- HSDPA capable, ships with two batteries and a second battery charger, bright, wide display, three-way scroll wheel for navigation
- Cramped keypad, no Wi-Fi, no included microSD card, no included headphones and no 3.5mm jack, limited multimedia file support, can't edit Office documents, USB 1.1
A solid, if not outstanding entry to the smart phone market, the BlackJack is a mixed bag. It has HSDPA, an excellent display and good email functionality, but the inability to edit documents and the lack of Wi-Fi are sour points.
Price$ 899.00 (AUD)
The first HSDPA smart phone from Samsung, the BlackJack aims for a healthy dose of work and play. With a full QWERTY keyboard, push e-mail functionality, and an excellent display, the BlackJack is a solid, if not outstanding entry into the packed smart phone market.
The BlackJack is a tri-band GSM (900/1800/1900), GPRS and 3.5G HSDPA capable smart phone, meaning it is capable of supporting downloads of up to 1.8Mbps. It performs reasonably well for voice calls, but we found volume too soft, even at the maximum level, although the hands-free speakerphone did work well. As with most smart phones the BlackJack isn't as loud or clear as regular mobile phones. It is difficult to hold a conversation with background noise, such as busy city traffic. The BlackJack is equipped with plenty of standard phone functions including a hands-free speakerphone, speed dialling, call history, and a phone book. Despite being a 3G handset, the BlackJack doesn't include a front mounted VGA camera for video calling.
The BlackJack runs the Windows Mobile 5.0 operating system, so it naturally features push e-mail, as well as the synchronisation of contacts, calendar and tasks with Microsoft Outlook. A USB cable is included in the sales package, but it uses a Samsung proprietary connection instead of a regular mini-USB connection, and only USB 1.1 interface, rather than the newer 2.0 interface. The BlackJack has mobile versions of Internet Explorer, Windows Media Player 10, Pocket MSN, Outlook, Excel, PowerPoint and Microsoft Word, but the biggest let down of this unit is the fact that you can't edit these Office documents, you can only view them. Also, the supported file formats are limited compared to other handsets, as only MP3, WMA, WMV and WAV can be used. There are no included headphones in the sales package, and there's no standard 3.5mm headphone jack on the unit itself, so you'll have to purchase a set of the proprietary headphones before using this function.
The GPRS/EDGE wireless functionality makes the BlackJack a good email device, although we were disappointed with the lack of Wi-Fi. The standard Windows Mobile messaging application supports push email from a Microsoft Exchange mail server, as well as standard POP3 and IMAP email accounts such as Hotmail, GMail and Yahoo! Mail. Also standard is Bluetooth 2.0 connectivity and a range of organiser applications like notepad, stopwatch, converter, voice recorder and world clock.
Continuing the work and play theme, the BlackJack includes a 1.3-megapixel camera, with a self-portrait mirror. The camera snaps images at up to 1280x960 resolution and users can adjust white balance, use several effects, and take photos using a two, five or 10 second self-timer. Overall though, the quality of images is quite poor and not recommended for anything more than a few happy snaps. Images can be saved to the 42MB of internal memory, or the microSD card slot, located under a plastic cover on the right side of the unit. Unfortunately, Samsung doesn't include a microSD card in the sales package.
The BlackJack doesn't have a touch-screen or stylus but does include a full QWERTY keyboard and an intuitive three-way scroll wheel with a back button to ensure it remains easy and hassle-free to operate. The keyboard buttons are raised, but their small size and cramped spacing make them more problematic when punching out long emails. Samsung has coloured the number keys on the keypad grey, rather than black. This makes them easy to differentiate when typing phone numbers. The rest of the controls consist of a five-way navigational pad, two selection buttons, answer/end call keys and dedicated buttons for home and back.
Measuring 113mm x 59mm x 11.8 mm and weighing a very reasonable 105g with the battery, the BlackJack is quite compact for a fully fledged smart phone. It is finished in a matt-black plastic with a silver navigational pad and earpiece, the only distinguishing design features. The thin yet wide design suits the 2.3-inch display, which is very bright and clear and excellent for most uses. The QVGA screen has a resolution of 320x240 pixels.
Battery life is rated at 5.5 hours of talk time and up to 11 days of standby time, according to Samsung figures. Keep in mind that excessive multimedia usage will diminish these figures considerably, so for heavy users the BlackJack may need to be charged every night. Samsung conveniently includes two batteries in the sales package though, and a battery charger case means users can charge the second battery without the phone.
Join the newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Samsung Galaxy Note 8: Full, in-depth review
- 2 Huawei Y5 (2017): Full, in depth review
- 3 LG G6 Plus: Full, in-depth review
- 4 First Look: Nikon D850
- 5 OnePlus 5: Full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Huawei go big on AI, announce Mate 10 + Mate 10 Pro
- Huawei's flagship tech trickles down to mid-tier with new Nova 2i smartphone
- Incipio Adds Pixel 2 Cases To Roster
- Survey: 20% of Aussie Apple users wouldn't switch to Android for a million dollars
- Tech21 Announces New Phone Protection For Google Pixel 2 and Google Pixel 2 XL
PCW Evaluation Team
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic
I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.
It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.
- Jabra Elite Sport (2017) review
- How to download the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update right now
- Opinon: Life after KRACK
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
Product Launch Showcase
- FTData Analyst/Business Analyst/Project ManagerACT
- TPTest Automation ProgrammerNSW
- FTSenior Business AnalystACT
- CCJunior Test AnalystACT
- FTSAP Payroll Test LeadOther
- FTInfrastructure Manager / Service Delivery ManagerVIC
- FTData Centre EngineerOther
- FTSenior Business Analyst - Office 365 ProjectOther
- TPSenior Project Manager (CRIM)VIC
- CCBusiness AnalystVIC
- CCCommunications Business Analyst - LTE / 4G / 3GWA
- TPIT Project Manager - Large Complex CRM ImplementationNSW
- FTSenior Digital Producer/Digital Program ManagerOther
- CCInfrastructure Solution ArchitectNSW
- CCJunior / Mid level Hogan Technical Consultant - BrisbaneNSW
- FTSolution architectOther
- TPTechnical WriterQLD
- FTSr Integration Architect - next year startACT
- FTProcess AdministratorOther
- TPChange ManagerVIC
- FTBusiness Analyst - Accounting / Financial DataOther
- CCEnvironment Support Analyst with .NetQLD
- CCSet-Top Box InstallerQLD
- CCBusiness Analyst - SharepointVIC
- FTSenior Salesforce Systems AnalystQLD