Review: Samsung UpStage
Even if it isn't the most pleasant experience, you need to use the phone side for most call and contact related features. You could start on the media for most things other than just dialing a number in by hand, but you wind up flipping the phone over so soon that you quickly learn to work on the small screen rather than flip it.
You don't need much screen space to find a contact, or dial a number, but it would be nice to have a little more for scrolling through your call log or composing a text message.
When in a call, the left soft key is mute and the first menu option is speakerphone. When scrolling through the options menu, three lines are displayed at a time instead of 2, which makes these menus bearable, if not usable.
Holding the UpStage to your ear is quite comfortable, until you put it in the battery wallet. The sides of the wallet have a sharp seam down them that make it uncomfortable to hold, and the flap that covers the phone side just flaps around when you're talking. If you want to talk directly into the UpStage while it's in the wallet, you might want to rip the front cover off. We've confirmed with Sprint that there are no electronic components in that part, so it's safe. You could also just use a Bluetooth headset; every one we tested worked very well with the UpStage.
While the contacts are easier to scroll through on the media side, they still do not make much use of the available space, wasting half the screen on a caller ID photo and leaving enough room for 3 out of 5 possible phone numbers and 1 email address. You will still need to flip the phone over to add or edit any information, as well as call or text them.
Click a thumbnail above for a larger view.