So, what do I want out of my next laptop and what must it include?
Samsung B3410 mobile phone
The Samsung B3410 is an entry-level touchscreen mobile phone that includes a full slide-out QWERTY keyboard, but lacks 3G connectivity.
- Low price, slide-out QWERTY keyboard, capacitive touchscreen, TouchWIZ UI, 3.5mm headphone jack
- No 3G, widget system needs work, poorly designed keyboard, only one home screen for widgets
The Samsung B3410 is a capable entry-level touchscreen phone that's crippled by a lack of 3G connectivity. If you can live without the B3410's below-average physical keyboard, opt for the cheaper but almost identical Samsung GenoA.
Price$ 199.00 (AUD)
Dubbed the Corby Plus in many overseas markets but changed in Australia to avoid associations with the Schapelle Corby drama, the Samsung B3410 is an entry-level touchscreen mobile phone that includes a full slide-out QWERTY keyboard. Its lack of 3G connectivity is disappointing, but the B3410's resistive touchscreen and intuitive interface make it a decent proposition for budget shoppers.
A successor to the unusually designed B3310, the Samsung B3410 mobile phone looks almost identical to the Samsung GenoA, sporting the same look and feel complete with deeply rounded edges and a flat back. The major difference is that the B3410 has a full, slide-out QWERTY keyboard. Its implementation isn't perfect though — the slider isn't smooth and the flat, stiff keys require a firm press to activate. As with any physical keyboard you'll get used to it over time, but its poor design means there's a steep learning curve.
The Samsung B3410 has a large 2.8in capacitive touchscreen, which is commendable for an entry-level phone at this price point. Below the screen sit answer and end call buttons as well as a large back button. The positioning of back button is a little strange; it's where you'd normally expect a menu button or a navigational key. The B3410 also has external volume controls, a lock button and a record key on the left and a dedicated camera key on the right. The 2-megapixel camera is basic and lacks a flash or self-portrait mirror but it does the job for the odd happy snap.
Like the Samsung GenoA, the general usability of the B3410 is comparable to Samsung's Icon range of mobile phones, particularly the Preston Icon. Like the GenoA and the Preston Icon, the B3410 runs Samsung's proprietary OS and features the company's TouchWIZ UI.
Strangely, the B3410 provides just one home screen, compared to the GenoA's three. The basic layout is the same: a row of widgets sits on the left edge of each screen and users simply press and drag icons from the panel to the main area to use a widget. Facebook and MySpace widgets are merely links to Web pages rather than dedicated applications, but the B3410 includes the Palringo instant messenger application, along with Google search and mail functions.
Samsung's TouchWIZ UI is reasonably intuitive but the widgets aren't labelled in the sidebar, so it's hard to distinguish what many of them do without adding them to the screen. Thankfully, the B3410 doesn't show too many signs of lag or slowdown and is generally responsive during everyday use.
The B3410's lack of 3G connectivity is a real downside, even at this price point. Although in most instances a 2G network connection is enough to quickly update your Facebook status, or send a tweet, any more taxing mobile Internet tasks are painfully slow.
The Samsung B3410 is a decent multimedia phone thanks to its standard 3.5mm headphone hack, music player, FM radio and expandable memory via a microSD card slot. There is also a voice recorder (quickly launched by pressing the record button on the left side of the phone), but the B3410 lacks the handy Samsung music recognition application seen on similar phones. There is no GPS or Wi-Fi, but at this price point neither of these features is expected.
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