The Infuse 4G comes with Quickoffice preinstalled. You can open and edit all popular office formats, including pdf right out of the box.
The calendar has four different types of view: list, daily, weekly and monthly. Adding a new event is quick and easy, and you can also set an alarm to act as a reminder.
There is a nice alarm clock app which allows you to create a large number of alarms – each with different starting time and recurrence.
The Infuse 4G comes with Google Maps and Navigation. Voice-guided navigation has become a viable solution since the v5.0 update. Vector maps are smaller and easier on the data traffic and reroute is an option if you go off course without the need to connect to the Internet. In fact, the only time you need a data connection is when you initially plan the course – Navigation will cache the needed maps.
Quite naturally, the app also supports the Street View mode. If it’s available in the area you're interested in, you can enjoy a 360-degree view of the surroundings. When the digital compass is turned on it feels like making a virtual tour of the location!
If Google Maps Navigation doesn’t do it for you, you can grab an alternative app from the Android Market – there are both free and paid ones.
With a 1.2GHz CPU, the Samsung Infuse 4G can run every Android app designed for phones. The structure of the Android Market is quite simple – featured apps on top and above them, three sections (Applications, Games and Downloads). There is also a shortcut up there for initiating a search.
The Applications and Games sections are divided into subsections (e.g. Communication, Entertainment etc.) so you can filter the apps that are relevant to you. Of course, there is also an option of displaying them all in bulk, but you’ll probably need days to browse them all that way.
There are all kinds of apps in the Android market and the most important ones are covered (file managers, navigation apps, document readers etc.).
After spending quite a lot of time with the Samsung Infuse 4G, we are left with bitter sweet feelings towards it. Its screen is a technological marvel – the best out there. Unfortunately, we cannot say the same about the rest of the hardware. The Infuse 4G looks by all means like a true flagship but fails to deliver in the performance section.
Currently it is the company’s most able model in the United States. Its tenure on top of the Samsung range will probably be short lived though. Samsung are bound to bring an US version of the I9100 Galaxy S II dual-core beast and when it happens the Infuse 4G will be instantly relegated from the star of the show to a support role.
So while the Samsung I997 Infuse 4G will probably do well in the short-term and will probably be snatched by a lot of people who are renewing their contracts right now we don’t see it as a long time success of the Galaxy S magnitude. But then again Samsung probably never expected it.
The company is fully aware that a smartphone with a year-old chipset at its heart will need more than a slight overclock to be a worthy flagship. But they also probably anticipated that with the current AMOLED shortages and huge demand the Galaxy S II will take quite some time to arrive across the ocean and the Infuse 4G is the handset that should buy that time.
Luckily for it, the rest of the smartphones in the AT&T portfolio aren’t too far ahead either and with a screen like that the Samsung I997 will probably be able to stand its ground quite successfully. In fact the Motorola Atrix 4G is the only AT&T handset to offer dual-core CPU, but if our experience with it is anything to go by, it needs some tuning before it can utilize its full potential. Besides the Atrix 4G has neither the slim waistline nor the impressive screen of the Infuse 4G.
Alternatively you can take a look at the HTC Inspire 4G, which at $100 comes at half the Infuse 4G price (contract charges not included, of course). The HTC smartphone is not technically better than the Samsung device at anything, but given the price difference it might be worth the few compromises. You will also be getting a metal construction with the Inspire 4G, a welcome change indeed but it comes at the price of weight increase.
If you are willing to look beyond Android for your next AT&T smartphone, then you should, of course, consider the Apple iPhone 4. The iOS-device hits the Infuse 4G with a better build quality and more compact size, but even the Retina screen cannot compare to the brilliance of a 4.5” Super AMOLED Plus screen. We are not going to dwell on the platform differences here, as you are probably all too familiar with them by now. Suffice to say that we consider the equal pricing of the Infuse 4G and the iPhone 4 fair.
Finally, AT&T also has some interesting Windows Phone 7 smartphones on offer. Samsung Focus and LG Quantum come completely free on contract with a fresh-looking OS and seamless performance and social integration. However WP7 is still far from the maturity of Android or iOS so opting for any of those two will be a move to save money rather than gain in versatility.
As it seems the Samsung I997 Infuse 4G has pretty good chance of completing its mission. It will ensure that those who want a new smartphone right now get plenty of bragging rights for a while and will still leave them with the largest Super AMOLED Plus display in the world when it imminently gets outdone by the AT&T version of the Galaxy S II and perhaps even the iPhone 5 or 4s in a few months.