Samsung Pixon 12 review

Do more megapixels make for a better mobile?

The Samsung Pixon 12
The Samsung Pixon 12

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Bad news we're afraid - if you're in the market for a phone with a decent camera and a good internet experience, best steer well clear of the Samsung Pixon 12 M8910. It might be nice to look at and have a shiny OLED screen to display web pages, but not only is it a little slow over 3G it simply cannot render pages well.

The TouchWiz internet browser has never been very good, and even the Webkit-based upgrades offer very little else. Yes, it's lovely being able to open more than one web page at once, and being able to use the address bar for text or Google search is a nice touch, but the rest of the time it's just an awful experience.

The samsung pixon 12 m8910 portrait internet

We're talking a schizophrenic approach to rendering web pages, idly choosing between full HTML and mobile versions seemingly at will. Those of you used to a fairly swift experience on the iPhone or Android efforts will laugh in the face of the speed at which full web pages load on the Pixon 12 M8910.

And that's not all. Each link doesn't require the happy single touch to open it up - no, you need to hit it twice. And whilst doing so, it's likely you'll hit the wrong part of the screen and therefore zoom in or out of the webpage.

After doing this for the fortieth time when trying to browse a selection of sites, we simply decided to give up, bookmark a couple of easy to use favourites (thank you, BBC Mobile) and left it at that.

The one-fingered zooming option that Samsung enjoys so much is also present and correct, and like other options doesn't work as well as we'd like. You have to hold your finger or thumb very still to activate it, and then sliding up or down is not as accurate as it could be by a long way. And even zooming in doesn't remove the need to double tap links... why?

Another major talking point is the lack of history on the phone - the likes of Nokia and LG allow you to visually scroll through visited web pages, but with the Samsung Pixon 12 M8910 you only have the drop down address bar to tell you where you've been.

The samsung pixon 12 m8910 lanscape

This is far from all encompassing though, and it means you have to spread yourself around searching for the pages you frequently visit but may have forgotten to bookmark.

The RSS reader was functional enough when we got it working, but that took some time as adding a feed in wasn't very easy as the web browser wasn't high powered enough to automatically detect them. We'd prefer it if you could import feeds across from the PC or something seamlessly, perhaps even via the cloud, but that's not possible here. In fact, you can't even put the RSS reader on the home screen, which seems like an obvious trick.

The one good thing you could say about the browser is the fact you can save small thumbnails of the webpage as a bookmark for the home screen... but it's worrying that's the best feature of a browser.

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.