Samsung Gravity TXT Review

Introduction and Design

Samsung’s Gravity line has exploded in the last year to encompass a wide array of handset categories, thanks partly to the introduction of the Android platform to the family, but it appears that it’s going back to its roots for their latest incarnation. Sporting an on-contract price of only $9.99, the Samsung Gravity TXT continues the trend as being a socially connected messaging device that’s aimed for the younger generation. However, as we continue to see more smartphones intruding on space once held tightly by feature phones, the Samsung Gravity TXT will really need to hit it big in order to keep afloat.

The package contains:

  • Samsung Gravity TXT
  • Wall Charger
  • Start Guide
  • Terms & Conditions


When you think of downright cheap phones, the Samsung Gravity TXT easily comes to mind as it sports one uninspiring design that’s downright forgettable. Not only do we despise its cheap feeling plastic exterior, but its shabby construction doesn’t leave an impression that it’ll last that long and withstand the everyday grind of messaging buffs. Sure it’s lightweight (3.95 oz) and not overly bulky (0.55” thick), but we can’t erase the fact that it’s so darn ugly looking.

You can compare the Samsung Gravity TXT with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.

Scary to say, we’re dismayed by the low quality 2.4” QVGA (240 x 320) TFT display tacked onto the handset because it falters in providing any reasonable visuals. Oozing with a noticeable amount of pixilation, combined with its bland looking color production, there’s nothing pretty with this one – especially when it utterly fails in being visible in outdoor conditions. Compounding the problems, viewing it slightly away from a straight angle results in bleeding and distorted colors.

With the keypad, it’s relatively straightforward in layout with its well-sized and rectangular looking buttons – and it helps that it offers a decent tactile response when pressed. However, we can’t say that many good things about the optical joystick since we find it unresponsive and cumbersome to use with navigation.

With its snappy opening/closing mechanism, it tucks away a 4-row landscape style keyboard that’s very challenging to adapt to and use extensively. Specifically, its flat and tiny sized buttons make it extremely difficult to feel out with our fingers – and it doesn’t get any better when they’re stiff to the touch. Moreover, we’re not thrilled to find the soft keys located in the bottom most row since it causes some confusion in corresponding them to their functions on screen.

In addition to finding the usual set of ports around its sides, we find its 2-megapixel camera and speakerphone notches properly located in the rear. Meanwhile, yanking off its flimsy plastic back cover, we’re given access to the SIM card slot, 1,000 mAh battery, and spring loaded microSD card slot.

Samsung Gravity TXT 360-degrees View:


Boring to tell you the truth, the hassle-free and no-brainer platform experience is lacking any visual pizzazz to minutely enlighten our interest. Throw in the fact that personalization is limited to things like the background wallpaper and main menu layout, it doesn’t particularly come off as appealing. Fortunately, its speed is tolerable enough to handle, but the optical joystick just ruins the entire experience as we frustratingly use it in the attempt to navigate around the platform – it simply just isn’t responsive!

Messaging and Functionality:

Naturally, the main highlight about the handset is its messaging aspects, which can be quickly accessed by tapping on the dedicated messaging button on the keypad and keyboard. Besides finding the usual set of functionality when composing messages, we find the ‘Conversations’ option especially useful since it organizes messages between multiple recipients. Yet, it’s seemingly laborious when typing lengthy messages with the physical keyboard – and it doesn’t help when we find an irritating process when typing letters consecutively all in caps. You simply can’t hold down the ‘shift’ key to do this, but rather, we’re required to tap the ‘shift’ key prior to each letter.

Being given the basics, the email app provides all the necessities in punching out a quick email on the go. With most generic and popular clients, setup is one streamlined and simple process. Additionally, it’s a nice gesture to see the handset offering support for Exchange email as well.

For those who consider themselves socially connected, the Social Buzz app is especially useful in getting a good grasp of what’s going on with friends and family. It aggregates all social networking content simultaneously from Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter – and it even allows you to compose you own posts. Even though it can be sluggish as times, at least the functionality is at our disposal.

Strangely, we find slim pickings with third party applications preloaded with the Samsung Gravity TXT – these include TeleNav GPS Navigator, Scrabble Demo, Tetris Demo, and UNO. Aside from that, we’re only greeted with the usual set of organizer apps and access to T-Mobile Mall – the carrier’s centralized hub for apps.


Forget about it! That’s exactly what comes to mind after looking over some of the shots taken by its paltry 2-megapixel camera. Uneventful to say the least, its results are terrible . Indoor low lighting shots get even worse with plenty of digital noise.

Just as bad, the handset only has a maximum video shooting resolution of 320 x 240, which makes them look almost indistinguishable. Equally, its molasses slow capture rate of 14 frames per second easily makes things look abundantly choppy. And to top things off, it captures muffled sounding voices! Can it possibly get any worse from here?!

Samsung Gravity TXT Sample Video:


Flaunting one bare bones music player interface, it’s functional in playing tunes, but the optical joystick again makes it one difficult process in juggling controls. Luckily, audio quality with its internal speaker produces some audible tones that don’t strain when placed at the loudest volume setting.

Indeed far from being the most suitable thing for watching videos, the Gravity TXT is able to play videos up to QVGA resolution. Not surprisingly, it’s able to play them with relative ease, but we don’t find anything mind-blowing with it – mainly due to low quality display.

With a total internal storage capacity of 115MB, it’s not sufficiently enough to handle the needs of media-centric individuals. Thankfully, there’s an available microSD card slot ready and willing to accept cards up to 32GB in size.

Internet and Connectivity:

Just like shooting photos and videos, you probably want to forget about doing anything web browsing related with the handset since it’s far from producing a tolerable experience. First and foremost, we’re constantly bombarded with warnings about pages being too large to load. After that, pages don’t display all media content properly, and simply replaces them with gapping white spaces. Lastly, the tedious and monotonous scrolling make it excruciatingly painful getting from one place to another within the same page. All told, we’re frustrated in the end!

Despite being deemed as an entry-level GSM model, you can still bring the handset abroad and expect it to function normally. Additionally, it features other connectivity items like Bluetooth 2.1 with EDR and aGPS.


Emitting weak tones through the earpiece, it’s rather difficult in distinctively making out words – despite hearing clear and noise-free voices through it. Conversely, our callers are dealt with their own challenge in deciphering hollow voices on their end of the line. Moreover, voices are muffled in tone with a hint of echoing when using the speakerphone.

Even though we didn’t experience any dropped phone calls during our testing, we experienced a few instances of the handset fluctuating in signal strength in high coverage areas within the greater Philadelphia region.

If you love to talk, then you’ll be impressed by the immaculate battery life of the handset since we’re able to get well over 10 hours of talk time on a single charge – versus the 6.5 hours rated by the manufacturer. Using the handset normally, it’s able to give well over two days of usage.


When we hear something priced at $10 on-contract, we might be reluctant in being a bit more harsh with its performance, but in the case of the Samsung Gravity TXT, we can’t get our mind off its abysmal experience. For a messaging oriented device, it already fails to even hit the mark loosely in that specific category due to the annoyances we find with its keyboard and optical joystick. Confining itself even more to an untimely demise, there are just way too many loose ends with this $10 phone that would make us drop it in a heartbeat in favor of something else – maybe some sort of entry-level smartphone. Honestly, this handset is one of the reasons why feature phones are increasingly becoming less relevant.

Software Version: T379UVKF9

Samsung Gravity TXT Video Review:


  • Cheap
  • Good battery life


  • Feels very cheap
  • Unresponsive optical joystick
  • Frustrating messaging experience
  • Unable to display complex web pages properly
  • Horrendous photo & video capture

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