Flash the T-Mobile Samsung Memoir at someone, and they could readily mistake it for a simple camera not a cellphone: with an 8-megapixel sensor, smile detection and Xenon flash, there’s no mistaking Samsung’s intentions with this handset.
In the box, there’s the SGH-T929 Memoir itself, a 1GB microSD card, battery, charger, wired stereo hands-free kit and a USB data cable. The Memoir supports the USB mass-storage mode, but the port on the handset itself is Samsung’s own proprietary connection, limiting you to their cable. There’s also no WiFi, although Bluetooth is on offer and can be used to transfer images.
First impressions of the Memoir are very good. Samsung have been liberal with the metal finish, and the 400 x 240 touchscreen dominates the front panel with only send, end and menu buttons underneath it. On the left-hand side the ports are hidden under metal flaps – Samsung’s combination USB/power/headset port under one, and the microSD slot under another – while the right gets a volume/zoom rocker, flush ‘lock’ button and protruding camera shortcut. There’s also a lanyard loop.
It’s round the back where the Memoir does its best camera impression, you could easily mistake the cellphone for a point-and-shoot compact. As well as a mechanical lens cover for the autofocus lens, there’s a Xenon flash, together with a textured grip area. The whole thing measures 110 x 53.5 x 14.5mm (4.3 x 2.1 x 0.6 inches) and weighs 126.9g (4.5oz) and build-quality seems high.
While the Memoir T929 may not run a fancy smartphone OS, it does get the latest build of Samsung’s TouchWiz GUI. That brings with it customizable desktop widgets, a scrolling side-bar with shortcuts and animated menus. Our experience with TouchWiz as a Windows Mobile GUI hasn’t been the greatest, but it seems to better suit the Memoir’s functionality; it’ll be interesting to see how the GUI keeps up with the phone’s camera pretensions.
We’ll be running the Samsung SGH-T929 Memoir through its paces over the next day or so, to see how it shapes up; we’ll also be taking some sample photo shots – after all, the Memoir is being positioned as the superlative cameraphone. Unboxing / Memoir phone walkthrough video coming online soon. Stay tuned for our full review!
Sample videos in 720x