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Samsung Tocco Lite GT-S5230

Samsung Tocco Lite budget touchscreen phone

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Review Having scored considerable touchscreen success with its debut Tocco F480, Samsung has been understandably keen to extend its Tocco-branded portfolio – first with the Tocco Ultra Edition GT-S8300 numberpad-packing slider/touchscreen combo, and now with a budget version, the Tocco Lite GT-S5230, also known as the Star in some territories.

Samsung Tocco Lite GT-S5230

Low connectivity diet: Samsung's Tocco Lite

As its name suggests, the Tocco Lite goes easy on high-end features. It offers a similar TouchWiz user interface as recent Samsung touch phones, but 3G connectivity is absent. It doesn’t do GPS or Wi-Fi either, and its camera is a modest 3.2Mp snapper. This Tocco is also light on the pocket, selling for as little as £90 in some pre-pay packages. Its obvious rival is the LG Cookie – another sub-£100 touchscreen handset.

The Lite measures 106 x 53.5 x 11.9 mm and weighs a mere 92g. The front is a slab design dominated by a clear and bright 3in, 240 x 400 resistive touch display. A simple trio of buttons sit under this: Call, End and Back keys. On the sides are a camera key and a screen lock/unlock button on one side and volume/zoom rockers on the other. A covered slot on the flank hides a regular Samsung multi-connector port for charger, USB cable and earphones. There’s no standard 3.5mm headphone socket.

The user interface feels and behaves in a similar way to its Tocco predecessors. The resistive screen means you press and drag to select and scroll around the display with none of the easy, fluid gesture movement you get using the iPhone or other capacitative screen handsets. Still, for this type of display – and at this sort of price level – Samsung has down a good job in ensuring the TouchWiz UI is responsive and accurate.

On the standby screen, the TouchWiz UI features user-selectable widgets that can be dotted over the display. These can be used to activate applications, give tap-to-activate control over functions, or access online services from the standby screen. In fact, there are three alternative standby screens you can swipe between, using a sideways sweep of your finger, like turning a page. They can be handy for keeping the homescreen uncluttered if you’re using lots of widgets.

Samsung Tocco Lite GT-S5230

Also available in pink

There are some 37 widgets you can choose from - some hidden but selectable in the menus - which can be dragged and dropped from a toolbar. These range from stuff like calendar, messages, photo gallery and music players controls, to ones launching online services such as Facebook, MySpace, Flickr, YouTube and Google apps. Additional widgets can be downloaded, though the choice is limited.

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