Samsung Blackjack II Review – A Worthy Successor

samsung blackjack iiThe first Blackjack (SGH-i607) that was offered from Samsung was loved by many but was also plagued by a variety of issues that tarnished the reputation of the device. Battery and operating system issues aside, the original Blackjack was a solid device that satisfied a lot of customers. Enter the Samsung Blackjack II (SGH-i617) – with its predecessor’s issues resolved and increased functionality it is poised to be a very strong contender in the smartphone market.

The quad-band Blackjack II is slightly thicker and heavier than the original, and with good reason. The larger size allowed Samsung to fit a larger battery into the device which has dramatically improved battery life. All of this has been done without comprising the attractive design of the Blackjack, which has largely been kept intact. The display has also gotten larger, expanded from the original Blackjack’s 2.25-inch display to a fuller and more vibrant 2.4-inch one.

Samsung Blackjack II features a full QWERTY-style keyboard and a variety of additional useful buttons including home, end, back, and talk. These buttons also serve an extra function – when they are held down they can do things such as locking the phone or activating the speakerphone. The original Blackjack’s side scroll wheel has been replaced on the Blackjack II and it has been combined into the centre navigation button. The button can now rotate which will allow users to scroll through lists and menus.

Operating the Blackjack II will now be made easier by the implementation of Windows Mobile 6. This is a large upgrade over the original Blackjack and should have potential customers smiling. Users now have the full Microsoft Office Mobile Suite to work with which is a big time-saver if you are going to edit files on the go. Also included are a PDF viewer, a voice recorder, an RSS reader, and a notepad. The Blackjack II runs smoothly thanks to a memory upgrade (it has double the internal memory of the original Blackjack) and media storage can be expanded via microSD cards (support is included for cards up to 4GB).

For users looking for online functionality, Samsung Blackjack II delivers. It has full Microsoft Direct Push support and also supports a variety of other e-mail options including POP3, IMAP, and Good Mobile Messaging. Instant messaging fans will not be disappointed as the Blackjack II comes with support for all of the big messaging services – Yahoo Instant Messenger, AIM, and Windows Live Messenger. The Blackjack II also comes with GPS support that can be used with programs such as Google Maps for Mobiles.

blackjack2-back-viewThe Blackjack II comes with all of the voice features users have come to expect. Conference calling, three-way calling, speed-dialing, speakerphone, and full roaming capabilities are included. Text and multimedia messaging are fully supported. Equipped with a 2-megapixel camera and a variety of shooting options including a fantastic self-timer feature the Blackjack II takes care of all your photography needs. For music Windows Media Player 10 Mobile is included.

Samsung Blackjack II performs well and has a rated battery life of an impressive seven hours of talk time and two weeks of standby time. It may not be innovative but the Blackjack II is a significant improvement over the original and should be a staple in the smartphone market for quite some time. For fans of the original this device is a must-have.

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