Samsung Champ Review

Internet and Connectivity:

Surfing the Internet on the Champ is done via the Java-based NetFront v3.5 browser, which is not the latest 4.1 version that is supposed to be much faster in JavaScript rendering. Of course, do not expect a tolerable web experience on a phone like the Champ.

Samsung Champ doesn't have a 3G baseband, you will be limited to EDGE speeds for everything as the handset has no Wi-Fi capabilities either. The phone is lacking a GPS chip as well, however Bluetooth 2.1, and an FM radio are still on board.

Camera and Multimedia:

The camera interface is typical Samsung of the latest TouchWiz variety, just the shooting modes are scaled down to the capabilities of the 1.3MP sensor – Single, Continuous and the fun Frame and Mosaic. There is no need to touch-focus as the camera doesn't support autofocus, just press the on-screen shutter and take the picture, or start shooting video. It takes about 2-3 seconds to capture and save the image, which is fairly normal.

The 1.3MP pictures are unfocused and lacking detail, but the colors are fine and the overall impression isn't negative, considering the sensor size. Video capture is in QCIF (176x144 pixels) resolution at 15fps, and the resulting video is with washed out colors and watchable only in a post stamp size on your computer screen.

There is no dedicated gallery for pictures or videos. They can be called from the Quickview icon in the camera interface, or from the “My Files” app, and in both places the multimedia files are separated in categories. Quickview shows the pictures one after the other, with double-tap switching to the next one, while in My Files pictures or videos are arranged in a list view. You can attach them to email, send them with MMS or Bluetooth, and that's about it. There is an image editing app in the menu, which allows for quick basic actions to be performed on the photo like cropping, auto adjust colors, or rotating.

When the music player is paused or playing in the background, it appears as a widget on the homescreen, full with album art and music controls.
 The dedicated widget is probably a tribute to the phone's music functionalities, as it has dual speakers in the front, and sports Samsung's Sound Alive technology that brings 3D sound effects in headset mode, kind of a mock surround sound. The supplied headset's quality is good, especially when the Bass mode of the equalizer presets is on. The effective output from the speakers is with decent volume, but the base sounds are tinny.

It doesn't differ from the latest TouchWiz-ed phones from Samsung and allows for creation of playlists and filters tracks by albums, artist or genre. There are even several equalizer presets, so the player is a well-rounded offering.
A feature that cements the Champ's added value as an affordable touchscreen music player is that the FM antenna is built-in, and you don't need to dangle the headset from the standard 3.5mm audio jack to tune in to your favorite station, neat.

Video can theoretically be played up to the screen's QVGA resolution, but we had trouble running a lot of the test files from the memory card. The MPEG-4 ones played in the lowest resolutions, but the player is very basic, and the video was a bit choppy.

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