphone but certainly disappointing on a mid-range Android.

Update: After a software update, the Galaxy Ace can record VGA videos at 24fps. We've updated the camera section of this review with new samples.

Here’s what else is going on the Ace’s spec sheet.

Key features

  • Quad-band GSM and dual-band 3G support
  • 7.2 Mbps HSDPA support
  • 3.5" 16M-color TFT LCD capacitive touchscreen of HVGA (320 x 480 pixels) resolution
  • 800MHz ARM 11 processor, Adreno 200 GPU, Qualcomm MSM7227 chipset; 278MB of RAM available to the user
  • Android OS v2.2 (Froyo) with TouchWiz 3.0 UI customization
  • Swype text input
  • 5 MP autofocus camera with LED flash; Geo-tagging, face and smile detection
  • VGA@24fps video
  • microSD slot (up to 32GB, 2GB in box)
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b, g, n and DLNA
  • GPS with A-GPS connectivity; Digital compass
  • microUSB port (charging) and stereo Bluetooth v2.1
  • Standard 3.5 mm audio jack
  • DNSe sound enhancement
  • FM radio with RDS
  • Document editor
  • File manager preinstalled
  • Samsung Apps brings a few nice apps for free
  • Accelerometer and proximity sensor

Main disadvantages

  • No shutter key for the camera
  • No support for Adobe Flash in the web browser
  • No ambient light sensor
  • No DivX/Xvid video support out of the box

So, the video is no good, but the still camera should be doing pretty well. Samsung’s refined TouchWiz 3.0 with a document editor and file manager out of the box score good points for the Galaxy Ace too.

The phone is pretty compact and we especially like the new rubbery textured back. There’s nothing to worry about in terms of ergonomics or pocketability, but those decidedly iPhone-ish looks are a bit questionable.

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Samsung S5830 Galaxy Ace live shots

That’s about all we can say by just looking at the phone – and it’s the second time we meet the Samsung Ace. You may as well remember our quick preview from a while back. It’s now time to see how ready the Samsung Galaxy Ace is for the real world and we begin with the hardware.

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