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Christmas Gift Guide

T-Mobile Sidekick 4G

Design by Samsung

Two color options

Back view

Features

Keyboard

Slider design

Another angle

Camera

Buttons and ports

More buttons

The T-Mobile Sidekick 4G made its first public appearance at CTIA 2011. T-Mobile also announced pricing for the new Android-based Sidekick at the show. You can either purchase the phone for $99.99 with a two-year contract with unlimited data or $149.99 with a two-year contract and qualifying plan, including data.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
Unlike previous Sidekick models, the Sidekick 4G is made by Samsung. The handheld keeps a number of the characteristic stylings of the old model, such as the four navigation buttons and five-row keyboard. However, it also brings some new additions, such as a touch screen (3.5-inch WVGA display) and a front-facing camera for video calls.

In the hand, the smartphone feels lightweight. As a result, it doesn't feel quite as sturdy as previous models but overall, the handset feels pretty solid.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
The T-Mobile Sidekick 4G will be available in either matte black or pearl magenta. Though T-Mobile revealed pricing, the carrier did not make any announcements regarding a launch date. The smartphone is expected to ship this spring.

In this picture, you can also see the new customized user interface. The Sidekick 4G runs Android 2.2 with Samsung's TouchWiz UI, but some aspects of the UI are unique to the Sidekick.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
A back view of the two Sidekick 4G models reveals the different color options.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
As we mentioned earlier, the Sidekick 4G runs Android 2.2 and also boasts new features, such as Group Text and Cloud Text, 4G support (up to 21Mbps), and Samsung's Media Hub video store.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
Sidekicks have always had great keyboards, and we're happy to report that the Sidekick 4G continues this tradition. We found it easy to use, thanks to the roomy layout. We also appreciate the dedicated number row, and there's even a shortcut for emoticons.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
The T-Mobile Sidekick 4G doesn't have a swiveling screen, rather it features a slider design with a spring-loaded hinge. The slider mechanism is relatively smooth and feels pretty sturdy. On the first couple of tries, however, we were a bit weary of breaking it. Once open, the screen sits at a slight angle so it's easier to see while typing.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
Another view of the Sidekick 4G in its open state.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
On back of the phone, you'll find the Sidekick 4G's 3-megapixel camera. There's a front-facing VGA camera for video calls. It's compatible with the Qik video chat client and calls can be made over Wi-Fi or the cellular network.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
On one side of the phone, you get a dedicated camera key and Micro-USB port.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
On the other, you get a 3.5mm headphone jack, a volume rocker, and a power button.
Caption by / Photo by Bonnie Cha/CNET
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