There is a certain truth in the statement that less can be more. The Samsung Champ definitely fits into that perspective. It allows users to slowly become accustomed to what life with a smartphone can be like without feeling like it is trying to be overwhelming. Samsung believes that with more exposure to technology like the Champ, customers will eventually want to upgrade their phone. With social networking widgets, a cordless FM radio, camera, and internet speakers, this entry level phone is definitely designed to get someone addicted to mobile devices.
Why is the Samsung Champ the Ideal Phone?
Although the Samsung Champ is 100% equipped, it isn’t a 100% top of the line smartphone. Many of the features are actually on the low end of the smartphone spectrum. There’s no 3G networking access, for example, so any internet data coming into the phone is going to creep along at a snail’s pace. That might have been exciting in 2008, but the modern smartphone can have lightning fast speeds.
The camera on the Samsung Champ is just 1.3 MP as well, so it is essentially worthless. There are some interesting omissions that Samsung has chosen with the Champ as well that make it a little difficult to sell at times.
- There is no automatic screen rotation because there isn’t an accelerometer equipped to the phone to make it happen.
- It supports up to 8 GB of mSD storage, but the card slot is underneath the battery. Every time a new card is inserted, the phone has to be reset.
- There are no smart dialing features included with the phone and texting comes from an on-screen T9 process.
What makes it the idea phone, however, isn’t its faults. It is the fact that there are good quality stereo speakers that will let users be able to play their favorite FM radio stations without the need for headphones. If users have an extensive music collection that can be stored on a mSD card, then the files can be transferred over to the Samsung Champ and then enjoyed with or without a cellular connection in place.
The Samsung Champ Is Just Big Enough
The first impression of the Samsung Champ is that it could be a cheap plastic mobile phone, but this is one of those times that the first impression would be wrong. The rounded corners and streamlined shape of the phone give it a little additional strength and it’s entirely affordable. Most users can pick up this phone for the same price as a high capacity mobile data plan right now.
The viewscreen on the Samsung Champ is 2.4 inches, so it isn’t huge, but it is big enough to be suitable for general purposes. The resolution isn’t outstanding at QVGA, but it works for a screen of this size. The one issue that consistently comes up with the screen, however, is that it has a very narrow angle of viewing. This makes it really tough to use the phone in direct sunlight – many users won’t even be able to see who is calling them in direct sunlight.
The touchscreen is resistive, so it isn’t the most responsive phone that users are going to find today. Most touchscreens are capacitive to better register impacts, but the screen is small enough on the Champ that it works reasonably well in this instance.
The Samsung Champ Has a Decent Battery Life
With a lithium-ion battery rated at 1000 mAh, there is about 12 hours of talk time that come from the Samsung Champ. Standby times may exceed 4 weeks depending on how many background widgets are running at any given moment. The SIM compartment is underneath the battery as well, so plan on swapping SIMs and mSDs at the same time to save yourself a bit of a headache.
There is a 3.5mm audio jack to use with this phone and it is located at the top of the Champ. Users will also find that a microUSB port has also been included for file transfers or charging and it is protected by the generic plastic flap. A useful volume rocker control mechanism sits on the left side of the phone and then there’s the hold key that’s on the right side.
Who Is Going to Love the Samsung Champ?
To be frank, the Samsung Champ is probably a little too small to be useful to the average person. If you hands are the size of an average adult’s hands, then you are not going to have an easy time using this phone. For that reason, kids and teens are probably the key demographic being targeted by Samsung for using this phone. Combine that with the fact the side controls sit very low on the phone’s frame and people with large fingers and big hands aren’t always going to enjoy the user experience they receive with this phone.
The phone is pretty solid, but the back cover isn’t going to hold up to much on and off action that might be happening with card swaps going on. There’s a glossy finish on the phone as well and this helps it to pick up fingerprints that are remarkably difficult to take off. It does support Java, however, so users will be able to add games and even some small apps to the phone, but there isn’t any multitasking included, so everything has to be either open or closed.
One of the strange functions included with the Champ is that the user interface sometimes requires a double tap to activate a program or widget. Some taps provide user feedback and others do not as well. It can store videos, photos, and up to 1,000 contacts, but there are some rough edges to this phone that keep it from being truly great. Searching can be difficult to accomplish, the double tapping on a resistive touchpad gets annoying, and the entire usability of the phone can be directly affected by this.
What’s the verdict? The Samsung Champ is a decent phone that can meet basic needs. Kids and teens will love this phone. For adults, the results are more mixed.