The Samsung SCH-i760 is stocked with an arsenal of tools that should satisfy most mobile professionals. The phone runs the latest Windows Mobile 6 Professional Edition so you get the full Microsoft Office Mobile Suite with the ability to create, view, and edit Word and Excel documents. You can also view PowerPoint presentations (with minor editing options) and PDFs. More functionality was also added to calendaring, contacts, e-mail, and more; all the details are outlined in our review of Windows Mobile 6. Other personal management tools include a world clock, a calculator, a notepad, and a task manager. Of course, you can customize the i760 for your lifestyle and download other applications to the device; visit Download.com for some ideas.
With Microsoft's Direct Push Technology, the i760 can synchronize with your office's Microsoft Exchange Server for real-time e-mail delivery and Outlook synchronization. There's support for a number of other e-mail solutions, as well, including Good Mobile Messaging and Verizon Wireless Sync. In addition, the device can be configured to access your POP3 and IMAP4 accounts. There's a handy e-mail wizard that walks you through the steps for setting everything up, and it's really just a simple matter of entering your e-mail address, login, and password. We used it to access our Yahoo Plus account and had no problems whatsoever. Unfortunately, like the Motorola Q9m, the i760 has been stripped of the Windows Live Messenger instant messaging client as well as Windows Live.
Phone features on the Samsung SCH-i760 include a speakerphone, voice dialing and commands, smart dialing, three-way calling, and text and multimedia messaging. The phone book is limited only by the available memory, and each entry can hold as many as 12 phone numbers, three e-mail addresses, addresses for home and work, a job title, and more. For caller-ID purposes, you can assign a contact to a category or pair it with any of 14 polyphonic ringtones or a photo.
In terms of wireless options, the i760 pretty much has it all except GPS. Bluetooth 2.0 is onboard with support for the A2DP profile, so you can connect to stereo Bluetooth headsets. You can also use Bluetooth for wireless headsets, hands-free kits, wireless file transfers, and dial-up networking. Integrated Wi-Fi lets you hop onto your home network or any available hot spots so you can surf the Web. Alternatively, the i760 is EV-DO capable so you'll be able to enjoy data speeds of as fast as 2.4Mbps, though realistically, you'll average closer to 300Kbps to 600Kbps. Bottom line, you'll have a better experience whether you're browsing the Web, listening to streaming media, or downloading games.
Given the 3G capabilities, support for Verizon's V Cast music and video services would seem like a good fit, but given that the i760 is more of a business-centric smartphone, Verizon decided not to include these services at this time. However, that doesn't mean the i760 can't have fun. As a Windows Mobile smartphone, the Samsung i760 comes with Windows Media Player 10 Mobile, supporting a number of popular audio and video formats--AAC, MP3, WAV, WMA, MPEG-4, and WMV, to name a few. If you have TV shows recorded on your Windows Media Center PC, you can transfer them to your device for on-the-go viewing. Onboard memory is 64MB of RAM and 128MB of built-in flash memory with about 59MB of user-accessible storage, but you should be able to carry a nice size library of music and videos by taking advantage of the expansion slot, which can accept cards up to 2GB.
Finally, there's a 1.3-megapixel camera with video recording capabilities. There's a flash and self-timer, and you can choose from several shooting modes, quality settings, and resolutions, which range from 1,280x960 to 160x120 for still images. To enhance the picture, there are white-balance settings and various effects that you can add. These tools are also available to you in camcorder mode, though you can only choose from three quality settings. Picture quality, while not spectacular, was good. We had some difficulty steadying the device to get a clear shot, but images came out with sharpness and decent color.
We tested the dual-band (CDMA 850/1900; EV-DO) Samsung SCH-i760 in San Francisco using Verizon service, and call quality was mixed. There was some reverberation on our end but we could still carry on conversations without problem and interact with our bank's automated voice response system. Our friends said we sounded fine, though not spectacular, as they could tell we were using a cell phone. The speakerphone also yielded a similarly mixed reaction. This time we thought the speakerphone sounded great with clear sound and plenty of volume. In fact, we were caught a bit off guard when we first activated the speakerphone and were blasted away by our friend's voice. Sadly, they didn't enjoy quite the same results, saying that we sounded soft. We had no problems pairing the i760 with the Logitech Mobile Traveller Bluetooth headset.
Powered by a 400MHz Samsung S3C2442 processor, general performance on the Samsung i760 was snappy, though response time reduced as we used several applications simultaneously. Surfing the Web was a joy with speedy load times thanks to the EV-DO support, and the smartphone was also able to find and connect to our test access Wi-Fi point with no problem. We had no major complaints in the multimedia category either. As we saw when using the speakerphone, the i760 has plenty of volume to crank out tunes, but it could use a little more in the bass department. We also wish the smartphone was equipped with a 3.5mm jack so we could plug in a nice pair of headphones. Video playback was decent with synchronized audio and image, but as expected, there was some pixelation during actions sequences.
The i760 is rated for 3.5 hours of talk time and up to 7.5 days of standby time. In our battery drain tests, we were able to get 4 hours of talk time from the standard battery and 6 hours of talk time from the extended battery. According to FCC radiation tests, the i760 has a digital SAR rating of 0.73 watt per kilogram.
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