Samsung Galaxy Xcover S5690


A good gift for Christmas ?

Don’t know what to buy your adventurous friend, girlfriend/boyfriend, dad or other important person in your life for the fast-approaching Christmas? The Samsung Galaxy Xcover S5690 might just be the perfect gift. Unlike all other rugged phones, this one brings a lot of class to outdoor activities thanks to its design. It was made as a direct competition to Motorola’s upcoming line of tough smartphones. Here’s the review with what you can expect from this device.

Waterproof and shock resistant

Samsung’s Xcover S5690 is, above all, IP67 certified; for those of you unfamiliar with the term, it means that you’ll be able to immerse it in 1 m of water and that won’t affect it at all, even if it were to stand there for half an hour. That’s not all: the product passed our shock-resistant and dust-proof tests with flying colors. As for construction and design, the Galaxy Xcover S5690 is not one of your average compact smartphones, because it measures 122mm x 66mm x 12 mm. But it is a slim device with its body made of plastic which has a weight of only 116 g. The standard touchscreen bar design is also present and it offers users excellent grip.Samsung-Galaxy-Xcover-S5690

Gorilla Glass screen

The screen of this product that we tested a while back is a touch one with 3.65 inch HVGA, but its 320 x 480 pixels of resolution don’t deliver the same brilliant levels of brightness and colors we have come to expect from the South Korean company. The display allows for multi-touch gestures – responsiveness is superb – and ships with Gorilla Glass against scratches and fingerprints. Under the screen sit the usual hardware keys; above it is a proximity sensor which is very helpful when you want the display disabled when talking to someone on the phone. Worthy of mention is the following: the back of the Xcover S5690 features a special lock at the bottom to keep it securely in place. You’ll be glad to know that when we tried to remove the back cover in order to access the battery, it took us a while, meaning that the device was really well-made to prevent accidental damage. Battery life was quite good: the smartphone lasted almost a day.

Powered by Android 2.3.4 OS

The operating system of the Samsung Galaxy Xcover S5690 is Android 2.3.4 which features the TouchWiz 3.0 user interface, one of the easiest ones to use. If you expected novelties, you won’t find them on this smartphone; there’s not even a compass or an altimeter. The display was able to fit a number of 7 customizable panes and the menus were all very user-friendly, as was rearranging applications.

The 3.2-megapixel camera employed by this device delivered low-quality photos, with poor contrast. It comes with geotagging and LED flash; as for the videos we shot: they were decent. For listening to music there’s a TouchWiz music player and it gives a good performance with solid audio quality.

Good connectivity

In the connectivity area, Samsung’s rugged smartphone makes use of the following: tri-band HSPA, quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE, stereo Bluetooth v3.0, Wi-Fi (b/g/n) and USB v2.0. Browsing the web is fast enough, although the screen is not as crisp as others. Download rates were up to 7.2 Mbps and upload ones were 5.76 Mbps. The device has a storage memory of only 150MB, but there’s support for microSD cards allowing up to 32GB.

Review conclusion

The Samsung Galaxy Xcover S5690 combines a rugged design with all the features of a smartphone and what results is a pretty good device. Sure, the review conclusion is that phone it lacks many other things found on the Galaxy S II or Apple’s iPhone 4S, but don’t forget that this is a product aimed at people who love to be outdoors.

Technical specifications

CPU800 MHz Marvell MG2 processor
Operating SystemAndroid OS, v2.3 (Gingerbread)
DisplayGorilla Glass display
Screen typeCapacitive touchscreen, 16M colors
Sscreen size320 x 480 pixels, 3.65 inches
Internal storage150 MB storage, 512 MB RAM
Call RecordsPractically unlimited
PhonebookPractically unlimited entries and fields, Photo call
Card SlotmicroSD, up to 32GB
WLANWi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi hotspot
3GHSDPA, 7.2 Mbps; HSUPA, 5.76 Mbps
USBYes, microUSB v2.0, HS
BluetoothYes, v3.0 with A2DP
Infrared portn/a
Primary3.2 MP, 2048×1536 pixels, LED flash
3G NetworksHSDPA 900 / 2100 MHz
2G NetworksGSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 MHz
Battery typeStandard Samsung battery, Li-Ion
Total weight116 g
External size122 x 66 x 12 mm