For a generation, TVs have been in the background – in more ways than one – of household entertainment.
- Looks good, Low price, Quick operation
- No Bluetooth, Missing phone status data on front LCD
This is another very impressive entry from Samsung, suited to those on a budget who want a solid phone without all the bells and whistles.
Price$ 215.00 (AUD)
Samsung's new SGH-X660 is an entry level mobile phone handset that covers all the basics and covers them very well. It doesn't have a lot of flashy extras, and is missing one or two small things such as bluetooth and a phone status information (battery life, signal strength) on the front LCD. Nevertheless, for a phone in this price range it is more than satisfying and aesthetically it is one of the better clamshell designs we have seen.
As an entry level model, the X660 only really has the basics. It is quite small, measuring just 89.5mm x 45mm x 21.5mm, and is barely noticeable sitting in your pocket. The flip mechanism operates smoothly and when fully extended it is just long enough to be comfortable to talk on. We feel it is one of the best looking budget phones on the market at the moment. The black and silver motif is attractive, and the curved, seamless exterior exudes a stylish, modern feel that should please even the most fashion conscious buyer.
The keypad is made up of raised buttons finished in matte black and is fairly comfortable to type on, although those with big hands may struggle a little with the cramped conditions. The phone supports T9 predictive text and we had no problems typing out SMS messages.
As an entry level model the screen is only 65,000 colours, not really comparable to the 265,000 colour screens of more advanced models. It does however do an excellent job with the simple and colourful Samsung interface. There is also a second, external monochrome LCD which we quite liked the look of. It does however have one issue. When you first close the phone, it displays all the usual data, including battery life, reception and time/date. However after a few seconds all this disappears except the time and date, leaving you unable to quickly check the status of your phone. This is a minor annoyance, but definitely worth noting.
The interface is vibrant and extremely fast. We experienced no slow down in our testing and everything operated flawlessly.
We found the call quality to be about average, with good volume and clarity on both ingoing and outgoing audio. There is also voice recording functionality, and while it is serviceable, it isn't particularly noteworthy. A good digital music player or standalone dictaphone will do a better job.
Even basic phones these days tend to come with some sort of camera, and the X660 is no exception. However Samsung has really only done the minimum, offering users just a basic VGA sensor. This is fine for taking wallpaper snapshots or capturing impromptu embarrassing moments, but it really isn't useful for much else. At a resolution of 640x480, pictures typically do not look great and aren't detailed enough for printing at regular sizes such as 4x6. They are really only suitable for on-screen viewing.
The X660 supports infrared and USB connectivity for transfering wallpapers, ringtones, photographs and other files to and from the phone, but sadly lacks Bluetooth. This is the only real omission on Samsung's behalf, and excludes those who wish to use Bluetooth headsets or in-car hands free kits.
It is rated at a talk time of 3.5 hours with 200 hours standby time, which is about average for a phone in this class. We found these figures to be reasonably accurate, needing to charge the phone once every four days or so.
Overall, this is a very solid entry level handset. It doesn't offer any fancy features, but the design and construction are top notch and it performs all the basic phone functions extremely well.
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