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Phones.com » Cell Phones » Review of the Samsung T939 Behold II

The Samsung Behold 2 is the second in line in the Behold series. The first Behold came out a year ago, and did not receive much attention. The Behold 2 is receiving quite a bit of attention, although the general opinion seems to be mixed. It is running Android, which is the hottest commodity in the cell phone market, which possibly accounts for all the attention it is receiving.

Look, Design, Feel (/10)

The design is very average, and it has nothing to really recommend it. There is an unusual twist to the design, which we will come to in a minute. 

The front is completely unremarkable, with the 3.2 inch screen and the inordinate profusion of control buttons. Considering the device is a touchscreen, the screen could have been enlarged to accommodate a few touch sensitive buttons instead of so many hardware ones. The overall first impression is very dated. 

The back is a little more interesting, although essentially useless, there is a world map pattern on the panel. It resembles the sort of decal, and while it looks nice, it's not great. The back also has the camera, accompanied by a LED flash and an external speaker at the bottom. 

The right and left sides of the phone have volume rocker switch, the camera key and the hold button. The top has the headphone jack and the microUSB port. The bottom is unadorned except for what appears to be a microphone. 

The materials used are all plastic with a faux metallic feel. The results aren't great.

Features (/10)

Inexplicably the Behold 2 does not run the latest version of Android; it does however run the latest version of TouchWiz, the Samsung user interface that sits atop the operating system. Unfortunately, the new TouchWiz leaves a lot to be desired.

The TouchWiz will seem familiar to veteran users of Samsung mobiles, however the newer tweaks have left the phone extremely annoying. The newest innovation being extensively talked about is the 3D cube navigation. There is dedicated button for the cube, which rotates around on the screen with a different application on every surface. It even has a dedicated hardware button, which seems unnecessary at best. 

The main menu has been shifted to the left of the screen, an update that wasn't thought through completely. When switching between the three home screens, the menu is frequently opened inadvertently. There are however quite a few custom applications. 

Data entry was frustrating, as the poor responsiveness of the touchscreen translated to slow, painful typing. The keyboard seemed alright otherwise. 

The strongest feature of the phone is the AMOLED screeen with 16 million colours. The brightness is fantastic, with liquid blacks and iridescent colours. 

The camera is also excellent, with 5 megapixels and a built-in flash. The camera technology has been imported directly from Samsung digital cameras, making the experience quite enjoyable. The interface has a fair few options, and it is possible to take passably good photographs with the device. 

Connectivity (/10)

The Samsung Behold 2 comes with quadband GSM, which means a user can take the phone anywhere in the world. Whether they would want to is a completely different issue altogether. It has GPRS, EDGE, 3G and WiFi too.

Performance (/10)

The phone appears to boot up very quickly indeed, although using the phone immediately will lead to a lot of frustration. Leaving it for a few moments will ensure the phone has booted up fully. 

The phone is extremely sluggish, with especially a great deal of lag when there are multiple applications open. This leads to the assumption that the device is unable to handle multitasking efficiently, and that the processor could probably have been much better than 528 MHz. 

Value for Money (/10)

The consensus is that the Behold 2 is really not value for money. Not because it is expensive, which it isn't; but mainly because the device does not hold up to scrutiny. There are many better devices that are available in the same price range. 

Pros

+ Custom applications

+ Excellent AMOLED screen

+ Camera is good, with 5 megapixels and a great interface

Cons

- Unremarkable design, with too many hardware buttons for a touchscreen phone

- Terrible performance

- Badly designed interface, especially the side main menu

Price

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Opinions

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Rating

Style: 8.0
160
Technology: 8.0
160
Efficiency: 8.1
162

Total votes: 210 | Hits: 7814

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