I donâ€™t need a smartphone and until last year, I barely used my cell phone. A combination of my staff all having smartphones or text phones persuaded me to get first a Samsung Link and then a LG Bliss. I later bought Wendy a Samsung Link and she loves it. While the LG Bliss has been good (after finally fixing all of itâ€™s really odd default settings), I want something that does push email.
What do I want to do? Now I looked at the Samsung Elevate and the reviews are mixed, most frustratingly different sites say different things about how it gets email. Some say they offer push email, others say you get email on the web. I was also looking at a LG Rumor 2 and of course was asking about e-mail access. When I bought the Samsung Link, the reviews raved about the Virgin Mobile email app that allows you to access up to five different email accounts. The email app is horrible and you canâ€™t install the Gmail app on it which means that it sucks for email. Email was also mentioned in some reviews for the LG Bliss and its inbox is only for text messaging. I asked the sales staff at Best Buy today and they were clueless about what each phone could do. They told me that I could easily go onto the web with 3G speed despite the fact that LG Rumor 2â€™s web browser isnâ€™t compliant, doesnâ€™t support 3G or even EVDO. Virginâ€™s network in Saskatchewan is still CDMA and doesnâ€™t support 3G either. On top of that, ever since I added my new cell phone to the network, they have had problems with it. Tonight I spent three different phone calls to Virgin trying to get my account fixed and they didnâ€™t reimburse me for the charges I occurred because of their network issues.
The entire process made me consider moving to Koodo and upgrade to a INQ Chat. I get access to Twitter and push email as well as 3G coverage in Saskatchewan. Any thoughts on a phone? I donâ€™t need apps and donâ€™t want to pay extra for a Blackberry data plan so take that into consideration. Also anyone have any thoughts on Koodo?
I was reading a couple of reviews for the LG Bliss and while I was okay with my Samsung Link, I would really liked a better web browser and some more app options. Wendy went out and bought me one and I have had it for the last week. Here are the pros of the phone.
- Decent web browser. Not as good as the iPhoneâ€™s but decent. I can use Gmailâ€™s text based or regular mobile interface as well as Google Calendar. It is exponentially faster than the Samsung Linkâ€™s browser and hey, it actually renders websites properly.
- The touch keyboard isnâ€™t that bad. After a week of using it, I have become fonder of it and faster using it than I was at the start of the week. It is just something to get used to but is quite usable.
- 2 megapixel camera. While I wonâ€™t be printing off a bunch of photos taken with it, it is good enough to upload to Flickr.
- Virgin Mobile only charges $10/month for unlimited web surfing. Thatâ€™s a great, great deal. With the speed of the browser, itâ€™s a service that I will be using a lot more rather than reaching for my iPod Touch.
- The speaker phone is quite a bit louder than my Samsung Link. I can toss it on the passenger seat and actually drive while having a conversation which is useful when I forget to grab my Bluetooth earpiece.
- While it has a decent text messaging inbox, it doesnâ€™t handle e-mail which I was sad about. The inbox is so well designed that pop3 or IMAP capability would be amazing.
- While Google java apps install, they wonâ€™t work because of the touch screen. Quite annoying and the phone would go from good to amazing if it worked with Google apps.
- I miss the â€œrecently textedâ€ list that the Samsung Link has. Itâ€™s a great way to keep those that I am in constant contact with in easy reach.
Overall, itâ€™s not a smartphone and if I was RIM, I wouldnâ€™t be that worried that it was going to eat away Blackberry marketshare but itâ€™s cheap ($119 with no contract), works well as a cell phone, and pretty good as a digital media and web browsing device. If you are a Bell, Virgin Mobile, or SaskTel customer, you may want to check it out. As for the Samsung Link, itâ€™s a great texting phone, has the Virgin Email App installed, is a great price ($69.99) but doesnâ€™t get along that well with the web. In the end, it kind of comes down to which you care about more, the web or email but both are good phones. Wendy has a Samsung Link and I am happy with the LG Blissâ€¦ we donâ€™t have any regrets with either purchase.