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Samsung Omnia Lite B7300 review

New Windows Mobile 6.5 phone is merely 'ok'

samsung omnia lite b7300

The Samsung Omnia Lite is no lightweight when it comes to its out of the box functionality. There's plenty of features and applications pre-loaded, and the hardware includes comprehensive connectivity options, satellite location finding and a comprehensive suite of office tools.

The Windows Mobile 6.5 touchscreen user interface isn't the most intuitive, though. It offers plenty of configuration options and functionality, but touch-phone usability isn't at the heart of the UI.

A little way under the revamped surface graphics it feels functional and not particularly user friendly. And with the layout of some menus, combined with the screen space and responsiveness, you may be using the stylus a fair amount rather than simply tapping with your fingertips.

We were also disappointed with the sometimes languid performance when responding to button pressing and experienced slow running of certain apps when several were open. This was frustrating, particularly when it interfered with something as basic as text messaging.

We liked:

The Omnia Lite has plenty of features and functionality packed in to a refined looking touchscreen device. High-speed data connectivity via Wi-Fi and HSDPA was welcome, particularly with the variety of online-based applications onboard. The synchronisation options too offered a good way of backing up and synchronising your phone on a PC or remotely.

The communications and messaging facilities are extensive and well implemented on the device, and we liked the media player options and playback.

There's a very generous selection of useful out-of-the-box apps included, ranging from office tools and online media functions to entertainment and communications functionality.

Some users may also find that the widgets-based TouchWiz Samsung interface offers an alternative user-friendly way of maintaining the Today screen.

We didn't like:

The Windows Mobile 6.5 user interface still isn't as touch friendly as it would like to be, which is highlighted on a compact screen device like this.

The screen was sometimes imprecise around the edges, which could be awkward when using the QWERTY keyboard in portrait mode – requiring the stylus rather than finger pressing to ensure accuracy. Tapping the top screen panel was problematic for the same reason – which meant closing down apps or pressing the Start button often required stylus intervention.

This could be frustrating when looking to do something quick with a finger tap.

While there's plenty of applications action, the phone was sometimes ponderous when carrying out commands, which could be frustrating.

The accelerometer didn't switch the screen automatically in all apps, which was irritating in some such as the Office Mobile suite where it should really be a default option.

As usual, we were disappointed not to see a 3.5mm headphone jack on the bodywork as standard on this sort of device.

Verdict:

The Samsung Omnia Lite has plenty of features and a generous amount of applications stacked up inside. The Windows Mobile 6.5 increases usability a bit from previous versions of the OS, but it's not a great leap forward in terms of overall user-friendliness.

It's far from as intuitive or slick to use as some Android phones and the Apple iPhone, particularly with its sometimes languid responsiveness.

It does pack a very decent helping of useful software, communication capabilities, back up and configuration options, so you do get plenty of functionality for your cash.

Its feature firepower is no doubt attractive for a Windows Phone at this level, but it's not really enough to make us warm to the Lite.

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Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBYes
Maximum Memory Card Size Supported32 GB
Built-in Memory250 MB
Memory Card SlotYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA
GPS ReceiverYes
Product FamilyOMNIA
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 2100
Rear Camera Resolution3 Megapixel
Front CameraYes
Memory Card SupportedmicroSD High Capacity (microSDHC)
Phone StyleBar
ColourBlack
Operating SystemWindows Mobile
Brand NameSamsung
Battery Talk Time9 Hour
Product ModelB7300 Omnia Lite
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Screen Resolution400 x 240
Weight (Approximate)109 kg
Maximum Video Resolution640 x 480
Processor ManufacturerARM
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 2.1
Operating System VersionWindows Mobile 6.5 Professional
Messaging TypeEMS, Instant Messaging, SMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email
USB StandardUSB 2.0
Height107 mm
Width51.8 mm
Depth13.3 mm
Radio TunerYes
Battery Standby Time650 Hour
ManufacturerSamsung
Product NameOMNIA Lite B7300 Smartphone
Processor Speed800 MHz
Processor TypeARM11
Product LineOMNIA
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeAccelerometer
Manufacturer Part NumberGT-B7300IKAXEU
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.samsung.com/uk/
Marketing Information

As productive and powerful as it is simple and fun, OMNIA Lite B7300 Smartphone combines all-in-one SMART performance with a positively practical and user-friendly interface. Its touch-optimised UI lets you navigate its many features with the tip of your finger and the rich graphic layout makes it that much easier, not to mention entertaining. And with a lightning fast browser, hyper-efficient mobile office features and versatile multimedia capabilities, Omnia Lite is designed to do almost everything for just about anyone.