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Main » 2010 » September » 18 » Samsung SPH-M570
Samsung SPH-M570

Samsung SPH-M570

Riding the wave of popularity of "environmentally friendly" concept, Samsung Restore for Sprint brings some eco-friendly marketing to Samsung US model lineup

This is a review of Samsung SPH-M570 released for Sprint. As this is a Sprint phone, large portions of the device menu and software were redesigned to fit the demands of this carrier and its services. We are reviewing the phone itself, not Sprint services or their implementation in this device. These services vary from carrier to carrier, are not phone specific and therefore will not be reviewed, we will only note their presence if they effect the very important functions of the phone.


Samsung Restore was released on Sprint network and is therefore a CDMA device. It is a contemporary feature phone with a few distinguishing traits, the main of which is the emphasis on the environmental effect the phone has or will have in its afterlife. It is made of renewable materials and packed into an ugly brown box underscoring the recycled paper it is made of. The box has a sunflower and green grass printed on it as a proof of the mission the phone has – to attract young, environmentally conscious customers doing lots of texting.

Samsung SPH-M570

Packaging, content

Not much is there, normal, considering the environmental marketing idea behind the phone. You get the phone with a battery and a generous 2GB microSD card, USB to microUSB cable, home charger with a USB cable jack, a microSD to SD converter, small Get Started brochures in English and Spanish, the much thicker legal crap booklet (who cares about the Earth when you attorney has something to say?!) and a plastic (!) envelop to ship the old phones, batteries, aircards and accessories to a Cell Phone Recycling Center. I also did not fully understand why for the eco-friendly phone, its battery, the microSD converter, USB cable and home charger were all packed into separate plastic bags. IMHO Samsung could have made an effort and used paper or some other kind of a biodegradable material to pack these parts, or just leave them in the box without any additional packaging.

Samsung SPH-M570 box

Design, size, materials, build

At 4.6" x 2.1" x 0.6" (11.7 x 5.33 x 1.52 cm) and weighing 4.3 oz (122 g) the phone is rather large for a simple contemporary feature phone, but this is clearly done on purpose – to make the sliding out full QWERTY keyboard more comfortable to use. With QWERTY closed the phone looks like a typical inexpensive candybar Samsung, with decent quality plastics used all around and a great assembly expected from Samsung. The front of the phone is black with a thick chrome band going around the edge and spilling over to the sides.

Due to the slider form factor of the phone, the sides are pretty thick, but Samsung masks it by visually dividing them with lines and colors. In addition to abovementioned chrome band, the sides have the band of light green color and a simple silver color band, hugging the back all around, just like chrome does with the front. The back of my sample was colored bright green probably to underscore the environmental nature of the phone, although the black color rear is also showing on Samsung website.

Controls, keyboard

The main alphanumeric keypad features large buttons with white background light, evenly lit and easily readable in the dark. Above, the dedicated Call and Hang Up/Off buttons are located in their regular positions with softkeys directly above them. To the left is a dedicated speakerphone button I found convenient and to the right is Back/Erase button. Smack in the middle of the function keys is a rather unusual feature for this type and class of the phones – an optical pad. Boy is it uncomfortable! Due to its highly sensitive nature all too often my crooked male finger missed the destination of my choosing, sometimes multiple times in a row, annoying the hell out of me. Other problems with keypad were a not-so-responsive Hang Up button (sometimes I had to press it a few times to end the call) and the rather strange location of the Space button, combined with "#", not "0" as usual.

On the left side of the screen two more vertical softkeys are sitting, there to take care of the things when the phone it rotated into a horizontal position when the QWERTY is opened. Considering the lack of touchscreen, this solution proved to be extremely comfortable, preventing the necessity to figure out which softkey to use to confirm an operation or launch an Options submenu.

Above the screen is the speaker and to the left of it is a LED used to communicate the charging status, new messages and some of the operations.

The back features a 2 MPx camera lens, a mirror for self shooting and a loudspeaker.

The left side houses the volume rocker and nothing else as this is where the QWERTY slides out.

On the right, we find a covered 3.5 mm jack and a dedicated camera shutter button.


A rather strange phone due to its unusual positioning, user interface and menu setup. Samsung and Sprint position it as a "green" solution, marketing their adherence to environmental cause, but as this is one of only two "green" phones Sprint sells (the second one is Samsung Reclaim that Restore is actually replacing, but at this point they are still sold side by side) and one of a few "green" phones made by Samsung out of 75,000 models company releases each year worldwide (don't know the real number, but it sure feels like it). This begs a question if Samsung marketing folks understand that you can't be a little bit pregnant – you either make environmentally friendly products or you don't, the rest is just a show off. Of course, there could be some additional sales, but mostly the "green" side of this phone will be a minor additional plus for a customer buying it for other reasons.

Overall this is an OK basic phone for somebody who is texting a lot and needs a full QWERTY, but does not do much else. The music player, camera, screen, size and weight are no better and often worse than the competing solutions, including many from Samsung itself. The UI is not conventional and might have been OK if it was not for a horrible optical pad – the implementation is so bad, it sometimes made me want to through the phone against the wall. Add to this very strange limitations imposed on the phone by the network and you are getting a solution for young people that no young person interested in anything but texting should choose.

Category: Samsung | Views: 274 | Added by: mobicat | Tags: Samsung, review, sph-m570 | Rating: 0.0/0
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