Samsung SGH-T819 Review

Introduction and Design
This is a GSM phone offered from T-Mobile.

Even though the 3G network hasn’t been activated yet, T-Mobile has released three 3G capable handsets, the Samsung T639, Nokia 6263, and Samsung T819. The T819 is the latest of the three and the one we’ll be taking a look at today. It’s a low level model so there isn’t anything to shock or attract you. Instead, it’s there for those who want something simple and not too complex.

The package contains:

  • Samsung T819
  • Charger
  • Headphones
  • Get started manual
  • T-Mobile manual
  • Samsung T819 manual


When you first look at the T819, it seems very elegant. The front has a nice glossy material to it while the rest is a more dull brownish color which doesn’t take away from it. The construction feels very solid for what it is and the only play we noticed was at the bottom portion of the upper half when the handset was closed.

The screen does a great job for what it is. While it looks to be small when compared to the rest of the front, it’s still fairly large. Colors seem very lively and bright regardless of the environment. With the brightness set to only the half-way mark, we had no difficulty making out the picture in very bright environments even when the sun was shining directly at it.

The keypad and buttons are just all over the place when it comes to comfort. The buttons are well laid out but they are just too cramped to be used comfortably. The D-pad and the keypad suffer the most from the small size. There were times when we managed to press the surrounding buttons to the D-pad when trying to navigate.

The keypad is not only cramped but very frustrating to use at time. The keys are almost completely flush with it and the material that’s used to differentiate them just isn’t enough. We found ourselves pressing the wrong keys when looking at the handset so forget about texting or dialing without looking at the keypad.

Samsung SGH-T819 360 Degrees View

Features and Software:

The T819 comes with the features you expect from handsets in its class: 1.3MP camera, WAP browser, simple media player, organizer, IM clients, and voice commands.

The layout of the interface for both the camera and media player have been carried over from other models so there shouldn’t be a problem if you’ve used other Samsung handset. Picture quality was mediocre with good, bright colors but things came out rather blurry.

With 3G capabilities, it would be nice to see an HTML browser but the T819 only offers a simple wap. We were able to load up and view everything but it was all cramped and aligned in a very long list.

Voice commands were excellent. Once the voice recognition was set, it almost always picked up exactly what we were saying even when it came to speaking the entire number.


At least you can view wap site and to make it better, the T819 has great reception for a handset its size. It was tested around Chicago area alongside a Samsung U600 and managed to get signal in places where the U600 was just a large paperweight.

Sound quality didn’t help out though as voices came through sounding muffled and quiet. We checked the volume and it was turned up all the way. This lead to some difficulty talking in loud environments but it was more than adequate in quiet places. On the other side, our voices came through clearly and there was no distortion or faintness that was heard.

Battery life was excellent on the other hand, lasting for 6 hours and 23 minutes of talk-time in our test from a single charge. Seeing as it’s rated for 5 hours of talk-time, we can’t say that it’s anything to complain about. Stand-by time is rated for 300 hours.

The phone itself was a bit sluggish at times. There were some instances where we waited for a second or two when going into an application or between menus.


The Samsung T819 is actually quite a nice, simple handset. It offers the standard features that can be found in its rivals and it looks nice. Sadly, it just doesn’t offer anything more than that. The sluggish performance, mediocre camera, lack of a browser, and sound quality aren’t helping it any. It basically leaves this handset for those who want something that they can talk on, get good battery life and signal strength, not be confused by it in the end, and get something that looks nice without being overly flashy. If that’s what you’re looking for then give it a try, otherwise look at some of the better handsets that are out there.


  • Simple
  • Strong reception
  • Long battery life
  • Display can be seen in bright environments


  • Cramped buttons and keypad
  • Poor sound quality
  • Mediocre camera
  • Sluggish performance

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User Rating:

6 Reviews

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