Even way back when the WinMo phonebook was one of the ugliest platforms one could imagine, the phonebook did an excellent job. Contact management has always been one of the strong points of the OS having its roots heavily in PDAs with the unlimited phonebook capacity and brilliant synchronization options - but it's all the more sweeter now that it has the looks to match.
The phonebook application of the Samsung OmniaLITE has a nice and simple interface and it is clear that it was developed with touch-operation in mind. The graphics are nice and navigation is intuitive enough to make sure your work with it is trouble-free.
You can opt for the OmniaLITE displaying either the SIM card or the phone memory contacts or both at the same time. Moving, copying and deleting contacts is available both one by one or in bulk. It goes without saying that you are practically unlimited in the number of contacts or fields for each name.
You can search your contacts by either dragging the scroll bar on the right, by kinetic scrolling of the list itself or by gradual typing on the virtual keypad. The last one of course, was our least prefered option.
Unlike the HTC offerings, editing contacts is also completely covered by the TouchWiz UI. It gives you a nice and simple interface, similar to the company's feature phones. You have a plethora of available info fields but no option to rename any in case something has been missed - not that there ever was an occasion when we felt that was the case.
When viewing a contact there is a shortcut in the context menu that takes you to your recent calls with the person in question. You can also add it to the reject list or the speed dial numbers straight from there.
Finally, if you are into grouping your contacts - the B7300 OmniaLITE has that covered too. The first four groups are pre-configured, the rest left to your imagination and specific needs.
Samsung made it clear with the previous Omnia handsets that telephony was never compromised, despite the fact that the extra features are somewhat becoming the main reason for buying a mobile phone. OmniaLite sticks to this trend and offers excellent in-call sound and clear reception.
The phone application offers Smart dialing, which means you will hardly ever need to go to the Contact list in order to dial a number.
The built-in accelerometer gives the OmniaLITE the cool feature to mute the ringer by simply turning the phone face down on the table.
Unfortunately, there is no proximity sensor to switch the display off when you hold the handset next to you ear so you should be careful about that.
The Call log on Windows Mobile devices offers practically unlimited entries. Samsung also pimped up the looks and added the nice extra sorting options. You can sort the entries alphabetically by name or by frequency of occurrence.
We also conducted our traditional speakerphone test to round off the phone part of the OmniaLITE review. You aren't likely to miss many calls with it, as it scored a Very good mark, ranking pretty high on our list of tested devices.
|Speakerphone test||Voice, dB||Ringing ||Overall score|
|Apple iPhone 3G||66.1||62.1||71.7|
|Samsung i900 Omnia||70,2||64,8||75,2||Good|
|Samsugn B7300 OmniaLITE||73,9||70,4||73,7||Good|
|HTC Touch Diamond2||74.6||70.0||78.1||Very Good|
|HTC Touch2 HD||75.7||75.7||82.7||Excellent|
More info on our test can be found here.
Messaging on the Samsung B7300 OmniaLITE is well heeled in terms of software. The handset can manage SMS, MMS and email. SMS and MMS share an inbox and a nice message editor.
The email editor has also been nicely skinned by the TouchWiz UI but there are no major changes in terms of functionality.
Setting up your email is easy as it is on most of the latest mid or high-end phones. You type your username and password and all the other fiddly options are configured automatically.
We now come to the available text input options on the OmniaLITE and unfortunately the handset fails to fully deliver here. Samsung have equipped the device with a proprietary virtual keyboard, which is way better than the Windows default one but that wasn't much of a challenge anyway.
The problem is that the keyboard doesn't work in landscape mode, which makes typing on it quite a challenge. After all, the short side of a 3" display hardly is the perfect place to fit 10+ keys. On the positive side there is nice haptics, but it isn't really enough to convince us that typing is what we want to do on the Omnia LITE.
So we relied most on the handwriting recognition of the handset, which we have to admit is remarkably accurate. The phone does a marvelous job of recognizing the letters and symbols we scribbled even when we used nothing but our fingers. Not the easiest thing to do without a stylus but it was the fastest input method for us.