We weren't fans of the original Vodafone Smart, and we can't say the Vodafone Smart 2 does a lot to bring us on side. Yes it is small, yes it isn't all that expensive, but we don't think it is really a very good value smartphone.

Certainly if we compare it to the slightly more expensive Orange San Francisco 2, which we thought wasn't quite such a giant leap forward as its predecessor, the Vodafone Smart 2 falls down as being a less giant leap forward than its own predecessor.

If we were recommending a budget handset, we'd probably advise spending a little more if you possibly can and buying something like the HTC Wildfire S.

We liked

The build quality is good. This is a solid handset that should take the knocks well.

The screen responsiveness is great, too. We can find that budget handsets don't respond well to taps, sweeps and swipes, but that criticism can't be levelled here.

We disliked

Video shooting is limited to a resolution of 640 x 480 pixels, and we found videos could be jerky and generally poor quality.

There's no smart dialling, which seems to us to be a tragic oversight.

The battery life is one of the poorer we've seen from a smartphone, and oddly it seems to be worse than that of the original Vodafone Smart.

Final verdict

Vodafone is clearly keen on its Smart line, and wants to build it. The starting point of the original Smart certainly gave plenty of scope, but Vodafone hasn't grasped the nettle very forcefully here. Any updated phone whose battery life is worse than its predecessor is asking for trouble in a review.

The Vodafone Smart 2 doesn't deliver enough bang for your buck, in our view - and there are better handsets out there for the budget level.