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Saturday, February 9, 2013

Samsung Galaxy Grand Duos GT-I9082 Review








Samsung decided to launch another Galaxy phone in India two weeks ago. This time, they made a big splash with the Galaxy Grand Duos. With all the phones Samsung has been launching it's pretty easy to get lost with all the models. Strangely, it has been available here in the Philippines since the first week of February, about the same time they launched the Galaxy S III Mini. That's just a week after the Indian launch. But what is even more puzzling is that there was no announcement, not even a post on their website or Facebook page. Perhaps they plan to have a separate event for the Grand soon, but for now your can get it at almost any Samsung store. 

The Samsung Galaxy Grand Duos GT-I9082's name is quite a mouthful and deservingly so because this is a 5" "Phablet" (phone/tablet) with dual sim capabilities. Finally some manufacturer listened to my prayers and made a mid to high-end dual sim smartphone. Specs are a follows:

- 5" WVGA Screen
- 1.2 Ghz Dual Core Processor
- 1GB RAM
- 8GB Internal Memory with Micro SD Slot
- 8 MP Front Camera and 2MP Rear Camera
- 2G/3G HSPA+, WIFI / GPS
- Dual Sim - Dual Standby
- 2100mha Battery
- Android 4.1.2

Familiar Design

Samsung decided to stick with the Galaxy S III design style. One can easily mistake this for an S III or Note 2. In fact , size-wise it sits right in between the two. 

Performance and Display

Under the hood Samsung decided not to use their Exynos chip and instead use a Broadcom processor. Performance is actually very good, games like Angry Birds, Temple Run and Dead Trigger play very well. Everything is smooth and fluid and to my eyes it's even faster then my old Galaxy S II. I'm not sure if the fast performance is due to CPU and GPU or because it's running on Jelly Bean 4.1.2. Yes, that's right! In fact, Samsung also included the latest TouchWiz skin and comes with most of the features you get on the Galaxy Note 2 like Multi-Window, Popup Play, S Voice, Smart Stay, and many more. Unfortunately it only comes with 8GB of internal memory so I would advice moving your media over to the external micro SD. Battery life is decent, with normal use I got more than a day. Use it hard and you will have to recharge at the end of the day.

Before the launch, one of the biggest complaints was Samsung's decision to use a regular LCD WVGA 800x480 screen on a 5" phone. I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised to find out that it's not bad at all. Not as good as an S III but definitely not bad. Colors are nice and bright with good viewing angles. The auto brightness setting was too dim so I had to manually set it about 3/4s up.

Grand vs S II


Camera

What good is a smartphone if it doesn't have a good camera, right? Well, it's better and faster then my S II. Other reviews say that the image colors are even more accurate than the already good S III. I guess I just have to take their word for it. It also shoots 1080p video.



A Dual Sim Champion

Most dual sim phones dedicate SIM slot 1 for 3G and SIM slot 2 for 2G. This is quite a pain if you need to use 3G on the other sim as you have to physically swap out the 2 cards. Samsung made this easy allowing you to choose which SIM uses 3G, you just can't use 3G on both SIMs at the same time though. It is also easy to customize the SIM card names and wallpaper so you will be reminded which SIM you are actually using. I only wish they put more options like what Alcatel has, such as setting specific contacts or groups to only use that SIM. 



Verdict

To say that I'm happy with the phone is an understatement. It is fast and the screen is actually good despite the low resolution. Could it be better? Yes, in fact to confuse us more, Samsung also sells the Galaxy Grand in Korea but with a Quad-core processor, 2GB RAM, LTE and NFC for the same price (It's not clear if it is single or dual sim though). For P16,900 this is actually a good buy considering you don't have many options in this category. Alcatel and Lenovo have some phones or you go low budget with Cherry Mobile, MyPhone, etc. But honestly you get what you pay for and Samsung has better build quality, uses higher end components and you also get their support and service. To be honest, I would actually choose this over the Galaxy S III.

The Good

- Large 5" display
- Good performance
- Dual Sim
- Micro SD
- Removable battery

The Bad

- Only 8GB Internal memory
- WVGA Screen resolution
- 2500mha battery would have been nice
- Why does the Korean model get better specs?

44 comments:

  1. I am planning to buy this phone. Problem is that I keep reading different specifications about its dual-sim capability. So, could you give me an answer, is this phone:
    1. - Dual Sim - Dual Active (DSA) phone or
    2. - Dual Sim - Dual Standby (DSS) phone ?

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  2. As per Samsung website it is dual standby. However the Grand has a feature called Dual SIM always on. It allows you to receive calls from both SIM cards. I think it just forwards your call from one SIM card to the other. I tried but can't seem to get it to work.

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  3. my SG grand storage is 4 gig only ??

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  4. Yes it has 8gb but only 4gb is user accessible. This is quite common with smartphones as some of the memory is used for the OS and system files.

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  5. Got one from my for perks on my 30th month Unlisurf Plan 999 of Sun, its ok but my confusion is it has no network mode(3G or 2G or both), 3G connection is really slow. Pls send me advise if anyone knows how to fix it(neilcellon@hotmail.com)THANKS

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  6. In settings, tap on "more settings", then "mobile networks", then uncheck "Use only 2G networks". This will keep you on 3G, remember only 1 SIM can be on 3G. As for your 3G being slow, I can't speak for SUN as I'm on Globe, but I noticed that it usually depends on my location. The other week I was in Pasay City and could not get a 3G signal, only 2G EDGE (E symbol on the phone), however in Makati I would get really fast HSPA+ (H+ symbol). Hope this helps.

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  7. The one from sun? Since dual sim to, open line ba sia? Or you can just use sun sim?

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    Replies
    1. Only one SIM is locked to Sun, the other slot is open line.

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  8. Hi! Can you or anyone please do a video on the TV Out for the Samsung Galaxy Grand Duos SG-I9082? Thanks!

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    1. A very good question, unfortunately I don't have that particular cable. It works on the S3, S4, Note 2 I will post something once I get confirmation it will work. Thanks!

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  9. Hi I'm also using grand. My only problem was I can't move my apps/files to my sd card. It says can't support moving apps to sd card. I tried several apps (like apps to sd etc.) in the play store but none of them work. I hope you can help me regarding this matter. Thanks alot...

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    1. Hi! There is nothing wrong with the phone. Starting on Android 4.1 and later, Google decided to have most apps reside on the internal memory. There are still ways to install apps on the SD card but it usually involves rooting or getting the app apk. Hope this helps.

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  10. Ow I see.. A friend of mine told me that I can manually move my apps I just have to open My files then move app to ext sd card. But nothing's change, I think it's more of a backup? Anyway do you recommend rooting a phone? Have you tried it? Is it safe or may damage the software later on? Also I wanna ask about updating the firmware is there any difference? I haven't tried it kinda scared. A lot of people says it's not good.. Sorry if I ask to much.. Thanks.. owe you bigtime :)

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    Replies
    1. Hi again! Your friend is right if you are using older versions of android like Gringerbread 2.3 or ICS 4.0. But with Jellybean 4.1 and up, it's either you root or that app has to support it. Actually some apps allow you to install some system files on the SD card to reduce the size. I'm just curious to ask what app do you need to install that wont fit on the system memory? With regards to rooting, I would not suggest it unless you are comfortable with doing it. I guess if you have to ask about rooting then I suggest better not do it. Firmware updates are made by the manufacturer so, YES! I always update to the latest and it usually improves performance of the phone. With that said if you are happy with your phone and are not comfortable with the above, just leave it and enjoy the grand.

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  11. Hi just got the grand , I had issues with calling and receiving texts, according to sun its related to 2g and 3g cconnectivity and suggested that I use 2g for phone function. Problem is when you want to use 3g I was instructed to use sort of a system manual process for the phone to shift to it, medyo burdensome. They say thats the way the phone was made its not automatic, weird!!! Any Ideas? Thanks

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    1. Hi Rey, can you explain further what you mean by issues with calling and receiving texts? I sometimes loose signal on my Grand but it comes back after a minute or so. Although I have always assumed that this was a problem with Globe as every other Globe phone I owned has had this problem. I made this conclusion because every time I roam in another country I never had this signal loss problem. As for the 3G, remember only one sim can have 3G signal at a time, and you will really have to switch it manually to use 3G on the other sim. Please note that almost all dual sim phones don't even have this option, usually you are stuck with 3G on sim1 and 2g on sim2.

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  12. E signal got lost even when full signal available plz tell how to solve this and internet got disconnected

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    1. This is 2g network e signal got lost even when full tower signal is available and internet got disconnected plx telll me how to solve this

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    2. Hi Jishu, it could be a problem with your network provider. It could also be that you are in a dead spot. I have a similar problem at my home with Globe and Smart Telecoms, I have full signal bar but can only get 2G, but as soon as I leave my home I get full h+ 3G signal. Everywhere I go I have 3G but as soon as I'm back home, it goes back to 2G. Someone told me its because my home is beside a radio station and also 3 cell towers of 3 different networks. Try it around different areas, if you still have the same problem then it could be something wrong with your phone.

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    3. Hi, my GT-I9082L has the same problem, I live in São Paulo, Brasil. I don't really know why but in some places the 3G signal it completly lost. In my case it only get back the signal after system reboot. I appreciate if someone could help with this problem.

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  13. I'm using Grand Dous too and i'm happy with the phone but I have this little problem. I noticed (sometimes) that some applications keep on crashing upon opening them - crashes right after I tap the icon -"streamzooblahblahblah has crashed - click wait, cancel or close. Bad programming? Why do applications crash? How to fix crashing applications on the phone? I hope you can help me regarding this matter. Thanks a lot... :)

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    1. Hi! I have had some apps crash as well, but its not uncommon with smartphone particularly android phones. Since there are hundreds of android phones developers can't possible test them on all models so you are bound to have some incompatibility here and there. It could also be that the app was not well written. You could also try clearing all your applications that are running in the background. Do this by holding down the home button and tap the trash icon. Or sometimes just rebooting your phone will do the trick.

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    2. Did you update your samsung galaxy grand? If yes, how was it? I updated my grand yesterday to version 4.2.2 and I noticed that I am not getting text messages from other networks but can send text messages. Can you help me with this? Thank you...

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    3. Hi! Yes I updated it also and so far so good. I don't seem to have the same problem you are having. Try checking you message center number in the SMS settings.

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    4. I did checked the message center number in the SMS settings and after that (a few hours), I received an SMS messages from other network. Thanks...

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    5. i have same prblm like yours.i still not receiving anu msgs.plz help

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  14. Hello, got new samsung grand and experienced auto shut off for about 3 times, today it shuts down again and when i open it, only the samsung logo keep on popping on the screen...i turned it off, remove the battery then restart again but still the same. What seems to be the problem? Pls help, thanks.

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  15. Hi Anne, check if there is a software update or try doing a system restore but remember to back up first. The auto shut off is not normal. Bring it back and exchange it for a new one while its still under warranty.

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  16. I updated my grand yesterday to version 4.2.2 and I noticed that I am not getting text messages from other networks but can send text messages and i had also tried checking my message center number in the SMS settings.it was there.Can you help me with this? Thank you...

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    Replies
    1. Try removing the SIM card and do a reboot. If you are brave enough you can do a complete reset (backup first).

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  17. How do you update for Grand Duos that is Sunlocked. Do you have to update it OTA?

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    1. Hi Joanne! You can try OTA or via Kies thru your computer. Not sure if update available for carrier locked phones. Mine was an unlocked unit. Keep me updated on how it goes. Good luck and follow me on twitter.

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    2. I manually upgraded my firmware to 4.2.2 through Odin and a firmware I got from SAMMobile. :)

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    3. Hi Joanne, hope your update went well. Sammobile is a great site for firmwares and other resources. I hope I can get to review the Grand 2 when it comes out.

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  18. is there anyways how to openline my samsung grand which sim1 locked from suncellular? tnx!

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    1. Unlocking your phone is a little tricky. Going to xda forums will be your best bet. Some have had success with an app from the play store called GalaxSim Unluck but again but I can't guarantee that. If you're uneasy perhaps bringing it to a stall in greenhills might be your best bet.

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  19. hi..i have my grand duo gt i9082..cannot txt or send mssge..i cannot find also message center under the message settings?...pls help...thanks

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  20. Hi Rida! Try going into messages app, hit the option key, then choose settings and look for Message Center. Hope that helps.

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  21. my galaxy grand does not support 3G, can i update it into 850/900/1200? pls help!

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    Replies
    1. It should! Go to settings, more networks, mobile networks, network mode, and choose either WCDA (auto connect) or WCDA only. Remember to make sure you set which SIM will connect to 3G. Also it will depend on your network and area of coverage. For example at my work (pasay city) I get 2G only using Globe. Hope this helps

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  22. if i can update it? how? and also i follow your instructions SIM 1 and SIM 2, the problem is i cannot select Network Mode (color gray) means that is cannot be selected. is that possible?

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  23. Hi. Is it true that all of them (smartphones) will slow down with time? I noticed that my Grand keeps on lagging. I want to speed up my Grand just the way it was (before). I uninstalled unused applications because i was thinking maybe it was one of the causes and I already downloaded clean master, auto task killer, even juice defender, reboot the phone, holding down the menu button and trash icon but still my phone keeps on lagging. My phone’s memory available space 2.21GB and my memory card available space 3.28GB. There’s an anti-virus installed too (it comes with the phone when I bought it) The version of my Grand is 4.2.2. Is this normal? I mean I can't see why it would be but its driving me absolutely nuts. What I mean by this is sometimes going from home screen to home screen it won't be smooth. It'll take a little bit of time (relatively speaking). Coming out of an app to the home screen will be choppy, not smooth. Sometimes Ill type out an entire word before it even registers and starts typing to catch up with me. If I tap the home button to zoom out from the home screen and back, it'll be choppy, not smooth. How do I get my phone to stop from lagging? How to fix the lag? Can you help me with this? Thanks...

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    1. I think the best way to fix your problem is to do a factory reset just make sure to backup first.

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    2. If I will reset my phone, the firmware version will not be affected, i mean still remain as 4.2.2? Thanks...

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