Samsung Jet S8000 review

Billed as 'better than the iPhone'... but can it even compete?

The Samsung Jet S8000 - is it a budget alternative to the iPhone?
The Samsung Jet S8000 - is it a budget alternative to the iPhone?

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The applications on the Samsung Jet S8000 are standard fare, but at least this time they're much more on show.

There's the usual tight integration with Google, giving us access to Maps, Mail and Search, although these are run in Java and as such are pretty basic.

Maps does offer the My Location service, but there's no double tap to zoom or Streetview on offer here, and Gmail is stripped of a lot of key features (still better than using the Jet's on-board email system though).

The samsung jet s8000 google maps

The other options are certainly worth taking a look at, even though they're never going to be deal breakers for a phone like this. Photo contacts, which lets you tag parts of a photo with a person's contact information, seems a little bit pointless, although it is fun to play with. It just assumes you'll enjoy staring at the same photo time and again to get your friends' details, which you probably won't.

Video editing is fairly comprehensive (much more so than the iPhone 3GS, and we know how giddy the world went for that when learning you can TRIM A VIDEO) with the ability to splice, cut, copy and more, as well as adding audio tracks, although MP3s weren't compatible for some reason.

Dynamic canvas sounds a lot more fun than it is, by the way, as it's nothing more than a glorified Paint program allowing you to rather haphazardly daub over things using your finger. We can't imagine you'll ever take a picture of your boss, draw a moustache on it then show him, for instance.

The gaming on the phone is among the better options from Samsung, as it allows you to play Rollercoaster, which uses the motion sensitivity to guide a rollercoaster around a track safely (it sounds better than it is), as well as other trial games such as Tetris, which are cool but leave you a bit angry at the prospect of having to pay for them after shelling out so much for a handset.

The samsung jet s8000 rollercoaster game

GAMING ON THE JET: Rollercoaster makes use of the motion sensitive controls

The rest of the applications are such standard fare that they're not worth going into, as you can probably work out what a world clock, timer, voice recorder and converter all do (although the voice recorder does pick up sound impressively well when we tested it out at a recent interview).

One other thing the Samsung Jet S8000 brings to the table is the ability to unlock the screen by writing a letter on the lock display - not only was this a laggy system, it refused to recognise if we'd written a C (our unlock letter) and sometimes instead decided we'd written a T, which started the internet.

If a company is going to put a feature like this on the phone, it should include some pretty wide parameters, or else the rest of the world will do like we did and swiftly turn the feature off.

Gareth Beavis
Formerly Global Editor in Chief

Gareth has been part of the consumer technology world in a career spanning three decades. He started life as a staff writer on the fledgling TechRadar, and has grown with the site (primarily as phones, tablets and wearables editor) until becoming Global Editor in Chief in 2018. Gareth has written over 4,000 articles for TechRadar, has contributed expert insight to a number of other publications, chaired panels on zeitgeist technologies, presented at the Gadget Show Live as well as representing the brand on TV and radio for multiple channels including Sky, BBC, ITV and Al-Jazeera. Passionate about fitness, he can bore anyone rigid about stress management, sleep tracking, heart rate variance as well as bemoaning something about the latest iPhone, Galaxy or OLED TV.