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Review: Samsung Intercept

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The Samsung Intercept runs the stock Android Web browser, just a little slower. The Android browser is a great Web browsing tool, and pages were rendered accurately and neatly. Images looked a little washed out on the Intercept's screen, and text did not look very sharp, but it was still legible. Besides the screen, though, the Intercept browser just seemed sluggish. I felt the difference between Sprint's slower EV-DO rel. 0 network - the only option on the Intercept - and phones that use Sprint's faster rev. A network, like the Palm Pre I have on hand. But even under Wi-Fi coverage, the Intercept felt sluggish in comparison. This was never a fatal problem. The browser didn't crash or stall to a halt. But pages loaded slower than I would like.

Navigating pages also should have been smoother. The phone was not responsive enough to touch gestures. Pinch and zoom gestures worked in the browser, the effect was jerky and jarring, not fluid. Even simple flicking could have a slight delay, which made the experience feel less smooth. It's still miles above what you'll find on even a good feature phone, but most smartphones and especially Android phones feel faster than this.

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Customize

You can't quite customize the Samsung Intercept as much as other Google Android phones, but there are still plenty of ways to make the Intercept your own. There are tons of widgets, shortcut and folder options available for the multi-panel homescreen, and many of these offer more complex functions than simple app shortcuts. You can tweak the ringtones and alert sounds, as well as the panoramic wallpaper, though you can't use the more advanced Live wallpapers.

I was pleased to find the Intercept had no problem running custom theme software like Open Home. There are free and paid software options available from the Android Market to help you skin your device myriad ways. I was worried the screen resolution on the Intercept would pose a problem, but I loaded Open Home and a few custom skins with no trouble. Open Home ran smoothly and let me flip back and forth in a flash between the standard Intercept home screen and Open Home's themes.

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