Samsung S400i Review – Premium Look, Budget Price Mobile Phone

Samsung S400i Review: Released in 2006, the Samsung S400i seemed to continue the trend of the S-family of Samsung phones. These sought to take the looks of previously successful phones, reduce their specification and release them on to the market at a cut price. This was a successful strategy in part because lower-marketed models were often severely lacking in the looks department.

That was no so much with Samsung, so releases like the Samsung S300 looked pretty much with the Samsung A800, and the Samsung S500i looked more like a Samsung E700. For the case of the Samsung S400i, there was no denying that this phone was much in the mould of the popular Samsung D500 and D600 phones. At this time the D600 was still a relatively top-end handset so it was perhaps a bit too much to expect many similarities.

While the specifications were lower – in this case even beneath the Samsung D500 – this was still not a ultra-budget mobile. Users benefited from the same TFT colour screen, and unusually for a VGA camera, also a flash. The phone also shipped with Bluetooth and a MP3 player on board, although limited storage made this of less use.

Full specificiations here.

The S-family of Samsung phones kept on churning out cut-price classics and saw many releases over the next couple of years. Oddly enough it would be some years until 2009 until another slide phone was released under this family.

Samsung S400i Review Pros: 

  • The phones look was spot on. To an untrained eye this was very little different from the more premium D500 and D600, and it also saved on both size and weight.
  • The screen was relatively good for a budget handset – it came at 1.9 inches and 176 x 220 resolution.
  • I-mode support was enabled on the handset which allowed for the delivery of different content. The S400 was thus one of a few select models to offer this service.
  • Connectivity was good and the phone offered Bluetooth for connection to devices.

Samsung S400i Review Cons:

  • The camera was much weaker than that of the D500 – this was just a VGA style shooter. Although this contained a flash it could only take pictures of limited quality and no video.
  • Storage on board was clipped to just 13MP, way short of the 96MB seen on the D500. Unlike the D600 there also was unsurpisingly no memory card slot. This limited the amount of functions the phone could carry out.
  • The phone shipped with a smaller capacity battery which gave rise to shorter talktime and standby times.
  • There was a certain premium paid for the look of the phone, and the phone was roughly equivalent to something like the Nokia 6230 which by now was older and cheaper.

Current Pricing and Future Prospects: 

This model is the poor relation of the Samsung D500/D600 and the markets reflect that. Built and sold in much smaller numbers, this is a rarer phone but would trade at prices under that of the previous two models. Its good looks may see a certain amount of demand for it.

Where can I get one?

Both Ebay and Amazon have second-hand and refurbished models.

Interested in more phones? See a list of phones I own here.

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