Product Type: Samsung mobile phones
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Samsung B3310 - but its pink!!
Member Name: Craggybuk
Advantages: Cheap, performs core functions well
Disadvantages: No data cable, location of memory card slot
Whilst out shopping my wife suddenly decided that she needed a new phone as she wasn't happy with her LG Cookie that she had only had for six months. As she is on a sim only contract, it meant that we would have to pay for a new phone for her. Previously she has always liked Samsung phones so when she saw the newly released B3310, she decided it was the one for her.
Purchasing the phone
We bought the phone in-store from the Carphone Warehouse for £49.95 but we also had to buy £10 airtime on top of this. If we had chosen not to buy the airtime then the phone would have cost £99.95 instead which seemed a bit strange but evidently all phone manufacturers do this. We had the choice of 2 colours, light blue or pink. Unsurprisingly my wife went for the pink phone which will pretty much ensure that I never use it!!. We decided to stay with Virgin Mobile although the phone was also available on the Orange, O2 and Vodaphone networks.
In the box
To be honest, there wasn't a great deal in the box at all, a lot less than I expected. Along with the phone there was a mains charger, instruction manual, warranty card and a set of headphones. It didn't actually dawn on me until a my wife wanted some music putting on her phone that there was no data cable provided. After doing a bit of research on the net, it appears that there is a data cable for this phone but it needs to be bought separately which I thought was a bit naughty of Samsung. The phone also comes without a CD as there is no additional software required for this phone which I think is actually a good thing as in my opinion, most people just want to move files to and from the phone which can be done via Windows explorer.
The phone itself is very well designed. it is very small compared to the Cookie, but it is robust at the same time. It has a 2 inch screen which is very clear and information never looks squashed or truncated. What is unique about this phone is the way the numbers 0 to 9 are arranged down the left hand edge of the phone. I must admit that I like this feature as it means that you don't have to slide open the keypad in order to make a call.
If you need to send text messages or perform any other operation that requires alphabetic characters to be entered (such as setting up contacts in the phone book) then you will need to slide the phone open and use the QWERTY keyboard. I must admit I am impressed with the quality of this keyboard and I am always sceptical of small phones as I have had problems in the past with pressing 2 keys at once. There is no such problem with the Samsung.
The phone takes MicroSD memory cards upto 4Gb. In my opinion, the major fault with this phone is the location of the memory card. In order to insert the memory card, you need to remove the battery which is fine for the initial install but as the phone doesn't come with a data cable then unless you buy one, it means you will need to remove the battery every time you want to transfer data to or from the card. I feel this is sloppy from Samsung, its almost like additional memory support was an afterthought.
Functions and Features
2 Megapixel Camera - The camera is ok, it has a limited digital zoom which will be fine for taking pictures close up but the results when taking photos of objects more than 5 or 10 metres away are not brilliant.
FM Radio - In order to use the FM radio you need the headphones plugged in as they also act as the antenna for picking up the signal. As with ordinary radio, the quality of your reception will depend on your location. I found the sound to be crystal clear although I tend not to listen to the radio much on phones as I find that it drains the battery too fast.
MP3 playback - Although the quality of the music is excellent, the features in this mode are very basic. You can only play tracks in a certain order and there is no facility to shuffle the tracks into a random order. Also, if you are listening to tracks directly from the memory card, you cannot even skip a track.
Browse the Web - As this feature involves an extra cost we haven't tried it out so I'm unable to comment on its quality.
Making Phone Calls - I'm a bit old fashioned when it comes to mobile phones, as long as I can make a call then I'm happy, the extra gimmicks don't really interest me. With this phone it is simple to make calls. as previously mentioned, you just press the numbers on the left hand edge of the phone and press the green phone button to connect. You can also get to your phonebook without having to open up the phone although, if you want to search for a contact by name, you will need to slide the phone open to get to the keypad.
Technical Features - The phone is Bluetooth enabled which is vitally important in my opinion, especially with the memory card issue I discussed earlier. With Bluetooth, it provides another way of getting data to and from your phone without the need to remove the memory card. The phone is also quad band which I believe means that it can be used anywhere in the world. As we haven't been abroad for over 10 years then this feature is not really of benefit to us but it would be beneficial if you were jetting off to all corners of the globe.
Mobile tracking - I have never come across this feature before although that's not to say that it doesn't exist in other phones. When a new SIM is entered into your phone, you can set it to automatically send the contact number of the new SIM to two recipients to locate your phone in the event that it has been stolen. I think this is a fantastic idea which should become standard on all phones.
Fake calls - Again, I've never seen this feature on any other phone and I must admit to chuckling when trying it out. It is designed to get you out of situations you'd rather not be in such as meetings or unwanted conversations. By setting up a shortcut key, you can get the phone to ring you and also play a recorded message so it sounds to someone in earshot that there is actually a person on the other end of the phone talking to you. Although this is probably not the most ethical feature on a phone, I could list many occasions where I would find this feature useful.
Games - The phone comes with four Java games. Two of these are full games and the other two are previews of games which can be bought. Extra games can be downloaded at a cost but I've never really seen the point of playing games on a phone.
As this phone is still new, the battery life is still very good. an average charge takes approximately two and a half hours which will give between five and seven days use. These figures are based on fairly limited use of no more than 5 texts per day and maybe a call every other day.
I think this phone is very good. It is certainly not at the high end of the market and this needs to be taken into consideration when deciding how good it is. As long as a phone can make calls and send the occasional text message then I am happy with it. This phone performs both them tasks perfectly well and if it wasn't for the fact it was pink, I wouldn't mind using this phone myself. I definitely think this phone is aimed at the female market and I think it will sell very well. I would certainly recommend it to anyone looking for a new phone that isn't going to cost the earth.
Summary: A good all round phone.
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