Samsung captivate glide

Smartphones with physical keyboard are becoming increasingly rare, especially in the high-end ranges.

The Captivate Glide doesn't really have a lot of direct competitors. In fact, on AT&T, it's the only high-end smartphone with a physical keyboard at all.

We Disliked

The build quality, while sturdy, just doesn't have that "Premium" feel Samsung is going for. We're not afraid of anything breaking, but we'd be a little embarrassed to compare it to something like the iPhone.

AT&T's network is probably the worst thing about the Glide. Even though it's capable of 21Mbps "4G" speeds, we rarely saw anything that would have even been considered fast 3G. Spotty coverage in some areas definitely doesn't help AT&T's case.

All of the bloatware AT&T includes is another negative point. Some of their apps aren't even apps, but shortcuts to Marketplace downloads!

The overall specs seem a little bit weak for the price. A 1GHz dual-core processor is very "last year," and the lack of 1080p recording is disappointing. Still, if a physical keyboard is important to you, that feature alone more than makes up for it.

We Liked

The slide-out keyboard is really quite good, and since that's a major selling point for the Glide, it should be. The sliding mechanism feels well-built (unlike the weak hinges in the HTC Desire Z).

Samsung's TouchWiz interface has come a long way since the days of the original Captivate.

Everything looks nice and there is almost never any sort of lag when sliding from screen to screen or transitioning through pages.

We were very pleased with the battery life the Glide had to offer. It still needs to be charged nightly, but it's nice to know that if you happened to skip a night, it won't be dead in the morning.

Verdict

If a physical QWERTY keyboard is a required feature, the Captivate Glide is probably one of your best options – definitely the best option on AT&T. If you're not tied down to AT&T, the Droid 4 is really the only better option you'll find, and it's not even out yet.

For those willing to forego the physical keyboard, the similarly priced Galaxy S II offers a bit more in terms of performance. Or, for just $50 more, the Galaxy S II Skyrocket gets you 4G LTE, a 4.5-inch screen, and 1.5GHz dual-core processor.