Reviews and Problems with Samsung BlackJack II / SGH-i617
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Samsung Jack i637 Review
11 June 2009
Conclusion: The Samsung Jack is a worthy successor to the BlackJack II . If you are a fan of Windows Mobile Standard and want a smartphone that looks elegant and business-like yet is powerful and speedy, then the Jack is a safe bet. Another option is the smaller and sexier Samsung Propel Pro , but the tradeoff is that it can be a pain to always have to open the keyboard slider to use it.
Pros: Snappy, quick performance when accessing apps, Twice the memory of the BlackJack II, Excellent reception and call sound quality, 3.2 MP camera with video; good quality outdoor photos, marginal for indoors.
Cons: Display quality is very average, Battery must be removed to access microSD card slot, Proprietary connector instead of microUSB
As one of my colleagues put it, the
could be described as a "me too" device in a long list of similar mobile phones. It isn't an awful device, or even a bad one, but more middle-of-the-road in that it doesn't have anything terribly unique to set it apart from the rest of the pack.
It has acceptable voice quality, but not great; it offers good performance, not blazing speed; a pretty good keyboard, but not a great one -- you get the idea.
Summary: At $99.99, the Jack is a good bang-for-your-buck smart phone. Although we favor the superthin design and standard Web browser on the Nokia E71x, the Jack is an attractive phone that feels great in your hand. Moreover, this device will support Microsoft’s new Windows Mobile 6.5 operating system when it becomes available, making the Jack somewhat futureproof.
Pros: Strong call quality, Sharp industrial design, Comfortable keyboard, Good battery life, Upgradeable to Windows Mobile 6.5,
Cons: No 3.5mm headphone jack, Keyboard keys could use more space,
Conclusion: A welcome, though not earthshattering upgrade to the BlackJack. As the adage goes, if it ain't broke, don't fix it; and the original BlackJack was an extremely popular phone thanks to its low price, slim design and power. The II adds features that keep the BlackJack competitive in 2008: GPS, Windows Mobile 6, 2MP camera, more memory and a single slim high capacity battery.
Pros: Full-featured and the price is right at $99 after rebates. Super-slim and quite pocketable. Attractive looking and reasonably solid. GPS is handy for those who hit the road and the camera is actually decent, unlike the original BlackJack's. Plenty of memory to run programs and store data. Supports SDHC high capacity microSD cards. AT&T has strong service nationally and 3G HSDPA makes for fast downloads and page rendering.
Cons: Slippery! Proprietary Samsung connector for sync/charge/headset. GPS is slow on initial satellite acquisition. Voice dialing software not included.
Excerpt: Originally released in 2006, the first BlackJack gave more high-end (and expensive) handhelds a run for their money with its sleek design, easy use and overall approachable setup. The new BlackJack isn’t so much a redesign as it is an upgrade. Lovers of the original will be happy, but it isn’t different enough to attract anyone new.
Pros: Simple to use; stylish and compact; affordable
Cons: Poor video quality; inconsistent media downloading; headphones are not included
Conclusion: Samsung took what many loved already with the BlackJack and made an evolutionary step forward keeping the same known design while greatly improving on the features. As far as performance goes, it’s solid with quick responses, great reception, clear sound, and strong battery life. It’s a definite winner in our eyes and keeps up with the competition by providing the same capabilities while adding some that others are lacking.
Pros: Great sound quality, Long battery life, Faster performance than the BlackJack, Video Share, GPS
Cons: Keyboard and navigations keys are cramped, Lack of WiFi, Poor picture quality, Video Share can only be used with other Video Share capable handsets