Samsung Focus Review
Calling quality is pretty decent with the Samsung Focus despite voices heard through the earpiece sounding hissy in tone towards the end of sentences, but thankfully, its near deafening tone makes it relatively adjustable in comprehending conversations without much fault. On the other side of the line, our callers did say that our voice sounded mute, but still manageable in hearing our words. Finally, the speakerphone is able to produce some loud tones, which can sometimes sound strained, but still handles well in providing distinguishable conversations.
During our testing, the handset performed admirably in maintaining a solid connection to the handset with no evidence of extreme fluctuations in signal strength in the greater Philadelphia region.
It surely has to be attributed to Super AMOLED technology because the Samsung Focus is a champ in the battery life department after putting out over 18 hours of life after a single full charge – and that's 18 hours of heavy usage. Naturally, we had brightness set to automatic and consistently used the handset to do a heavy amount of web browsing and text messaging in that span. It'll easily obtain the standard one day mark for users who are a little bit more lax with usage, but nonetheless, the Focus obtains some high marks over the competition. The manufacturer has it rated for 6.5 hours of talk and 300 hours of standby time.
It's rather difficult to say whether or not this is indeed a make or break opportunity for the Redmond based company – especially when they're sitting on huge amounts of money taken in from their PC venture. Placing that to the side, it's a sobering fact that Microsoft has been steadily losing visibility in the mobile space in just the course of the last 3 years. Sure Windows Mobile had some humbling beginnings in the early days of the smartphone era, but things change almost in a heartbeat. And unfortunately for them, they were unable to adapt to the rapid changes in the industry to keep the light shining down upon them – thus giving up precious market share to the likes of Apple's iOS, Google's Android, and RIM's BlackBerry.
Casting off all of their previous reputations, we're happy to say that Microsoft has done an impeccable job in becoming a relevant figure in the mobile space once again with Windows Phone 7. Naturally, there are a lot of expectations on their shoulders, but for something that's running on first-generation devices, the mobile platform quickly captures some noteworthy attention thanks to its dynamic presentation which is tastefully supplemented with some ridiculously fast speeds. There's no arguing that they have a hit on their hands, but it's going to take some serious refinements in getting the platform on par with the diverse offerings seen with other mature platforms. Of course it's not quite as complete in all key areas, but its level of presentation finally sheds that whole notion of using a stylus for navigation as it seamlessly adapts to an all touch figure.
Ultimately, the Samsung Focus might not be the biggest and baddest device we've seen to date, but it shouldn't be this time around, because the attention is best reserved for Windows Phone 7. Granted though it does offer some pretty decent hardware, such as the 1GHz Snapdragon chipset and gorgeous 4” Super AMOLED display, which does well in showing off all of the glitzy eye candy that WP7 has to offer the end user. This well rounded device might not steal the show with its hardware showcasing, but it's undoubtedly Microsoft's wonderful looking and adaptive mobile platform that places the spotlight on them. Well done indeed.
Software version of the reviewed unit: 7.0.7004.0
Samsung Focus Video Review:
- Brilliant Super AMOLED display
- Long battery life for such a smartphone
- Great responsiveness with WP7
- Dynamic aspects of the homescreen
- Zune integration
- Accurate on-screen keyboard
- Not yet a fully mature platform
- Plastic casing that scratches easily
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- Display 4.0" 480 x 800 pixels
- Camera 5 MP
- Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon S1, Single core, 1000 MHz
- Storage 8 GB
- Battery 1500 mAh(6.50h talk time)