To help us provide you with free impartial advice, we may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site. Learn more

Samsung Galaxy Apollo I5801 review

Our Rating :

It may have updated software, but the Apollo lacks its predecessor’s excellent AMOLED screen and it feels far cheaper.


Android 2.1, 3.2in 240×400 display

We liked the Samsung Android Galaxy Portal and were looking forward to seeing the updated Android 2.1 Apollo. Newer operating system aside, the Apollo struck us as a step backwards: it has a lower resolution screen – 240×400 as opposed to 320×480 on the Portal – and it’s a normal LCD instead of a superior AMOLED display. The reduced resolution makes text slightly blurry.

Samsung Galaxy Apollo I5801

Unlike most Android phones, the Portal’s home screen is on the left rather than in the centre, and the application tray scrolls sideways rather than vertically. The combination of this and Samsung’s custom TouchWiz icons made the phone hard to navigate initially.

There are some software improvements over the Portal. Social networking account integration is far better. You can import contacts from Facebook, Twitter, Windows Live, Google, Yahoo! and MySpace into a single Contacts app. Your Inbox can aggregate messages from multiple services, and the Calendar integrates with Google and Facebook.

Snaps from the 3-megapixel camera were average for a phone, but the lack of a flash dooms low-light shots. Video can only be captured at 320×240, which is barely good enough for posting to YouTube. Battery life was good, although it’s highly dependent on your use of WiFi, 3G data and GPS.

Samsung Galaxy Apollo I5801 Port

Build quality is inferior to the Portal. The Apollo’s rear casing is made of a cheap-looking black plastic, and the ridged design looks tacky. The front has a mirror finish around the screen which highlights greasy fingerprints. Worst of all, there’s only a single, central Home button which replaces the four-way navigation rocker on the Portal. Instead of physical buttons for Back, Search, Menu, Answer and End Call, you just get touch-sensitive Menu and Back buttons.

Samsung Galaxy Apollo I5801 side

The Apollo is a poor follow-up to the popular Portal. The HTC Wildfire has a better screen and camera, along with HTC’s Sense software, or you can Motorola’s new Defy now for the same price.


Rating **


Main display size 3.2in
Native resolution 240×400
Second Display No
CCD effective megapixels 3-megapixel
Video recording format 3GP
Connectivity Bluetooth, WiFi, USB
GPS yes
Internal memory 170MB
Memory card support microSD
Memory card included 1024MB
Operating frequencies GSM 850/900/1800/1900, 3G 900/2100
Wireless data EDGE, HSDPA
Size 114x55x13mm
Weight 109g


Operating system Android 2.1
Microsoft Office compatibility Word/Excel/PowerPoint editors, PDF viewer
Email client POP3/IMAP/Exchange
Audio format support AAC, AAC+, eAAC+, MP3, WMA, AMR, WAV, MID, OGG
Video playback formats MPEG4
FM Radio yes
Web Browser Webkit
Accessories headset, USB data cable, mains adapter
Talk time 7.2 hours
Standby time 21.3 days
Tested battery life (MP3 playback) 30h 42m

Buying Information

Price on contract £20-per-month, 18-month contract
SIM-free supplier N/A
Contract/prepay supplier

Read more