Hands-on With a Samsung Galxay I9300

Two days ago, someone brought a phone to me to help configure for internet access. We had chatted earlier and he mentioned that the phone was a Samsung Galaxy S III. However, when I gave him instructions on how to configure it, he couldn’t find his way through. So, we agreed that I would have a look. You can imagine my feelings when I first saw the device. Take a look:

galxay-i9300

Note that the label says “Galxay”, not Galaxy. Of course, the design and shape told me immediately that this was not the authentic item. Here was a clone, pure and simple. It also felt significantly heavier than the Nokia 808 PureView, which I had in hand then. The authentic S III is way lighter than the 808.

The label also mentioned that this device had a 4-inch “HD” display. That’s much smaller than the real S III’s display too. Here’s the lockscreen, looking really Samsung-ish.
Galxay-I9300-lockscreen

Here is the desktop, still bearing a strong resemblance to Samsung’s TouchWiz user interface:
Galxay-I9300-desktop

There’s even a pull-down notification bar, Android-style, but with a different look and feel. As a matter of fact, immediately I touched the display and felt the poor quality, that was it. No doubt about it; this was a clone. Probably Chinese.
Galxay-I9300-pulldown-notification-bar

The deception was further exposed when I went into the app menu. Those icons…. tsk, tsk, tsk.
Galxay-I9300-icons

I almost never play with any mobile without spending time in the web browser. When I launched the browser on this one… there…
Galxay-I9300-browser-home

And when I loaded MOBILITY.com.ng on it, oh dear Lawd! What version of HTML does this browser support? 1.3?
Mobility in Galxay-I9300-web-browser

Of course, when I dug into the Settings menu, it was nowhere near Android in any way. Oh, plus this Galxay i9300 is GPRS only. Oh, yes. Not even EDGE is present. Buhahahaha!

Multi-tasking? No where to be found either. And it is dual-SIM too. I’m betting that you already saw the two phone icons on the horizontal top bar; right?

The Scourge Of Clones

The problem of fake mobiles has been with us for years. Get stuck in traffic at Opebi or Ojota and almost any major road in Lagos, and someone will walk up to you to offer you a phone looking every inch like a Nokia N8. But don’t be fooled. It isn’t. Usually, the price should be a give-away, but sometimes people don’t quite seem to understand the saying, “If it sounds too good to be true, it is not true.”

How can this problem be tackled? What can manufacturers do to prevent people from pushing these clones in the market? What is government’s role in that as well?

I asked how much this “Samsung Galxay i9300? was purchased. The reply: N10,000. There you go. If you don’t have N90,000 to splurge on the real Samsung Galaxy S III, but want to live in a fool’s paradise, with just N10,000, you can have the dual-SIM Galxay I9300.

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5 comments

  1. This cloning of a thing is too much in our country. I think its †?? government’s role to check compatibility of products and these clones can’t do W?a† they are said to do so why still push them into †?? market? Government must stop all these o.

  2. I came across one yesterday here in PH. I jusk glance the android market I quickly detect it. Pure fake device. God hv mercy on 9ja?

  3. The clones are everywhere. I was shocked to see a Samsung Galaxy Note for N15k being hawked during traffic, I took a closer look at it and discovered it was equally a clone

  4. @moses personnally I think this one is not the work of Government. Average Nigerian is a thief and they only shout when they fall victim. Average Nigerian always want the best, but at a very very cheap price(if not free).

    Whenever buyers of fake phone stop buying them, the sellers of fake phone will naturally go on exile. It is just like 419 thing. If you are not greedy or a potential 419 yourself(ready to make quick money from where u did not sow) you will hardly fall victim except its at gun point. I pray those who are always after cheap/free phones to contnue to fall victim. They deserve it.

    This morning one of my oga called me to come and have a look at his satellite, I got there and started inputing somee frequencies(which I saved in my BB Torch 9810) into the decoder then my oga now said “ehen! That is BB abi?” I said yes sir. Pls I bought one for my son yesterday, he is in school and he needs 1. I bought Bold 5 (9900) he added. I stopped what I was doing and looked at him again and then ask how much sir? He said “8K 2nd hand any way.the owner wants to go for xmas and brought it so I just pity the young man and decided to help him out and since my son needed it I just have to buy it” in my mind I said help indeed. I then asked him has the guy travelled? If not ply go and collect your money bcos that BB is fake. The man (my oga) was kind of dumbfounded and stood for like a min and went inside to bring the phone and the pack for me to see.

    I collected the BB and looked at it front and back then the pack and smiled. The man shouted “is it fake?” Then is said yes sir. He was still not convinced. At this point I have to put aside the satellite issue and face BB matter now.

    The build quality of the phone is more than perfect. When I press menu, the display and icons are not what u will even on curve 2. I open the back cover, guess what? It is a dual sim BB. On top of that it has antenna for FM radio and the battery inside is” Nokia” battery. My oga was still not 80% convinced of what was telling him. He collected my BB, checked the icons and shaked his head.I went further to tell him that in any BB, go to any where u can type a message and then type “my pi” as one word and then press space, u will see the pin of the BB or type “my ver” as one word and press space bar, u will see the model and OS version of the BB. The man did it on my own and got it, but doing it on his BB ” Bold” yielded nothing. At that point he took a heavy breath and said he going to call police and that I am going to help him with all the p roof.

    I managed to finish what he called me for (satellite) and told him, pls I am on my way bcos somebody is waiting for me at home. You see? Buying Bold 5 for 8K

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