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VIDEOVIEW: Software Hands-on with the final Samsung SGH-i900 Omnia Open Market ROM
Posted by Arne Hess - on Thursday, 24.07.08 - 19:45:19 CET under 08 - Reviews - Viewed 64812x
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Following the earlier Samsung SGH-i900 Omnia GUI and Software Hands-on videoview I've just received the final open market ROM for the Samsung SGH-i900 Omnia which is the software build, Samsung will use for its unbranded and SIM-free i900 Omnia. Unlike the previous hands-on, which was made with a SGH-i900 prototype running a Beta software, this videoview now shows you how the final software will look and work. As you can see, Samsung made further improvements to make the software even snappier and also adds/changes a couple of features. Also notable now is the increased stand-by time. Was the stand-by, with the Beta, something around 6 hours only, I haven't managed to get the battery to less then 50 % now, using it a full working day.

In addition to the typical Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional applications, Samsung added a good amount of customized applications to the i900 Omnia which makes it a real competitor for the HTC Touch Diamond.

UPDATE: The Samsung SGH-i900 Omnia review is now here.

Cheers ~ Arne


 
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Comments
Posted by theefman on 24.07.08 - 21:36:40

Arne, can you tell me the firmware version of the final rom? Thanks and great videoview.

Posted by Pablo Escobar on 25.07.08 - 01:30:23

Thank you very much for this excellent hands-on video arne!

Posted by hlov on 25.07.08 - 01:45:07

Hi,
Great demo, how did u get the ROM, I have i900DXF8 and I would like to update it.
Regards,
Hlov

Posted by Pablo Escobar on 25.07.08 - 01:46:00

but there are still some questions.

has samsung integrated a posibility for a personal arrangment of the icons? i would like to switch the arrangement of the camera icon and some others.

how is the qualtiy of the speaker? is it stereo or mono? and is it loud enough referring to other windows mobile phones which are in most instances too silent?

and how ist the quality of the musicplayer?

thank you!

Posted by nm peters on 25.07.08 - 02:36:07

Great review.

More than 50% battery left after a full day, that's great!!! I got a diamond bin using it two days, im scared to do anything on it in case it drains the battery, ridiculous!

I would really like to know more about your experience with the battery life of the Omnia.

Also how do you find the larger QVGA screen compared to the tiny Diamond VGA screen?

Overall I love the VGA screen of the diamond but having a phone that I can surf the net while listening to music simultaneously without the battery dying makes the i900 a better option.

I can see the diamond battery running out on me just when I really need to use it for something urgent!

Posted by the undude on 25.07.08 - 05:42:52

i love your video reviews.... but my poor little blackjack runs out of memory after about 10 minutes.... oh well.

my biggest question is regarding speed and responsiveness.  is the omnia faster to respond than the htc diamond or se x1?   as the day goes on, does it start to get stuck, or lag in responsiveness?

also, how visible is the screen outside in bright daylight?

also, do you find the virtual keyboard responds predictably?

finally, what is the maximum capacity sd card that the omnia can recognize?

many many thanks for your input and coverage of the samsung winmo devices.   i really like how they think things thru. :-)

Posted by Mayance on 25.07.08 - 07:44:47

Hey Arne, thx very much for this review.
I hav eone question, jave much free ram do you have after a hard reset and how much ram is free after disabling the touchwiz plugin?
Thx in advance

Posted by Omnia_User on 25.07.08 - 09:18:42

Hope the final rom fix the problems on the phone. My F8 rom is really unstable.

Posted by joe on 25.07.08 - 10:29:56

You should also test the GPS functionality. E.g. with Google Maps.

Posted by Johnny De,silva on 25.07.08 - 10:40:54

I saw that you had slingplayer installed on the device does it widescreen affect slingplayer or does it optimize the wqvga screen?

Cheers

Posted by Arne Hess on 25.07.08 - 11:34:09

@theefman: The ROM version is: i900XXHG7/XFHG7 (PDA) and i900XXHG7 (Phone).

@hlov: I received the ROM with the test device from Samsung. However, I don't have the ROM itself.

@Pablo Escobar: No, the main menu cannot be resorted (however, it might be possible through the Registry anyway but I haven't checked this yet), only the extra Shortcuts can be changed. The speaker quality is okay for a mobile phone. It's mono (with headset stereo) but it's loud and clear. In some calls I even had to tune down the volume to the min. because it was too loud! The music player quality is quite good as well in both modes, loudspeaker and stereo headset.

@nm peters: I'm going to give the battery further tests but the first impression was very delightful! Also it's not just a QVGA screen but a WQVGA (Wide QVGA). A larger screen is always easier to tap with thumbs, therefore you get a real benefit from the screen size. In terms of a comparison between this QWVGA screen and a VGA screen, there is no real differences in the daily use, especially if you use Opera Mobile where you can zoom-in/-out anyway. But surely a (W)QVGA screen isn't as crisp as a VGA screen is.

@undude: Thanks a lot for your kind words, appreciated! You mean you watch the WMV videos on your BlackJack? Sorry to hear that you run out of memory after 10 min. Will try to keep the 10 min. limit for upcoming videos! ;-)
I will not compare it to the X1, all I have tested so far was early Beta ROMs. However, I haven't seen any problems with the Omnia now that it went slower during the day. In my impression in the evening it works as fast and responsive as it did in the morning after I turned it on.
The screen is readable in the sun but as with most color displays, it's not a joy at all. I wouldn't watch a movie in the sun but it's good enough to read SMS, find a contact or make a call.
The keyboard is okay and responds well. However, I don't like the XT9 implementation and think that the Diamond keyboards are better.
According to Samsung, 16 GB are supported for microSD. So far I've only tested 8 GB which worked well.

@Mayance: Don't know about the free RAM after a hard rest but after the device is switched on (and I don't have anything installed in auto start) I have something around 35 MB free RAM. After turning off the TouchWIZ plugin I still have something around 35 MB. It doesn't occupies as much memory as TouchFLO 3D does.

@joe: I have tested it. Just because I don't have it in the video doesn't means I haven't tested it and as you can see in the Google application I opened, Google Maps is preinstalled and works out of the box with the GPS receiver. Nevertheless, more to come soon in the review.

@Johnny De,silva: Slingplayer Mobile works great.I t looks a little bit weird in portrait mode because you have a lot of space between the video and the taskbar on the bottom but it works perfectly in landscape because it take the whole screen for fullscreen mode which is perfect if you watch something in 16:9. Best of all, it even rotates automatically, using the inbuilt G-Sensor, so you don't have to tap the fullscreen icon!

Posted by silencer22 on 25.07.08 - 21:24:11

i'm holding an older rom version F8
just like to point out that for the zoom function (via the volume key), tapping n holding at an icon/button/folder will trigger a click on it

Posted by Arne Hess on 25.07.08 - 21:55:10

@silencer22: wow, you are right; also works on my device. This phone has so many functions, every day you find a new one. Thanks for the tip!

Posted by Walter on 26.07.08 - 00:17:00

Hi Arne, do you know any details about the GPS receiver of the OMNIA? Is it a sirf star III one? If not, which technical specification does it have? Have you also used the GPS in a car together with a navigation software like TomTom? Have you also used it when walking?
Is it possible to change the colour of the screens? In your review the homescreen was grey and all the other screens were white. May you also change it to black similiar to the iphone screens? Many thanks in advance.

Posted by Arne Hess on 26.07.08 - 00:39:54

@Walter: I have absolutely no information about the GPS chip but I thought about it as well when I was writing the review today.
The GPS navigation part I've covered in today's review which you can find here. Haven't tested TomTom since I don't have it but another one. Worked without any problems! The only navigation software problems I expect is the uncommon screen resolution and most GPS navigation programs are nit picking in terms of the screen resolution. Anyway, O2 Germany will ship its i900 Omnia version with Route 66.

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