When images of Samsung’s GT-B5330 Android came to our attention today, we were cautiously optimistic. After all, it’s not that often that we get to see a portrait orientation QWERTY Android, and from a big name like Samsung, at that. The phone appears to be getting ready for the Chinese market, and we might be interested in keeping an eye on it in the hopes that Samsung decides to bring it to the West, were it not for some very disappointing hardware choices.
According to GLBenchmark figures, the GT-B5330 is in testing with Android 4.0.4; so far, so good. Things start to fall apart a little when we get to the handset’s processor and display specs: if what’s reported here is accurate, the GT-B5330 will run an 850MHz SoC, and feature a screen that only has a 320 x 240 QVGA resolution.
That’s unfortunate, because even a few tweaks there might make the GT-B5330 a whole lot more interesting. With even a 1.2GHz single-core processor, and maybe a WVGA (or even 640 x 480, if we’re not going wide) display, the GT-B5330 could be an exciting little model. As it stands, even if Samsung had global plans for the handset, it would be hard to get excited.
We’d love to Samsung deliver something along these lines but with some more modern hardware under the hood. It wouldn’t sell GS3 numbers, but there’s a dedicated group of smartphone users who demand hardware keyboards, and sensing that RIM’s future looks shaky, are looking to jump ship for similar hardware on a non-BlackBerry platform. They could be yours, Samsung, if you just give them the options they’re looking for.
Update: The GT-B5330’s paperwork just hit the FCC, with nary a single 3G band to be seen.