Summary: The Samsung ATIV S is an excellent smartphone, although not as expensive as the market flagships. Its highlights are the big and bright HD screen, and the great camera.
It is light and thin, which makes it easy to carry, despite of the big frontal area.
The Samsung ATIV S is a good option if you are looking for a Windows Phone 8 smartphone.
Summary: The Odyssey is a good illustration of what your money buys you in a new Windows Phone. As we’ve seen, it’s not so much performance — Windows Phone 8 does just as well with inexpensive hardware as it does with the premium goods — but fit and finish, build quality, and the quality of the phone’s display. For a little bit more money than the Odyssey, you can get the Windows Phone 8X, which has a much nicer display, better camera, and much nicer hardware.
Pros: Zippy performance, Good battery life, Fast data
Conclusion: Whilst Samsung’s rivals have split elements like removable storage and a removable battery between their flagship and secondary Windows Phone 8 devices, Samsung launched its WP8 story with one device aiming to do it all. In some aspects this has resulted in a ‘jack of all trades’ experience, with competent performance across the board but no real point with which to excel in.
Summary: A new star in the Windows sky. Samsung offers a direct competitor to the HTC 8X and the Nokia Lumia 920 with the ATIV S; all three devices run Windows Phone 8. Where are the small but subtle differences and can it ascend to the Windows Phone 8 throne?
Pros: Good build quality and low weight, HD Super AMOLED Display, Completely smooth operating system, High quality camera, Removable battery, Storage extension via micro SD card, Long battery runtime, The main camera produces very good pictures and can replace less expensive digital cameras. The temperature is always in the non-critical range and the battery runtimes are convenient.
Cons: Retail price: 549 Euros, Small scope of delivery, The app variety is still small - we are spoiled by the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store. The Samsung ATIV S cannot change that.
Excerpt: The Samsung ATIV Odyssey is the manufacturer's first US Windows Phone 8 smartphone. Available on Verizon Wireless for $49 with contract, Samsung obviously wasn't shooting for a flagship device, and they've yet to bring the higher end ATIV S (equivalent to the Samsung Galaxy S III in terms of hardware) to the US. The ATIV Odyssey is akin to the Galaxy S III Mini and it has a colorful 4" Super AMOLED display running at 800 x 480 in a very compact form.
Pros: Compact design, fast and fluid experience.
Cons: Features and specs don't wow us for the price vs. the Windows Phone 8 competition.
Summary: Design-wise, the Samsung ATIV S looks like a smaller version of the Galaxy Note 2 with Windows Phone 8 inside. Samsung designed a few elements slightly differently, probably to differentiate the ATIV S from its larger Android-powered sibling, however it really feels like owning a Galaxy-series device, in fact, the specifications are very similar to the Galaxy S3 (4.8” 720p Super AMOLED display / Snapdragon S4).
Summary: The Samsung ATIV Odyssey runs Microsoft's Windows Phone 8 quickly and smoothly, but we're less than impressed with its design. In this price range, we prefer the Nokia Lumia 822, which is free on contract as of this review. While the Nokia is slightly larger, you get more color options and free turn-by-turn directions via Nokia Drive. If you're willing to spend a bit more, the $99 HTC Windows Phone 8X has a sharper 720p display, a sleeker design and wireless charging.
Conclusion: Samsung is no doubt embarking on an odyssey with this venture, which should be a refreshing thing to see for Big Red’s customers. Attached with a very easy-on-the-wallet price point of $49.99 with a 2-year agreement, there’s plenty of things to like about the Samsung ATIV Odyssey – especially when it performs rather well in pretty much all categories.
Pros: Inexpensive price point, Smooth performance, Includes a microSD card slot
Conclusion: Samsung might not be Microsoft’s favorite son in the Windows Phone 8 realm, but it’s managed to slide in on the budget level with a phone that is desirable without draining the wallet, just like Nokia. Design-wise, the ATIV Odyssey is more streamlined and attractive than the budget 800 series Lumias. Specs-wise, the Lumias have a few more powerful elements. But, when taken as a whole, they’re about on the same level.
Pros: Light, comfortable design, Bright and crisp display, Speedy performance, Hardware shutter button for camera
Cons: Low resolution display, Uninspiring camera, App store still lacks good selection