Samsung Epic 4G – Review Round-Up
Earlier today Sprint released another 4G phone, the Samsung Epic. It has a 1GHz processor, Android 2.1 (where’s 2.2?), a 5.0 megapixel camera that records video in 720p, a front-facing camera for video chat, a 4″ Super AMOLED screen, and a full slide-out QWERTY keyboard.
It’ll cost you 249.99 after a $100 mail-in rebate with a new two-year contract. Just like the HTC EVO 4G there is a mandatory data fee of $10 a month for 4G even if you don’t live in a 4G market.
Enough of that, on to the reviews!
When you compare the Epic to the EVO, the Epic is the clear winner. Whether it’s the slide-out keyboard, better screen, longer battery life or Swype built in, there are plenty of reasons to choose this phone instead.
Placed aside the other Galaxy S phones, the Epic still comes out ahead. It’s the only one of the four that has 4G, the only one with a camera flash and the only one that has the slide-out keyboard. Most everything else across all four carriers are the same, except for small details in pricing and data plans. But when you’re trying to decide between three skinny brothers and a stronger (but fatter) fourth brother, it’s clear what the choice is.
Slide-out keyboard is wonderful
+Super AMOLED screen improves on EVO
+About the same fast-ness as the EVO
+Sprint’s software customizations aren’t atrocious
=Battery life is still pretty mediocre
=It’s a waiting game to see if Samsung will offer Android updates frequently
The good: The Samsung Epic 4G has a knockout Super AMOLED display, a 1GHz processor, a front-facing camera, an impressive QWERTY keyboard, a 5.0-megapixel camera with an LED flash, and supports Sprint’s 4G WiMax network. It is capable of acting as a mobile Wi-Fi hot spot for up to five devices.
The bad: The Samsung Epic 4G is the bulkiest of the Galaxy S phones and also the priciest. It also requires a costly data plan.
The bottom line: The Samsung Epic 4G is a multimedia powerhouse with features the other Galaxy S phones don’t have. Unfortunately, it comes with a big price tag.
the Epic 4G is a great device. Killer, even. Nothing speaks to us more strongly during the course of a review than finishing it and saying, “alright, I’m ready to buy this thing,” and the Epic is on the short list of phones that has managed to do it. More than its Galaxy S siblings, it feels like the Epic has overcome its shortcomings — notably the forgettable UI skin — to shine, and it’s a phone we could easily imagine using day to day. Only thing is, the EVO is also on that short list for us — and the better camera, bigger screen, and $50 savings versus the Epic still make it our winner in this 4G shootout, though only by the thinnest of margins. Needless to say, if you need a physical keyboard and you’re looking for the one of the most musclebound Android phones money can buy, we wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it.
OVERALL THEME: Paying for 4G without having it sucks. This a great phone, but the only thing it beats the Evo 4G on is battery life. The Evo 4G has a better camera, and is cheaper. But, if you want a physical keyboard, this is the 4G phone for you.
Not sure how long this is going to last, but at the time of writing you can get this phone on Amazon.com for $200, instead of the $250 here.
Also, if Wired and MobileCrunch put up reviews in the next couple days I’ll try to add them to this.