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Customer Review

22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Phone, but watch out for surprise charges from Sprint when ordering from Amazon, December 1, 2011
This review is from: Samsung Galaxy S II Epic Touch 4G Android Phone, Black (Sprint) (Wireless Phone Accessory)

Got this phone here about a month ago and I'm loving it. The large screen is a big plus for me as I'm in the IT business and having a device that I can actually use remote desktop on in a pinch can be a lifesaver. Easily fits in all of my pockets. Good size for my hand; when holding it vertically I can perform all functions without having to use both hands.

FAST fast fast is all I have to say about the performance. Probably the quickest phone I've ever used. I can't wait until they get Android 4.0 released for it.

Camera takes very good pictures and video camera WAY outperformed my expectations. The flash is also the brightest I've seen on any mobile phone.

Anyway, I've got it set up as an FTP client, SMB client, VNC/RDP client, DLNA client, Exchange and IMAP client, and even as a Sharepoint client. I can't believe it ALL works flawlessly! Combine this with the Dolphin HD browser and LastPass for password/form-fill management and you've got mobile computing bliss.

Battery life is even better for this model than other Galaxy S II models due to the Epic 4G Touch's larger battery (for WiMax support). If you don't constantly use 4G, it will last even longer than the other models will. I've been getting 20-24 hours of above-normal to heavy use.

4G (WiMax) speeds are much better than I was expecting. I'm seeing real-world speeds of 5-15Mbps down and 1.5Mbps up. Very nice.

Only two major complaints:

1. There is a known bug where if you encrypt both the phone and the (internal) SD card, it disables satellite GPS functionality completely. It will not function at all. This occurs on every phone of this model with the current firmware. Samsung is, I'm sure, working on the problem but not being able to encrypt is a BIG deal for those of us who need to use it for work.

2. Not a complaint about the phone itself, but Sprint adds an (as far as I can tell) undisclosed $36 "Device Upgrade Fee" to your Sprint bill after purchasing it from Amazon Wireless. If it was somehow disclosed during the purchasing process, it must have been in REALLY fine print because I'm not the sort who just scans through. I actually read this stuff.

[BEGIN RANT]Now, calling it an "upgrade fee" is simply false labeling. This fee has nothing to do with recouping the cost of activation or the clerical process of moving a customer's services from one device to another. No, this is not mere supposition on my part. Sprint representatives will tell you up-front (as they did when I called to complain) when confronted about this fee that it's there to "help make their phones' pricing more competitive". So essentially what they're doing is using this as a way to advertise one price publicly while actually charging the customer a higher price than what was advertised. There is no argument in the world - ESPECIALLY having spoken to a Sprint representative on the phone who confirmed this - that this is not a deliberately deceptive business practice. It is unacceptable, and if I didn't already sign a 2-year contract I would have walked out on Sprint over it. No one should tolerate what are manifestly deliberate hidden and obscured fees/costs.

The real kicker here is that Sprint will wave the fee if you purchase the phone through THEIR store (at a higher price than Amazon, of course), but not if you purchased it through Amazon Wireless. I've seen this confirmed by multiple people on multiple forums. Amazon Wireless should be more than a bit peeved by this. I sure am.

So anyway, to sum up: BUYER BEWARE when it comes to Sprint. If they're willing to deliberately deceive customers in this regard, perhaps they're willing to do it in other areas, as well. Keep a close eye on your bill.[END RANT]

So it's a fantastic phone. Probably the best hardware currently available. Even the Galaxy Nexus is getting beaten by it fairly handily in most benchmarks. Once the (rather major) GPS bug is squashed and once it gets Ice Cream Sandwich, it'll be a dream. It's too bad Sprint had to spoil the good time with behavior than ONLY a company with an army of lawyers could get away with.
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