Samsung Sunburst A697 Review
We rarely witness a cell phone design that is truly different from our general understanding of how such a device should look. Over the years, we have come to think that Samsung is among these few companies that have affinity to experiment to a certain extent with the design of their handsets. The Samsung BEAT DJ immediately comes to mind here. Now, we are seeing just that happening in the U.S., with the new Samsung Sunburst that has recently made its appearance with AT&T. The Sunburst is one of those cell phones, which look truly unique, when placed next to the other offerings of the same class. Let's see if there's something more to it than meets the eye.
The Sunburst is a small device that fits well in the hands and should be a good size even for those with tiny hands. It has sleek, curvy lines and the design is straight out of Star Trek.
You can compare the Samsung Sunburst A697 with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.
The Samsung Sunburst’s 3” touchscreen predictably takes up most of the phone’s front real estate, but below Samsung has squeezed in Send, End, and Back keys. Those who have been around awhile may feel some nostalgia for the Motorola v120 when they see the design element Samsung uses to separate these buttons: a swooping “V” that is chrome when off but lights up white when the phone is unlocked. The keys feel good, are big enough to press easily and have good travel.
The volume rocker and microSD slot can be found along the left side of the phone while the right side houses the combo charging/data/headset port, lock button and camera key. In this day and age we are surprised and disappointed to see Samsung’s proprietary charging port and lack of a true headset port, especially since a 3.5mm adapter is not included. The 2 megapixel camera and speaker are on the back of the phone. The back door and sides of the phone have a soft touch coating giving a high quality feel.
The Sunburst is without a doubt a well-built phone that feels solid in the hand and slips comfortably in the pocket. For the most part Samsung has used premium materials for the Sunburst and it really shows. It is not a high-end phone on the spec sheet, but it certainly feels like one.
1. ace1122 (Posts: 237; Member since: 23 Mar 2009)
This phone may not be much but atleast its cool looking. All Verizon's non-smartphone touchscreen phones are just ugly. Well actually just bout all Verizons phones are rather dull and boring looking.
2. Jyakotu (Posts: 814; Member since: 12 Dec 2008)
I wonder if Samsung will update this phone in the near future. I like the look, but I think it should've came with 3G.
3. baldilocks (Posts: 494; Member since: 14 Dec 2008)
Why does the Alpha Tag say "Cingular" and not AT&T?? :)
4. percy (unregistered)
this model does not play videos from youtube page ...
5. fft26 (unregistered)
i hate this phone, its slow frezes and is retarted
6. gemi (unregistered)
i think samsung sunburst is cool handphone...
I LIKE IT!! i wil buy..... :)
7. ruffone (unregistered)
This is a PHONE. That means audio. Two-way real time conversations! Yet your video review completely bypasses that aspect. YUK! Poor review.
8. ruffone (unregistered)
Commenters, please note: If you cannot spell, I will not read your comment.
9. Rabby (unregistered)
I just purchased the Samsung Sunburst A697 because I was assured by Consumer Cellular that it has voice recognition. I could communicate with my co-workers as we float to locations. That's a sweet spot for me as in Maryland you can't drive your car and hold the phone. I love the fact that there are reviews of micro-electronic communication devices.
10. Jmarc (unregistered)
Thinking of buying this phone from ebay.. i got some questions 1. How good is the sound quality and should i buy this phone or the blackberry 8310 ?
11. DJ6ual (unregistered)
Can the Samsung A697 support Apps similar to that of the iPhone. I am still not really clear on the difference between the 'Colorful Touchscreen' of the Samsung A697 and 'Smartphone Technology' of other units.
My son wants a phone that will function as an iPod/mp3 Player. He also wants to text, access Facebook, and possibly check weather reports. His favorite App is the local Police Scanner for our area, he usually listens on my iPod. He says he wants a "Smartphone" but he is only 11 going on 12 so this phone looks like it might be a better choice. Please let me know what you think, thanks!
12. Older Newbie (unregistered)
Bought this phone via Consumer Cellular AARP program. Came with a 'Quick Start Guide' printed in 4 point lettering. Had to use a magnifying glass to read it. No full User's Guide that would tell me things like how to set up the Bluetooth. Some features missing: voice-activated dialing is very useful for AARP people, as keypads are usually very small and hard to use. Don't know whether I'll be satisfied or not because I can't activate the darned thing!
13. Hawthorne (Posts: 1; Member since: 24 Jan 2012)
@ Older Newbie - I trust you have called them since you posted, and got that sorted out. However, you are ahead of me a little, I didn't realize it had bluetooth at all! Might look into that, though for my purposes, the speaker phone is more than adequate. A good speakerphone has been one of my priorities, and this phone has that.
I'm happy with it, but now that Concell has made web browsing more accessible, I might have to look at upgrading to a smart phone. I don't find the web browsing very usable on it. Might be me, of course ...