Samsung Vibrant Gets Reviewed

While the launch is only three days away, the awesome folks over at Wirefly have came through once again with the first full review of the T-Mobile Samsung Vibrant. Hopefully this review can help those of you decide that aren’t quite sure if the Vibrant is the Android phone for you. Don’t forget to leave your thoughts in the comments!

Tags: ,

  • Dennis

    Omg one more day, im at the tmobile store first thing in the morning when it opens at 10 can’t wait i been reading into this phone for the longest lol

  • Macknifetx

    The only thing negative I have to say about Tmobile is their marketing is terrible. Here it is, the night before their supposed launch of the Vibrant and their website still says coming soon. I am not interested in extending my contract and have been looking to find out what the actual cost will be off contract. The prices that have been thrown around were 330 (When it was first announced), 449 (Shortly after announcement, and the 500 listed in the fine print for this phone.

    If I were them, I would have had a pre-sale on the device, and built up as much hype as possible. It worked for the Droid and is working for the Droid X, and while the Iphone does not need the hype (they are getting enough bad press as it is), it all works for them. The only information about this phone has been on the tech and phone blogs for the most part. Only after they launched the MT3G, did they start with the advertising in which they over paid actors to show how the touch conformed for them. Tmobile should have taken and chopped up the promo video and started airing it a week ago, and let people know what this phone can do. Instead they gave us a website, that twirled the phone around and listed the specs. That technology went out years ago.

    If they want to move up in the cell phone wars, they need to advertise more; whether it is on TV or on web pages a lot of people visit.

    Just my two cents.

  • taaars

    OK, I got to test this phone today at the store, and I must say, ANY video you see of this display does it 0 justice, it is, for lack of a better word, gorgeous. (its the first thing that pops out at you) Now, after that I dove a little deeper, (the store was slow at midday, so they let em play with it a good while) Ok..lets talk about the lag deal, there was 0 lag with standard widgets and live wallpaper, so I went ahead and started adding samsungs own live widgets 7 screens, I had widgets on all of them, fairly full, then I changed the simple weed live background to something a little more challenging, water..the nice thing is that it shows waves and when you swipe your finer across it it interacts, like your running your had through real water…as i went from screen to screen I noticed VERY little fact I wouldn’t call it lag, more of a “jump” it seems to be due to the live widgets updating, but I am not surprised, even a pc has some issues with live desktop and running stuff, and when 2.2 comes out I can see this being barely and issue. People say..well Iphone never lags when flipping screens, , well iphone doesn’t have live widgets or live wallpaper, and you really have to load this phone down to make even a little lag to start.

    Now, touchwiz 3.0,Before I was set to get adw launcher, or something else (which you can have and switch on the fly) in all honestly, touchwiz isn’t bad, so once I get it I may decided to keep it as is, but it is nice to know I can change the launcher to something else if I like.

    Web pages, load fast, My wife loaded her favorite Spanish page and it was up in a a few secs (think about 6)..pinch and zoom was smooth and reformatted the page fast.

    Camera, video does a great job, Regular pics very nice, blink detect works like a charm, so does smile, and you can tap anywhere on the screen to set focus area. (I did not get to test the night wasn’t dark)

    Although I may never play sims, I tested it out anyways..The 3d rendering was nice, game ran smooth..but not my cup of on to the next thing…

    The accelerometer, very fast…no waiting for the unit to respond to the change of direction.

    Sound, I just tested the ringer volume and the movie avatar, both fairly loud, some ringtones annoyingly loud. The vibrate also was strong.

    Overall build, Yes its plastic, I don’t feel it to be cheap at all, feels very solid and light, its real thin, so I know when I put a hard case on this puppy it will still be thinner than my MT3G.

    All in all, I am very impressed by this phone, even my wife was impressed, and she hates it when I decide to switch phones for us, and after playing with this I am certain now I will be getting this come tomorrow.

  • ObsceneJesster

    Mailman, You say your looking for a reason to stay with T-Mobile instead of moving to Sprint. How about better data speeds? T-Mobiles HSPA+ is faster in both download and upload when compared to Sprint’s fake 4G called WiMax

  • ItsMichaelNotMike

    OK, the reviews are rolling in, thanks for posting impressions.

    I too was able to finally get my hands on it today. Here’s my impressions.

    Appearance: When you see it in someone’s hands it is noticeable how small it looks. It looks great. All black, shiny and high tech looking.

    Weight: When it was handed to me, yes, the first thing you notice is how light it is. And I don’t mean light, I mean really, really light. You could put it in your shirt pocket and forget it’s there.

    Cheap Plastic: A word about others saying feels like cheap plastic. 1) most phones have cheap feeling plastic; 2) most phones do in fact utilize cheap plastic. Consider that you can replace a Slide battery cover for $10 shipped, that should tell you that yes, there’s cheap plastic on cell phones; 3) most phones since day one have used cheap plastic; and 4) so what.

    The reason people are commenting about the Vibrant’s cheap plastic feel is as I said before, there’s no heft to it. My Slide’s cover is cheap plastic yet overall the phone feels like the quality HTC handset that it is because there’s some weight to it. The SGS is so light, that’s why it feels cheap to people. We have all been brought up to associate weight with quality, the heavier a small electronic device is, the better it must be.

    But times have changed. One of the reasons the SGS is so light is that the SAMOLED display leaves out one of the layers included in TFT screens. Also, other components are getting better, but lighter. (I bought a 28″ 1080p HDTV that has all the extra connections and ports, speakers, and a base. It weighs 19 lbs! I have on a wall an NEC 42″ gas plasma monitor that I bought in 1999, back when such cost me $12,000. It weighs 104 lbs. With the wall mount it totals 116 lbs. I know all this because NEC said to be damn sure that the mounting bolts are affixed to structural beams. LOL).

    Once handling the SGS, pressing some buttons, looking at the display, etc. you forget real fast about your initial impression that the phone feels like a cheap handset.

    Form factor: Overall the phone has an excellent design. There’s a chin on that back of the phone so when typing or watching a movie there’s something to grasp. It’s subtle, but useful.

    The hardware switches on the front of the phone are cool. They are white lighted and look great. The rounded corners are especially good looking. I guess many phones are going to rounded corners (even my HD2).

    Extra Cover: In the Wirefly review it said the SGS comes with two covers, a dark one and a purplish one. The manager of the store said his Vibrant did not come with a second cover. But his may have been a limited demo unit.

    Display: Coincidentally I had Avatar on my HD2 so we were able to play that movie, in the same place on the tape, for a side by side comparison. It was a great test because the fluorescent lights provided a great backdrop to see how the SGS does in bright light situations.

    The Vibrant was… pardon the pun… vibrant! It pummeled my HD2 under the bright lights. I was able to look at Avatar scenes side by side and see that detail on the Vibrant was sharp, clear, and pronounced. In comparison, because of the bright lights and reflection on my HD2, the same scenes were dull, washed out and blurry.

    The Vibrant has a better resolution than the HD2 and it shows. The detail in the movie was sharp and finely defined. For example, in one scene there was a fire burning in the background. On the Vibrant the fire was a bright orange and the flames were finely detailed. On my HD2 the fire was a dull orange, and most significant, it was blurry. Not real blurry, but when compared to the SGS it was obvious which display was the better of the two.

    Display Size: Where the HD2 really beats the Vibrant is the screen size. The SGS has a 4″ diagonal screen, the HD2 4.3″ While you may not think that is much of a difference, remember that that is .3″ on each edge, which adds up, especially on screens this small.

    The difference in size is so prominent that if one of the main “features” you are looking for is max screen size (because you intend to watch a lot of movies, while on flights for example, or you want to make it easier to view Net pages) consider the HD2 over the SGS).

    Keep in mind, however, that the size difference between the two was noticeable only because the HD2’s display was next to the SGS. When I first saw the Vibrant, before my little shoot out, the Vibrant’s screen was plenty big.

    Bells and Whistles: The store manager had his SGS set up with animated wallpaper running (like it was on the Nexus One demo back in Jan-Feb). I am a fan of animated wallpaper and the SGS does not disappoint. Of course, there’s no function for the wallpaper except to wow us. And it did that. The one he had set was the rays of light crisscrossing the screen. It looked super cool.

    The TouchWiz graphics are very cool too. He got a phone call and the dialer showed up after he rejected the call. The phone interface has a nice design.

    Android: The OS worked quickly and without any lag. Flipping screens was smooth and responsive to touch commands.

    I was especially impressed that while the movie was playing a call came in and the interface popped up immediately and functioned smoothly.

    Conclusion: While my “test” was only 15 minutes I have enough experience with handsets to know that I like what I saw. It’s a fantastic device and when you couple that with the fact it’s $200 on a two year contract, well… it’s ridiculous that people are complaining about the FFC or LED flash.

    Get this handset, you will love it.

    Bonus Tip: There’s a lanyard hole on the SGS. I recommend you put a lanyard on it, IMMEDIATELY. While other phones might drop because of their heavy weight, the SGS feels like it will go flying out of your hand with a good gust of wind coupled with a little nudge or bump by someone.

    That brings to mind one benefit of the SGS’s light weight. If it falls to the ground it seems that it won’t suffer as much damage because there won’t be that much force on impact.

    • M.

      great review.. just got my Vibrant and its great… I was wondering what the lanyard hole was. Do anyone know how to remove TouchWiz and use stock Android? Or where to get these other live wallpaper from?

    • Tom

      That’s not a lanyard hole. That’s an opening for the speaker phone. Note that this “lanyard hole” is on the back cover. If you are unlucky, your lanyard will rip off the back cover and let the main part of the phone crash on the floor.

  • michael

    My question is does this phone have a front facing camera?

    • David

      No, no FFC.

  • meg

    where is the lanyard hole on the phone?

  • Bon_gabs

    @meg,,lanyard at the top left hand side,,remove the back cover and you’ll see it

  • Bon_gabs

    anyone here has static noise issue on the speaker mode calling? thanks

  • tmo-guy

    Is the samsung vibrant worth its price? i heard all of its problems were fixed and that its a really great phone, i’ve been playing around with a lot at t-mobile stands.

  • blue lanyard

    I like this article! Will come again next time for
    sure, thank again