The latest Samsung slider phone which was unveiled just yesterday at a Telstra Investor briefing promises lightning fast download speeds on Telstra’s lightning fast Next G network. We take a look to see how it really stacks up.
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The Samsung SGH-A811 sports a Titanium finish and has a 2.12-inch widescreen QVGA display for easy website and Foxtel viewing. Right below the screen is a directional pad, Foxtel and BigPond hotkey, call start and end button, and a clear button for easy menu navigation and access. A front-mounted camera is also found on the A811 and is used for either taking low-resolution photos or for 3G video calls.
Users can find the key tone / volume adjust buttons, My Place hot key, and MicroSD card slot on the unit’s left spine, while the camera button and proprietary port (for charging and USB connection) can be found on its right. Sliding the phone reveals a responsive and well-spaced keypad, and exposes its 3 mega pixel camera sensor at the back of the unit.
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Pressing the OK button takes you to the main menu. Here, users can access their phonebook, call logs, messages, calendar, files, and unit settings instantly. Other programs like Music Player, Browser, Camera, Alarm, and Applications (Voice recorder, Memo, Task, Converter, Timer, Stopwatch, World clock, and PocketNews) are also accessible in the main menu, placing everything the phone has to offer up front.
The A811 supports wireless printing via Pictbridge or Bluetooth, has a Document viewer (PDF, MS Word, MS Excel, MS Powerpoint, JPEG) that allows a user to view files while on the go, and can even retrieve and save e-mails to your phone.
Users can also have a bit of fun with the A811 as it comes with a music player that supports MP3, AAC, and MWA formats, as well as a 3.15 mega pixel camera. The camera can be set to take photos (up to 2048 x 1536) or shoot low quality videos (up to 176 x 144) and users can opt to save and store it in the phone memory or memory card.
The real crowning glory for the A811 however, is its fast download speeds. We have used the unit’s browser to load websites that were heavy on content (websites with a lot of text, photos, and videos) and have found the A811 to load it almost instantly.
The A811 also did not have a problem streaming various shows from Telstra’s Mobile Foxtel service, with videos from channels like CNN running smoothly with very short buffering times. Users can preview any channel but have to subscribe or pay for a 24-hour ‘Day Pass’ in order to fully view the streamed shows.
Users can also access various BigPond services (like BigPond TV, News and Finance, Weather, and e-mail) by pressing the BigPond hotkey in the front menu. Navigating through the various services was easy, with pages being fully loaded within a matter or seconds.
Finally, the Samsung A811 has an internal memory of 45MB with a microSD card slot for memory expansion, has a talk time of up to 140 mins (when connected to the 3G network), and will last for almost 8 days when the unit is placed on standby.
Samsung has done it yet again with the new SGH-A811. The slim form factor, great set of office and multimedia programs, as well as its fast Internet and download speeds make this unit a powerful and well-balanced mobile phone. An outright purchase of $999 may be steep for some, but then, that is nothing that a Telstra phone plan might not be able to fix.
– Tri-Band GSM/EDGE 900,1800,1900MHz
– UMTS/HSDPA 850MHz
– 2.12″ 262K Colour QVGA TFT Screen (240 x 320 Pixel Resolution)
Dimensions (HxWxT): 51.3 x 104.5 x 13.8 mm
Weight: 79g with Battery
Internal Memory: 45MB
External Memory: MicroSD
– 3.15 Megapixel Camera with Auto Focus
– VHS Quality Video Recording/Playback
– MP3 / AAC / AAC+ / e-ACC+ / WMA Player
Standard Battery: 900mAh Li-Ion
Talk Time (Max):
– 3G: Up to 140 mins
– 2G: Up to 170 mins
Standby Time (Max):
– 3G: Up to 180 hrs
– 2G: Up to 230 hrs
– Bluetooth 2.0 (A2DP, AVRCP, BPP)
– Email Client POP3/IMAP4
– SyncML (Local Only)
– SMS/MMS/WAP 2.0/JAVA
– Flight/Offline mode
– Pictbridge and Bluetooth printing
– Document viewer (PDF, MS Word, MS Excel, MS Powerpoint, JPEG)
– uGo, uTrack and Black GUI
– Travel Charger
– Stereo Headset
– PC Link Kit
– User Guide
Samsung SGH-A811 | $999 | | www.samsung.com.au
For: Slim form factor; Fast Internet downloads and video streaming; Useful features; Battery life
Against: The price is too steep, but a plan from Telstra should resolve the problem; Navigating through some websites can sometimes be difficult
Verdict: This is the world’s fastest phone so long as it is connected to the world’s fastest network.