At the end of the Samsung B7610 OmniaPRO review we're about to part ways with one solid device - the specs alone will tell you that much. But having held it in our hands we can safely confirm.
Its TouchWiz user interface is so far reaching, most of the time you can forget that you're using a Windows Mobile device. The excellent assortment of preloaded apps means you won't have to struggle with the aging interfaces of the default apps.
The dual-homescreen bit is a great addition to the UI. Nokia has a similar feature, but that is reserved only for its business-minded Eseries. And the B7610 OmniaPRO is the epitome of a business device.
We can go on heaping praises on it but there are a few things that disappointed us. The plastic that the OmniaPRO is made of is no match for the metal casing it should have had. And the OS-related color support limitation leads to heavy banding on the screen, which really spoils the pleasant experience of a WVGA AMOLED display. Plus the 6.5 version of WinMo was not as snappy as ver. 6.1, we tested earlier.
Still, the B7610 will prosper in a business environment. The Office support is the best available on a mobile device and syncing options
The roomy, four-row keyboard is comfortable and easy to get used to. The touchscreen is very sensitive as well. Shame it's not a tilt screen though.
But when it comes business, Samsung have got a whole family full of pros. Through out this review we've referred to the Samsung B7610 just as OmniaPRO, but that's not quite correct. Including the B7610, the "OmniaPRO" moniker covers three phones and two form factors in total:
Its HTC-made nemesis is called HTC Touch Pro2. It is a WinMo-powered phone and its display is bigger by a hair at 3.6" with the same resolution. TFT vs. AMOLED doesn't matter much because of the 16-bit color resolution dictated by the OS. The CPU is slower but the RAM is only slightly bigger. But you get TouchFLO UI, which is still the king of custom interfaces for the Microsoft OS. Oh, and the QWERTY has five rows.
The "other white meat" here is the Sony Ericsson XPERIA X2. It's mostly on par with the HTC Touch Pro2 in specs, except the smaller screen - 3.2". The 8MP camera trumps all the other alternatives we offer here. The modifications to the stock interface are not very extensive though, just the X-Panels.
The menacing Motorola MILESTONE (or DROID in the US) also looms over the OmniaPRO's head. It's got a bigger screen with slightly more resolution (3.7" and 480 x 854 pixels), which is an excellent viewport to the MILESTONE's strongest point - Android 2.0 Eclair.
The Nokia N97 duo also makes bid for the most popular smartphones with a slide-out QWERTY and a touchscreen. We won't list their specs as the N97 mini review is still fresh. But for Symbian users, the N97 team is the smoothest transition to touchscreen-land.
And finally, we're pretty sure that power users are saving their cash for the Nokia N900. The Maemo OS is the most successful mobile Linux so far. We know, we know… Android uses the Linux kernel but even Google say that it's not Linux. Maemo is on the other hand is embracing its roots and your favorite open source apps are a quick port away.
Whew, that's quite a long list. And of all the phones listed, probably none will achieve the status as the QWERTY phone. But for many users, seeing the Samsung B7610 OmniaPRO will be a love at first sight experience. Ignore the nay-sayers - the TouchWiz and WinMo combo performs excellently and for a business people with gadgety inclinations will love the keyboard, the smooth syncing and the excellent Office support.