NEW THIS MONTH

This gadget is both an over­sized smart­phone and a mini-tablet. LIM TSIAO HUI makes calls with it.

Simply Her (Singapore) - - Cover Reads -

An over­sized smart­phone that’s also a mini-tablet.

Most smart­phones have at most a 5-inch screen while mini-tablets usu­ally sport 7-inch screens. So for a smart­phone, the Samsung Galaxy Mega has a whop­ping 6.3-inch screen.

CAR­RY­ING IT

As long as a pen and as wide as a busi­ness card, the smart­phone mea­sures 16.7 x 8.8cm, but is only 0.8cm thick. It jut­ted out of my jeans pocket and was more eas­ily car­ried in my hand­bag.

MAK­ING CALLS

“I am not hold­ing that brick to my ear!” ex­claimed my col­league. But I found it sur­pris­ingly com­fort­able to talk on – it’s light at 199g – and my fin­gers didn’t feel any strain. While us­ing it in pub­lic, I barely drew sec­ond looks.

FIG­UR­ING OUT THE MENU

The An­droid in­ter­face is not as in­tu­itive as that of the iPhone or Win­dows 8 de­vices. It took me a while to find the set­tings to mute the key­board-tap­ping sound and to set a pass­word – th­ese com­mon tasks were em­bed­ded in the menu.

SURF­ING THE IN­TER­NET

It can’t beat a 10-inch tablet for on­line shop­ping, or read­ing the dig­i­tal ver­sion of Sim­ply Her, but I could still read with­out squint­ing.

TAK­ING PHO­TOS AND VIDEOS

It has an 8-megapixel cam­era. Be­cause the phone is thin but big, it’s hard to shoot pic­tures with one hand. But it was a cinch search­ing for pho­tos and videos taken with apps like In­sta­gram and What­sapp, as they are au­to­mat­i­cally cat­e­gorised into fold­ers.

SEND­ING MES­SAGES AND E-MAIL

I ap­pre­ci­ated the over­sized key­board with its well-spaced keys. A use­ful line of num­bers above the QWERTY keys meant I didn’t have to switch be­tween key­boards. I typed faster, with fewer ty­pos. But it was im­pos­si­ble to type with just one hand.

READ­ING AND EDIT­ING DOC­U­MENTS

Read­ing text doc­u­ments was a breeze. I could even make quick changes on the go. The spa­cious cal­en­dar was a huge plus – the month-at-a-glance view let me see my daily ap­point­ments eas­ily.

NAV­I­GAT­ING WITH IT

Thanks to the gi­ant screen, GPS maps are clear – to use it as a nav­i­ga­tor, just mount it in your car with a ve­hi­cle dock ($58, from Samsung Ex­pe­ri­ence Store). Di­rec­tions given were fairly ac­cu­rate too. Samsung Galaxy Mega, $798 (with­out con­tract), avail­able from all tel­cos, ma­jor elec­tri­cal stores and Samsung Ex­pe­ri­ence Store.

The Samsung Galaxy Mega is as long as a pen and more than half the width of an A5

note­book, but it’s less than 1cm thick.

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