Samsung Tocco Ultra Edition S8300
Touchscreen, keypad and a killer camera, but where's the WiFi?
Text input is decent for a touchscreen phone too – even though most will opt for the keypad. The touch keyboard fills the screen, avoiding problems experienced on other touch phones, caused by fingers straying on to control buttons mid-message. There is no Qwerty keyboard option, however, which may disappoint some users.
No pinch zoom, but swipes through lists and has improved scrolling
For a compact touchscreen, the Tocco Ultra Edition is noticeably accurate; with large fingers getting by with few accidental strokes. The 8Mp camera fires up within a couple of seconds of pressing its side button, switching automatically into landscape viewfinder mode. The slider design keeps the lens tucked behind the bodywork, so it has to be open to use it.
It’s amply equipped with adjustment options, with a sharp-shooting autofocus system onboard, Face Detection and a macro mode for excellent close ups. In Smile Shot mode, the camera waits for a subject to smile before snapping. Similarly, Blink Detection can avoid shots ruined by serial blinkers.
Wide Dymamic Range gadgetry improves light handling by boosting sensitivity in tricky lighting situations, while an Anti-Shake option reduces hand wobble problems. Tapping various icons onscreen and selecting options hand you plenty of control over auto camera settings like white balance, exposure and metering, plus ISO for light sensitivity. Various typical cameraphone effects and frames can be added too, plus there are multi-shot, and panorama shot modes, plus timers.
Thanks to the onboard A-GPS, you can also switch on geo-tagging, adding location metadata to shots, so you can view where they were taken on the onboard Google Maps or other suitable desktop or online application.
The results from the camera are impressive. It feels comfortable to use and snap with, and there’s minimal lag from pressing the shutter to image capture. It takes terrific shots with colours rendered richly and accurately, with the autofocus capturing crisp, detailed images. As well as a strong performance in good lighting, it did pretty well indoors in reasonable conditions. A dual LED flash is onboard for low light shooting, which does is satisfactory for boosting lighting locally.
Certainly compact for a touchscreen model
While browsing photos has no pinch-to-zoom, you can zoom in or out by touch button and slider action. Samsung offers a stack of in-camera image editing options to play with, and you can also upload images and video online straight from the handset, thanks to a Share pix app that supports Flickr, Facebook, Picasa, Photobucket, MySpace and Friendster.