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Samsung Galaxy Y review

Samsung's latest low cost Android smartphone

Our Verdict

We'll bring you our final verdict when we get a fully-working review sample of the Galay Y in.

Product features

  • Built-in Memory : 180 MB
  • Rear Camera Resolution : 2 Megapixel
  • Battery Talk Time : 5 Hour
  • Screen Resolution : 320 x 240

View full specification

For

  • Compact
  • Cheap
  • Good range of apps
  • Galaxy branding will appeal

Against

  • Low resolution, small screen
  • Poor camera
  • Battery life suspect.

We've now updated our review to reflect our findings with a fully working version of the Samsung Galaxy Y - including a price drop to under £90.

Samsung wants to cater for a range of users, not just those wanting the biggest, fastest and most media hungry phones and the Samsung Galaxy Y looks to bring functionality to the low-end range.

The 'Y' stands for 'Young', which clearly signals the market this phone is targeted at. The Galaxy Y sells itself as a budget Android device which allows you to keep updated on the go, from poking your friends to tweeting what you had for lunch.

The Samsung Galaxy Y replaces the Galaxy Mini at the bottom of the Galaxy range and this puts it head to head with the Orange San Francisco 2, HTC Wildfire S and Alcatel One Touch 990.

Samsung galaxy y review

The Galaxy Y is low on specs, but this means it is also low in price – available for free on contracts starting from just £9.99 per month, or £90 on PAYG, making it very competitive. A SIM-free option will set you back around £115.

Samsung galaxy y review

The Galaxy Y is a dinky device measuring 104 x 58 x 11.5mm and housing a 3-inch QVGA (240x320) TFT touchscreen.

Samsung galaxy y review

You'll notice that the screen is certainly petit, but Android 2.3.5 (Gingerbread) still works well – albeit looking rather grainy due to the low-res TFT display.

Samsung galaxy y review

Pick the Galaxy Y up and it sits nicely in the hand; the rounded textured back provides a comfortable and firm grip while weighing in at 97.5g grams giving a solid feel without seeming heavy.

Samsung galaxy y review

The build quality of the Galaxy Y is sturdy with no flex in the handset when pressure is applied. The back cover is plastic but it fits snugly on the phone and when removed feels thick enough not to be a worry.

Samsung galaxy y review

Flip that handset over and you're greeted with a 2MP camera and speaker, which has a raised grill – bit of an odd feature but is likely there to provide a bit of distance between the lens and a surface when placed on a side.

Samsung galaxy y review

There is just one button on the right hand side which is the power/lock key. Thanks to the Galaxy Y's small size, it is easy to reach when using one handed.

Samsung galaxy y review

Move to the top and there is a 3.5mm headphone jack and a covered microUSB port. Providing you have not bitten your nails off, the cover is easy to remove.

Samsung galaxy y review

On the left of the handset there is a volume rocker switch and hole where a lanyard can be fitted - if you're in to that sort of thing.

Samsung galaxy y review

The is not much happening on the base of the Galaxy Y, just a microphone pin-hole and a dent in the chassis to allow you to take the back cover off – which we did with ease.

Samsung galaxy y review

Back to the front and it's the classic Samsung three button combo below the screen, with touch Back and Menu buttons flanking a physical Home button. The Home button has a premium textured look and feel which seemed out of place on the budget Galaxy Y. It made us shudder if we caught it with our nail, as it felt like scraping your hand down a blackboard. We also found the touch buttons quite unresponsive, requiring firm taps to register.

Samsung galaxy y review

Under the hood there is an 830MHz processor powered by a 1200mAh battery. The Galaxy Y is not going to be winning any speed races and it shows when using the phone with it slow to start up and load apps, but we expect this from cheap handsets.

Samsung galaxy y review

Samsung has stuck a miserly 160MB of internal memory inside which can thankfully be upgraded to 32GB with a microSD card. Granted it's a budget handset, but even the San Francisco 2 and Wildfire S offer 512MB.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Input MethodTouchscreen
TouchscreenYes
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBYes
Contract TypeSIM-free
Maximum Memory Card Size Supported32 GB
Built-in Memory180 MB
Built-in FlashNo
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyHSDPA, EDGE, GPRS
GPS ReceiverYes
Multi-SIM SupportedNo
Near Field CommunicationNo
Integrated TV TunerNo
Product FamilyGalaxy
Cellular Generation3.5G
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1900, GSM 1800, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 2100
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Rear Camera Resolution2 Megapixel
Number of SIM Card Supported1
Front CameraNo
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD
Phone StyleBar
ColourBlack
Operating SystemAndroid
Brand NameSamsung
Battery Talk Time5 Hour
Product ModelY
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Screen Resolution320 x 240
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)99.7 g
Green CompliantYes
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityWEEE, RoHS
Maximum Video Resolution240 x 320
Processor ManufacturerARM
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 3.0
Operating System VersionAndroid 2.3 Gingerbread
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), Instant Messaging, MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email
USB StandardUSB 2.0
Pixel Density133 ppi
Height104 mm
Width58 mm
Depth11.5 mm
Radio TunerYes
Battery Standby Time350 Hour
ManufacturerSamsung
Product NameGalaxy Y Smartphone
Processor Speed832 MHz
Processor TypeARM6
Product LineGalaxy
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeProximity Sensor
Manufacturer Part NumberGT-S5360MAAFOP
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.samsung.com/uk/
Marketing Information

Start your new smart life with GALAXY Y for young, dynamic mobile users on the go who want to stay in touch and connected. All the bells & whistles of an Android-driven smartphone with exciting apps, faster downloads, Wi-Fi connectivity on a more intuitive, enticing UI. Accessing web-based apps and mobile Internet has never been easier for a new generation always on the move. Stylish smarts are full-featured on this model including big 3" display and larger QWERTY keyboard but still compact. Welcome to a smarter, better life.

Powerful & Compact

Powerful performance meets stylish, compact design in the GALAXY Y. Strong processor, faster download speeds of 7.2Mbps makes this already a winner. Add the attractively compact form factor and 3" screen for ample viewing of videos and for playing games and you're really on top.

Rich Smart Experience

The most up-to-date Android operating system provides a smoother user experience ramped up by amazing Google Mobile services that interface web-based applications with real life options in entertainment, leisure and lifestyle choices. Social Hub integrates your texts, messages, emails and SNS updates into a single chronological feed to be accessed at any time. Free Samsung Apps (and also paid) are both handy and invaluable, and make your life easier and more fun.

Package Contents
  • Galaxy Y Smartphone
  • Battery
  • Quick Start Guide
  • 2GB microSD Card