The Galaxy Pro smartphone from Samsung tries to do something rather different with Android and marry the operating system with a mini-QWERTY keyboard. The Blackberry-style keyboard is beloved of professionals and consumers alike, as it can make for fast text generation.
Samsung has made a great job of the keyboard here, and we find it difficult to fault. The keys are large and well made, they deliver a nice return when pressed, and their slightly domed shaping is comfortable under the finger and conducive to speedy typing.
We also like the fact that Samsung has found room for a small set of cursor keys on the bottom right of the keyboard. This makes getting around within longer texts a fairly speedy and efficient process.
Unfortunately the same praise can't be given to the screen. Android has been squeezed into a screen that measures 2.8 inches across the diagonal and has a resolution of 320 by 240 pixels. The resolution is low, and the screen really doesn't have the right dimensions for use with Android.
There is a lot of scrolling required to get through menus and make selections, and this is the case whether you are using the Samsung Galaxy Pro in its standard mode or turned on its side and with the screen rotated, because the long and short edge dimensions are quite similar.
Very oddly, Samsung has not implemented pinch to zoom. This makes web browsing. in particular, a little frustrating as you have to use the small on-screen zoom icons to enlarge any particular web page.
The technical specifications are reasonable for a handset that costs £209 (inc. VAT) SIM free. Android 2.2, HSDPA, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS are all present. There is a 3-megapixel flashless camera, 512MB of internal storage and an 800MHz Qualcomm processor. Sadly Flash is not supported.
The Samsung Galaxy Pro is a disappointing smartphone. Although it has a good keyboard and specifications that seem to suit its price, the low-resolution screen lets it down. And without a good screen, the best keyboard in the world would struggle to win many favours.