Hands On: The Samsung SGH-T809 (Verdict: Hello Lover!)


Last week I was happy to find a nice shiny new Samsung T809 arrive from T-Mobile. I powered it on and started to check out it's features right away. The T809 has Bluetooth, a 1.3MP camera with swivel lens and video capability, it's a slider phone and about as thick as a RAZR. There is a TransFlash slot, but no card was included. So the phone is very compatible bluetooth-wise. It connected flawlessly to my 12-inch Powerbook, and I transferred some MP3s and video to the phone to entertain myself with on the subway. The sound quality is excellent as the T809 has dual speakers at the bottom of the phone for stereo sound. The screen is a beautiful 262k colors that displays everything perfectly. The camera was what I started playing with next and results are spectacular in good lighting, but so-so in low light. Pictures come in at a whopping 1280x1024 resolution, so if you resize them to 800x600, quality gets even better. After the jump you can see what I mean and read more.

Hands On: The Samsung SGH-T809 (Verdict: Hello Lover!)


Thin Thin Thin! About as thick as a RAZR.

The phone also allows you to edit images and video with cheesy, but fun, filters like sepia, negative, and black and white. Check out some of the cameraphone pictures below. As you will see, lighting plays a big roll.

Hands On: The Samsung SGH-T809 (Verdict: Hello Lover!)

Hands On: The Samsung SGH-T809 (Verdict: Hello Lover!)

Hands On: The Samsung SGH-T809 (Verdict: Hello Lover!)

The interface packed with the T809 is what you'd expect from Samsung, easy to use and colorful. It makes getting around very easy. What about call quality? Excellent and the speakerphone function actually works unlike a lot of cellphones I've had in the past (read: Motorola V300, Motorola A630, Nokia 3300). The slide function is nifty and saves a lot of space. The phone also includes a built-in IM client with ICQ, AIM, and Yahoo! support. The IM works well and is very speedy.

So I've told you how wonderful everything is, but the phone has a few flaws. The big one that sticks out like a sore thumb is battery life. This phone has gotten a lot of daily use out of it for me. I have about 10 MP3s, I like taking pictures, and I make plenty of calls. The battery dies about 2/3rds of the way through my daily grind every day. Because of this, I have to carry the proprietary charger around with me to make sure I don't get screwed. I hope Samsung will somehow improve battery life before this phone is released to the public.

Overall, this phone is a hit. It's made me lose the Blackberry and become a phone-a-holic. Samsung crammed everything you could ever hope for inside a phone the size of a RAZR, and they did it right most importantly. There's no word yet on a final release date or price point, but T-Mobile customers finally have a reason to stay with T-Mobile, and it's the Samsung SGH-T809.

Hands On: The Samsung SGH-T809 (Verdict: Hello Lover!)