Samsung Rant M540: Full QWERTY Keyboard Multi-Media Phone
Personal Electronics buzz
11 August 2009
Excerpt: The Samsung Rant edges out the LG Scoop/Rumor in my opinion. I went back and forth on these phones and chose the Samsung Rant 540. The Rant has a horizontal slide-out full QWERTY keyboard that is designed for fast text messaging and sending e-mails. I am still finding cool features on the Samsung Rant.
Summary: A lot of phones are trying to be everything to everyone at the moment, and it's refreshing to see Samsung approach both the Highnote and Rant with such singular vision. That's not to say that either of these phones are lacking critical functions - just that Rant does exactly what it should: facilitate communications. And it does this very well.
Pros: It's a godsend for mobile text/IM/email addicts; slide-out QWERTY is comfortable and requires about 60 seconds of adaptation; it's Sprint TV and Sprint Music Store capable; music plays in background; stereo Bluetooth; camera with video capture and night shot; photo caller ID; GPS; comes with extra back cover, complete with curly doodles; loads of fun.
Conclusion: The Samsung Rant is essentially a 2008 version of last year's LG Rumor, sporting a better keyboard, high-speed data access, work e-mail support, and more multimedia options—all for the same low price.
Pros: Roomy, comfortable QWERTY keyboard. Includes 3G, GPS, and Bluetooth radios. Offers support for corporate e-mail accounts. Sprint's easy-to-use One Click interface gives quick access to favorite apps.
Cons: Poor Web browsing experience. Slightly awkward control pad design. Music player and camera could use improvement.
Summary: Admittedly, much of our criticism of the Samsung Rant is nitpicky. For $49.99, the Rant packs in more bleeding-edge goodies—including GPS, Sprint TV, and the Sprint One Click UI—for the price than any other phone we’re run across. Also, it has one of the better keyboards we’ve seen in a text-centric device. The Rant may be a jack-of-all-trades, master-of-few, but for the price it’s easy to overlook some of these minor shortcomings.
Pros: Extra-wide QWERTY keyboard, Excellent One Click menu, GPS navigation and Google Maps, Sprint TV compatible,
Cons: LCD has narrow viewing angles, Slow-to-load music player,
Conclusion: You might not take the phone’s name seriously, but the Samsung Rant offers strong text-centric features with beefy multimedia muscle. The QWERTY keyboard is good and the GPS, Sprint TV and music are all there. The phone has some stability-related issues but it has very good potential and hopefully after a few firmware updates, the Rant will be a solid phone.
Pros: Sturdy build with a great QWERTY keyboard. Full set of multimedia features and a good camera. GPS has strong performance.
Cons: The phone needs a little bit of work in several areas.
Conclusion: We really like what we’ve seen in the Rant, and the One Click UI has a lot to do with it. A good interface will go a long way to making even a bad phone look good, but the Rant is certainly not a bad phone. Its size is on the large side, but that allows for a bigger keypad that we think users will enjoy. The build quality, as always from Samsung, is top notch.
Pros: One Click is wonderful, Quality feel, though it is bordering on bulky, Larger keyboard with more options, Camera performed admirably, 16GB microSD support, Good call quality and battery life
Cons: It could stand to go on a diet, Keyboard felt odd, though we expect with time this will not be an issue