Why you shouldn't buy a Samsung Android phone

I purchased the Samsung Galaxy i7500 about 6 months ago. I blogged before on how disappointed I was with it, and that hasn’t changed. Recently I took my losses and replaced it with an HTC Desire, which turns out to be the perfect Android phone - I totally love it.

Summarized, here are some of the issues I’ve had with the i7500:

  • The screen locks/blocks when dialing, and can’t be unlocked. This means you can’t use the touch screen to navigate through phone menu’s. I’ve met a fellow i7500 who suffered from the same problem, and his workaround was to use the trackpad to navigate through the numerical on-screen keyboard. But sometimes even this doesn’t work.
  • Photo’s are sometimes corrupted. You end up with missing pictures and strange files with numerical id’s. Sometimes they also seem to come back again, so perhaps they are still correctly stored on the filesystem, though when accessing the storage remotely you will see the strange files as well.
  • WIFI is flakey/buggy. It will sometimes not recognize previously accessed/stored networks and it weel keep asking for a key. Turning wifi off/on again sometimes solves this issue.
  • Battery life is really poort, and actually simply not acceptable for a device with features such as the galaxy. Why put in 3G, Wifi, GPS and an oled screen if the device doesn’t have enough power to last a working day?

All of these issues persist after a full factory reset

Samsung has completely ignored its “early android adopters” and chose to focus on supporting “cheaper” Galaxy Spica in stead. This is the support you get for a device that has cost € 450,- half a year ago (and now costs less than half of that).

I don’t even care for an Android 1.6 or 2.x update, I just want a usable Phone.

I recently checked to see if there were any updates available. The only software that’s available on the Samsung Mobile site is “Samsung NEW PC Studio”, which I previously ranted about. I’ve tried downloading the update, but the installer is actually failing to install due to a “configuration file error”. I’ve tried contacting Samsung Mobile about this and all they came back with was to contact Samsung Netherlands. It’s unclear why they can’t forward support requests internally themselves.

Eventually Samsung Customer service (after I forwarded the mail myself) replied that there are no updates and there is no reason to use New PC Studio, which makes me wonder why they offered the download in the first place.

This whole experience has made me reconsider my appreciation for Samsung in general. I used to be a fan of their products - I have had Samsung flatscreen TV’s, printers, mp3 players (one of the few ones with ogg support back then) and I have always been really happy. Until now that is

Summary

If you want a buggy, overly expensive Android phone and terrible customer service / support, pick Samsung. I can’t imagine anything will improve with the new models so you should be save. However, if you want your money’s worth from a company that truly believes and supports Android, pick an HTC device like de THC Desire or HTC Legend

Last updated April 18, 2013, 4:35 p.m.
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