Samsung Memoir 8-Megapixel Cameraphone Lightning Review

The Gadget: Samsung Memoir, which is the 8-megapixel upgraded version of the Samsung Behold—both of which have Samsung's TouchWiz-based touchscreen interface. It's also got a Xenon flash that works quite well.

The Price: $250 with two-year contract, $50 rebate and qualifying data plan

Samsung Memoir 8-Megapixel Cameraphone Lightning Review

Samsung Memoir 8-Megapixel Cameraphone Lightning Review

Samsung Memoir 8-Megapixel Cameraphone Lightning Review

Samsung Memoir 8-Megapixel Cameraphone Lightning Review

Samsung Memoir 8-Megapixel Cameraphone Lightning Review

Samsung Memoir 8-Megapixel Cameraphone Lightning Review

Samsung Memoir 8-Megapixel Cameraphone Lightning Review

The Verdict: A pretty damn good cameraphone. The TouchWiz UI is pretty much the same as the version on the Samsung Behold. In short, it's more usable as a touchscreen phone (keyboard is fairly decent) than Windows Mobile phones, but not quite as good as say, Android or the iPhone. It does have haptic feedback, meaning there's a slight rumble as you press down on the screen. And yes, that implies that the Memoir doesn't have capacitive touch. You still have to press down when you want to click things. Let it be known that Jesús Diaz does not like some Samsung touchscreen UIs.

The front of the phone looks like a Samsung touchscreen phone, but the back actually looks a lot like a Samsung camera. Which is kind of the point. The 8-megapixel camera is very good. So good, in fact, that it's (give or take) about as good as my Samsung NV3 point and shoot from a few years ago. The gallery below has comparison shots.

Samsung Memoir 8-Megapixel Cameraphone Lightning Review

Samsung Memoir 8-Megapixel Cameraphone Lightning Review

And here's how well the Memoir's Xenon flash works in complete darkness. Spoiler: Pretty damn well.

Samsung Memoir 8-Megapixel Cameraphone Lightning Review

I haven't had enough experience with Nokia's high end N-series cameraphones to say whether or not the Memoir is better. We've already established that more megapixels isn't always better, but if the Memoir can take photos that are just about as good as Samsung's NV3 (which doesn't take FANTASTIC images, we have to admit), it's a great alternative for a point and shoot camera.