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Samsung JetSet SCH-r550 (Cricket) review: Samsung JetSet SCH-r550 (Cricket)

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The 2-megapixel camera takes pictures in six resolutions, from 1,600x1,200 pixels down to a special size for picture ID. Other options include a night mode, a self-timer, adjustable brightness, four white settings, five color effects, three quality settings, an adjustable ISO, exposure meeting, and five shutter sounds, plus a silent option. The JetSet doesn't have a flash.

The JetSet had mediocre photo quality.

The camcorder shoots clips in two lengths. Videos meant for multimedia messages are capped at 15 seconds, but you can shoot for longer in normal mode. Editing options for the camera are similar to the still camera, though a bit smaller. The handset offers a respectable 53MB of internal storage. For more space, you can use a microSD card; the slot will accommodate cards up to 16GB. Photo quality was mostly poor for a 2-megapixel shooter. Many of our images were dark and blurry around the edges.

The music player is pretty simple, but it offers a fair number of features. You'll find playlists, an equalizer, and repeat and shuffle modes. Adding music to the phone is easy with either a USB cable or memory card. Tunes over the external speaker were unexceptional--headphones will offer a better experience.

You can personalize the JetSet with a variety of wallpapers, clock formats, themes, and banners. More options, and additional ringtones, are available from Cricket through the WAP 2.0 Web browser. The JetSet doesn't come with any games or applications, but you can buy them from Cricket.

We tested the dual-band (CDMA 800/1900) JetSet in San Francisco. Since the Bay Area isn't part of Cricket's home coverage area, we made calls using the carrier's roaming network. Call quality was good overall. We noticed an improvement over the Motorola Hint, both in the strength of the signal and in the quality of voices. However, the JetSet's volume level wasn't quite as loud as on the Moto phone, but it provided a better overall experience.

On their end, callers said we sounded fine. They could tell that we were using a cell phone, but they didn't report any problems beyond some background noise. It wasn't a deal breaker, they said, and automated calling systems could understand us. Speakerphone quality was decent enough, but the volume level was much too low.

The JetSet is equipped for 3G (EV-DO) networks, which Cricket operates throughout its home network. We weren't able to test it since we were roaming.

The JetSet has a rated battery life of 3.5 hours talk time and 10.4 days standby time. We had a tested talk time of 3 hours and 27 minutes. According to FCC radiation tests, the JetSet has a digital SAR of 1.05 watts per kilogram.

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