- Stylish, brushed metal design; only 9.6mm thin; external OLED display
- Flip hard to open, no memory card slot, poor tactile response of keypad and controls, no 3G
The U300 is certainly a stylish looking handset, but it has too many faults to be recommended as a wise purchase.
Price$ 549.00 (AUD)
A smart and sophisticated looking mobile phone thanks to a sapphire blue, brushed metal finish and a design that is just 9.6mm thin, Samsung's U300 certainly doesn't compromise on style. Unfortunately, its design sacrifices usability -- the difficult to open flip, poor tactile response of the keypad and controls, and the lack of a memory card slot deem this handset mindlessly frustrating to use.
The U300 is certainly attractive, largely thanks to the brushed metal finish. It feels solid and well built, and the spring operated flip certainly gives the aura of a handset that fits into a higher price bracket than it actually does. The small OLED display on the front is convenient and stylish, while sunlight mode improves the internal screen visibility in bright sunlight. Unfortunately, the style of this handset also contributes to its downfall. The flip is almost impossible to open with one hand and even with both hands it's still a little tricky to flip open.
The casing is just 9.6mm thin, but this size means that a memory card slot has been sacrificed -- with just 70MB of internal memory, you won't be able to store many multimedia files. The biggest downside to the U300 though is its controls. In keeping with the design of the handset, they are completely flat. At the best of times they are barely responsive, often taking two or three hard and firm presses of a finger to activate. Day-to-day menu browsing, answering calls and typing messages is a frustrating process -- the controls simply lack tactility, making the U300 a chore to operate.
It's a real shame this is the case, as under the cover is a handset with a decent features list. Aside from the lack of 3G connectivity, the U300 includes a 3.2-megapixel camera with 4x digital zoom, video recording and playback, a music player and Bluetooth and USB connectivity. The music player has repeat and shuffle play modes, preset equaliser settings and 3D sound effects, with the A2DP Bluetooth profile it means you can wirelessly stream your music to a set of compatible headphones. The U300 also has Bang & Olufsen's ICEpower technology designed to offer enhanced acoustic capabilities and sound quality without affecting battery life. We didn't note much of a difference in sound quality but the included proprietary headphones don't help.
Strangely, although there is a TV-output option, there is no composite TV-out cable included in the sales package. Other features include standard POP3 and IMAP4 e-mail access, SMS and MMS messaging with T9 predictive text input, a handsfree speakerphone, polyphonic and MP3 ringtones, a voice recorder and image editor.
Battery life is above average, rated at up to six hours talk-time and up to 300 hours of standby time. Samsung claims the use of Optimized Power Usage Solution (OPUS) will increase talk-time by 10 per cent.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Epson WorkForce ET-4550
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Huawei Mate 9
Google Daydream VR headset
Acer Swift 7
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Lexar® Portable SSD
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Surface Pro 4
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370-Gaming 5 AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard review
- 2 Kogan curved 4K UHD 55-inch LED LCD TV review
- 3 Panasonic Blu-ray recorder PVR set-top box review
- 4 Garmin Fenix Chronos fitness tracker smartwatch review
- 5 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
Latest News Articles
- Samsung unveils Bixby voice assistant for upcoming Galaxy S8
- BlackBerry readies a more secure version of the Samsung Galaxy S7
- Android device updates: Nougat rollout begins for the Moto Z Play
- Android device updates: Nougat is coming to the Moto G4, G4 Plus
- Beyond smartphones, Samsung wants its Exynos 9 chip in VR headsets
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Oppo R9s Plus phone: Full, in-depth review
- Samsung 2017 QLED Q7 TV: Full, in-depth review
- HTC U Ultra phone full, in-depth review
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTSocial Media ExecutiveNSW
- CCInfrastructure Business AnalystACT
- FTAgile Test AnalystQLD
- FTSnr Salesforce Technical Consultant/Architect Global IT Company - SydneyNSW
- CCProduct Design AnalystNSW
- FTAssociate Consultant - IT Project ServicesVIC
- TPBusiness Analyst - Infrastructure ProjectQLD
- FTDatabase Modelling SpecialistACT
- TPProgram ArchitectQLD
- FTStorage Engineer (HDS)NSW
- FTICT Client Services ManagerQLD
- TPJunior Business AnlystVIC
- FTSenior Software Engineer x 2 - Adelaide Based (PV, NV2 or NV1 required)NSW
- FTFull Stack Web Developer .NET or JAVANSW
- FT.Net Solutions DeveloperSA
- FTSenior System/Network EngineerACT
- FTServer Engineer l Windows l VMWare l Active DirectoryNSW
- TPSystems ManagerQLD
- FTJunior Applications SupportQLD
- CCFullstack .Net DeveloperNSW
- CCBusiness Analyst- Data GovernanceNSW
- TPFront End DeveloperNSW
- TPPerformance Test Analyst - Perth BasedQLD
- FTHelpdesk TechnicianVIC
- CCChange and Communications ManagerQLD