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Samsung Epix Review

Posted: , by Ray S.

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Interface:

Many manufacturers have recently redesigned the look of the home screen for Windows Mobile in order to disguise the default bland design. This is especially true with Samsung creating a new theme for the Epix which runs Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional. Large and colorful icons dominate the home screen with the digital clock right in the center. On the top portion of the personalized theme lies a rotating carousel of four icons associated with different quick functions. Minimal animations are implemented with the new Samsung theme and seem uninspiring when compared with HTC's TouchFLO 3D.

Home - Homescreen - Samsung Epix Review
Favorites - Homescreen - Samsung Epix Review
Contacts - Homescreen - Samsung Epix Review
Settings - Homescreen - Samsung Epix Review

Home

Favorites

Contacts

Settings

Homescreen


The first icon in the carousel is the home that provides quick access to your text messages, e-mail, and recent calls list. The second one is the favorites launcher which allows you to add or remove any applications you want to quickly open without going through the standard menus. Thirdly, you will find the contacts that provide you with up to six different people whom you choose to be selected from the screen. Once you select a contact, you will then be able to place a call or send messages to them. The last icon on the carousel is the settings which allows for various general settings to be modified such as the screen brightness, vibrate mode, and activate the phone lock. We have seen several themes that have masked the Windows Mobile platform quite well, but the new Samsung theme pales in comparison to the complexity and personalization of others.


Phonebook:

The phonebook of Epix is almost identical to the other WM6 phones. The number of contacts that can be added is not restricted and depends only on the memory available. All contacts are displayed as a list; each field consists of the name and the number of the contact, while a letter placed beside them indicates what the type of the number is (w – work; m – mobile, etc.). Pictures are not displayed even if there is one attached to the contact.

The line displayed at the top of the screen is a search field, which initiates a name and number search on entering a symbol – the more symbols you type, the more accurate the match is – it’s quite useful! This one searches all names entered for the contact, but if you want to find an acquaintance by other field like “company” for example, you have to use the “Search” application. There are tabs with different letters (divided in groups of three) just below it. This way you can arrange the contacts so that only the ones beginning with a given letter are displayed. These two search features are quite handy and they make finding a particular contact in the phonebook very quick.

The old tabs, filtering by first letter have been replaced by a vertically positioned bar, with all the symbols possible on it. If you run your finger across it, the letters enlarge as you pass over them so you can easily choose the one you want. This is very similar to the iPhone but is way more comfortable from the other WM6 phones.

Too bad that’s not the case when adding a new name to the phonebook; the device offers way too many capabilities, including multiple work and home numbers, but there’s only one for mobile –something quite inconvenient as that’s exactly where we wanted to add multiple numbers to. The numerous address, e-mail and other address fields confuse you even further – it would have been a lot easier if the most frequently used fields are highlighted in some way. We would choose this to be done with the Name, Picture, Mobile number and e-mail fields and thus finding them would have been easy, eliminating the need to go through the long list.

Personal photos and ringtones can be assigned to each contact; there’s no restriction on the dimensions of the pictures but they are visualized in very small size even on an incoming call – we think they are useless. You can also add a note to each contact.

Samsung Epix Review
Dialing a number:

To dial a number, which is not stored in your contacts, you’ll have to use the numeric hardware keys or virtual keypad that is a menu option.


Pressing the buttons you will start imputing the digits of a possible number, but at the same time you will search the phone book as if imputing a text by a predictive text input system. So, to call John you can press 5-6-4-6 and the matching contacts will be visualized in the list.



Organizer:

When it comes to PIM applications, this version of Windows Mobile 6.1 has nothing new. The Notes, Tasks, Calculator, and clock PIM functions are the same that we have seen on other mobile devices. Similar to other Samsung devices, the Epix forgoes the traditional miniUSB connection found on other smart phones for their proprietary USB connection.

Alarms can be accessed through the home screen, by tapping on the clock icon. Three of them are available, and they can all be configured to be active for certain days of the week, assigning names and different sounds to each of them. All alarms can be active simultaneously, and overall they are easy to use and do what they are supposed to. We are rather disappointed that their number is limited to three, as it was in the previous version of the OS.

The next tab in this menu is the clock; there is a field called Visiting next to it, which can be used as a World Clock – select another location and the phone starts using its local time. The clock has an option to be displayed on the title bar of all the menus, which is handy.

The electronic calendar, where you can save your appointments, can be found in the HP Shortcuts menu. You can use options like: reminder (PRIOR NOTICE 1/5/10/15/30/45 minutes, 1/2/3/4/5/6 hour/day/week), recurrence (Once, Every (same-day-of-the-week), Day (same-date) of every month, Every (same date-and-month) for every year, sensitivity (normal, personal, private, confidential). You can also add attendees (required or optional) from your contacts where e-mail addresses have been added and where meeting requests will be sent.

Calendar - Samsung Epix Review
Calendar - Samsung Epix Review
Calendar - Samsung Epix Review
Calendar - Samsung Epix Review

Calendar



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Samsung Epix

Samsung Epix

OS: Windows Mobile Professional 6.1
view full specs
Display2.5 inches, 320 x 320 pixels (177 ppi) TFT
Camera2 megapixels
Hardware
624 MHz
150 MB RAM
Size4.56 x 2.41 x 0.51 inches
(116 x 61 x 13 mm)
4.41 oz  (125 g)
Battery1800 mAh, 7 hours talk time

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