Written on 1/21/2010 12:31:00 PM by poison_ivy
Okay, forget about the Motorola Milestone and the Nokia N900, Samsung has done it again and released a mobile phone that can match these phones' features at a very cheap price: meet the Samsung Genio Slide.
Familiar with the Samsung Genio Touch? Well, the Samsung Genio Slide is pretty much its twin brother except that the Genio Slide has a slide-out QWERTY keyboard. The other thing that's different on the Genio Slide's face is that it features a secondary camera for video calling. The Samsung Genio Slide also features a 3.5mm headset jack on top and a standard microUSB slot on the side.
Samsung did a good job of making the Genio Slide thinner than the Nokia N900. Of course, the Milestone is still the thinnest mobile phone with a slide out keyboard but for a budget phone, it's amazing how thin Samsung has made this handset.
There's a four row QWERTY keyboard and the keys are large and have a nice tactile feedback. In fact, it's actually better typing on the Genio Slide than on my Milestone.
The Samsung Genio Slide, like the Samsung Genio Touch has the latest Touchwiz UI. You can add widgets to the three homescreens. As for the homescreens, you can change the wallpapers per homescreen or you can choose one wallpaper for the three, kinda like the N900.
The screen is pretty much responsive and unlike Nokia's S60, kinetic scrolling is present on all menus. Of course, at this price point, you can't really expect it to be as fluid as on the iPhone, Milestone or the N900 but the screen responsiveness is pretty much adequate, meaning it doesn't have any annoying lags but it's not that fast either.
Now what I like about Samsung is that they're pretty much able to put anything on any device and then slap a pretty competitive price on it. Take this whole touchscreen and slide-out keyboard segment of the mobile phone market. We have the Nokia N97, N97 Mini, Nokia N900, Motorola Milestone, HTC Touch Pro2, Xperia X1, and Samsung B7610 competing in that department and most of these mobile phones are priced somewhere around £400 or free at around £30-£35 a month tariff. Now features on these handsets are pretty much common, 3G, WiFi, Bluetooth, at least 5 megapixel cameras, and GPS. Then comes Samsung with the Genio Slide which also has 3G, WiFi and Bluetooth. 3G and WiFi isn't really common on mid-range handsets, usually it's one or the other but not the Samsung Genio Slide, this mobile phone gives you two choices in connecting to the internet plus 3.2 megapixel camera with smile detection (which not even the iPhone has), and A-GPS. And the price? Around half the price of the high-end mobile phones or free on £15 a month tariff on Vofadone!! Now THAT's value for money.
As for the media player, I actually like Samsung TouchPlayer better than the standard music player on the Milestone. Plus, the Samsung Genio Slide actually
Another great feature of the Samsung Genio Slide is that it supports Microsoft Exchange which is good news for business users but ordinary folks like us don't really give an A**. Oh wait, I take that back, you can actually make use of the exchange support by setting up your gmail account though I haven't actually tried that. Setting up your email is actually pretty easy or tricky depending on your tech knowledge. You need to know your email client's incoming and outgoing email server but it's nothing that a quick google wouldn't fix. The Samsung Genio Slide also has an onscreen keyboard (alphanumeric in portrait mode) which is really responsive and you don't have to slide out the keyboard in case you need to do a quick text response. My only problem is that in landscape mode, there's no onscreen keyboard, you have to slide out the QWERTY one which I guess is a good call considering the screen area would be too small for a landscape onscreen QWERTY keyboard, but still, it would be nice to have that option. Text messages can be viewed in threaded mode which seems to be the standard these days.
As for the 3 megapixel camera, it lacks autofocus but it has geotagging and face detection (which is fun but not really quite useful). Shutter speed is actually faster than the Milestone and as usual, image quality specially in outdoors shot is pretty decent. Here's two sample shots:
The web browser has an option to enable flash, I turned it on but I still get the adobe logo when viewing the videos on this blog. Anyways, the web browser is alright. I mean, it's not blazing fast but it will do when you need to have a quick browse of some of your favorite websites.
And as icing to this feature phone, Samsung also added a task manager which can be accessible by holding the menu button. Although it's a nice added touch, you'll find that it's not as nice as the task manager on the higher end smartphones because most of the time, you'll see a message regarding how the phone is out of resources.
I can't really put the Samsung Genio Slide in league with the Milestone and Nokia N900 because in the truest sense of the word, the latter two handsets are smartphones and have their own operating systems and applications which make them more of a mobile computer. The Genio Slide, while it offers almost the same features in terms of connectivity and emails, only has java applications going for it. Now I'm not saying that the Samsung Genio Slide can't hold its own against these handsets, in fact, it's on a league of its own. It's a mobile phone that gives you so much more value for your money.
College kids and teenagers don't have to break the bank in order to get the iPhone, N900 or the Droid in order to connect with their friends, check your email or your Facebook status because the Genio Slide can do all of that. Think of it as the netbook of mobile phones (it's not as good as the Macbook or Vaio but it will do). No doubt like the Samsung Genio, the Genio Slide will definitely create another stir and would become popular to texters and social network addicts alike.