Samsung Fascinate - black (Verizon Wireless)
Manufacturer: Samsung Part number: FASCINATEBLKVZW
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- Bottom Line:
- Sleek and powerful, the Samsung Fascinate is another strong addition to Verizon's Android lineup. Its user interface won't appeal to everyone, particularly seasoned Android users, but it's a good smartphone for the masses.
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CNET editors' review
price range: $199.00 - $208.00
- Reviewed by: Bonnie Cha
- Reviewed on: 09/07/2010
The good: The Samsung Fascinate offers a gorgeous Super AMOLED touch screen, a 1GHz processor, and a great multimedia experience. The smartphone can be used as a mobile hot spot.
The bad: GPS positioning isn't always accurate. For now, you can't save apps to an SD card or voice dial over Bluetooth. Search is locked to Bing.
The bottom line: Sleek and powerful, the Samsung Fascinate is another strong addition to Verizon's Android lineup. Its user interface won't appeal to everyone, particularly seasoned Android users, but it's a good smartphone for the masses.
Fascinate? More Like Fantastic!
by PC2Day on June 22, 2011
Pros: + Gorgeous body, and screen. Visually one of the most stunning phones ever created.
+ Very fast. The processor and memory rival the best currently available.
+ HUGE community support. I can't emphasize the importance of this.
+ The BEST video card on t
Cons: - No exterior notification LED, and requires 3rd party apps for this feature
- If you're not willing to spend a few minutes rooting your phone, you will be stuck with BING until Android 2.2 comes out.
Summary: I am a professional that needs a phone to perform quickly, and have a supportive community behind it for updates, apps and the random question.
I am coming from a ...
Summary: I am a professional that needs a phone to perform quickly, and have a supportive community behind it for updates, apps and the random question.
I am coming from a Palm Pre, which was a wonderful device as well; simple, but easy-to-use. unfortunately the touch screen on that device went out, and I decided to switch to an Android based phone. What a WONDERFUL choice that was.
Having Google at your fingertips (literally,) is amazing; automatically syncing calendars, contacts, and the multitude of Google-powered services like Google Voice, Maps and Navigation. So 5 stars for the Android OS, development, and community.
With respect to the phone, it's simple. Objectively, it's the best hardware available for the Android platform on the market, and definitely one of the best in general (beats even iPhone 4.) It's incredibly fast, smooth and reliable. People have reported call quality, headphone jack and GPS issues--all of which have not been experienced by the large majority of Verizon Fascinate users, as demonstrated by the communities at XDA-Developers and Androidcentral. I repeat, it does NOT have these severe issues people are seemingly complaining about.
Subjectively, it's a gorgeous phone; Samsung's proprietary SuperAMOLED screen looks incredible. It's chrome ring around it's all black exterior makes it look like what the iPhone 4 wishes it could be. The only thing I think it's missing, is an external LED notification light--however there are work-arounds, including the NoLED app which uses the screen to indicate various types of notifications (SMS, email, missed call, etc.) The battery life is fairly good, impressing most users--especially if you turn the (already ridiculously bright) screen brightness down.
Now the Bing issue. It's not one--it took me MINUTES to remove all traces of Bing from my phone, and restoring all respective Google features. Verizon has stated however, that when Google releases Android 2.2 (Froyo,) it will re-introduce Google and replace Bing... without the need for rooting, or and tinkering. So, don't let that hold you back from an amazing phone.
Do yourself a favor, and get this phone--it's literally AMAZING, and everyone who has seen mine has drooled.
*** P.S. If you will buy this Android Phone I suggest at: www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0040JHXS4/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=***************&********=as2&camp=217145&creative=399373&************=B0040JHXS4
22 out of 22 users found this user opinion helpful.
Beautiful phone, one to consider
by tikrjee on September 8, 2010
Pros: SuperAMOLED screen looks nothing short of amazing; good screen real estate makes up for lack of physical keyboard; responsive; better than expected battery life
Cons: Software does stutter every now and then, nothing major though; did not ship with 2.2, but "promised" it will arrive by end of year; takes some getting used to for previous android users; GPS not always reliable (no biggie); background tasks...
Summary: First: to those rating this with 1 star simply because it's "locked" to using Bing, news flash: it's a Verzion thing. All Verizon phones are subject to this ...
Summary: First: to those rating this with 1 star simply because it's "locked" to using Bing, news flash: it's a Verzion thing. All Verizon phones are subject to this agreement (though, not all of them have gone to this extent). Quit acting like it's the end of the world. Make a shortcut for google.com, or default your browser's home page to it if Bing is so unusable for you. You're rating the device, not Verizon's business decisions.
At any rate...
The screen is absolutely phenominal. I have difficulty taking my eyes away from it. Words simply do not do it justice. This is one you have to see to believe (in fact, find someone that has it loaded up with a hi-def or good quality video and prepare to be blown away).
I'm normally not a fan of phones without buttons. I'm not a big fan of touch screens. I need a keyboard. That being said, the screen is so massive compared to, say, my previous 'droid (Devour), making it very workable. The screen is responsive, and typing or texting is pretty smooth.
The interface does take some getting used to if you've owned an earlier Android phone. That being said, it's not rocket science. I could personally do without some of the widgets, but it's easy enough to not use them.
Haven't had a chance to really put the camera to use yet, but as with GPS, I really don't care. It's somewhat of a novelty, and it's nice to have. But if I'm looking to take some photos or shoot video, I've got a camera for that. Having said that, I'm sure it's great for quick point-and-shoot moments.
GPS isn't the best at times, but I've got Magellan for that. Not a biggie personally. Only really use it on the phone when looking to see what's near for a bite to eat or to waste time.
Disappointed it did not ship with 2.2 installed, but given the Android update track record, it's going to be a while before we see all phones ship with any new standard. Samsung promises the update by the year's end, and 2.1 definitely beats 1.6.
Call quality is solid, no dropped calls. I've yet to find a way to death-grip this one (by the way, if you have a Devour, wrap your bear paw around the bottom half, covering both sides and the speaker to kill the signal). Battery didn't completely drain after a day of some solid use (calling, txting, downloading and playing with apps), so it beat my expectation. As per all Android phones, make sure to grab a task killer app (really wish they'd make it standard, or find a way around this). If the battery life watching videos were a bit longer, I'd feel comfortable leaving the ZuneHD at home. At least it gets in a full movie and then some, so I'll forgive that (plus, that whole "phone" thing is nice to have).
All in all, I'm happy with it. The screen makes looking at almost anything enjoyable (or in some cases, tolerable with the volume off). Despite the lack of a physical keyboard (knew this before buying), typing is comfortable and responsive. The droid 2.1 software is not as smooth as 2.2, and I really wish it shipped with it, but the update is coming. Sure, default search isn't Google, but it's not that difficult to set the browser's home page to that (pretty much did that first thing). Once you figure out the TouchWiz interface, it's pretty smooth, though I do miss Motorola's MotoBlur (hey, I liked it). All in all, if you're looking for a new Android phone, and what to get those iSheep second guessing their new contracts (or in my case, Verizon is the only game in town), this is an excellent device and is definitely worth taking a look at.
27 out of 40 users found this user opinion helpful.
Hello? "locked" with Bing? Do you even own this phone??
by skim23 on September 10, 2010
Pros: This is by far the best Android phone ever. period.
Cons: Basically Verizon wast clear enough regarding this Bing thing and stupid people are over-exaggerating how they feel "raped" because they are "forced" to use Bing-everything or verizon navigation. NOT TRUE
Summary: Bing Bing Bing. Stop crying people and stop speading wrong information. Yes, Bing is the default search engine. NO, you are NOT FORCED to use it. If you actually have ...
Summary: Bing Bing Bing. Stop crying people and stop speading wrong information. Yes, Bing is the default search engine. NO, you are NOT FORCED to use it. If you actually have this phone and care to tweak things a bit, you can go Google-everything. I got this phone yesterday and first thing I did, sent Bing-everything to trash. Yes I know it's still there but at least you don't see it on your phone. Now you just need to download google map, navigation, etc and put the icons on your home screen. This phone also comes preloaded with "voice search", which you will find on your apps page. You also put that icon on your home if you'd like. You click it once, it says "speak now: google search" and it will go directly to google. I don't know why people are spreading craps like search will be redirected to Bing! If you don't like voice search then you set google.com as your browser home. is it that difficult? I click my map or navigation and they are google too. I just came back from a restaurant 20 minutes away from my house using the google nav and it worked great! Seriously, if you don't have this phone and you've been just reading crap on internet do not rate this phone. It's just a search engine people. and it's MODIFIABLE
26 out of 41 users found this user opinion helpful.
THIS is an AWESOME PHONE!!
by narayanait20 on September 18, 2010
Pros: - Hummingbird processor is the fastest of all the processors available.
- Best of all the Screens. Especially, videos look stunning!
- Lightweight and compact. The phone feels so much better than others, both in pocket and hand.
- Best Music Player
Cons: - GPS is slow, but not a deal breaker, for sure.
Summary: Best Customized / modified android phone. You can add / remove screens, rearrange the screens, make any as your home screen. Delete apps right from the icons, hitting the small red icon ...
Summary: Best Customized / modified android phone. You can add / remove screens, rearrange the screens, make any as your home screen. Delete apps right from the icons, hitting the small red icon on top. A music player in the notification bar. Some of Samsung widgets are great. I find all these customizations awesome!
Samsung has done really a great job in modifying the interface and making it cool. And, this review is coming from an experienced android phone user who used most of the earlier models, Motorola Droid, HTC Eris, etc.
- Lock button on the right side. Best for holding the phone with one hand, in your palm.
- Amazing sound quality while playing music and video, especially when you are wearing a headphone. You can actually feel sound moving from one ear to the other
- Best of all the Android Music players available - even better than the paid ones like MIxzing, Lithium, etc.
- This might be just me, but I find Bing to be really good, except for the map. For that and navigation, you can just download the Google maps from market. I suggest the users to give Bing a chance, you will like it.
This is for the users who write reviews without owning one. Please don't write a review about a phone before owning one! Samsung has made such an awesome phone and you guys complain about it instead of appreciating it. Samsung has customized the phone so well to make it more user friendly, so that WE can love it. It has taken into consideration most of the problems I had with a normal android phone and made the fascinate so well. I feel so bad to see the user review of the phone at three stars when it is faster and better than most of the android phones available. I own this phone for nearly a week now and I love it. Great job Samsung!
Just think about it guys, the phone hit the stores on 9th and people started reviewing it even before the launch date!! Please ignore these kind of reviews.
13 out of 16 users found this user opinion helpful.
CLOSE AS IT GETS TO THE IPHONE FOR VERIZON
by flamingoezz on September 7, 2010
Pros: form factor - perfect size in hand and screen is still big
screen - way brighter than any verizon phone, especially outdoors
speaker - sounds pretty nice - calls & music
camera - takes a decent shot, haven't tried video yet
Cons: bing - you can easily make a google shortcut which is the same 1-button click as you would use for a built in widget, but if people want to make a huge deal out of it, i'll be glad to be one of the few people sporting this phone
Summary: This phone is the closest thing you get to the iphone in size, weight, and quality. if you don't mind a huge phone, and want a nice, big screen ...
Summary: This phone is the closest thing you get to the iphone in size, weight, and quality. if you don't mind a huge phone, and want a nice, big screen - droid x may be the way to go, but as far as small, functional smartphones, this makes the incredible look uncredible.
17 out of 27 users found this user opinion helpful.
Amazing phone, the screen is simply beautiful.
by roxymits87 on September 11, 2010
Pros: Super AMOLED screen, good pictures and video, extremely fast, GREAT phone!
Cons: Bing, no dedicated camera button
Don't listen to "Mikedeezy33"!
First off he posted two days before the phone came out, there's no way he could of been telling the truth to ...
Don't listen to "Mikedeezy33"!
First off he posted two days before the phone came out, there's no way he could of been telling the truth to begin with.
"1. Bing is default search, NO choice as to changing it. The search is awful!"
Android 2.2 will give you option of changing it.
"2. Google navigation disabled."
I was using it fine today and in fact it came with Google Navigation!
"3. GPS does not work."
Works fine, but did take a few minutes to get satellites - bug fix coming in android 2.2
"4. Phone is laggy."
This phone features a Hummingbird 1.0GHz processor, which produces amazing graphics compared to all the Droids.
"5. Poor software support from Samsung"
Although Samsung is a bit slow, they do release updates.. My Omnia 2 has been updated at least 2-3 times in my 4 month of ownership.
Don't listen to idiots!
14 out of 20 users found this user opinion helpful.
I love it so far.
by MarleyLove on September 10, 2010
Pros: Easy to use right out of the box. I'm a first-time Android user.
Gorgeous screen. Even makes pics taken with my crappy old phone look great.
I love the slim size. It will fit nicely in my pocket when I don't have a handbag with me.
Cons: There's some kind of issue with my verizon.net email address, ironically.
Summary: I went to the Verizon store to get a Droid X last night because my old Dare touchscreen stopped working(been waiting for this mistake to die for a long ...
Summary: I went to the Verizon store to get a Droid X last night because my old Dare touchscreen stopped working(been waiting for this mistake to die for a long time). The Droid X was on a 10 day backorder., and I didn't want to be without a phone that long. I looked at the Fascinate, and I just fell in love. It's so easy to use. The touch screen is very responsive, and I absolutely adore the Swype texting. I like that it's big, but not humongous like the Droid X. It fits perfectly in my hands.
I'm not much of a techie, and I don't really understand what the big deal is about Bing. It's easy enough to get to Google. I wouldn't let these poor reviews of the phone just because it's locked to Bing influence my decision, even if I'd read them before I bought it. It's quick when online and emailing. I think I'm going to be very happy with it.
8 out of 8 users found this user opinion helpful.
Replaced my iPhone with the Fascinate and I love it
by LisaManresa on September 29, 2010
Pros: Fantastic user interface with Android 2.1, really looking forward to the 2.2 update as well as 3.0
The screen is just gorgeous
Very light-weight and a great size
Cons: Buttons on the bottom don't stay lit when the phone is in use (really, really frustrating in low-light)
I can hear the reverberation of my voice on the internal parts when I talk on the phone
Summary: I was getting extremely tired of AT&T's service. So when it came time to add a line to my plan, I, sadly, broke up with my iPhone ...
Summary: I was getting extremely tired of AT&T's service. So when it came time to add a line to my plan, I, sadly, broke up with my iPhone and headed over to Verizon. To be honest, if I was going to get a new phone I felt like upgrading to the iPhone 4 wasn't worth it, I should atleast try out something new. I think the Fascinate is a fantastic transition from the iPhone to Android. The interface is similar, but allows for so much more customization and it's super easy to use. My husband is quite technology illiterate and he was picking up the tricks of this interface faster than I was. He loves the phone.
Key features that I love:
As I said, the interface is great. The customization that it offers is face superior to IOS, and while I know I can get this same interface on other droid phones, the design of this phone is what really sold it for me. (Well, that and the buy one get one free offer, to be honest) The phone is very light-weight, and overall a fantastic size. Even with a pretty big case on it, it easily fits into my jeans pockets (not an easy feat if you've seen womens' pants lately). The screen is downright beautiful and large for the phone size. And the camera, both still and video, is great.
The biggest issue for me is the buttons on the bottom of the phone (menu, home, back and search). Even when you're actively using the phone, the backlight shuts off immediately, and since there are no raised indicators for the buttons, it's virtually impossible to find them right away in low light. It always takes me 2 or 3 hits to get the right button. They should remain lit while the phone is actively being used, or at the very least stay on for a full minute after they've been interacted with. Another issue I have is with the power button. It's probably the most-used button on the phone, you power the phone on/off with it and you lock/unlock the phone with it. But it's positioned directly on the opposite side of the phone as the volume toggle. So if you're operating the phone one-handed, you end up messing with the volume instead or fumbling awkwardly so that you don't hit the volume button. The case I got seems to have helped with this, but I still think it's quite an oversight on the product design side. The last issue I have is with the phone itself. When I'm talking I can hear my voice vibrating the internal parts of the phone which essentially creates a tinny echo when I'm talking. It may just be me, I can be a bit of a loud talker, but I have tested it on 3 different Fascinates and had the same problem on all of them. Slightly annoying, but I'm getting use to it.
Now to address the Bing complaints. Yes the entire reason most people get Android phones is for Google. That's why I got mine, and yes it is pretty irksome that Verizon went and preloaded it with Bing. But to come on here and crash the product's rating because of that is just ridiculous and immature. Five minutes of googling and taking an additional 5 minutes to follow a step-by-step tutorial and you can completely reconfigure the phone to default to all Google apps. Super simple and really a complete non-issue. I had my previously stated technology illiterate husband follow the tutorial and he figured it out just fine in under 10 minutes. And it should be noted that the upgrade to Android 2.2 will bring the choice to set your default search engine, problem solved again.
Overall I think this is a fantastic phone, and Verizon's network has proven to be the absolutely best way to go in my area (SF Bay Area). My service is great and my 3G speeds are way faster than they were on AT&T. Android is a great OS and I don't see myself moving to something else anytime in the near future. I also think this is a great phone for those who are just coming into the smartphone world. It's easy to use and fun to customize. All in all, I don't think you can go wrong with this phone.
7 out of 7 users found this user opinion helpful.
Great Phone, don't write it off so quick!
by SteveTheLabRat on September 11, 2010
Pros: Beautiful screen, blazing fast processor, sleek package.
Cons: Yes, bing IS locked in as the "main" search engine however even before 2.2 comes out, you can still search just as easily with google. Also, it does come pre-programmed with a few too many annoying "buy-me-now" apps that cannot be removed.
Summary: Ok, so first I want to say that so many people right off the bat are calling this phone trash because of the bing issue. This should NOT throw you ...
Summary: Ok, so first I want to say that so many people right off the bat are calling this phone trash because of the bing issue. This should NOT throw you off. I was concerned at first because the look of bing on IE is too cluttered for me however bing is practically IDENTICAL to google as far as phone search engines are concerned. Plus again, it's going to be a non-issue with Android 2.2. Second, I wonder if all those people would be as pissed if it was google locking in their search engine instead. Some of them are just pissed their google didn't get the Big Red nod. I should know; I still remember the good ol' Netscape vs. IE debate with Windows. People like a scandle, even if the two options are the same!
But back to the phone, since that's what you're here for. Here's how I break it down among Verizon's top 3 droid phones sans keyboard. Really, they are all ALMOST identical especially if you are upgrading from a non-droid, non-smart phone. For you nit-pickers: If you like a bigger screen that may not be as pretty, and the best camera, go with a Droid X. If you want a phone thats sexy with a fantastic screen, get a Fascinate. If you can't get past the bing issue, or want something between the two, go with the Incredible. I opt'ed for the Fascinate though I know people with all three and I doubt you'd be dissapointed with any of em!
7 out of 7 users found this user opinion helpful.
Great phone BUY IT
by charlie2272092 on September 8, 2010
Pros: S-Amoled android camera Processor.....just everything
Summary: The phone is fast great and I like how slim and responsive it is......for you idiots who are giving it a bad review because of bing, grow up...OMG ...
Summary: The phone is fast great and I like how slim and responsive it is......for you idiots who are giving it a bad review because of bing, grow up...OMG BING?!? F-That i hate this phone jeez i could kill myself! get real its a phone....not the ultimate search machine. this is a great buy...better than droid X with its horrible lcd display! btw the gps does work, the samsung support does not suck and the phone is not laggy at all....stop assuming things and talk to me when you learn something about phones.
9 out of 12 users found this user opinion helpful.
- Manufacturer: Samsung
- Part number: FASCINATEBLKVZW
- Description: Powered by Android 2.1, the Fascinate is equipped with support for Google Mobile Services. Additionally, the Fascinate boasts a brilliant four-inch Super AMOLED touch screen display, Samsung 1GHz Cortex A8 Hummingbird Application processor, and an integrated entertainment, multimedia, messaging and social networking experience.
- Packaged Quantity 1
- Product Type Smartphone
- Form Factor Touch
- Phone Design PDA
- Integrated Components Voice recorder,
- Antenna Internal
- Width 2.53 in
- Depth 0.39 in
- Height 4.92 in
- Weight 4.1 oz
- Body Color Mirror black,
- Technology CDMA2000 1X
- Mobile Broadband Generation 3G
- Service Provider Verizon Wireless
- Operating System Google Android 2.1
- Input Device(s) Touch sensitive screen (multi-touch)
Messaging & Internet
- Cellular Messaging Services SMS,
- Instant Messaging Services Google Talk
- Supported Social Networks and Blogs MySpace,
- Messaging & Data Features Text messages,
- Mobile Services YouTube,
- Wireless Interface Bluetooth,
- Bluetooth Profiles Object Push Profile (OPP),
Hands Free Profile (HFP),
Headset Profile (HSP),
Phonebook Access Profile (PBAP)
- Communication Features Internet browser,
Mobile Email client
- Phone Functions Call timer,
- Polyphonic Ringer Yes
- Sensors Accelerometer,
- Additional Features DLNA Certified
- Personal Information Management Synchronization with PC,
- Supported Digital Video Standards DivX
- Type Samsung Cortex-A8
- Clock Speed 1 GHz
- User Memory 2 GB
- Supported Flash Memory Cards microSDHC - up to 32 GB
- Sensor Resolution 5 megapixels
- Focus Adjustment Automatic
- Camera Light Source LED light
- Video Recorder Resolutions 1280 x 720 (720p)
- Features Video recording
- GPS Navigation GPS receiver
- Navigation Software & Services VZ Navigator
- Type OLED display - Color
- Technology Super AMOLED
- Diagonal Size 4 in
- Connector Type Headset jack - Mini-phone 3.5 mm
- Included Accessories Power adapter , Power adapter
- Also Included microSDHC - 16 GB