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Samsung Omnia CDMA Review

Samsung Omnia CDMA

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Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Camera Interface - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Camera Interface - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review

Camera Interface

The Omnia is the currently the only phone available from Verizon with an integrated 5MP autofocus camera and flash. The first thing that impressed us was its operating speed. The interface starts somewhat sluggish (about 3 seconds), but focusing and saving is very quick (2 seconds each). It is optimized for working entirely with fingers and has large icons with clearly marked functions. All main options (flash, resolution, focus, exposure, shooting mode and scenes) are visible on the screen. Thanks to them, after just couple of taps you can choose an option without having to go through complicated menus, to scroll or confirm. There also are shortcuts to the gallery and the camcorder.

The rest of the settings are separated in two tabs with a few pages each. The first one lets you change the quality (compression), the white balance, to add effects, to change the ISO sensitivity (up to 800), contrast, sharpness, color saturation and focusing mode (center, in a point or matrix). By using some of the options (like the Color swap for example), you can achieve very artistic results. The Face Detection also works well and shows a large green square that tracks the movement of a person’s face. This is to ensure that the person is in-focus. The only option we found missing was the ability to tag photos with the GPS location, which the GSM Omnia is capable of.

Regardless of how many features and options the camera has, the most important aspect is how well the pictures look. Since OMNIA is the first 5-megapixel phone offered by Verizon, we were rather excited about its performance. When we took our test pictures, we compared them with shots, taken with the other Verizon camera phones. Next to the HTC Touch Pro and the LG Dare, which are equipped with 3MP cameras, OMNIA stands well, taking slightly better pictures in natural, as well as in artificial light. The details level is above average, but colors are sometimes too saturated and the image is overexposured, so brighter objects burn out. The LED flash on the Omnia is brighter than the one on the Touch Pro, and has a large distance of 15 feet, but the downside is that if it’s used take a picture of a person up close (within 5 feet), their face is washed out. The only work-around it to change the Autofocus to Macro Mode, which reduces the intensity of the flash. There aren’t any significant differences between the Verizon and the GSM versions, but compared to the other 5MP phones on the market, it scores just above the middle.

Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Outdoor Samples - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Outdoor Samples - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Outdoor Samples - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review

Outdoor Samples


strong light - Indoor Samples - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
medium light - Indoor Samples - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
low light - Indoor Samples - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
no light with flash on - Indoor Samples - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review

strong light

medium light

low light

no light with flash on

Indoor Samples


When recording a video, you can use a majority of the effects and settings that are accessible in the picture mode. The maximum resolution is 640х480, but is limited to only 15 fps just like the LG Dare. For 30 fps recording, you have to drop down to 320x240 resolution. Videos are recorded in the 3gp format instead of MP4, which is used on the GSM Omnia. Unfortunately, the videos are choppy when viewed.


Multimedia:

Saved images can be viewed in either the Media Album or Photo Slides program. The Media Album is the best method as you can view images full screen, zoom in and out, and slide you finger from one side to another to go to the next image. The Photo Slides program is not as user-friendly, as you have to use arrows on the bottom of the screen to move forward and back.

Photo Slides - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Photo Slides - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review

Photo Slides


For music and video playback, the Touch Player is used instead of the standard Windows Media Player. Music files are categorized into All Music, Albums, and Artists. When selecting Album, it shows all the cover art on the screen so you can easily see and select the one you want to listen to. The player controls are large, so that you can use your finger instead of a stylus. The quality of playback is good, considering there is only one speaker located on the back. You can also connect your own 3.5mm earbuds using the FM cable, or a Stereo Bluetooth headset.

Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Touch Player - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
FM Radio - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
 

Touch Player

 

FM Radio


When the FM cable is connected, you can listen to local radio stations, and it allows you to store two groups of 6 stations for presets. It is also RDS capable, where it will show the name of the station and what song is being played. While having a built-in FM radio player is nice, we would have been more impressed if it offered XM Satellite radio instead.

As previously mention, the Touch Player can also be used for video playback. Supported formats are AVI, MP4, DivX, and XviD. We tested a total of 12 files using those formats, with different resolutions, bit rates, and fps. The best looking was DivX, with 720x306 resolution and 24 fps, as the video was smooth did not drop frames. When playing a video in MP4-H264 format with 720x306 resolution, the video began dropping a lot of frames, making it unwatchable. The only MP4-H264 video that playback properly was at 320x136 resolution. When trying a XviD file (at 720x306), the first 5 seconds of playback had a few dropped frames, but was then fine after that. Regardless of which format is used, the quality is held back by the fact 65K colors of the display. This is one area where the iPhone still reigns supreme.

Video Playback - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Video Playback - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review

Video Playback


Software:

Unlike the GSM Omnia that is available in both 8GB and 16GB models, the CDMA version only comes with 8GB of onboard memory. But you can add a microSDHC memory card up to 16GB in size, giving the device an amazing total of 24GB of storage capacity.

Thanks to the fast ARM920T PXA312 processor, operating at 642Mhz, there is little-to-no delay when opening most programs and going through the phone’s menus. You can also have several programs open at once without noticing any lag.

Office Mobile - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Office Mobile - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
Office Mobile - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review

Office Mobile

The device comes with Office Mobile, allowing for viewing and editing of Word and Excel files (including Office 2007), PowerPoint viewing, and a PDF reader. All of them visualize documents correctly and open them rather quick. Unfortunately, navigating though a PDF file is done only with the help of the small arrows at the top, instead of using your finger on the page itself. Fortunately, the zoom stays at the same level once you move on to the next page.

The Video Editor at your disposal, but it can only open 320x240 (or smaller) resolution videos in the 3gp format. It’s absurd that you can record videos at 640x480 resolution, but cannot edit them. Still, this function offers some interesting options like putting together a picture and video story. You can also add subtitles and apply various visual effects.

Instead of coming with Google Maps, the CDMA Omnia uses VZ Navigator for GPS guided directions, which of course is $10 per month if you choose to install it. It allows you to plan your trip and even will re-route you if there are traffic congestions while on the road. Other features include the ability to find local movie theaters and show times, restaurants, gas stations, ATMs, hotels, hospitals, travel (airports, bus, car rental), parking lot/garage, and Verizon stores. It is an excellent program and worth the price, but we whish the (free) Google Maps were also included.

VZ Navigator - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
VZ Navigator - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
VZ Navigator - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
VZ Navigator - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review

VZ Navigator


An application that is unique to the CDMA Omnia is the VZAppZone, wherein you can access news and weather, and download a variety of other programs (entertainment, productivity, utilities, ringtones, games, security, and wallpaper). The ringtones and wallpapers are only a few dollars each, but games and utilities can cost $20-40 to download. This is supposed to be a Windows Mobile version of VCast Downloads, but it is poorly implemented, and doesn’t offer a lot of content. Naturally, you can use a microSDHC memory card and transfer pictures, videos, ringtones, wallpapers, and Windows Mobile applications directly.

VZAppZone - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
VZAppZone - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
VZAppZone - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review
VZAppZone - Samsung Omnia CDMA Review

VZAppZone


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Samsung Omnia CDMA

Samsung Omnia CDMA

OS: Windows Mobile Professional 6.1
view full specs
PhoneArena rating:
9Excellent
Display3.2 inches, 240 x 400 pixels (146 ppi) TFT
Camera5 megapixels
Size4.41 x 2.24 x 0.52 inches
(112 x 57 x 13 mm)
4.34 oz  (123 g)
Battery1440 mAh, 5.5 hours talk time

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