Samsung Epix SGH-i907

DSCF8783

I’m a smartphone type of guy, in the beginning it was mainly for the keyboards really, but as they’ve progressed I’ve come to admire all of the functionality in them as well. My regular phone, when I’m not reviewing any, is the AT&T Tilt, which is still probably one of the best smartphones on the market today even though it’s kind of aging in technological terms. So I’m no stranger when it comes to smartphones overall, I’ve owned others as well, and I’ve found they’re not just for business people these days, smartphones can be appreciated by anyone really for their features and overall usability. Now I like my Tilt quite a bit, but I might have to give it up for the phone I’ve got for review today…

We’ve taken a look at a few phones here on technogog, but no smartphones, until today that is. I’ve got the Samsung Epix for review, it’s a Windows Mobile 6.1 based phone that has quite a few great features including a built in optical mouse, touchscreen, full QWERTY keyboard, 320×320 screen and even a 2.0 megapixel camera. The optical mouse has got to be one of the best features of this phone, it makes using WinMo much easier and actually kinda fun, no more tapping the screen with your finger or getting out stylus for navigation, just use you thumb to move the cursor around the screen and click. It’s for At&t of course, and only them, so it does offer their aGPS navigation service, mediaNET and all of the other things you come to use with their services. It also has the now standard features of smartphones today like WiFi and Bluetooth as well.

Yes it’s fully feature packed, and really made for business, but it’s not without its faults, video recording is choppy and there’s no built-in GPS, something that I would have expected to come standard on a phone of this caliber, or really any smartphone these days. Another thing that bothered me about the Epix was using it in sunlight, the screen, or the cover of it,is like a mirror, it needs some anti-glare on it. Those are the only three glaring real faults I could find with this phone overall.

So first up check out the unboxing, then continue on for the rest of the review:

Specifications:

Samsung Epix SGH-i907

The Epix is Samsung’s first AT&T Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional device featuring touch screen capability—built for enterprise and small business customers.

The Epix is a powerful smartphone that offers features like a high-speed processor, large application memory capacity, and aGPS to run corporate email, location-based services, and vertical application solutions. The Epix has the manageability and security capabilities that enterprise IT managers seek, including Microsoft System Center Mobile Device Manager deployment—a security and manageability server that enables enterprise IT administrators to better manage mobile devices.

The Epix is a world-capable, 3G smartphone featuring tri-band HSDPA (850/1900/2100) and quad-band EDGE (850/900/1800/1900). Its touchscreen, full QWERTY keyboard, dedicated function keys, and optical center navigation button with mouse pointer enabled, easy one-hand operation for even the most complex multitasking needs.

Specifications:
* Dimensions: 4.56 x 2.41 x 0.51 inches
* Weight: 4.4 ounces
* Talk Time: Up to 7 hours
* Standby Time: Up to 14 days
* Battery: 1800 mAh standard battery
* Technology: GSM/GPRS/EDGE/UMTS/HSDPA*
* Frequency: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz (GSM/GPRS/EDGE); 850/1900/2100 MHz (UMTS/HSDPA)
* Data Transmission: GPRS/EDGE Class 10; HSDPA 3.6 Mbps
* Operating System: Windows Mobile(TM) 6.1
* Antenna: Internal antenna
* Memory: 256 MB ROM, 150 MB RAM with microSD (sold separately)
* Display: 2.55 inches, 320 x 320, 65k TFT; touchscreen with vibration feedback option, Stylus
* Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g and aGPS
* TTY support
* Hearing Aid Compatible (HAC)

I’ve only listed a few of the features, and there’s many, so you can head on over to the ATT site to read the full specs and features if you wish HERE or you can visit the Samsung website HERE for a nice flash presentation and info.

Let’s cover the things I found to not be good with this phone, because there’s only a few of them, so let’s just get them out of the way first.

First up the goofy stylus just needs to go, where’s the ‘regular’ stylus you find with other smartphones? The telescopic antenna stylus just seems to me like it will break easily.

The screen cover is way too glossy especially in bright light and in sunlight the thing is like a mirror. I tried using it outside in sunlight and I could see myself perfectly in it and not the actual screen unless I tilted it a bit.

I mentioned it in the intro, but why no real GPS? I’m sure there’s room for it in there, this assisted GPS works, but I would prefer the real thing. Sure some people like the aGPS, but personally I don’t care for it as I don’t like to use the data, everywhere I go has an open Wifi spot so I really have no need for their data package at all.

And as you’ll see below I’ve got a sample video for you taken with the Epix:

As you can see the video is a bit choppy and I’m not sure why, I made sure there were no other programs running in the background, but every video I took was like that.. The video quality is not bad really, it’s much better than the last few phones I’ve reviewed, that’s for sure, but choppy is still choppy and not worth much at all….

Of course there’s the AT&T bloat junk installed in there as well, but at this point we’ve got to accept it I guess…

other than that there’s really not much wrong with this phone, call quality is fine, and I had no problems at all getting a signal anywhere I went.

Battery life is great, I got the rated times out of the battery, and I found that using Bluetooth or WiFi doesn’t seem to drain the battery as fast as other phones do. Speaking of Bluetooth and WiFi, I had no problems connecting my Jawbone2 to the Epix, and WiFi works great as well, it worked perfectly for me.

Now one of the main feature of this phone is the optical mouse, I’ve read other reviews from sites that get their phones before the actual release and one of the complaints was using the optical mouse, for me I like it a lot, I’m going to miss it when I switch back to my Tilt,  it makes using the phone much easier and even fun.

Check out the next video for a tour of the interface and everything in between, it’s about 10 minutes long so sit back, relax and enjoy it, there is an edit in the middle there, I removed the part with my contacts telephone numbers, don’t want private numbers floating around out there now do we?!

and here’s a few sample pictures as well taken at high resolution (1600×1200) with setting on Super Fine, the colored pictures at the end are the special modes like Sepia, Black & White and Negative..

PIC_0004 PIC_0005 PIC_0006 PIC_0010 PIC_0011 PIC_0014 PIC_0016 PIC_0017 PIC_0019 PIC_0020 PIC_0022 PIC_0023 PIC_0024 PIC_0025

Image Gallery:

DSCF8014 DSCF8017 DSCF8090 DSCF8092 DSCF8096 DSCF8097 DSCF8098 DSCF8099 DSCF8100 DSCF8103 DSCF8108 DSCF8113 DSCF8115 DSCF8764 DSCF8768 DSCF8776 DSCF8777 DSCF8783 DSCF8792 DSCF8793 DSCF8812

Make sure to stop by our main site and visit the cellphones category to see all of the other cellphone reviews we’ve collected.

Conclusion:

The Samsung Epix has got an excellent set of features that can make your business life and personal much more organized and even fun.

The integrated optical mouse is just great really, it makes using the phone that much more easier. Call quality and battery life are very good, along with the ability to take still pictures.

The lack of real GPS, and choppy video do take a bit away from the phone overall, but not much, personally I’ve only used the video camera on my Tilt a few times since it so it’s not that important to me. The aGPS system is more of a personal preference as well, I just like the ability to not use the data on my cell plan if I don’t really have to.

Overall I love this phone, and I can easily recommend it to anyone in the market for a new, features rich smartphone for business of pleasure.

I may have to retire my Tilt for the Epix…. hmmm

Pros:
Cool optical mouse makes navigation easier
Large screen
Long battery life
Good still pics
Good call quality
Easy to use
Seems well made

Cons:
Not real GPS
Screen glare
Choppy video
Goofy telescopic stylus

Grades:  
Overall score-8-10
Design score-9-10
Performance score-8-10
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  • Chan

    Really interested in this phone, it’s what the Treo Pro should’ve been instead of the disaster it is. Has anyone heard on the grapevine if/when this is going to be released in the UK?

  • Pingback: Samsung Epix gathers more review praise | Gear Diary()

  • Player911

    I own this phone… and it DOES include GPS. I use iGO8 on it perfectly. Go into GPS Options in the Settings menu, and change the “PROGRAM” port to “COM1″

    This will assign it to a physical port so most GPS apps won’t have a problem finding it.

    aGPS is “Assisted” GPS… which only means it uses Cell Towers to help speed up the initial fix on your location. Kinda how Google Maps can “kinda” guess your location.

    Be let it be known that the EPIX has a FULL GPS system. To test, turn off the phone antenna and launch your fav Nav Software.

    I have a hacking compilation and tweak guide, which includes steps how to install the awesome HTC Manilla2D homescreen, TouchFlo kinetic finger-enabled OS-Wide scrolling and gestures, Volume-Up/Down Swap, and much more.
    http://howardforums.com/showthread.php?t=1448980&page=1&pp=15

  • Kristofer

    I tried various things with the one I had for review and I couldn’t get it to work, including that Program/Com1 thing… it still used aGPS, I tried all kinds of settings before I made the call that it didn’t work… don’t know why it didn’t work on the unit I got

  • Alec

    You can turn off the vibrate feedback for the touch screen. It’s in Settings, Sounds & Notifications, Vibrations tab.

  • erich

    Had this phone with AT&T. Generally this was a good phone and PDA, except for a few problems. The Illumination is really low, so it is hear to see at night. The volume for the PDA and phone was difficult to maanage. Windows Mobile 6.1 was good. But really bad part of this phone is the wi-fi. It NEVER worked, even at the university. AT&T tried to help, but the wi-fi is a samsung probelm. When I called samsung for assistance I was hung up on when I would ask for more help or counterdicted what they were telling me. Samsung’s customer service repes could never tell me the smae story and were cluess when it came to techincal information. They hung up me 4 times, even when I was on a 3 way call with and AT&T resp and a samsung rep. If you buy this phone do not plan on support from Samsung and do not expect the Wi-fi to work!

  • danngy

    The Epix supports true GPS.

    This phone does have its fair share of notification issues when its in sleep mode. Also, check out http://www.mysamsungepix.com and grab chgFingerMouse and SmartSKey to make the phone easy to use with one hand.

  • Kassy

    I have the Epix and I love this phone. Yes the screen is somewhat difficult to see in the sunlight, but everything else works fine. You can add either the Google GPS or the AT&T navigator and it works well. The Wi-Fi on this phone is awesome. It automatically connects whenever I am in a wi-fi area. The phone has an awesome battery life unless you’re on the internet all day, which will happen to any phone. Overall, I have really enjoyed having the Epix. IF you’re not a smartphone person, this phone is easy to use because it uses the same software as Windows computers… its just in a phone format. Great phone choice.

  • ana

    I just got this phone two days ago. In a matter of minutes, I tried calling it to see if everything was fine with the incoming and outgoing calls, and it came to my attention that whatever ringtone i used, it would always ascend. there is a setting to where you can put it as just ring or ascending ring. i’ve had it on ring the whole time, and when someone would call, it would be in a low volume, and then after about 4 seconds, it would get really loud. so i have no idea whats up with that. and then i checked the wifi and it didn’t work at all.
    so i returned the phone for another one, and got it this morning.
    same problems!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! so my dad is on the phone with samsung, and at&t and nothing…
    they know nothing!
    you’re soooo lucky if it works.

  • Sam

    Just FYI, aGPS *is* “real” GPS. It’s “assisted” GPS (hence the “a”). The “assisted” part uses cell tower information to get a rough fix and download local ephemeris data (tells the phone which satellites are relevant) that helps the GPS get an initial lock. Without knowing roughly where it is at start-up, a GPS will take much longer to get an initial lock because it doesn’t know which satellites it should expect to “see”. Once any GPS chip has that initial fix, subsequent locks in the same area should be much quicker. If you’re seeing poor accuracy with aGPS, it’s possible that the GPS is never getting a true GPS fix, so the reported position is only as good as the cell tower data. With WinMo devices there are a number of freeware programs you can use to directly review what the GPS is doing, and the quality of satellite data it is receiving. I use Chartcross’s GPSTest – works like a charm.

    If you look around the internet a bit you’ll find that other reviewers have had plenty of success with the GPS on this phone – including using it with third party apps (which is often a problem for phones purchased from carriers – they like you to use their nav software…).

  • John Owens

    All Epix owners need to go to:
    http://www.mysamsungepix.com/

    They have a fix for the notification ring problem while in sleep mode and are working on the ascending ring problem, actually there is a fix but you can’t have the notification and ascending ring bugs fixed at the same time. Either one or the other. They are working on that.

    WiFi will not work unless the proxy box is UNCHECKED. Then if you want Media Net and CV you have to re check the box. AT&T does not seem to know this.

    Great phone well worth the extra dollars. Anyone know how to turn on HSDPA like the Tilt?
    radionet@bellsouth.net

  • Carole

    I just received my Epix today and I am completely lost. I do not know how to accept and download a ringtone, I don’t know how to go back or delete when I make a mistake putting a contact in, I do not like the mouse, I just want to know how to go up, down, and right to left. Can someone who has this phone please send me some information in very simplified details. Thank you! I would appreciate it. Carole

  • soccerr

    Well i’m getting this phone monday and i really can’t wait to get it. I’ve seen a lot of great reviews about it and have been watching some videos so when i do get it i have an idea of how to use it. I’ve seen two different kinds of main menu’s though there’s that one above in the video and another cooler one that has a carrosole effect. i like the carrosole one a bunch more but i think it comes the other way. does anyone know how to change it?

  • bob a bouy

    the first poster chan is a complete moron ..go fu#@ urself slanty

  • Janna

    This is a really great phone if worked properly. It has the most incredible functions when it works. If you record video then there is no way to delete it. It turn itself on and off without provocation and uses up it’s own battery. It is always running errors. It’s unreliable. Aside from this, it has a cool drawing pad/note pad and fast internet access. The stylus is fun to use. I wish they would work out the kinks because if it ever funstioned properly it would be the world’s best.

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