Home' LAPTOP Magazine : December 2010 Contents SMARTPHONES
for a full review of the new OS.
The touch keyboard provided
a reassuring knocking sound as
we typed, and we appreciated the
dedicated .com button. We just wish
the keyboard extended across the
display in landscape mode.
Internet Explorer Mobile is pretty
fast. It supports tabbed brows-
ing and automatically hyperlinks
addresses, e-mail addresses, and
phone numbers. However, the address
bar doesn't appear in landscape view.
On our web speed test, the Focus was
just a couple seconds behind the
iPhone 4 loading mobile versions of
CNN and ESPN. The accelerometer
was responsive when switching orientations, but the
iPhone 4 was a hair faster at that as well.
All Windows Phone 7 devices have a dedicated
search button that integrates tightly with Bing. You
can search locally online, or contextually on the
device. And when you press and hold the Windows
key, you'll launch the fairly accurate speech rec-
ognition feature, powered by TellMe.
Windows Phone 7 does not let third-party apps
run in the background. Multitasking is limited to
Microsoft's own apps, such as playing Zune music
while you surf the web.
Microsoft expects to have around 1,000 apps
available at launch. Still, you'll find such popular
apps as Foursquare, Netflix, and Slacker. If you want
spoken turn-by-turn directions you'll need to spring
for an AT&T Navigator subscription($9.99 per month),
which also includes search and traffic info.
The Focus lets you download videos from the
Zune Marketplace on your desktop. An episode of
House played smoothly and clear. Music sounded
nice and loud through the speaker.
Pressing the camera button takes photos---even
if the phone is locked. Too bad the 5-MP camera
doesn't shoot very fast. Even when we engaged
the autofocus the shutter seemed a half-second
behind. We like that images automatically upload
to SkyDrive. The 720p camcorder delivered detailed
footage. Unfortunately, you can't output video via
HDMI or wirelessly via DLNA.
Gamers will appreciate
that the Focus has a solid
selection of Xbox Live titles
available for download,
including Rocket Riot, The
Harvest, and The Sims 3.
Overall, the iPhone
Samsung Focus i917 (AT&T)
A brilliant Super AMOLED display makes Microsoft's slick and friendly
Windows Phone 7 OS really pop.
When you're launching a whole new mobile
operating system, you want the hardware to put
your best face for ward. The Samsung Focus does
just that. Everything on this handset---from the
tiles on the home screen to Xbox Live games and
HD videos---really pops. The Focus is also ready
for work, thanks to revamped versions of Outlook
and Office Mobile. Still, this smart phone faces stiff
competition from Android and the iPhone.
The Focus feels significantly lighter than the iPhone
4 (4.8 ounces), which is a feat given Samsung's
larger display. The bottom of the Focus sports three
capacitive buttons, which were responsive but too
easy to accidentally press.
The Super AMOLED screen stands out. We
saw deeper blacks and superior viewing angles
compared to other Windows Phone 7 devices,
though the iPhone 4's retina display boasts a
The look and feel of Windows Phone 7's software
is one of its key selling points. It all starts with the new
home screen, populated with Live Tiles which you can
easily move around (just press and hold). See p. 42
Samsung $199 (with two-year
CPU: 1-GHz Snapdragon Operating Sys-
tem: Windows Phone 7 RAM: 512MB ROM:
1GB Internal Memory: 8GB Display Size/
Resolution: 4 inches/800 x 480 GPS:
Yes Camera: 5 MP Wireless: 802.11b/g/n,
Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR Ports: microSD card
slot, headphone, mic Talk/Standby Time:
6.5 hours/12.5 days Size: 4.8 x 2.6 x 0.4
inches Weight: 4.2 ounces
Eye-popping Super AMOLED screen
Attractive, intuitive interface
Sharp 720p camcorder
Daily Briefing app for news, stocks, weather
Good selection of games and launch apps
No multitasking for third-party apps
Camera has slow shutter speed
Only 8GB of built-in memory
Address bar for IE Mobile and Maps don't work in
4 remains our top smart phone choice for AT&T
because of its better camera, sharper screen, and
much wider app selection, but the Focus more than
holds its own against the Samsung Captivate running
Android. The Focus puts a great face on Windows
Phone 7, a well-designed OS that we expect to
LAPTOP | December 2010
A sleek pinstriped battery cover adorns the back of the
Samsung Focus, along with the 5-MP camera.
Get More Online
NEED MORE WINDOWS PHONE 7?
Check out the LG Quantum on video.
See p. 6 for more info on how to use this code with your cell phone.
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