Now that the home entertainment market has moved towards streaming video services and Blu-ray content, there has never been a better time to convert DVD collections to digital.
- Sleek and stylish design, solid build quality, user interface, 7.2Mbps HSDPA
- No included microSD card, proprietary headphone and charging jack
If you want the fastest possible access to Telstra's Next G network, then the A811 is an excellent choice.
Price$ 849.00 (AUD)
Claiming to be the world's fastest phone thanks to 7.2Mbps HSDPA-capabilities, the Samsung A811 is almost identical in design to the A801. It retains most of the same features apart from network speeds, including a 3.1-megapixel camera with autofocus, a microSD card slot and an excellent display.
The A811 is one of the first phones released in Australia to offer 7.2Mbps HSDPA speeds, in-line with Telstra's recent increase in Next G operating speeds. We were impressed with network speeds on the whole, as browsing news or sports results, for example, is ultra fast compared to a regular 3G network. In most instances, the loading bar was filled in just a second or two. The A811 also handles voice calls adequately and volume was loud enough at its highest setting -- both on the earpiece and when using the handsfree speaker phone.
The A811 is identical in shape and form factor to the A801, but it has a much more attractive gloss titanium finish. It looks stylish and sleek, but the glossy surface attracts plenty of fingerprints. The slider feels sturdy and solid, while the keypad and button layout is excellent, contributing greatly to a hassle-free user experience.
Like most Samsung mobiles, the A811's user interface is excellent. The display is bright and clear and the layout is convenient -- encompassing a simple list format for most submenus and labelled, coloured icons for the main menu. The speed of the interface is also notable as it responds well to quick button presses.
The A811 is equipped with two digital cameras; a front mounted VGA camera for video calling and a rear mounted 3.1-megapixel camera for capturing photos and video. The main camera can snap photos at a resolution of up to 2048x1536 pixels and videos at up to 320x240 pixels. Unfortunately there is no flash, so night-time photography is out of the question. The camera does a solid, but not outstanding job of capturing images -- colour reproduction is poor and lack of sharpness is an issue.
Samsung has included 45MB of internal memory but a microSD card slot will handle most of your storage. It's disappointing that there is no card in the sales package though.
The included media player supports a multitude of file formats and has basic settings such as shuffle and repeat playback and playlist support. The display can also be orientated horizontally when watching videos. Unfortunately, the proprietary headphone jack is an annoyance and the headphones lack quality if you plan to use this as your primary music player.
The A811 has Bluetooth and USB connectivity and a USB data cable is included in the sales package. The A2DP audio profile is a feature, so you can wirelessly stream your music to a compatible pair of Bluetooth headphones.
Other applications include PIM utilities such as a voice recorder, memo, task, calculator and currency converter, as well as Java 2.0 and a document viewer. The browser is notable -- you can view pages either at the regular desktop size, or you can make the whole page fit to the display. This is ideal when using the Next G network to access the Internet.
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