Review of the Android Powered Centura from Tracfone
This review by de9w2dsl will cover the newly released Samsung Galaxy Centura, one of Tracfones first Android smartphones.
|Samsung Galaxy Centura Front|
Tracfone is a prepaid wireless cell phone service provide that offers low cost phones and service. They only recently began selling Android smartphones, and the Samsung Galaxy Centura is one of the first available.
The ZTE Valet, Huawei Glory and LG Optimus Dynamic and Dynamic II are the other Android phones also available. Follow the links to read our reviews of each phone.
If you're looking for more phone options with Tracfone, be sure to visit our Tracfone BYOP page where we give all the details on bringing your own smartphone to use with Tracfone.
Now let's get to the full review of the Samsung Galaxy Centura.
Review of the Samsung Galaxy Centura SmartphoneThe Samsung Galaxy Centura is a touchscreen smartphone running on Android 4.0 operating system. It can be used exclusively with Tracfone prepaid wireless service, meaning you can't buy the phone and then try to use it with other service providers. The Centura uses the CDMA network, running on Verizon towers.
You can read more about the difference between GSM and CDMA, and how to determine which is right for you, in our recent post on that topic.
Before we get to far, let's take a look at the features and specifications for the Centura.
Samsung Galaxy Centura Features and Specs
- Android 4.0 OS
- 3 MP Camera and Video Recorder
- 3G speeds
- WiFi connectivity
- Bluetooth Wireless
- Mobile Web
- MP3 Player
- Instant Messaging
- GPS Capabilities
- Gravity and Tilt sensors
- Hearing Aid Compatible
- Hands free speaker
- Voicemail, Caller ID, Call Waiting
- Comes with Battery and Charger
Samsung Galaxy Centura Dimensions and Specs
- 3.5" Touchscreen
- Dimensions: 4.4 x 2.4 x 0,4 inches
- 4.4 ounces
- 800Mhz Processor
- Internal Memory: 4GB NAND
- 512MB RAM
- Compatible with up to 32GB external MicroSD Card
- Battery Standby 10 days
- Battery Talk time 7 hours
To give a balance of the pros' and cons' for the Samsung Galaxy Centura, let's take a look at de9w2dsl's short list of Likes and Dislikes about this new touchscreen smartphone. While we don't cover every good or bad thing about this phone, we do strive to highlight enough information to allow you to make a more informed decision when buying this phone.
So let's get to the review.
Samsung Galaxy Centura Review - Likes and DislikesWe will begin by taking a look at some of the things we really like about the Centura, and then move to some features we didn't like, or thought should have been included.
Likes for the Samsung Galaxy Centura:
There are many features that come with this phone that make it a great value compared to other Tracfone cell phones.
|Samsung Galaxy Centura Back|
We like that the Centura comes with WiFi connectivity, 3G speeds, Triple Minutes for Life and a 3MP camera.
WiFi access on the Samsung makes it possible to surf the internet for free when connected to wireless internet. 3G speeds means that when you aren't on free WiFi, you can still be online at decent speeds using the phone's data.
The 3 mega pixel camera will take both pictures and video recording at fair quality, especially compared to the 1MP camera's on many other Tracfone devices.
Triple Minutes for Life is the best deal offered by Tracfone. (Some of their older phones have only double minutes for life.) What this means is that for every minute you add to the phone, you get 2 more for free. So if you add a 60 minute prepaid card, you will get 180 total minutes!
The biggest like about the Samsung Galaxy Centura is the Android operating system which allows users to have access to over 700,000 apps from Google's Play store. Many apps are free, or a just a few dollars and provide huge features and functionality. You can use Google Maps, play thousands of games, or find time saving apps that make your life easier. Visit the Google Play store to learn more about the apps they have to offer.
There are a few things we are not such huge fans about for the Centura, which we will now cover.
Dislikes for the Samsung Galaxy Centura:
The first thing we are not huge fans about is the new system for splitting up calling minutes/texting minutes/data into three separate pots or pools. What this means is that when you add a 60 minute prepaid card, you will get it tripled into 180 calling minutes, 180 texts, and 180 mb of data.
For many, this will work just fine, and is even a better deal than the previous system where you would just get 180 total minutes for calling/texting/web browsing.
But for those who are heavy text users, this reduces the number of texts you get form a 60 minute card from 600 to just 180. That is a significant reduction. So if you tend to do way more texting than other activities, you may want to stick with older models. For the rest of us, this is simply a new system we must get accustomed to.
Another small dislike about this phone, and all the new Android phones from Tracfone, is that Tracfone Promo Codes won't work on them. You can no longer get extra minutes for free when adding a new prepaid card.
We also dislike that there is no Airtime display on the home screen, but you can quickly and easily find your minutes balance, which we will explain a little further below.
Finally, the Samsung Galaxy Centura is on the expensive side compared to other Tracfone mobile devices. It typically retails for $130 in stores and on the Tracfone website. We will cover more on where to buy this phone, and how to get it for less, at the end of this review.
That covers the main likes and dislikes we found with the Centura, check out the comments, or leave your own, with more thoughts on the pros' and cons' of this phone.
How to Check Your Airtime Balance on the Samsung Galaxy CenturaThis is a question/problem we have been seeing a lot, so we want to cover it here for your convenience. As we mentioned above, these is no display on the home screen, but checking your Tracfone balance is very easy.
The first option is to use the new Tracfone app, that will give you your balance. We haven't tested this very much, but you can go directly to the app on Google Play to learn more, and download it.
The other option is to follow this simple process:
To find out the number of minutes/text/data left, you'll need to log on to your Tracfone account and submit a balance request, OR set up a bookmark in your browser (on your computer or phone) to go to "https://www.tracfone.com/direct/CheckBalance?input_phone=1234567890" (replace 1234567890 with your phone number). You'll get a free text message on your phone with your balances. The service end date is not in the text message. It's only shown on the browser screen.
Overall Review of the Samsung Galaxy Centura
|View on Amazon|
For those who prefer a more simple device, check out some of the other phones we have reviewed at our Cell Phone Reviews page.
Overall, the Samsung Galaxy Centura is a great value and provides massive improvements over past Tracfone cell phones. It is one of the first true smartphones offered by Tracfone. The ability to surf the web for free via WiFi and use apps for entertainment, work or social make this a phone with multiple uses and functionality.
For those comparing it to the ZTE Valet, we suggest checking out our post showing the features and specs for both the Valet and Centura.
The Samsung Galaxy Centura typically retails for $129.99 in stores and online. We found the Centura on Amazon at a discount. And you can also read several informative customer reviews there as well.
You may also want to check out eBay and HSN.com for phone/minutes bundles that can be a good deal.
We would suggest you look into getting a case and/or screen protector to help keep your phone in good shape. There are lots of cases and screen protectors for the Centura on Amazon.
This concludes our review of the Samsung Galaxy Centura. We hope you found this useful. Be sure to share this with others who might like it, and leave a comment with any questions, thoughts or corrections.
You might enjoy reading some of our other recent posts such as Where to Find Tracfone Prepaid Cards or perhaps the Summer Sales and Discounts on Tracfone Cell Phones (2014)
Thanks for Visiting!
Samsung Galaxy Centura User Guide (pdf)