Saturday, 21 February 2009

Hands-on Samsung Omnia HD

Ever wanted 720p HD video content on your phone? Samsung's brand-new Omnia HD promises that, with 'HD' in the name and everything, but doesn't actually deliver it. Oh well.

The Omnia HD was unveiled at Mobile World Congress here in Barcelona. It's an 8-megapixel quad-band handset, with a whopping 94mm (3.7-inch) AMOLED touchscreen running at a resolution of 360x640-pixels. And it does indeed 'support' high-definition video content running at 1,280x720-pixels, in addition to DivX, Xvid, H.264, MPEG-4, WMV and RM video formats. Of course, it can only display video at half that resolution on its screen, but Samsung allows it to be outputted to an HDTV via a bundled cable.

It'll also play MP3, WMA and AAC audio formats, including iTunes Plus downloads. It's got GPS, Wi-Fi, 3.5G HSDPA data connectivity, push email support, an accelerometer for rotation detection, 8GB or 16GB of internal memory and up to 32GB of additional memory via microSD cards.

It's a gorgeous-looking handset, and must be praised for its incredible screen, HD or no. It's easily as good as the Cowon S9's AMOLED display, only larger. Hype aside, you couldn't appreciate HD on a screen of this size -- even it had enough pixels -- but it looked absolutely terrific anyway.

You can also film HD videos using the 8-megapixel camera, then either edit the clips on the phone itself, or transfer them to a computer for editing in a software package. Frankly, we're sceptical about the prospect of high-definition video shot on an imaging sensor the size of Max Clifford's conscience, but we'll save that criticism until we've fully tested it.

The GPS system offers both standard car navigation mode, but also a 'pedestrian mode' for turn-by-turn navigation on foot.

Running the Symbian S60 5.0 operating system, we found the Omnia HD didn't quite offer the same responsiveness the iPhone's screen offers, but its powerful innards, impressive feature set and amazing screen may well make up for it in many peoples' eyes.

1 comment:

  1. That is quite annoying. Having just bought a new next gen phone, and it's already outdated after being a couple months old.