Samsung Galaxy 5 (i5500) Review


Welcome to the Samsung Galaxy 5 review. The Galaxy 5 or Samsung i5500 was released in November 2010 and is one of the latest Android based phones on the Australian mobile phone market.  We think do not think that is coincidence that the HTC Wildfire was released just a few weeks before.  Anyway both phones on first glance have very similar hardware specifications but which one do we think is better? read on for the the HTC Wildfire Vs Samsung Galaxy 5 review.

Firstly the differences – the Samsung Galaxy 5 ($199) is cheaper than the HTC Wildfire ($299 December 2010) as a pre-paid package.  The price difference between the two is due to the Galaxy having a smaller 2MP camera but it does have a faster CPU which is essential to experience all the features of the Android 2.1. The lower resolution camera, less on-board memory but 2 Gig microSD card, and the not quite so obvious smaller screen size.  We didn’t notice the lower spec hardware but we did notice the not quite so zippy interface we liked on the Wildfire and even the Optimus.

The Galaxy 5’s construction feels cheaper than Wildfire but not the LG Optimus yet all the phones where easy to use in the hand and appeared quite sturdy.  Out of all the cheap Android based phones we prefer the HTC Wildfire that said the lower price of the Galaxy 5 makes it appealing too. The buttons on the panel are a good idea and the quality of the screen images was

The Galaxy 5 has all the usual features included in higher end phones so GPS, radio, decent web browser and of course Apps.  However the biggest problem with the Samsung and ALL Android based phones is the requirement for having a Gmail account to activate the phone.  We do not agree with this compulsory login before we can even use the basic features of the phone Eg. calender.  This goes the same with Apple and Microsoft phone these days.  Requiring access to a wireless internet connection or a data plan is we guess the basic requirement for these types of phones. However we are consumers and we should say NO.

Overall we like all the features you get on the Galaxy 5 but grow wary of the Android OS – just like Apple’s iPhone. We don’t think any of the touch screen phones really address all types of users but try to meet the bulk of users.

The Galaxy 5 is cheap enough mobile phone that does work well but there are better phones for not much more $$$.  Likewise there are phones that are cheaper and work just as well. Overall the Galaxy 5 It is easy enough to use and stable.  So if you can’t afford say the HTC Wildfire ($50-100 more) then the Galaxy 5 is a good alternative if you needs are not too demanding.

Update: After using the Galaxy 5 for a few months we encountered some issues with ‘slowing’ interface.  The Galaxy 5 does become laggy and we began to encounter reduced battery life for some reason.  So our conclusion changed slightly in that it gives a good first impression but needs more work for long term stability.


  • Samsung Galaxy 5 (i5500)
  • Network
    Quad-band GSM 850/900/1800/1900
    Dual-band 3G 850/900/1900/2100 (Dependent on country)
    HSDPA 7.2 Mbits data speed (download)
    384kpbs data speed (upload)
  • Design
    Touch screen
  • L108 x W56.5 x D12.5 mm
    Weight 101 grams
  • Display/s
    External 2.8 Inch TFT 240 x 320
  • Camera
    LED Flash
  • Video Camera
    480 x 320 video camera 15FPS
  • Connectivity
    Bluetooth V2.1
  • CPU
  • Memory
    Up to 170MB available to user
    MicroSD up to 16Gig
  • Ring tones
    MIDI, MP3, Video, vibration and others
  • Features
    Light Sensor
    Music and Media player
    SMS, MMS, IM, Email
    FM radio with RDS
    Speaker Phone/Hands free
    Li-Po 1300mAh battery
    Up to 690 hours Standby
    Up to 490 minutes Talk Time
  • Price history
    Under $199 AUS 2010 (Pre-paid)