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Samsung SGH-T719: first impressions

Samsung SGH-T719: first impressions

I confess--I had my doubts about the Samsung SGH-T719. When I first heard that Samsung was marketing a BlackBerry Connect-enabled flip phone, I wondered about its practicality. Sure, it was slim and sexy, but how good would it be at e-mail without a QWERTY keyboard? Well, I stopped by the Samsung booth this morning to get a hands-on look at the T719, and I've got to say, it's pretty darn cool. The handset is very sleek and lightweight (3.5 ounces), and it boasts a vibrant 262,000-color internal display. Also inside is a SureType keyboard, much like the one found on the BlackBerry 7100 series, where two letters are assigned to each key and predictive-text technology aids with word entry. It felt good in the hand, and the keys were surprisingly manageable. In addition, the EDGE-enabled, quad-band smart phone has a speakerphone, a 1.3-megapixel camera with video-recording capabilities, and Bluetooth. The one downfall may be its meager 17MB of internal memory, and there's no expansion slot. Still, we're looking forward to checking it out; expected availability is Q3 2006, but pricing or carrier information have yet to be announced.