on May 13, 2011
Because in my humble opinion, the phone is fun. I'm so sick of touch phones I couldn't bear my TMobile Mytouch 3g anymore. The thing was a pain, force close, slow, etc. I wanted a full keyboard again. People seem to love smaller, because admittedly, it's more accessible. However, just forego the body glove on this phone, and it still fits in your pants pocket. I tend to think bigger phones get taken better care of, because you're more aware of it. My phone doesn't force close. It's incredibly fast. I enjoy Media Hub app, which allows me to purchase or rent movies right to my phone. For the inability to see in broad daylight, turn the light up on your phone. I did and mine works fine.
Being able to text and surf the web at warp speeds has been very enjoyable. I've found the phone to have some things that seem bulky or what not, but all in all nothing is ever perfect. So I'm rating this 5 stars.
on June 13, 2011
Let's be honest ... there is no perfect phone out there (talking about Android capable phones) Or you opted for a very expensive and heavy HTC or Droid (with virtual keyboard) or you get one with physical keyboard.
I only have a couple of days with it, so I cannot give a full battery's review, but like it so far. This is a fantastic cellphone for email and texting and ok overall device for the rest, including browsing and taking pictures.
If you don't text a lot or barely use the keyboard, stay away from this device. The phone screen is not extremely small but this cellphone does not really shine on that area. What you're getting is a dedicated 5 rows keyboard where typing is a real pleasure. After owning an HTC H2 (nice cellphone after rooting and running Froyo) and other HTC models, I should say ... nothing like real typing. Cellphone's screens are really responsive on these days but the problem with virtual keyboards is that you need to swap and change rows all the time so the whole typing experience changes. I was really looking for something like this and happy I found it. I thought about the HTC G2 but this keyboard is better and the hinges mechanism is stronger and way more solid. I also like the idea of having a small trackball for navigating and clicking hyperlinks; there is no trackball on the HTC G2.
It is really fast. In terms of the touch screen and Operating System, it is very responsive. You swap and change screens without major issue, I have not noticed any lag. The browsing's speed depends of many factors (area coverage, browser, etc) but this stuff is faster than my Wifi connection at home. I am getting 6Mbps; downloading or viewing multimedia content is really nice. It is not as smooth or crisp as my previous HTC HD2, but that's the trade off of having a smaller screen and better keyboard. For "on the go" browsing requirements, it's more than enough.
Layout and buttons
Like I said, fantastic keyboard. The hinges mechanism is stronger and better than similar phones. It has a dedicated camera button but the power button is on the opposite side and below, so it is kind of weird and maybe you can turn it off my mistake? Has not happened to me and you need to confirm when turning off anyway (standard on all phones) but the power button could be in a better place. Not a big deal, you get used to. You will also have the "back" button, which is an arrow, the menu button, the "home" button and there is another button which is kind of a "task bar" button. I did not have that on my Galaxy Tab but lets you switch between applications, it's kind of cool having a dedicated one just for that, instead of press and hold the "menu" button (I think is like that on most Android Phones)
Won't talk too much about this (we all know it's running Android 2.2 out of the box) but the UI is nice. Has been customized a bit by Samsung but not bloated with tons of unproductive and expensive programs like ATT does on most of their Android models. You can do wifi calling and tethering and as fas as I know, it's completely free (wifi calls will consume your minutes though but you can call a USA number while traveling, let's say from Europe or South America. Just be sure roamaing is off. Tethering will also use your available data plan air time so please refer to your Tmobile representative and confirm)
--The not so good--
Well ... the screen is really responsive but not the biggest one. It's 3.5 I think but based on the overall phone's size, it could be bigger. There are two black bezels at both sizes of the screen that are "stealing" precious space. Unless they did this to save money and sell it cheaper (this cellphone actually has an attractive price) this is a waste of space!
No camera flash
I am not a big camera flash lover (I do photography as a hobby) so I don't really miss this. I prefer and use a dedicated camera to keep my memories, avoiding flashes if I can, but this is certainly a missing feature. It can be useful for some people and situations so keep that in mind. Indoor pictures are ok though, just be sure there is enough ambient light before taking the shoot. However and in order to be fair, there is a front camera for face to face chatting via web or Android programs. Most cellphones come with only one so that's positive.
Refreshing Interval for Social Network apps.
If you are an Android user, you probably know what I am talking about. If this is your 1st Android phone, this is basically the refreshing interval when your cellphone's widgets (Facebook, Twitter, email) will connect and download new stuff while device is idle seating on your desk. The Android software has been customized here so you can only set refreshes one time every day (or manually) It is good for saving battery but I don't like it. I want to be able to refresh whenever I want and I can miss important notifications that way. What's more weird is that even with that daily option only, my Facebook and email got new stuff frequently so I don't fully understand yet how or why that's happening. I mean, for sure the cellphone is doing a more frequent refresh but why the "one time per day" option only?
Granted, plastic phones do not look as professional or nice as steel ones, but hey! ... you want a cellphone to impress or because you need it for work and family? My wife's HTC looks nicer but it is heavy as well. The 4G Sidekick is not ugly but if your cellphone is a "self esteem booster" to you, get the HTC G2 maybe. Not saying this is a cheap one, but has a younger look than most mid range cellphones. I don't mind that, honestly, it's superb for texting and emails.
-- UPDATE, AFTER 10 DAYS WITH IT --
Really like this phone. I have no additional things to comment or say but the battery, and good ones. After 10 days with it, maybe more, I can confirm this cellphone has a decent battery life. With moderate usage (20 to 30 min browsing Internet, a few short calls of 5 min or less) I ended the day with about 65% battery; unplugged about 9am, returning home at 6pm. I had one day where I really pushed hard and it was 40% charge at 6pm. The small screen definitely helps on this aspect. I should say I had Engadget Widget, Facebook and sync emails every hour I think and screen brightness was on auto mode, nothing more. "Juice Plotter" , a free Android App. , helped me with the statistics. I know for sure now that this cellphone can give you more than 24hrs on standby.
Great phone overall. Good Android experience (Froyo out of the box) with a nice Samsung customization on the UI. The screen is not the biggest one but this cellphone is great for "texting" with a very attractive price.
on June 27, 2011
although marketed as a smartphone for teens, people who love to text, a social networking phone, blah blah, its much more. compare this to other phones "for adults" or something like the Droid "Pro" on verizon. compare the specs and the sidekick 4g is more of a business phone/poweruser phone than the Droid Pro and some other smartphones out there.
it makes me sick that most reviewers on tech sites are also sold by the marketing of the sidekick 4g. they all claim what they were told: a mid-range phone great for social networking and texters.
Droid Pro: 3.1 inch screen with hideous hvga resolution. 480x640? seriously? try showing some google analytics charts on that resolution. the droid pro is basically a motorola charm on extra strength tylenol
Sidekick 4G: 3.5 inch screen with a 480x800 resolution.
processor? the sidekick 4g has the SAME processor found in the ultra popular samsung galaxy s smartphone, a 1GHz hummingbird processor. the sidekick 4g is no slouch.
only the marketing and 'youthful' UI make the sidekick 4G a smartphone for high schoolers and non-business people.
for starters.. try downloading a "home" replacement from the android market such as launcher pro or adw launcher. this will get rid of some of that kiddish user interface and will likely speed up the phone a bit.
not a fan of smartphones with sliding keyboards. they always give when in your pocket and when typing its so annoying to have the touchscreen jiggle and give when open. but since the sk4g sliding screen in surrounded on two sides this(and the strongly built slider) make the sk4g a solid slider that doesnt feel like its going to break.
the camera is sort of a downer but its not that bad. no led flash is a drawback for some but for a 3mp camera, the quality of pics is pretty good. this just shows that its not all about megapixels and the quality of a good camera lens helps.
the front facing cam is a plus and makes up for the 3m camera and no led flash.
on October 14, 2011
I've had this phone since July, and having grown fed up of the random system issues, I used my not-so-useful "insurance" to get a replacement phone.
The original one I had would give me a 1 in 5 chance of freezing in either the browser or map (and it has crashed in Angry Birds as well), often when I am driving and need directions. Not just a regular freeze though; a 'hurriedly get the backing off and remove the battery, put it back in, and wait an eternity for the ostentatious loading screen to get me back to the home page' one (this could take two or three minutes on a good day). All of this while trying to avoid other cars in rush hour traffic. The issue was a dangerous one at that point. The lag was the second worst issue to deal with. I can live with some lag, but even after using the built in program manager to clear processes running in the background, the memory it clears is only in the single digits and would leave me with only a fifth of free memory total. The screen lock is just a pain (you have to slide an angled sliver down to unlock or up to quickly access an application and it'll do either of those in your pocket/purse) and the text layout was equally frustrating. God forbid you know anyone with more than one phone number because the drop down list for a new text does not differentiate between what is mobile, home, work, etc. Fed up with two months of ever-mounting dislike of the phone, as all of the issues happened to crop up about seventeen days after purchase of the phone, just in time to not be able to return it, I requested a replacement. Perhaps it was just a bad phone to match my luck? Negatory.
The phone I was sent as replacement was even worse than the original. It was freezing right out of the box, doing the same things as the first. I called to have it troubleshooted and was using it bare bones, hard reset and with no SD card (rendering the usefulness of the phone down to about 12%). The issues were even more severe by that point and I knew it was the hardware and not my SD card or handful of applications. I called them the next day (today) to figure out how a solution was going to benefit all parties involved. This is where the one star gets its name.
Customer service at T-mobile is worthless, particularly on this phone. It's one thing if it's user error or just a bad apple in the bunch, but the Sidekick is, and I quote, "already noted in their system for having these technical issues" and their way of fixing the problem? Vouching to send me Sidekick after Sidekick until I get one that works, if it ever works. There's no way around the policy outside of buying a different phone, and for full price since I used my upgrade to get the Sidekick. I was LIVID to find that they knew this phone was harboring a slew of crippling mechanical errors and would not budge on satisfying a very angry customer. I just wanted a different phone and some sort of deal on the darn thing. Full price left and right AND an extended contract to replace THEIR broken cell phone.
I was prepared to just go back to using my G1 and eat the cost of three payments I'd made towards the phone... only if they'd waive the last payment. Flat out refused and expected me to throw down another payment towards a glorified paperweight.
Told them I would be cancelling my service with them for their lack of understanding on a matter that is entirely their fault and I'm the one getting shafted over it.
- T-mobile knows this phone is full of malfunctions yet still tries to pawn it off on loyal customers like it's a baby iPhone.
- You will be stuck with it because they sure don't want it back.
- Avoid this cellular phone like it's carrying the plague. Trust me, you'll thank me later.
on May 13, 2011
I used to have the previous Danger sidekicks, the original sidekick and the sidekick id. I was thrilled when Tmobile debuted with the new sidekick. It's not at all like the old sidekicks, the only thing in common with them is the screen flipping up. It's very easy to manage and I love all the android apps. It is more bulky than other phones, but not so much that it's an issue. Plus, this sidekick is a touchscreen. also, as a side note it's manufactured by Samsung. I definitely recommend the phone. It's highly customizable.
on June 26, 2012
I got this phone probably about a year ago. I can't even type in a phone number with out all the glitches, bugs, and freezing. I have traded it in 3 times already. I went over to t-mobile and argued how badly I hated this crappy phone. She said ya, T-mobile had to discontinue all sidekicks because of all the issues. So in conclusion, if you are thinking of buying this phone, let this be a warning, you will regret it.
on May 31, 2012
I love Sidekick, and I thought I would love this one but all I want to do it throw it across the room!! It freeze at just the right time, when you are doing something or need help with something. I have done a master reset thinking that would help and it just cut the freezing down to maybe twice a day. I was told by T-Mobile that is it from a Samsung update. They are right. I didn't have a problem until I was forced to do the update. I put it off for about a week and then Samsung did a force update on my phone.
T-Mobile doesn't seem to care that this phone is acting up, I have emailed them, phoned them, and even went as far as blasting them on their own Facebook page. Nothing works, I just keep getting the same generic answer "we are working on the problem". I suggest that NO ONE get this phone if you can help it. As I said before I am a Sidekick lover but this new Sidekick and turned into a nightmare.
on December 19, 2011
The phone locks up several times a day. While it is a sold piece of hardware, Samsung's touchwiz launcher on top of android makes the phone unusable. It locks, generally when you are trying to answer a phone call and needs a battery pull to work again. That means you miss a lot of calls and have to call friends and clients back. Youtube locks all the time. Sometimes you have to battery pull it and sometimes you get lucky and just have to restart it.
If I had a dollar for everytime I had to factory reset this phone I could afford a new phone that worked.
Samsung has issued several "fixes" for this phone, none of which have fixed anything.
Only buy this if you like being frustrated, enjoy pulling the battery, like factoryresetting and losing your data and apps and like relogging into google to redownload your apps.
Otherwise, buy something else. Preferably not Samsung.
on November 27, 2011
I've had older versions of the sidekick and it was my favorite phone. This new Android version is the worst phone I've ever had! If you do some research on the Tmobile user boards you'll see that all owners of this phone are dissatisfied if not angry! There are so many problems that occur daily such as freezing, dropped calls, touch screen not working right ect. I have to take the battery out at least twice a day to reset. Tmobile is not doing anything to help the unhappy people who are now stuck with this phone. Stay away!
on February 14, 2013
I bought this item thinking i would enjoy the android experience as well as have a cool phone with a qwerty keyboard. However, this phone sucks. It is very slow and and right when i got it. It started to turn on and off over and over again. Once in a while it would work for about ten minutes and then do the same thing. DO NOT GET THIS PHONE. SERIOUSLY. Even if it didn't have the problem I had with the turning on and off, it is still not worth getting. The keyboard is literally the only good part about this phone. Do not waste your upgrade on this crap. I'm usually a Samsung guy with most electronics, especially phones. Although their other stuff is fantastic, this phone really discourages me from getting a phone from the Galaxy or Note Series and instead getting an Iphone. Hopefully T moible hurries up with getting the IPhone in their lineup.