Review: Samsung A900
People will inevitably compare it to the CDMA RAZR, and it is nearly the same size. However the A900 is slightly narrower and thicker, which allowed Samsung to add nicely rounded edges. This makes the A900 more comfortable to hold over long periods. No matter how you hold the A900 - open or closed - it feels good in your hand. The heft of the metal body gives the A900 a high quality feel, without being too weighty like larger metal-bodied phones.
The lid is shorter than the bottom half, and the ledge created by this difference in lengths makes a nice perch to insert your thumb and flip the phone open. The large radius of the rounded sides provide an additional deep crevice to slide your thumb into. The phone flips open with a confident snap around a solid-feeling hinge. The weight, solid feel of each half of the clamshell and silent, smooth hinge give the user a sense of quality and confidence.
Although the speaker and screen are flush with the top half's face, it is easy to place the phone speaker against your ear, because the rounded corners of the lid let you position the phone by feel.
AD article continues below...
Borrowing directly from the RAZR, the A900 has a flat metal keypad - or nearly flat. There are two nearly imperceptible ridges on either side of the 5 "key" and indentations between each row of keys. Although it does not have as much tactile separation between keys as the RAZR, dialing or texting on the A900 is remarkably easy and fast. The surface for each key is large enough that even without physical indicators, the thumbs "knows" where to go and can move about the keypad quite confidently.
The softkeys and send / end buttons are positively huge - approximately twice the size of any numeric key. At least some of the real estate devoted to these keys should have been devoted to expanding the D-Pad. Although the D-Pad looks like a tiny scroll wheel, it is a traditional style navigation pad. The ring used to select a direction is quite narrow, and is sunk slightly beneath the keypad's surface, however the center select key is level with the rest of the keypad. The sunken D-Pad was already difficult to use because it offers so little space in which to choose a direction, and the raised select key in the center further decreases its usability, as you are more likely to hit select than whatever direction you want. Whenever possible we found ourselves using numeric shortcuts for navigation instead of the D-Pad to avoid frustration.
Samsung Showcase 2005
Hands-on report from the Samsung launch event in New York City for their late-2005 / early-2006 lineup.
Micro-LED Backlights Could Bring OLED Performance to LCD Screens
Jan 5, 2017
AT CES this week, Rohinni demonstrated its micro-LED technology, and provided a glimpse at new backlight technology it's working on for the LCD display panels used in phones. While most LED chips are around 1mm, Rohinni's micro-LEDs are many times smaller and can be placed precisely on thin, flexible plastic sheets.
DirecTV Now: App Tour
A quick hands-on tour of the DirecTV Now app for Android. (An iOS version also available.) This is the boldest attempt yet to bring all of the major network and cable content to cord-cutters, and the full service is available from mobile apps, in addition to home streaming boxes.
Google's Tour Creator Lets Anyone Create VR Expeditions
May 9, 2018
Google today introduced Tour Creator, a tool that allows people to create and share their real-world experiences via virtual reality. Google explains that to make a VR tour people can use their own 360-degree photos and supplement them with imagery from Google Street View.
New Qualcomm Tech Aims to Bring High-Quality AR and VR Mainstream
Aug 15, 2017
Qualcomm today announced a major expansion of Spectra, its effort to offer manufacturers a drop-in hardware and software solution for easily and affordably adding advanced camera technology to phones and other devices powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon chips. The expanded Spectra suite includes three new hardware camera modules.