Review: Samsung Focus 2 for AT&T
The Focus doesn't have too many apps preloaded. AT&T has preloaded a minimal set of its branded apps on the handset (MyATT, Code Scanner, FamilyMap, and Navigator). There's very little bloat. The Marketplace for Mobile is a pleasant place to browse for apps, which are plentiful enough to make up for the lack of apps pre-installed on the Focus.
The Focus's Bluetooth radio worked as it is supposed to. I had no trouble pairing with any device. Phone calls via mono Bluetooth headset sounded excellent, as did calls sent to my car speakers. Music pushed through stereo headphones was also good.
Most smartphones these days offer a white, digital clock of some sort on the lock screen. The Focus does this, too. It is a bit too small, if you ask me, and isn't as noticeable as the date is (which I usually don't care that much about). I wish there were a way to control the clock on the lock screen. There isn't. It suffices, but just barely.
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The Focus uses Microsoft's Bing Maps. The feature set is the same as most other free mapping services, and it offers a rich user interface and step-by-step directions. The Focus also has AT&T Navigator, which works very well, but costs $10 per month to use. It's a shame the Focus doesn't (yet) have access to Nokia's incredible mapping and location apps; they;re far superior to Bing Maps.
As with all Windows Phone devices, the Focus syncs well with Microsoft-based work and productivity tools. The versions of MS Word, Excel and PowerPoint that are in the Office Hub sync perfectly back and forth with the desktop versions. Users can save files to their personal SkyDrive for access later or from PCs. The Office Hub also lets people share documents and files if using the Focus on a corporate network.
Hands-On: Samsung Focus 2
AT&T had its newest Windows Phone on hand at the CTIA Wireless event and Phone Scoop spent some time with it.
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