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Samsung Wave 525 review

 Review: February 2011  

Rating: 5 stars

In a nutshell: The Samsung Wave 525 (or Samsung S5250) is an entry-level smartphone running Samsung's Bada operating system.



In a move designed to broaden their range of handsets using the Bada operating system, Samsung have launched the Wave 525 and placed it right into the bargain £100 price range (or as low as £10 per month on contract with free line rental thrown in!) Previously Samsung's Bada operating system had only appeared on high-end handsets. Now, here it is, bringing smartphone capabilities into the budget sector.

The Wave 525 (or Wave525 or Wave S5250 or Wave 2 as Samsung annoyingly refer to it sometimes) is a smart-looking smartphone, with an ultraslim lightweight design, chrome edging and an unusually narrow shape, making it longer than usual, but great to hold in the hand. The extra length allows for a longer than normal LCD screen with a generous size of 3.2 inches and a WQVGA resolution of 240 x 400 pixels. The extra screen space is used to good effect by Samsung's TouchWiz 3.0 user interface, which works well and lets you customise up to 10 home screens with icons and shortcuts to good effect. The Bada operating system is easy to use and intuitive and comes with some nice features, such as good integration between contacts and facebook and twitter accounts. The virtual keyboards are easy to use, with generously-sized keys, especially in landscape mode. While the number of apps available for Bada cannot match the iPhone or Android, there's plenty of pre-installed features that make it superior to a standard (non-smart) phone. There are some very good free games available.

The Wave 525 isn't a 3G phone, which does limit its smartphone aspirations, and means that there's no secondary camera for video calling. However, it does have Wi-Fi, so you can get fast internet access if you're in a Wi-Fi hotspot, and you can use EDGE if not. Web browsing uses Samsung's Dolphin browser, which does the job but isn't as good as the browser on Android phones. Apart from the lack of 3G, connectivity is outstanding, with Bluetooth 3.0 and USB available in addition to Wi-Fi, GPRS and EDGE.

The Wave 525 has a built-in GPS receiver, with assisted GPS and geo-tagging.

The camera is one area where pennies have been saved. With 3.2 megapixels with no flash and no autofocus, it can't match the other Samsung phones in this price range. However, it's easy to use, making good use of the touchscreen. The video recording is at QVGA resolution with just 15 frames per second, so again is below the average for this type of phone. On the positive side, Bada does provide you with an image editing app.

The music player is better than the camera, and the phone also has an FM radio with RDS and the ability to record directly from the radio. There's a music-recognition app installed too. A 3.5mm headphone socket is present, and simulated surround sound is available when you plug in suitable headphones.

The phone's memory is 100MB, which is quite generous for an entry-level smartphone, and the phone will accept microSD cards up to 16GB as well. The processor seems to be adequate for the job, although it's not lightning-fast like the 1GHz CPU used in the high-end Samsung Galaxy S. The user interface is responsive most of the time, but hiccups on occasions.

The battery is reasonably high-powered, at 1200mAh, and is more than sufficient for a phone of this type. Samsung quote an incredible 50 days standby time, which is beyond incredulity, but real-world users should find that they get several days use between charges.

We're actually very impressed with the Wave 525. iPhone it ain't, but as a budget smartphone it does a heck of a lot, and does it very nicely too. Although there aren't too many Bada apps available, there are plenty of tools built into the OS, and some great games to download. Alternative smartphones to consider in this price bracket would be the Android-powered Sony Ericsson Xperia X8 or the Symbian Nokia 5230. We'd go for either the Wave 525 or the Sony Ericsson.

Samsung Wave 525 features include:

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Samsung Wave 525 user reviews

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Average rating from 22 reviews:

Reviewed by Dilip Bag from India on 25th Mar 2014
samsung wave 525 bast phone

Reviewed by BHAVESH PANT from INDIA on 9th Jan 2014
nce mobile i lk it:-)

Reviewed by rohit from india on 8th Oct 2013
outstanding mob

Reviewed by Rochelle from UK on 6th Mar 2012
This is an excellent phone..
Had it for 2 months.
The internet comes really fast when your in a Wi-fi place...
Highly recommend

Reviewed by raja from india on 27th Feb 2012
samsung 525 is good mobile

Reviewed by Jordan from INDIA on 31st Jan 2012
as it is not smart in its layout

Reviewed by judo from uk on 25th Jan 2012
I've had this phone for a year now without one single problem from it. the touch screen works very soothly and browsing works great too. the battery life is great and the built in email sync is great and very simple to work. I got this phone by mistake but now with no regrets. personally I think its a great phone that does everything you need it to do. great phone for the price.. . thumbs up from me :-)

Reviewed by Jamie from UK on 5th Jan 2012
Broke within one week, does not turn on at all. Battery charged, tried everything. Complete waste of money. Poor selection of apps, poor speed of loading pre-loaded apps. Camera was OK but not great. The only reasonably good thing about the phone itself. DO NOT BUY. Very disappointing from Samsung after my previous phone built by the same people lasted ages and was a better phone that this.

Reviewed by siddharth kamble from India on 23rd Nov 2011
mobile is best but battery is not best

Reviewed by ajay bhagat from india on 17th Oct 2011
i bought the phone last 1 month ago .this is a great phone smooth touch screen great music player with 3D sound .3.2 mp camera good clarity with zooming, 1wifi is beautyful working and internet surfing is makhan solid samsung but agar ise front camera diya hota to great yaar

Reviewed by jerwenjay from philippines on 21st Sep 2011
i love this phone.. i bought it just two days ago for only 5250php and i can saythat it is worth buying. for me this is better than galaxy mini except for the OS. EXCELLENT Samsung! :)

Reviewed by shampi dodo from india on 19th Sep 2011
very good phone.

Reviewed by vikas from india on 5th Aug 2011
an average phone in this range because of it slowness in working.

Reviewed by amish from india on 29th Jun 2011
it is the best mobile phone in its price range even monte is not that much but it lack in front camera only but that dos not matters

Reviewed by Neil Danks from UK on 11th Jun 2011
Felt it was good value for money for what I am paying, odd thing happened today though, I plugged in the earphones and about 10mins later as I was listening to the radio, it unexpectedly called someone on my contact list, turned it off tried again only to see it call someone else on my contact list. anyone experience this or any ideas . Many thanks Neilsaway@sky.com

Reply by abc from india on 24th Aug 2012
same happened wid me also and i think buying this phone is totally waste of money

Reviewed by Kath from England on 29th May 2011
Easy to use phone. The screen is sensitive, and the menus intuitive. Setting up my email account was easy. The music player is great. The camera is very good, especially when used outdoors. It has some superb features. I would've happily given it 5 stars, but the only area that lets it down is texting (specifically replying to a text). The screen displays the received message above, and the QWERTY keyboard below, leaving only a single-line space to write in. Text moves out to the side as you write. Hence, you cannot see the whole message that you've just written. What a shame Samsung!! The phone is otherwise excellent!

Reviewed by sam from england on 23rd May 2011
I like this phone.. it is easy to use as the layout is simple, not a lot of apps but then again its not an android. Overall impressed with the phone :)

Reviewed by anonymous from england on 5th Apr 2011
worst phone youll ever find, i have and most certainly regret a 2 year contract with this poorly made hand held device; everything is just so slow and 'laggy', sometimes it doesnt even read that your pressing it, it is discoordinated, the app store is pathetic theres no point in even having it, the camera is o.k but its a phone and it seems they have overworked it but failed to meet any good quality, the GPS Mapping system only tells you your current location, everythings a fuss to get sourted out but then doesnt even meet your requirments such as the sim traking device-it tells you it will send a messeage to those you want if you take out your sim card but obviously that doesnt work

Reviewed by Ed from UK on 25th Mar 2011
1st entry into the touchscreen market & I have to say I am fairly impressed, although not 100% perfect with the odd slow movement or mis-tap, but some of this could be me, not precise enough with my fingers. Only having budget phones before (blackberry curve 8520 about the best) I was impressed with the screen, very bright & clear. As the main review sayís the camera is a bit ordinary, but I have a DSLR so I only use it for point & shoot & still manage to get some good pics. The reception on the radio is poor, crackles & breaks up a lot, so much so, I turn it off quite often. The music player is reasonable but nothing special, not anywhere in the same class as an ipod. Internet browsing is pretty good without being super-fast, still a lot faster than the blackberry. Quality & feel is good, smart looks, easy to use, good battery life & quick to charge. With the BADA OS it hasnít got all the apps of the other OSís but it does still have quite a lot including quite a few games (a lot free), Tiger Woods is very good. So over all itís a very decent phone for the price, I would recommend it for someone like me, a 1st time touch phone user.

Reviewed by vinay from UK on 17th Mar 2011
i hv been using wave 525 from dec 2010, dis fone is pretty cool..have good design n have lot of features, at an affordable price..but after using few months, it having some serious problems..some of dem are... 1, recently when i using other earphones(audio only) other than that was originally supplied makes my phone call automatically the top most number in the logs list. 2, Double Tapping only seems to work 1/10 of the time, and I have tried tapping everywhere on the phone 3, One more thing when i enter message INBOX i always getting an error message " Memory is Full.Delete some text messages to receive new message:.. 4, I am very disappointed with the battery life n camera quality of the Samsung Wave 5, and last but not least jst after using 2 months my mobile keep restarting, n now it is in samsung authorised service centre.....thanks samsung.... :(

Reviewed by Terry from E.U.S.S.R. on 13th Mar 2011
Had it a week, work phone. No 3G+lack of apps=load of toot.

Reviewed by sam from uk on 12th Mar 2011
Surely you knew before you bought it that it had no 3G - if you want 3G get a phone that has it!

Reply by Terry from E.U.S.S.R on 28th Jan 2012
If you had read my post correctly you would have noticed the words "work phone" this denotes that the phone was not chosen by me, it was chosen for me by my firm.

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