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Samsung OMNIA HD Preview

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Our Samsung OMNIA HD i8910 Review is now published - click here to read it.

Software and Internet browser:

As previously mentioned, similarly to both Nokia 5800 XpressMusic and Nokia N97, OMNIA HD i8910 utilizes the latest as of now Symbian OS version (v9.4 S60 5th Edition). Again, we need to point out that we´ve been testing a proto unit and certain changes are far from being unlikely until the retail version comes out and even more so, given a recent video ad showing off a new multitasking menu.

Start up the phone and Samsung´s interface, TouchWiz 3D springs to life. Just like its previous versions, it´s quite showy and appealing, with the well known widgets at hand that you can also pull on the screen by dragging them from the status bar on your left to the home screen. There are a few other TouchWiz phones that have already been announced and similarly to the rest of the pack you have four separate widget screens that are really easy to switch between by just pressing one of the three cubes at the upper part of the screen. It´s like you have several desktops on your computer. You can easily get additional widgets online with the UltraTOUCH, but all we could find out here was an option to start/stop the preinstalled ones. Well, let´s go on with the rest of the airs and graces having something to do with the home screen itself.

Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Samsung OMNIA HD Preview

3D navigation is one the eye-candies that can be switched off should you not really like it. Just touch in the home screen and slide it to your right and you´ll switch over to the photo contacts screen. As suggested by its name, you can call up contacts by just touching the assigned photos. They are pretty easy to tag in a Facebook-like style which is really cool.

Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Samsung OMNIA HD Preview

We get back to the widgets to slide a finger to our right and the main menu pops up, looking quite in character with the TouchWiz interface, with all these showy eye-candy icons appearing in a 3x4 grid. Changing over to a vertical item list is pretty easy as well. Actually, you reach the menu by pressing an icon at the bottom of the screen or the dedicated button.

3x4 grid - Main menu - Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
list - Main menu - Samsung OMNIA HD Preview

3x4 grid

list

Main menu


If you don´t happen to be a widget freak, don´t throw your hands up in despair, both Finger Use and Basic home screens are just a few clicks away. There are only a wallpaper and four icons at the bottom in Basic mode, whereas Finger Use allows customizable quick access to four functions of your choosing, just like the Shortcuts bar on 5800 XpressMusic. Information about upcoming events is also showed on the OMNIA HD screen, as well as the name of the song you´re listening to if the player´s on.

Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Samsung OMNIA HD Preview

We came across another similarity to the Nokia 5800 (nothing to cause our eyebrows to raise) in the sub-menus, which are visualized in a vertical scroll list. You confirm your choice by double-clicking the selected item to get it started. We activated the QWERTY keyboard to type in several test messages and we are quite pleased with it. You can actually choose the response time depending on your own typing speed. Switching over to a standard on-screen keyboard or hand writing recognition are just a few clicks away.

What we do miss is the Mini QWERTY keyboard present on the Nokia 5800. Phone books searches are implemented with a GPS-like keyboard entry system (A, B, C, D, E, F...) with the first letter of all saved names being showed on-screen first. After typing something in, only the necessary letters remain on the screen as if the phone thinks ahead and tries to guess what you´re looking for.

Handwriting - Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Full QWERTY - Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Numberic keyboard - Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Search in contacts - Samsung OMNIA HD Preview

Handwriting

Full QWERTY

Numberic keyboard

Search in contacts



Internet browser:

It´s practically the same as the one found on the Nokia 5800, only the interface has got more colorful and appealing. All pages and Flash elements, including the YouTube player load properly, there is no evidence of any problems and navigation on such a huge screen feels all beer and skittles. What really appeals to us, although it´s no great shakes, is the zooming feature activated by holding your finger in place for a while onto the part you want to zoom in on, although we had certain difficulties getting used to it. At any rate we feel we should keep waiting and test a retail unit before we pass any verdict on the final browser implementation.

Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Samsung OMNIA HD Preview
Samsung OMNIA HD Preview


6 Comments
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posted on 20 Oct 2010, 01:55

1. att_agent (Posts: 96; Member since: 26 Feb 2009)


ITS A DIRTY POINT BUCK!!!!!

posted on 31 Mar 2009, 15:39

2. chupum (Posts: 115; Member since: 10 Feb 2009)


What carrier is it going to be on when/if it hits the U.S.?

posted on 07 Apr 2009, 09:39

5. Astromanaught (Posts: 46; Member since: 11 Mar 2009)


Well its gsm, so most likely is either AT&T or T-Mobile. Or maybe sold unlocked at retail? Even with carrier subsidizing i would put the price around 300(after $100 mail in rebate). On another note I'm glad to see S60 getting some love state-side. Never owned one but I know those that have it love it.

posted on 04 Apr 2009, 08:18

3. Legion (Posts: 397; Member since: 12 Dec 2008)


Samsung is stepping it up, this will be good for the industry.

posted on 06 Apr 2009, 14:56

4. mesign (Posts: 1; Member since: 06 Apr 2009)


just wondering if there's anthing to cover the camera lens?

posted on 07 Apr 2009, 23:31

6. Cameron (Posts: 1; Member since: 07 Apr 2009)


Na theres not but it is in the phone deep so it dosent matter still nice for things like dust

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Display3.7 inches, 360 x 640 pixels (198 ppi) AMOLED
Camera8 megapixels
Hardware
TI OMAP3430, Single core, 600 MHz, ARM Cortex-A8 processor
Size4.84 x 2.28 x 0.51 inches
(123 x 58 x 12.9 mm)
5.08 oz  (144 g)
Battery1500 mAh, 13.5 hours talk time

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