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Review: Samsung's U600 - 10.9mm Thick Slider

Review by Samuel Chan on Tuesday June 26, 2007.

samsung sgh-u600 · cell phone reviews · samsung news · cell phone news · samuel chan

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Samsung's SGH-U600 set a world record for thinnest slider handset on the market, a record that Samsung itself had set. The new U600 is thin - thinner than many of the thinnest candy bar shaped handsets available today. The danger of miniaturization, such as we see in the U600, is often compromised ergonomics and usability. In this review we'll see if Samsung can avoid those issues with their latest and greatest slider phone.

Take note that the review model is a Hong Kong market SGH-U608. Minor differences in firmware can be expected when compared with versions of the U600 sold in other markets, such as in Europe.

Physical Aspects

Compared with its predecessor, the D900, the U600 looks a lot more streamlined. All three color schemes look very attractive. Few could find fault with our Sapphire Blue review model. The material used in the body is mainly plastic, but it doesn't feel cheap at all thanks to its metallic finishing and coloring.

At 103.5mm x 49.3mm x 10.9mm (4.1" x 1.9" x .43"), the U600 feels very sleek and smooth in the hand. Its 81g weight is about right, and the build quality feels very solid. Users should have no problem sliding the device into a shirt pocket.

The front of the phone is almost completely flat. The d-pad is slightly raised in the middle, making it very comfortable to access. Unlike the d-pad, the soft keys and dial/hang-up keys are all touch-sensitive, making it possible to have them mounted on a completely flat surface. The clear plastic used on the front of the phone is much stronger than that of the D900 - pressing on the hard surface won't result in any distortion of the screen image.

The dial/hang-up buttons are not backlighted, whereas the softkeys and d-pad have a very attractive white backlight behind them. Since these buttons are touch-sensitive, they are not the most reliable in use. Samsung added in the function of having the softkeys blink when accessed. This doesn't rectify the fundamental problem with touch keys, but it might allow users to be more confident with these non-mechanical buttons. All touch sensitive keys are automatically locked during phone conversations, so they shouldn't pose a problem when the user's face touches them.

The design of the U600 is very clean. The volume keys, ports, and shutter buttons can be found on the sides. One addition would be the new power button at the top, which also serves as a keypad lock key. This is a useful feature, but being as the power button is located on the top, it is not as accessible as it could be for such a common function.

Users will appreciate the slightly raised d-pad for its ability to make sliding open the phone simpler. The half-auto mechanism feels less well-constructed than on previous models, though. It is stiffer and not as smooth in action. Together with the glossy surface, sliding open the phone with one hand is not really all that easy. The alphanumeric keypad is engraved on a single piece of metal, and thankfully are appropriately spaced, and offer great tactile feedback.

In terms of its physical aspects, I am quite pleased with the U600, with the exception of the touch sensitive keys and slightly tricky slider. The design is really conservative, meaning that not a lot of people should find reason to complain. On the other hand, not a lot of people are going to be wildly impressed, either. Unlike the Motorola RAZR, for example, the U600 doesn't stand out when seen from afar.

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selwyn @ 2:54:39PM EDT on Tuesday March 17, 2009

i hav been takin out the battery anyhow.now the fone dosent work can yall help

ZC @ 7:32:13AM EDT on Wednesday May 27, 2009

I've just got this phone and it's brilliant. I've never had a Samsung before as they have always been too illogic in the way they are set out. However, this phone easily beats all of my previous mobiles.

The touch screen buttons are nice - I said that I would never have a phone with touch screen buttons but...-and I don't find myself acidently pressing them or double-tapping them because of the vibraion feedback when you do.

Great, sleek phone!

Raymond @ 5:32:47PM EDT on Thursday May 28, 2009

Does anyone have any idea how I can change my SGH-U600 menu display from English to Traditional or Simplified Chinese?

Catherine Murray @ 11:30:24AM EDT on Monday July 6, 2009

Need instructions for Samsung SGH U600 also lost all connections apart from battery. Got it for 75 birthday.

lillyRds @ 11:04:25AM EDT on Sunday July 12, 2009

I have a purple Samsung U600 phone. It's super and I love it. I love the fact that its so slim and easy to fit in any pocket. The touch screen buttons are cool, and I love the vibrations that occur when they are touched! :) The large shiny screen is of great quality, and the camera is perfect! Overall, this is an awesome phone in my opinion!

The saint @ 3:57:29PM EDT on Tuesday July 21, 2009

screen went wrong after 8 months, carphone warehouse repaired it for free although had to buy a replacement phone as it took 2 1/2 weeks for them to replace screen. It would be wise not to press on screen to open and close :-)

miss @ 6:07:16AM EST on Saturday December 5, 2009

this fone was amaaaaaaaaaaazing ive ahd it for over a year and i loved it to bits.. u can do allsorts like block ppl from ringin/texxn u which other fones dnt offer.. BUT.. recently the menu buttons have just stopped working.. and i cant get into my menu so its pretty useles.. a few of my friends with the same phone ahve had the same problem...

glacier queen @ 4:51:47AM EST on Monday December 14, 2009

samsung have a 2 year warranty on their phones, so if you've got problems, like i had with software, call them and they'll arrange for it to be sent back, repaired (if a problem with the phone/software etc) and return it - i was quite impressed - i want to upgrade now and don't know which phone to go for - anyone have any ideas - want similar features to U600!!

sad eyes @ 8:37:47AM EST on Tuesday January 12, 2010

can anyone help ,my key pad is locked up all of a sudden ,, cant send a txt,

samir @ 8:23:26PM EDT on Saturday May 15, 2010

I have Samsung SGH U600, from last few days it is showing display problem, means sometime it does not show screen (I can hear an incoming phone but cant see number)and sometime it fixed automatically. I fail to understand. Please advise.

Ellie @ 3:18:03PM EDT on Thursday June 17, 2010

I like this little phone because the camera is so good, I have had other samsungs and the camera was crap, but this one is clear and autofocuses. Although it is only a 3.2mp it is a whole lot better than other 5mp that I have owned.

auser @ 3:36:42AM EST on Friday November 12, 2010

This phone sucks when it comes to deal with a "little" large file, no option to install an app in the memory card, restriction on installing for example a 600kb jar+jad file, etc.

JANE @ 10:51:10PM EDT on Saturday April 30, 2011

i've got this phone for almost a month but i cant make a call...i alreasy set the phone settings but still i can;t call..anyone can help me..

Mark Smith @ 7:59:46PM EDT on Thursday May 5, 2011

I like the designe of this phone...

About the author

Samuel Chan
Sam Chan is MobileBurn's roving reporter and reviewer in Hong Kong, where he has access to all sorts of toys the rest of us just can't have.

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