The Samsung E1107, nicknamed the “Solar Guru,” is one of the more unique phones that is on the market today. Even though it was introduced in 2009, the solar technology that helps to keep this phone charged is still innovative enough to help users be able to reduce their carbon footprint on the environment in little ways. There are some definite advantages and disadvantages to using a phone like this, so let’s see what the user experience happens to be with the Samsung E1107.
This Is a Phone That Is Relatively Bulky
If you took the Apple iPhone 6 and put it up next to the Samsung E1107, you’d be able to stack two iPhones on top of each other and the Solar Guru would still be thicker than that. The problem here is that the solar panel requires a certain amount of size in order to work. Don’t let the bulkiness of the unit in size fool you into thinking that it is heavy, however, because the Solar Guru weighs in at just 77 grams. It’s very easy to take this mobile phone with you just about anywhere.
The display on the Samsung E1107 is about what you’ll find on all of this class of phones that Samsung produced in this era. It has a CSTN display that offers users a 1.5 inch area for reading texts, composing them, and accessing menu options. The 128×128 pixel resolution is supplemented with 65k colors for a reasonable overall experience. It isn’t a smartphone, so comparing it to a smartphone screen would be impractical.
The nice feature of the Solar Guru is that the keypad is nice and large. It’s well spaced out and the keypads is soft and responsive, which is something that can’t always be said with phones that have an entry-level price point. It also has a 5 way navigation pad that helps to get users through the various menu screens quickly and easily. On the negative side of the experience is the proprietary charger that feeds through an all-in-one port.
How Is the Overall User Experience?
This is where weighing the pros and cons of the Samsung E1107 really come into play. The overall user experience really depends on what specific needs must be met by a mobile device. Here are some of the specific pros and cons to consider when thinking about the purchase of the Solar Guru.
The Pros of the Solar Guru
- It comes equipped with an FM radio so that media can be heard. The reception is pretty average and it will allow users to get most stations within their area. A favorites section allows for station programming.
- There are a couple of games included with the phone’s operating system, including a time consuming Sudoku game.
- The interface is familiar, with icons clearly depicted, and there are reasonably large fonts on the screen that make it easy enough to see what is going on, even though there’s just 1.5 inches of space with which to work.
- There are security features included with the phone which allow for the setting of Fixed Dialed Numbers with coding so that only certain numbers can be dialed from the handset.
In addition to these specifics, the E1107 also has some regional advantages. Some phones have been equipped with regional prayer applications. There is also a stopwatch, an alarm clock, and a calculator included in the menus.
The Cons of the Solar Guru
- The volume of the incoming conversation is remarkably inconsistent. Users are going to find the need to keep a finger on the volume controls with this phone so they don’t wind up blowing out an ear drum while talking with a loved one.
- The solar panel doesn’t charge under lights like the information claims that it can. It may indicate that it has received sunlight, but it the charging is minimal at best. There’s also no way to really determine how much charging in the sunlight is going on at any given moment.
- On a full charge, users are going to get about 5 hours of talk time at maximum, which means there’s a good possibility that the phone will need to be charged at some point throughout the day.
Samsung has also included Mobile Tracker 2.0 technology on the E1107 in case someone happens to steal the phone or users happen to lose it somewhere. Although the cost is low enough that the average person would probably just purchase a new phone, having the chance to recover a lost phone may sometimes be nice to have.
What the Verdict on the Samsung E1107?
For a mobile phone that comes at an entry level price, there is a lot of value that can be seen with the Samsung E1107. It has a few basic features that make it a tempting target for users who are looking to reduce their consumption of fossil fuels while having a phone that can realistically get charged up anywhere there is some sunlight on its solar panels
What would improve this phone dramatically would be a camera. It does have a hands-free proprietary connector, but that’s the extend of the features it contains. There is no Bluetooth connectivity, no USB connections, no GPS functionality, and no chance of connecting the phone to Wi-Fi. The one media feature it does have, the FM radio, is a nice enough addition to a basic, no frills type of phone.
For those who are looking at the entry level segment and want a basic mobile phone that can help them connect through talk or text, then the Samsung E1107 is a nice phone to have. It’s especially useful in communities or places around the world where access to electricity may be sporadic at best. In return, users will be able to receive a phone that can meet their basic needs for a very fair price.