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Hands-On with the Samsung Transform Ultra for Boost

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Oct 12, 2011, 1:24 AM   by Rich Brome

The Samsung Transform Ultra isn't top-end but the hardware design is much nicer than you'd expect for prepaid. This phone is actually remarkably similar to the LG Optimus Slider for Virgin and Enlighten for Verizon, but read on to find out what Samsung did differently.

The Transform Ultra has a larger screen than LG's Optimus Slider / Enlighten, but Samsung's screen is not as nice. In fact, while the Transform Ultra's exterior looks and feels very nice - perhaps even high-end - the pleasantness ends when you start staring at the low-quality display. It's low-resolution, washed-out and has poor viewing angle. It's not the worst display we've seen, but it's the one part of the phone that reminds you that this is not an expensive phone.

But again, the body looks and feels nice, with a nice solid, spring-assisted slide action. A unique texture on the back feels quite nice. The keyboard is excellent; it's much better even than many more expensive Samsung models, such as the new Stratosphere for Verizon. Physical keys for home, back, menu and search are appreciated.

The specs of the Transform Ultra are anything but "ultra"; this clearly isn't intended to be a top-end phone, so the name choice is odd. The specs are low-end for an Android model, although the front-facing camera is a nice bonus.

 

Samsung Transform Ultra

Click a thumbnail above for a larger view.

The software is all stock Android, which seems to be the way Sprint prefers things for its Boost and Virgin phones. Even the camera interface is stock Android, which is unusual for a Samsung (and a bit unfortunate, since Samsung has some of the est camera interfaces.)

This bad boy just went on sale for Boost, and a little birdie tells us it's planned for Sprint as well. If you're not picky about your screen and want a great keyboard in an affordable Android phone, the Transform Ultra is worth a look.

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