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Samsung Brightside review

5.5/10 AVG.
RATING



5.5/10
Informr score
The Samsung Brightside currently has an Informr score of 5.5 out of 10. This score is based on our evaluation of 2 sources including reviews from users and the web's most trusted critics.

The line between smartphones and feature phones started to blur a long time ago. And at the intersection of both mobile phone segments, it’s not unusual to find something like the Samsung Brightside. It’s a phone that looks like a good entry-level smartphone, but in reality, it’s actually nothing more than a souped up feature phone that lacks the chops to compete with the likes of the Lumia 920 or the Galaxy S III.

The Brightside comes with a very basic feature-set. It has a 3.1-inch QVGA touchscreen display, 3-megapixel camera, Bluetooth 2.1 with A2DP, GPS, and support for EV-DO Rev. 0 data. While it doesn’t offers HSUPA or LTE data speeds, it does have dualband CDMA network support. And its limited amount of internal storage space can be expanded further with microSD cards.

As a feature phone, the Brightside can’t do much for users who intend to multitask. At least it comes with a 1,000 mAh battery that lasts up to 6.5 hours of talk time per charge. It’s also comfortable for messaging thanks to its built-in, slide-out QWERTY keyboard.

The market has no shortage of phones like the Brightside. Its small, low-resolution touchscreen display is made tolerable thanks to a handy hardware keyboard. And compared with many touchscreen-only entry-level Android handsets, it’s a far better deal for the money. But as long as we’re talking money, then it’s worth noting that much cheaper models exist with similar or better features.

Need to Know: Samsung Brightside

1. Slide-out QWERTY keyboard and a touchscreen display for user input. (The Good)

2. Battery life is quite long at 6.5 hours of talk time per charge. (The Good)

3. Limited amount of onboard RAM and a slow processor, which affects performance. (The Bad)

4. Touchscreen display has a low native resolution. (The Bad)


Operating system
Custom
Processor
Unknown
Screen Size
3.1"
Camera
3+ MP


What the Critics Are Saying...


PC Magazine

The Brightside is actually just an overly ambitious feature phone. It pairs a nice slide-out keyboard with a responsive touch screen and decent call quality.

- Alex Colon, PC Magazine
Cnet

The Brightside is a bizarre little feature phone, mostly because it reminds me of a throwback device more than it does a new entrant to a highly cutthroat device market. The fact that today, entry-level smartphones (and better) can cost less than Verizon's full-retail $100 asking price for the Brigh...

- Jessica Dolcourt, Cnet


Prices (Where to Buy)




Common Questions


Samsung released the Brightside on March 1, 2012.


We've got you covered! Download a free PDF copy of the Samsung Brightside user manual here.


Samsung backs up the Brightside with a 1 Year parts & labour warranty.


If your Brightside has problems and is still within its warranty period, you could contact Samsung support or the retailer you purchased the phone from. You'll find Samsung's contact information here. If your phone is off warranty and needs repair for a physical problem such as a broken screen or bad battery, you should visit an authorized service centre or a local phone repair shop. You can also connect with others in The Informr Community Forum to find and share answers to questions.



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Quick view

Screen Size
3.1"

The Samsung Brightside's screen size is 3.1 inches with x pixels resolution.

Processor
Unknown

There is a processor (CPU).

OS

The phone runs on proprietary operating system firmware.

Camera
3+ MP

You can take photos or capture video with the phone's onboard 3+ megapixel camera.

There's no secondary front camera.

Storage
No

Internal memory is No. An external, MicroSD (up to 32 GB) expansion slot is available for increased storage capacity.

Battery
1000mAh

The phone is powered by a Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion), 1000 mAh battery. Samsung's performance ratings are 14.5 days standby time.

Samsung Brightside Specs

Overview
Release date March 1, 2012
Regions available USA
Networks
CDMA:
800/1900 MHz
Data:
1xRTT, EV-DO Rev. 0
SIM card No
Dual SIM No
Operating System
Processor
Internal Storage No
RAM 128 MB
ROM 256 MB
Digital compass No
Flightmode Yes
Hearing Aid Compatible Yes
TTY/TDD Yes
Noise Cancellation No
SAR Head: 0.75 W/kg
Body: 0.75 W/kg
Languages No
Manufacturer Warranty 1 Year
Accessories Included AC Charger, Data Cable, Manual, Standard Battery
Power & battery
Type Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion)
Battery Capacity 1000 mAh
Removable Battery Yes
Wireless Charging No
Fast Charging No
Video Playback Time Unknown
Internet Use (Wi-Fi) No
Internet Use (Celluar) Unknown
Talk Time Unknown
Standby Time Up to: 14.5 days
Physical Characteristics
Design type Slider
Material Plastic
Colors Black
Dimensions [H x W x D] 11.1 x 6.0 x 1.4 cm (4.4 x 2.4 x 0.6 in)
Weight 122 grams
Water Resistant / Waterproof Unknown
Rugged design No
IP Rating No
Antenna Type Internal
Changeable Faceplates No
Display / Screen
Type Color
Technology LCD (TFT)
Colors 262k
Resolution x pixels
Pixel density Unknown
Size 3.1 inches
3D No
Secondary Display No
Sensors Ambient Light, Proximity
Graphics Yes
Themes Yes
Backlit Illumination Yes
Zoom / Magnification Yes
Screen Orientation Lock No
Multi-Touch No
Fingerprint-Resistant Coating No
Additional Display Features -
Input / Navigation
Sleep / Wake Key No
Home Key No
Mute Key No
Input Type QWERTY, Touchscreen
Navigation Type Touchscreen
Predictive Text Entry Yes
Physical keyboard Yes
Voicemail Key Yes
Any Key Answer Yes
Voice Commands Yes
Keypad/Screen Lock Yes
External Volume Control Yes
External Media Playback Controls No
Fingerprint Sensor No
Call Management
Wi-Fi Calling No
Voice over LTE (VoLTE) No
Contact List Capacity Depends on system memory
Multiple Numbers Per Contact Email address, Other fields
Contact Groups Yes
Auto Answer Yes
Voice Activated Dialing Yes
Photo Caller ID Yes
Web / Email / Messaging
Web Browser Yes
Email Client Yes
Email Protocols Microsoft Exchange
Additional Email Features Yahoo! Mail, Windows Live, Hotmail, Gmail, AOL, Verizon.net
Messaging SMS, MMS
Push-to-talk (PTT) No
Connectivity
USB Yes
USB OTG Support No
Infrared No
Bluetooth 2.1
Bluetooth Profiles A2DP, AVRCP, BPP, DUN, OPP/FTP, HFP, HSP
Bluetooth Audio Codecs SBC
WiFi No
WiFi Encryption No
Mobile Hotspot No
WiMAX No
Memory Expansion Slot Yes
Expansion Slot Info MicroSD (up to 32 GB)
PC Synchronization Yes
TV Out No
DLNA Support No
NFC No
UMA Support No
Data Tethering Compatibility Yes
Java Applications No
Brew Applications Yes
ECML / Digital Wallet No
PictBridge No
Camera
Main Camera
Aperture
Unknown
Resolution
3+ megapixels
Dual lens
No
Zoom
Yes
Flash
No
Additional Rear Camera Info
Effects, ISO, Multi-shot, Night mode, Panorama, Self-timer, White balance
Video Recording Formats
3GP / 3GPP, 3G2 / 3GPP2, H.264 / AVC, MPEG-4
Video Recording Parameters
Front Camera
Zoom
No
Additional Front Camera Info
No
Video Recording Parameters
Audio / Video
Audio Playback Yes
Audio Formats MIDI, MP3, CMX, eAAC+, AAC+, AAC, WMA, QCP, M4A
Radio No
Video Playback Yes
Video Playback Formats 3GP / 3GPP, 3G2 / 3GPP2, H.264 / AVC, MPEG-4
Mobile TV No
Streaming Video Yes
External Speakers Yes
Headset Jack 3.5mm
Custom Ringtones No
Vibration Alert Yes
Downloadable Ringtones Yes
Ringtone Composer No
Ringer ID Yes
Haptic Feedback Vibration No
Speakerphone Yes
Apps
To-Do / Task List No
Calendar Yes
World Clock Yes
Alarm Yes
Stop Watch Yes
Timer No
Calculator Yes
Currency Converter Yes
Document Viewer Yes
Viewable document types BMP, DOC, DOCX, GIF, HTML, JPG, PDF, PPT, PPTX, XLS
Weather No
Stocks No
Maps No
NotePad Yes
Voice Memos / Recorder Yes
Games Downloadable
Apps Downloadable ()
Included Software / Apps -
More
Additional comments Other Names (AKA): Samsung SCH-U380

Related Links Manual (PDF)
Samsung Brightside Reviews
Where to buy Samsung Brightside
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Critic Reviews


PC Magazine

The Samsung Brightside is so busy pretending to be a smartphone that it misses out on basic features, like a usable screen

from PC Magazine

Upon first glance, the Samsung Brightside looks a lot like a midrange, keyboarded smartphone. At $99.99, it's priced like one too. But the Brightside is actually just an overly ambitious feature phone. It pairs a nice slide-out keyboard with a responsive touch screen and decent call quality. That...More

Upon first glance, the Samsung Brightside looks a lot like a midrange, keyboarded smartphone. At $99.99, it's priced like one too. But the Brightside is actually just an overly ambitious feature phone. It pairs a nice slide-out keyboard with a responsive touch screen and decent call quality. That's the bright side. Unfortunately, the phone's display looks terrible from any angle other than straight on, the camera is poor, the video camera is worse, and multimedia support is spotty. While it may be a decent choice for some, you'll probably be happier with either a simpler phone or a smartphone.

Read full review

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Cnet

Decent call quality, laggy processor, mediocre camera

from Cnet

The Brightside is a bizarre little feature phone, mostly because it reminds me of a throwback device more than it does a new entrant to a highly cutthroat device market. The fact that today, entry-level smartphones (and better) can cost less than Verizon's full-retail $100 asking price for the Brightside illustrates just how quickly the feature phone market is shrinking--a real disadvantage to those who just don't want to be saddled with a recurring data fee. Still, my lingering impression of the Brightside that it was an afterthought. To me, it's a sore thumb in Verizon's stellar premium lineup....

More

The Brightside is a bizarre little feature phone, mostly because it reminds me of a throwback device more than it does a new entrant to a highly cutthroat device market. The fact that today, entry-level smartphones (and better) can cost less than Verizon's full-retail $100 asking price for the Brightside illustrates just how quickly the feature phone market is shrinking--a real disadvantage to those who just don't want to be saddled with a recurring data fee. Still, my lingering impression of the Brightside that it was an afterthought. To me, it's a sore thumb in Verizon's stellar premium lineup.

Yet to be fair, that position may suit some people just fine, and there absolutely should be feature phone alternatives to smartphones. In terms of features, there's very little that this phone can offer a Verizon customer that one of the Android sale phones or BlackBerry Curve cannot--except, of course, escape from a recurring monthly data fee and more features than a flip phone. If you place more of a premium on simple tasks and on avoiding that data plan, you might be drawn to the Brightside's admirable keyboard and some of its abilities. Besides, call quality wasn't at all bad. However, the Brightside is far from a slam dunk, and if your heart is set on a feature phone, I encourage you to shop around Verizon's options for the interface and build you most prefer.

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