Good no nonsnese phone
I purchased this phone at an AT&T store.
This is one of the best phones I have used when it comes to holding onto calls even with a weak signal. The menus are easy to navigate. The included belt clip actually holds the phone securely and swivels out of the way when you sit. This phone is built like a truck! I accidentally sat myself and a large recliner (at least 250 Lbs. total) on top of the phone. Other than a small crack in the glass covering the screen the phone sustained no damage. This would have destroyed most of the fancy phones that are popular these days. This phone also performed well as a GPRS modem hooked to my laptop, but, AT&T's data pricing plans are too high to do much of that.
The phone is so small it can feel uncomfortable to hold for extended periods unless you have small hands. Also, missed calls seem to generate several notifications which must be cleared and it sometimes takes a while for the voicemail icon to go away after you check your voicemail. There are not many accessories for this phone.
Phone good - No Accessories, No Service
I have used Motorola and Nokia phones before and have had great service with them.
My first S46 quit and gave a purple screen. I had put it on my belt and one hour later on the road, it had a purple screen. Siemens would not stand behind it.
After much being transferred from here to there, an ATT manager finally replaced my phone.
It has been very dependable. However, there are no accessories available for it. No hands free headsets for using while driving, just an ear bud that still requires you to find the phone and press the answer button when it rings. It does not have loud enough volume for a noisy environment, and the included belt holster is constantly dropping the phone on the ground. It is a good thing that this phone is well built.
Service - terrible
Accessories - almost non existent
Quality - good.
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I have service through AT&T. They are slowly changing all of there service over to GPRS. That is great unless you live in an area that doesn't get good GPRS service. This phone is dual allowing me to use digital and GPRS. It is simple to use and has more features than the average person will need. It has a rugged design that works well. If there was a down side it would be short battery life, and lack of accessories to go with the phone. Overall I love it. I was using a Nokia 3360 prior to this phone. The nokia was a good phone, but limited on what it would do.
After trying them all, Still the best
An absolutely fantastic phone. I have used the 6310i, the V206, the T721, and the S56. The S46 is simply a great phone.
With the exception of the soft buttons and maybe more memory for calendar items, there is nothing I would change.
The reception is better than any phone I have used, and the battery life is incredible. Even simple things like the belt holster is well designed.
Its great to me!
I like the sounds that it has with the phone. It is light weigh and easy to mange. The phone features is the only thing whats great with it, it needs to have a speaker phone to it but it does not come with it. So the next phone I will get will be similar to this phone that I like so much.
The "can do everything phone" sometimes.
While the phone sports the nice feature of switching between GSM and TDMA service in Southern California is excels at neither.
I formerly had a Nokia 6360 that died due to water damage. While the nokia(TDMA) could make and receive most calls in the house, often the S46 goes straight to voice mail. To make a call I must stand in the backyard. If your area has strong GSM coverage then this should not be a problem for you.
The word clunky does fit in how this phone looks and feels. Perhaps a well made clunker is a better definition. It has been dropped several times from heights ranging from 2 feet to 8 feet and still works. The plastic screen scatches easily, and the two soft buttons under the screen are starting to become delaminated with use (6 months).
-Ease of Use
You cannot use the hands-free with the charger as they plug into the same spot. Menus might be intuitive in Germany but for me they stink! Nokia=simple, S46 =headache.
The phone does work, in fact it works in places others might not, but this has more to do with AT&T's greater coverage in my area Southern California.
The only reason to get this phone is if you need (TDMA/GSM) service. Remember it does not support AMP or analog service, something all traditional TDMA phones will do.
STAY AWAY FROM THIS PHONE
You can check out the problems with this phone at the ATT wireless site in the customer support forums.
Phone has a notorious problem with sudden power off's, SPO.
This means the phone will turn itself off with no warning. You may find the phone has been off most of the day without you knowing about it. This could be a critical problem for some people.
My phone worked OK for the first 3.5 months, then started having the problems, then finally would not take a charge or boot up even when plugged in. A new battery solved the problem for a couple of weeks, but the SPO problem reappeared and then the phone died completely.
ATT will not support this phone beyond 15 day after you take it, except for programming your account info.
This means that if you have a problem, your only options are to send the phone in to Siemens for repair/replacement and have no phone for the 2 weeks this takes, pay ATT $50 to send you a new S46 phone and then give them the old one to trade with Siemens, Buy a new GSM/TDMA phone at full retail price, (Sony T62U $250), or cancel your service and pay the early termination penalty.
If you had TDMA service and switched to GSM, ATT will restore your TDMA service and reactivate your old phone, but the contract term stays. You will not pay the termination fee if you do this, unless you cancel before the contract end date.
Other Siemens phones seem to have this problems as well, but I have not had them.
STAY AWAY FROM THIS PHONE!
BEWARE OF THIS PHONE
I bought 2 phones in same week. both broken. For the one week I had the second phone it took 3 calls to at&t before it would back up to TDMA mode. The next day the phone kept asking me to install SIM card (already installed). The phone would not work. There are so many problems with this phone. It is very user unfriendly, terrible customer support....Stay with GSM or TDMA...it is not worth the hassle. Do not go GSM if you travel, trust me. Wait until perfected!!!!!
1. Missed Key Inputs: Occasionally the phone misses key inputs. Very annoying if dialing while not looking directly at the phone.
2. Activation & Customer Service (AT&T Issue): Took 3.5 hours on hold to get the phone activated. AT&T has unacceptable hold times.
3. Failure to switch from GSM to TDMA.
Phone prefers GSM over TDMA, so will attempt calls in a weak GSM area where TDMA is very strong.
4. Sound Quality Bad: Picks up too much background noise. In quite places, quality acceptable. (So not in the car, not at work, but OK at home with the Radio off :>)
5. Firmware not available: Siemens makes downloadable firmware available for other phones. Why not this one?
6. GSM coverage poor in Portland Oregon, particularly in Hillsboro/Tanasbourne.
7. Slowness: The firmware in this phone is often very slow. EG, when unlocking the screen saver, it takes 3-5 seconds for the screen saver to verify security code. When manually switching modes, the phone pauses for 3-5 seconds while accepting the reconfiguration.
8. Message Duplication: Every Voicemail seems to result in a Text message as well. So now you have two notifications to deal with.
9. No STANDARD headset jack: Proprietary headset jack requires proprietary Siemens headset.
10. AT&T Issue: Phone based call forwarding not implemeted.
11. Device Conflicts: Using the Siemens headset jack disables the IrDMA port. Wierd.
1. Display / Backlight is very clear and easy to read.
2. Menu is intuitive.
3. IrDMA is a nice feature.
Phone Firmware Versions:
Found by going to:
Menu | Setup | Device | Status | Phone Identy
Found by entering
SW Version: 64.5500
HW Version: 3.020514
Purchased at Fry's in Wilsonville, Oregon.
This phone is going back.
Oh, and I give the S46 a 3.5 rating.....still needs some improvement!