Samsung Galaxy 3 and Galaxy Apollo review: Galactic twins

GSMArena team, 12 August 2010.
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User interface (continued)

The performance of the Samsung I5800 Galaxy 3 is very good – we experienced no lags, even with UI animations turned on. The CPU is powerful enough to take on even more expensive handsets (and with the lower-res screen the Galaxy 3 is flying).

Here’s the traditional run of benchmarks and how it stacks up against the HTC Legend and the Samsung I5700 Galaxy Spica, which has a faster 800MHz CPU.

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Samsung I5800 Galaxy 3 benchmarks

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HTC Legend benchmarks

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Samsung I5700 Galaxy Spica

The software on the I5800 Galaxy 3 and I5801 Galaxy Apollo is almost identical, so we’ll review the general version and mention any changes in the Galaxy Apollo (mainly Orange stuff).

Excellent phonebook

A typical Android smartphone, Samsung I5800 Galaxy 3 has a phonebook with massive functionality and practically unlimited capacity. The I5801 Galaxy Apollo has an identical phonebook.

The handset displays the phone memory, SIM-stored and all Google contacts in the phonebook. There is a dedicated setting for that, so you really can have all of your contacts gathered in one place. You can search the entries by either flick-scrolling the list or using the alphabet scroll at the side of the screen (courtesy of Samsung and the TouchWiz UI).

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The Galaxy S phonebook

With Android 2.1, the Galaxy 3 packs the new Quick contacts feature. It lets you use the contact photo in the phonebook and call, text, or email the person with a single click.

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Quick contacts come with Android 2.1

Thanks to Android 2.1, there is also multiple accounts support for email and contact synchronization, including Exchange accounts.

There are many info fields that you can assign to each contact, but it still remains perfectly organized. You have all the types listed (numbers, email addresses, etc) and there's a plus sign on the right - clicking it adds another item of that type. Pressing the minus sign under it deletes the unneeded field.

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Checking out and editing a contact’s details

Samsung have added another cool feature to the phonebook, which is also available in the Bada OS. In the main contact list, a swipe to the right on a name will dial the contact’s default number, while a swipe to the left will start the New message interface. The side-sweep thing works in other lists too where you have names or numbers.

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Swiping on a contact’s name or number in the log will start a call or launch the message composer

Great telephony

The Samsung I5800 Galaxy 3 caused us no trouble during calls. The reception was good and we didn’t experience dropped calls, though the in-call sound wasn’t as loud as we would have liked.

Smart Dial is available and works like a charm – the implementation on the Galaxy 3 searches both contact numbers and names.

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Smart dial works like a charm • The in-call screen

Thanks to the proximity sensor, your screen will automatically turn off, once you place you next during a call. The available options during a call include taking a note, using the keypad, muting, holding the call or adding another call to this conversation.

The call log is the tab next to the dial pad. It shows all the dialed, received and missed calls in one list sorting your call history by contacts.

We also ran our traditional loudspeaker test on the I5800 Galaxy 3 and I5801 Galaxy Apollo. They both scored a good mark with (unsurprisingly) very close results. More info on our loudspeaker test as well as other results can be found here.

Speakerphone testVoice, dBPink noise/ Music, dBRinging phone, dBOverall score
Samsung I9000 Galaxy S66.6 65.966.6Below Average
Samsung I5700 Galaxy Spica66.6 62.175.7Average
Acer Stream63.665.675.8Average
Samsung I5801 Galaxy Apollo71.766.671.2Good
Samsung I5800 Galaxy 373.766.672.3Good
HTC Hero76.771.977.7Very Good
HTC Desire75.275.785.5Excellent
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