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Samsung Galaxy Ace - a hands-on walk-through

One Mobile Ring has just taken stock of the recently announced Samsung Galaxy Ace, where we thought we would deliver to our readers a brief walkthrough of the handset that will be first seen at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona next week.This mobile phone was only officially made public two weeks ago by Samsung, where it’s said to be the replacement model to their midrange Galaxy Portal handset from early last year. The Galaxy Ace was unveiled along with three other new Android based phones, the Samsung Galaxy Fit, Samsung Galaxy Gio and the Samsung Galaxy mini phone - where each of them are geared up for certain types of people.

The handset arrives running Android ‘Froyo’ 2.3, with a 3.5-inch 320x480 HVGA touch screen display, a 5 megapixel camera whilst being powered by an 800Mhz processor. Samsung’s Galaxy Portal only had a 3.2-inch screen. This slight increase in screen size is noticeable along with a design shift away from previous formats, with a reduction in physical buttons which are replaced with touch sensitive versions instead.

Samsung Galaxy Ace’s right-hand side view highlights the similarities between the bezels of the Galaxy Ace and the latest Apple handset, where the head-on-view even more confirms the iPhone 4 now has a doppelganger. Samsung has repeated this form of flattery before, where the current flagship Galaxy S has the look of another Apple device, the iPhone 3GS. This side image also clearly shows one distinct advantage the Galaxy Ace has over the Apple device – expandable memory.

The left-hand side of the Galaxy Ace just houses the volume up and down button, where the flatness of the screen is clearly on show and in a way that once again mimics the iPhone 4’s with its very level retina screen - only with much less of a premium cost attached.

The top of the Samsung Ace mobile phone has a miniUSB charging and data connection port behind a slide cover, along side of the 3.5mm audio jack socket for listening to the built-in FM Radio with RDS features. This location for the headphones seems the choice place for the audio jack with Samsung . This is a welcomed change to other midrange phones, with a better level of comfort when using the earphones and the device sits in a pocket.

The rear of the Galaxy Ace is a 5 megapixal camera with a bright flash, where the Galaxy Portal only carried a 3 MP variant without any flash abilities. Samsung’s Ace houses their microSD card on the side, as seen earlier on, where under the backing plate is just the SIM card and a removable battery – another advantage over the Apple iPhone 4.

Samsung’s Galaxy Ace runs from the newest Google mobile OS, Android ‘Froyo’ 2.2 with the company’s own TouchWiz UI overlay to the platform with multi-touch support. The Portal shipped with the much older Android ‘Donut’ 1.5, although it was updated to version 2.1 but multi-touch wasn't possible due to the hardware limitations.

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Rob has worked in the affiliate industry for many years with large publishers, and previously worked as a journalist on titles such as Wired, PC Magazine, ITProPortal, The Register, The Inquirer, Pocket-Lint, Mobile Industry Review, Know Your Mobile and The Gadget Show.