Diets are all the rage, and not just in the land of Z-list celebrities. Mobile phone manufacturers are cutting calories by the truckload to give their supermodels skinnier exteriors.

Think thin

Take Samsung’s X820: it’s a low-carb, low-fat candy bar. And, at only 6.9mm thick, it’s out to make other fashion mobiles such as LG KG800 Chocolate a touch self-conscious.

In hand, the X820 feels delicate. For the first couple of hours you’re wary of putting pressure on its waif-like chassis for fear it could shatter it into oblivion. However, the Samsung uses fibreglass-infused plastic to keep itself intact under stressful conditions. Once you stop gawping at its almost non-existent side profile it’s apparent that the X820 is somewhat of a mixed bag.

Compact and bijou

The bevel-cut keypad looks great and only adds a millionth of a millimetre to the overall profile, and its generous size means you don’t need to worry about over-sized digits. The display’s great too. When it comes to screens, Samsung are up there with the very best and, despite its relatively low resolution of 176x200 pixels, the X820 displays impressive brightness and vibrant colours. It’s just a shame that it’s so damn small. At only 1.9 inches it makes using the Samsung’s document viewer nigh-on impossible to use.

The X820’s menu system is clean, colourful and relatively easy to navigate although it doesn’t have the immediate user-friendly appeal of intuitive Sony Ericssons. Another minor complaint is that you can’t have vibrate and ring on simultaneously, which can result in a few missed calls. Annoying.

Slim pickings?

Despite its tiny frame, those clever bods at Samsung have even found room for an accomplished 2MP camera while it also supports A2DP for partnering it with Bluetooth headphones. Unfortunately you’ve got only got limited space for file storage and by ‘limited,’ we mean a paltry 80MB of memory. There’s no room for a memory card slot so you might as well forget about using the X820 as an MP3 player. But you’re buying this as a fashion statement, right?

Stuff says... 

Samsung X820 review

The X820 is undoubtedly king of the slim brigade, and a major feat of design engineering – can mobile phones get any thinner?