Samsung Star S5230 Review


Samsung seem to have kept the tradition and the Samsung Star S5230 comes running the well known TouchWiz interface that is also available on the Preston S5600, UltraTOUCH S8300, OMNIA HD i8910 etc. Honestly, we don´t really like the whole widget thing, but it certainly has its fans out there, that´s for sure. There are three separate home screens where you can place widgets, similarly to the way it´s done on Android devices and switching between them is as easy as sliding a finger. The cool thing is if you drag a widget outside the active area, it´s moved to and appears on the next screen, plus you can set one and the same wallpaper on all three of them. There is a bunch of preloaded widgets, including ones to deliver Facebook, MySpace, YouTube, Flickr and Picasa functionality that are no more than simply shortcuts to the corresponding websites, but there is one that allows you to download and install additional widgets that we find most appealing.

All menus are colorful and we do like them. When you get to the main menu  of the Samsung Star S5230 you will see the middle icon at the bottom has been changed and now leads you to your Photo contacts. The option is different from what we saw on the OMNIA HD i8910 and actually reminds us of what you have on S-CLASS 3D interface phones (take a look at our LG ARENA review or LG Viewty Smart Preview), because there is a vertical scroll list that shows the pictures assigned to contacts – they can be switched by sliding a finger upwards or downwards. The phonebook shows all entries on a vertical scroll list. We are pretty disappointed with the searching itself, because it feels clumsy and is, unfortunately, not performed as you type letters in. Thankfully, there is a slider on the left that filters entries by the first letter of the contact name and we believe this is the best way to find a particular contact fast.


All functions the Organizer offers should be more than enough to meet the needs of ordinary customers. You´ve got Calendar where you can enter up to 300 events, take a look at them in daily, weekly and monthly view or just see them all on a vertical scroll list. You also have Notes, Tasks, World Clock, Calculator and Unit Converter here, while Voice Recorder and Stopwatch are both available through the application menu. The My Files app that is actually a fully fledged file manager is also in the above mentioned menu.


Typing away messages (SMS, MMS and email) can be done in several entry modes. First, you´ve got the standard phone keypad of course. Second, you can activate handwriting recognition, a function we don´t really like here, since writing by using your finger feels like an uphill battle on this phone, not to mention screen fails to register pressing in its entirety, which is way too important when it comes to hassle free handwriting. Third, there is a full, software QWERTY keyboard that is only available in landscape mode and takes several minutes to get used to. The automated text entry and spell checker software kicks in anytime you misspell a word and we are pleased with its functionality indeed. We need to point out that since the screen measures only three inches, keys are not exactly large, so people with thicker fingers might find them somewhat difficult to press. The only thing we don´t like is that setting up your email account is not automatic, i.e. you will have to enter all relevant settings manually even if you happen to be on a popular service provider.


The Samsung Star S5230 comes equipped with Samsung Mobile Browser v0.8, a Webkit based application that supports both JAVA and Flash. Page rendering is fast enough, although cannot really make up for the excessively long loading of web content. You need to double tap the screen to zoom in on things, or alternatively, keep your finger pressed against the screen until context menu pops up allowing you to zoom in/out. The lack of pan view is not immediately obvious here, since most pages are loaded in bird´s view mode anyway. Despite what manufacturer claims, not all Flash elements are displayed correctly. Certain pages are visualized properly, while others fail to for no reason in particular. For an instance, the YouTube player on our webpage doesn´t work on this phone at all, while the one available on the PC version of YouTube and flash elements there are both loaded and rendered without a hitch. Another gripe we have with the browser is that text is not rearranged and squeezed together to fit the new frame size when you zoom in on something. All told, we are neither really pleased nor generally displeased with the browser. Still, we wouldn´t be caught using it often, because pages load really slowly due to the lack of 3G and Wi-Fi support. Truth be told, following up feeds feels way easier through the RSS reader that you can find in the application menu.

Local connectivity is available through Bluetooth and USB in three different modes – Media Player, PC Studio and Mass Storage. The Samsung PC Studio software pack is most interesting, since you will be getting its latest version along with the phone. It comes with a brand new interface that looks better and is, by far, much easier and intuitive to work with. That´s the ticket, Samsung!



1. jmweekes

Posts: 14; Member since: Aug 28, 2008

Anybody know if they have changed (corrected) message notifications with this later version of TouchWiz? I have a Behold--love the phone but absolutely hate the fact that if I have it set for periodic notification of messages, I have to view (actually open) every message before it will stop beeping. All the older, non-TouchWiz Samsung phones I've had would continue to beep/remind me until I hit any button to acknowledge a message (or messages); they would then stop reminding me until a new message was received. I'm very intersted in the S5600 (Preston), but will be very reluctant to get it (or any TouchWiz phone) if this (which I see as a huge problem) has not been addressed.

2. behold--me

Posts: 679; Member since: Jun 22, 2009

nice budget touch phone looks like the LG cookie

3. sumanthbr

Posts: 1; Member since: Jun 27, 2009

Hi Can we play songs on the Bluetooth headset using star?.. I need the answer as i didn't find anywhere abt this..Pls some one help me i am planning to buy this..

4. sonisoe

Posts: 440; Member since: May 06, 2009

it's so samsung.... battery sucks.... 2 samsung devices previously i had, 2 disappointments.... but i still have hope for the android samsung galaxy.. that phone has got 1500mAh battery power and AMOLED display which is supposed to make the battery last even longer and yet displays vivid colors...

5. ketty

Posts: 1; Member since: Jul 16, 2009

samsung star is really Bad in-call quality, Battery performance is below par, MicroSDHC card slot is underneath the battery ? pls smeone reply me.

6. valimunt

Posts: 1; Member since: Aug 10, 2009

Is there a chance to enhance the battery life, with an software (or firmware) update. i'm verey very disapointed about this. After 24 hours the battery is empty. If someone have a solution for this please write me at But the phone at this price is vrey nice.

9. ARUN MAHAPATRA unregistered

hi this is nice phone

7. ddvniek

Posts: 1; Member since: Sep 08, 2009

I think it's actually a stylish phone.

8. Cabong unregistered

I have one of these, for almost a year mow. The battery lasts me for over 1 week... Most times for 10 days or so... In my oppinion, the worst on this phone is it's display, which is not very good under huge light (like sunny days).

10. Ranjan Sharan unregistered

we want to know it hava wi-fi connection or not

11. josh unregistered

i like the pone but i cant figure out to download multi media msg's. when i get one and try to download a pic. it says network not availible when it tryes to retrieve the pic. i called att they said there is a setting that needs to be changed but didnt know witch one. anyone know?

12. vijayinani

Posts: 1; Member since: Dec 27, 2010

is there any method to get the latest firmware for the samsung star GT-S5233A and update the phone with it? any site / link with the complete procedure and the firmware + packs / method ll b really useful.

13. MichaelT unregistered is selling this phone (samsung GT-S5230) aka the Star at a good price and its unlocked, but the phone (according to Samsung ) is made for Europe and cannot be registered here, comes with a phone adapter for charging to the UK and has no English printed manuals. The phone also has some issues the main one is when you are on an automated call, there is no keypad to EZ access, so you have to press an unlock key on the side of the phone to then get more icons to navigate. The phone will hang up with your caller if you need to be hands free and by placing the phone on your ear, and chin will cut off the caller. The other troublesome issue is that it is not EZ to navigate or setup because there is no manual, and the CD (only thing in English) is not very well set up to answer your introduction to how to use the phone.

14. Rolliekins123

Posts: 1; Member since: Jun 01, 2012

This is the best phone I have ever had. It is extremely light and the touchscreen is responsive. It has everything that I would expect from the everyday phone. The camera is nice and doesn't blur things out, and it has exceptional memory.

15. williamflores

Posts: 1; Member since: Mar 07, 2013

nice post i like this...this samsung star mobile phones is looking so beautiful with excellent features. visit:
  • Display 3.0" 240 x 400 pixels
  • Camera 3.2 MP
  • Storage 0.05 GB
  • Battery 1000 mAh(10.00h talk time)

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