Samsung Galaxy 551 – Ownership Review by Monish
This is my first ownership review of my mobile phone – Samsung Galaxy 551. Please forgive me for the points that I may have forgotten to include. First I had a Nokia 5610 for two years starting from the first year of my college. I lost it in train and had to buy an alternative. I bought Samsung Champ, but was not satisfied with it as I text a lot. Then came the Android storm and a lot of droids were there. I had to narrow my search to QWERTY messengers because I was so fond of messaging. The search left me with three phones – Nokia C6, Sony Xperia Mini Pro and Samsung Galaxy 551.
Nokia C6 was a phone I had been following since I lost my first phone and I was badly waiting for the phone to be released. But when it came out, I already had purchased a Champ. But nevertheless, all my sights were set on this beauty. The only thing that concerned me was that it was a Symbian powered device. Though Nokia phones are reliable, they never really allow the users to control anything. You cannot even set the brightness of your Nokia phone. That is why I was looking for an Android phone.
Then the Sony Xperia X10 Mini Pro was my choice. This is yet another phone that I loved so much. Sony had a drawback of poor battery, so had to leave out this option. Another reason for dropping out this phone was that it was too small for comfort.
Finally I was left with Samsung Galaxy 551. I finished my research on the phone and was completely satisfied. It is the same as the Galaxy 3 but with a sliding QWERTY attached. I was worried about the screen resolution as it was definitely not the best. Yet, I decided to get this phone and purchased it from Univercell for Rs13500 on 14th Jan 2011. It was a special day to me.
All the things that I am about to mention are what I feel about the phone.
Things I liked about my Galaxy 551:
1. Android OS
Galaxy 551 is one of the first phones from Samsung to come with Android 2.2 Froyo out of the box. The Android OS gives you the true power of open source (P.S I am not a programmer or thing like that). By power I mean, it lets you tweak almost anything. There are such a lot of setting options and it took me a day to go through everything. The Android market is great with all the apps and games. A lot of useful applications are already there in-built. Android supports lot of launchers and widgets that allow great levels of customization of the phone.
2. Sliding QWERTY
Trust me when I say this – “The best QWERTY phone”. Typing is really awesome and you are never bored to text. You will even go to the point of replying to a forward message just to feel the keyboard. The four row QWERTY keypad is quite well spaced and a real comfort for the fingers to work with. After six months, I feel that the slide is a little clunky now-a-days. But typing will always be fun.
Music is at its best I should say. The phone came with a 2GB microSD card, but by no means was that going to be sufficient. So I bought a new 8GB card and put all my music into it. The Android music player of Galaxy 551 is awesome by itself. This phone comes with an in-ear type headphones and that cancels out all the noise. I do not use them much as I use Sennheiser more.
I come from a college which has its own Wi-Fi network and the Galaxy 551 works like a charm there. I can download anything in the college with just this phone. Also since I live in Chennai, I am blessed with a good 3G network from Airtel and that means I basically download anything anywhere. While going to college, I enjoy YouTube videos in my mobile and the videos stream with ease. Bluetooth is quite normal and I enjoy transferring files to my friends over Bluetooth because of its high speed.
5. 3D Gallery
The way Android has come up with Gallery is quite amazing. The gallery of Galaxy 551 gives the photos a new refreshing look. The photos are neatly organized based on their dates or the folders. Every time I go to the see the photos, the 3D Gallery never ceases to amaze me.
The 3.2MP camera of Galaxy 551 is quite amazing. Shots come out superbly at any time of the day, but the ones under sunlight stand out. The autofocus feature is superb, but the phone lacks a dedicated camera button. There are just lots of options to select the mode and type of photo. With a photo editing software from the Android market, one can become a photographer with this camera.
A review is never complete when it does not mention the negatives. There are quite a few negatives despite which the Galaxy 551 is cool.
Things that I do not like about my Galaxy 551:
Truly speaking, the battery of Galaxy 551 is one of the worst I have seen. It hardly comes for a day. If you are a previous Nokia mobile phone user, you will be greatly disappointed with the battery. It is not this phone alone, but in general all the droids are prone to this. But all I can say is to be happy because it lasts a full day even if you use it always or if you keep it away. Using 3G really has its toll on this poor battery.
The display of Galaxy 551 is nowhere up to mark. Samsung is known for their displays, but I don’t know why they have messed it up here. The 3.2”inch screen has a resolution of 240×400 and that is the reason the display is not proper. Despite lacking sharpness, the phone produces superb color and at its full brightness, the color tones are awesome.
May be in terms of the number of apps, the Android market equals App Store, but in quality it is nowhere near the App Store. Though there are a few good apps, the rest of the apps are crap and nonsense.
4. Build Quality
If you were a Nokia user, you will definitely not like the feel of Galaxy 551. It doesn’t feel solid and the slider is clunky at times. The back of Galaxy 551 is a scratch magnet and there is no saving it.
My Rating of Samsung Galaxy 551