Samsung Instinct s30 Review
Not much has changed here, though the software now clocks in at CB26, whereas the original Instinct still has CA10. To the layperson the two are identical, but if you look around you’ll notice a few differences. NFL Mobile Life and NASCAR Sprint Cup Mobile are now hard options in the Fun tab, and the user can no longer add items to the Web tab.
The big deal here is deeper access to Java API’s for developers. Specifically, they now have access to multimedia (including streaming content,) messaging , Bluetooth, contacts, calendar and file access to read and write from the internal file access. Theoretically there could be some very cool apps coming, but we’ll see how many developers jump on board with this. One important nugget lost on most reports is that this access will be granted to all future Sprint Java-enabled phones. While other carriers tout their “open network” that continues to produce nothing of note, we really applaud Sprint for proactively opening up their platforms and encouraging customers to take advantage of all that their phone has to offer.
Everything we loved the first time around is still there, and we still maintain that the s30 UI is one of the easiest and most intuitive UIs on the market. The Favs tab allows for quick access to what you do most, from menu items to TV channels to downloaded content to one click messaging to a specific contact. While it lacks the polish of iPhone OS- or Palm’s upcoming webOS- it is still a very easy to use yet functional operating system.
Phonebook, PIM and Messaging
The phonebook of the Samsung Instinct s30 remains the same as before, that is to say not quite smartphone level. There is no separate first and last name fields, which is a disappointment given that other models like the Memoir offer a pretty darn great phonebook on a feature phone. The calendar approaches smartphone levels a bit more with its ability to sync with Microsoft Exchange, though it still cannot sync with plain old Outlook. Other basic functionalities - like calculator, clock and notes- are included and unchanged. Visual Voicemail is still better than AT&T’s offering.
One main gripe of the Instinct was the lack of an Instant Messaging client, even though it eventually came. The Instinct s30 ships with it, giving the user access to AIM, Yahoo and Windows Live. Sprint Mobile Email is a snap to setup and offers push-ish email with preconfigured setup for the most popular services, plus access to other personal email and, as with the calendar, Exchange support. The user can of course also send SMS and MMS messages, the former of which is threaded. Unfortunately the portrait keyboard is STILL ALPHABETICAL, not T9. Someone at Samsung needed to be fired last year over this, by now the entire department should be gone. This is perplexing as it is unacceptable.
The Samsung Instict s30 calendar approaches smartphone levels, and there is IM client, but the portrait keyboard is still alphabetical
1. dickenson (Posts: 8; Member since: 03 May 2009)
I purchased the same Instinct s30 of the same color in this review from Sprint for $129.00 after the mail in rebate. So far I like this phone and pretty much agree with the PhoneArena assessment of the phone in general. I wish it did come with an extra battery and maybe a leather case. It does function as advertised. It feels very good and solid in the hands. And the screen size is very nice. The features of the phone and what Sprint offers as part of their Everything Data Plan is what drew me to this phone and how they made it very easy for me to become a new customer. I am also very please to know that developers have the ability now to create new applications for this model to add some more excitement. I would like to see a version of Blackberry Pocket Express available for the Instinct s30. This phone has plenty going for it for the price. And it's very stylish. I like the fact that this phone offers two web browser. The Opera Mini 4.2 Browser is very fast indeed. And I hope that eventually EV-DO Rev A will be offered for a download update, which may increase the standard browser download speed. I am looking forward to seeing a few very good, informative and fun applications for this phone in the near future. But with a two year contract I do think the fun of using the Instinct s30 will fade anytime soon till I'm ready to replace it with something more flashy and advanced.
2. douchka (Posts: 4; Member since: 12 Mar 2010)
Is it me or Phonearena always rates Sprint phones above 8, and any other carrier 8 or below? Same way cnet.com always rates ATT's phones way above average and any other carrier phone average or below? Must have something to do with advertising. I mean of of the advertisement on here are sprint ones... Just saying