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Samsung F490 review

 Review: May 2008  
 

Last updated June 2009

Rating:

In a nutshell: The Samsung F490 is a beautiful touchscreen phone with a large screen and slim body.

 

The F490 (nicknamed the Samsung Nerva) seems to be Samsung's answer to the massive-selling LG Viewty. Like the Viewty, it has a full-size touchscreen user interface, a 5 megapixel camera, and high-speed 3G HSDPA which enables fast internet access. The Viewty and the F490 look very similar. The F490 also seems to be a development of the Samsung Armani. It looks like Samsung removed the Armani branding and made the F490 do everything that the Armani should have done! Read on and all will be made clear ...

The F490 is a touchscreen phone using Samsung's Croix user interface that first appeared in the Samsung Armani. We liked the Armani, but the trouble with the Armani is that it's just too small for a touchscreen phone. If you're relying on the screen to control everything from making calls to writing texts, then you want the screen to be big - like the iPhone at 3.5" or the Viewty at 3". The Armani's screen is just 2.6". The F490 has a 3.2 inch screen, and this makes all the difference. It's a much easier phone to use than the pocket-sized Armani, although text addicts please note that that texting on a touchscreen phone is never going to be as fast as on a conventional keypad. The screen has a 16:9 widescreen format when turned sideways, so is perfect for watching videos & movies too.

The F490 has a much higher spec than the Armani too - it's directly comparable with the LG Viewty. Don't even mention the iPhone - the F490 blows the iPhone out of the water in terms of features! First up, this is a 3G phone, with a high-speed implementation of 3G called HSDPA delivering broadband internet speeds of up to 3.6 Mbps. It also has a 5 megapixel camera with autofocus and flash - as usual, don't expect this to match a dedicated digital camera for quality, but as phones go it's in the top 20 of camera phones. 3G video calling is possible too. The F490 has a well featured music player capable of playing nearly any common digital format, and produces high quality audio. It's missing an FM radio though, which is a shame.

Memory is reasonable, with 130 Mbytes of onboard memory plus a slot for adding a microSD memory card. Connectivity is good too, with USB 2.0 and Bluetooth, although there's no 3.5mm audio jack and no WiFi.

Physically the phone is very attractive, with its minimalist shiny black exterior. It's very slim too at just 11.8mm, making it significantly slimmer than the Viewty.

Overall we like the F490, but it doesn't quite match the Viewty. The Viewty user interface just seems to have the edge, and the Viewty's camera is better too. An excellent phone, but if you want touchscreen then the new Samsung Omnia should be your first choice.

Samsung F490 features include:

  • 5 megapixel camera with autofocus, 3x digital zoom and LED flash
  • Video recorder & 3G video calling
  • Display: TFT, 240 x 432 pixels, 262,144 colours
  • Music player (MP3, WMA, ACC, ACC+, e-ACC+ formats, OMA Digital Rights Management)
  • 72-voice polyphonic ringtones / MP3 ringtones
  • Speakerphone
  • Voice memo recorder
  • Messaging: SMS, MMS, email
  • Java games
  • Memory: 130 Mbytes plus microSD memory card slot
  • Connectivity: Bluetooth, USB 2.0
  • Internet: WAP 2.0, web browser with Google search, GPRS, Edge, 3G (HSDPA 3.6 Mbps)
  • Triband (900/1800/1900 MHz) plus 3G (UMTS 2.1GHz)
  • Offline mode
  • Size: 115 x 53.5 x 11.8 mm
  • Weight: 102g

Samsung F490 user reviews

Love this product? Hate it? Please share your experiences to help other people choose the product that's best for them. Please do not review this product if you have not used it. This is a review site, not a forum, so please don't just ask questions. Please do not use swear words or offensive language, and please, no advertising!

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Average rating from 85 reviews:

Reviewed by lostinwallington from england on 27th Apr 2011
Hi have the Samsung F490 and i can only say this is brilliant ,the phone has a sharp, crisp display and the touchscreen is well made. It is also mid-weight for its size , it has a 3.2 inch touch screen but has so many features packed in that you understand why the phone is weighted so well, there is Blue-tooth connection, HDSP connection and plenty of memory,which can be expanded via memory card if and when required ,the only problem that i can predict is the phone has no auto calibration for the touchscreen and has to be implemented manualy, it also has the mute in icon that remains active when making calls and can be accidentally activated by touching the ear but all in all when compared to the competition it blows most out of the water,the only real competition comes from Apple which unlike the 490 has an audio jack for earphones,if wire's running up the side of your head doesn't bother you.
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Reviewed by Tim from UK on 27th Mar 2011
This is a brilliant phone but myn doesnt seem to vibrate and getting games, software and themes for it is next to impossible
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Reviewed by chris from Australia on 30th Aug 2010
I have found that the samsung F480 has bad service (reception) the battery doesnt last long at all the phone freezes up all the time it cuts out when your talking to people have to of these phones the F480 and F480i the are both the same i also know to other people with the F480 and they are having the same problems DONT BUY ANY SAMSUNG MOBILE PHONES
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Reviewed by sadat hasan from banglaesh on 21st Feb 2010
this phone is good all in one set but touch screen is really tough to doing work...............
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Reviewed by ben donver from asda on 10th Feb 2010
rubish tbh dont buy it waste of time
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Reviewed by meroaz mumtaz from england on 24th Jan 2010
i say itz good bcuz the battery lasts a long time the only bad thing is the camera
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Reviewed by zaach from UK on 17th Dec 2009
it is a very good phone i meen excellent phone only if i could get one
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Reviewed by olivia from england on 2nd Dec 2009
i think its a realy good phone with a great camera most of my friends have got it and they think it is wonderful the only problem is that it takes a few days to get used to it other than that its a great phone :)
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Reviewed by Paul from Bolton ,England on 25th Oct 2009
I've had tis phone for 17 months and i fisrt i thoughts it was good but after about a month i started to relise the faults of which there are many! I'll start with the good things. The video is good quality and its a nicely styled phone it has a 3.5 mm earphone jack the screen is very responsive when you're texting and that is about it. The faults. It is incredibly slow the toouch screen doesn't respond anywhere near fast enoughsi i'm constantly sending empty text because the reply button and the send button appear in the same place. So you get a text press reply and i just sits there so you press it again and it responds to both presses and sends and empty text that you then can't stop in time beause the response is sooooooooooo slow. when you are texting the response and each button press is fast but then the predictive text is utter rubbish and doesn't seem to have althat many words but will spell words that don't even exsist! It won't save words that you use alot that ar n't in its dictionary so your constantly having to type word in manualy defeating the point itn predictive text. I had a SE k800i before this and the camera was great at 3.2 megapixels. This has 5 megapixels but the picture quality is worse that the k800i. And its mindnombingly slow at taking a picture. I mean literally 12 seconds to take a photo which is rediculous so you can't take a phto of pets of or animals or anything where people are moving and when you taking a picture of people stood still everyone says are you gonna take the picture and you have to say i am doing. The internet in 3g is really fast but its constantly changing back and forth between 3g and gps so one second it fast the next its really slow. Its stupidly hard to answer a call and then hang up so i now know what to do but if anyone else tries to answer it for me they can't figure it outmy girlfriend recently tried to answer a call because i was driving and she pressed all the buttons on the sides to no availy because she couldn't unlock it then when i told her how to unlock the screen she still couldn't answer it because its so bloody badly designed. And then when you do get to answer or make a call the person on the other end can't hear you because reception is constantly failing so they can'yt understand what you're saying. The battery is good lasting about 2-3 days...if you don't use the phone at all but everything drains the battery so fast so it lasts about a day. I can't wait til next month when i get to change upgrade it!! :D . Next i think i will get SOME phone, ANY phone. Anything is better than this. It has completely put me off samsungs phones. One thing i will say for it. its a tough little thing. I've tried to breake it i really have and nothing harms it. If i could give it no stars i would
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Reviewed by Rehan from Afghanistan on 20th Oct 2009
f490 is very good mobil phone but i have one problem that is about batery of this mobile. i m still using this mobile phone i cant find batery for this
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Reviewed by jon from england on 2nd Oct 2009
good at first but started to freeze alot and mess up. also it took along time to load files and often vibrated with out loading. Do not get this phones. i would get a newer model eg. samsung jet, or tocco ultra edition
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Reviewed by dhruba from bangladesh on 2nd Sep 2009
hey!it has a 3.5 mm jack!why is it denied here????
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Reviewed by energy from UK on 25th Aug 2009
my f490 turns off itself, any idea what is the reason?
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Reviewed by Tommo from UK on 29th Jul 2009
I've had this phone for the full 18 months, and I've loved it for 95% of that time, the full 16:9 touchscreen is large, and responsive when you persevere. The proper headphone jack makes it great for music/video. The Battery is awesome, I'm sure I've gone a full week without a recharge, people who have complained either have a duff battery or didn't charge it properly when new (Ie: continue charging a few hours after it says it's full). Only downsides are; when calling/texting there are more options to go through to complete the task. But you get used to it. It looks the biz too.
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Reviewed by Jmar from United Kingdom on 25th Jun 2009
My F490 been a great fone , now start to go funny, reboot itself, you put it off and the phone switch on automaticly, i have no idea , great to use but very bad on service. Don't buy it. many better option outhere.
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Reviewed by Shahariar Omar from Bangladesh on 9th Jun 2009
Smart but something is short by display theme.
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Reviewed by Kal-EL from Guyana on 31st May 2009
good phone problem with it is when receiving call u got to press camera button to unlock screen to answer and again to end call and the phone when idle u got to press camera button again to get in fixed that and the phone will be perfect and how about adding a phone case in to the accessory 's
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Reviewed by Andy from UK on 3rd May 2009
Terrible! Looked good at first, touch screen, ooh that looks nice...... Nope, it's sooooo slow and the touch screen just decides to give up occasionally. The camera is complete rubbish! Every time you take a picture, it comes out blurry. Unless of course you're stood under a flood light. I've had a few Samsung phones and I have always found that the speaker breaks after a very short time, this is no exception either. And I don't walk around town like those idiots you see either so it doesn't really get used that much. Anyway, it's really slow, most frustrating thing about it i'd say. Takes about a week to acknowledge the fact that you've pressed a button or tapped the screen or whatever! Only good thing so far is that the battery lasts about 4-5 days.
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Reviewed by Shezzy from uk on 8th Jan 2009
Fails as a phone, it rings you then remove sock, then u unlock, then u have to press camera key to bring up accept or reject on screen then u press accept and if your lucky the caller will not have given up, turned off divert due the above and costing me money to access voice mail
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Reviewed by Tom from Wales on 4th Jan 2009
I have had this phone since summer, and this is the "smartest" phone I have ever owned. My previous phone was a K850i. I'm not going to lie, I only keep it because it looks smart and thanks to the large screen is great for looking at videos/pictures/internet pages. The camera is similar to that of the 3.2mp U600, which is no compliment. Whether it be in ANY conditions, it will NEVER take a good picture, even with all the settings on. The speed is also shocking, even with all the settings off, you're looking at at least 3 seconds before it actually takes, so forget about taking pictures of anything that moves. Richard Bell's review is very accurate, and I agree with everything he says. Texting will be slow, and the pen is completely useless, you're nail is faster and steadier. It also has the Samsung problem of saving words/combination of letters that you never ever EVER use, such as wnt, instead of "you". Also forgets those that you do word, such as ur. Having said all that, I like the phone, and i won't give it less than average, however given the oppertunity I will not refuse a better one. For whom might this phone be useful? no one specifically, its no fun, its not *really* that practical, no good for photographing, the calendar is ok, even calling is tricky! (see Richard Bell's review)
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Reviewed by Jamie from Bell on 18th Nov 2008
Pretty good phone, but the battery and the camera are a bit rubbish but apart from that great phone!
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Reviewed by Richard Bell from UK on 1st Nov 2008
The Samsung F490... if I had to sum this phone up with just one word it would have to be 'irritating'. No really it's the MOST annoying phone I've ever owned or used, and I've had some rubbish phones. For the first month or so I was wowed by the phone's touch screen functionality and vague good looks but that really was short lived. This phone is quite simply a pig to use and live with! I've had to learn to text with one finger as this seems to be the only way of getting semi coherent sentences out of it. Answering and hanging up a call involves the pressing of a side button then the screen - sounds simple but it just doesn't work. If you call someone by mistake be prepared to expect a call back from them as by the time you're able to disconnect the call you WILL have rung their phone! Using the phone in any kind of sunlight, or ANY light at all is very difficult - if you must use this phone do so in a darkened room with a heightened level of patience! At least it has a 5MP camera though right? Well no, again the camera is shocking unless you have the steady hand of a surgeon and a glorious sunny day (obviously you then can't see the screen, but you can't have it all right) then your photos will be blurred. The flash is also useless, you can't take pictures when you're out of an evening - don't bother, it won't work. I am now going to fork out an extra £30 a month for a new contract so I can get the SE C905 and flog this beast to some poor unsuspecting ebayer. If you should be this unlucky person, I am genuinely sorry!
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Reviewed by Amber-Valetta from England on 28th Oct 2008
I am 11 and i dropped my phone and the inside of the screen cracked DO NOT DROP THIS PHONE and i know it's expensive and it's sort of on 1 side of the crack it's black so u can't see anything but on the other side u can see the colour. I can only see an 8th of the screen and it's the bottom half
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Reviewed by J Snowden from UK on 3rd Oct 2008
I've had my F490 for almost 4 months now and it has succeeded in driving me to the brink of insanity. In fact I have finally had to face the terrible truth about my Samsung's inadequacies and have just ordered an Eriksson C902 so that I can have a ceremonial 'stamping on the Samsung' event sometime next week. Like a heavenly Siren sitting on a rock in the water luring sailors to their deaths the F490 is a beautiful looking piece of equipment, has some excellent accessories including fast and easy internet access and an excellent MP3 player... however instead of buying an 'excellent phone with accessories' you end up with 'excellent accessories with a truly rubbish phone'. THE PHONE IS AWFUL. There are way too many options to select just to answer the d**n thing. The same goes for hanging up, too. It really takes quite some getting used to. On the numerous occasions when a friend or family member tried to answer the phone for me NOT ONE OF THEM could work out how to answer it. It is a nightmare. My best advice is DO NOT BUY THIS PHONE. If you are looking for a phone with a touch sensitive screen then opt for one that slides open to answer and doesn't immediately lock all your screen options the moment you answer (so maddening when you are negotiating automated answer phone systems "press 1 for blah, press 2 for blah-blah". I've invited all friends & family, who happily have somehow managed to maintain their sanity after trying to use my F490, to come to my ceremonial Samsung bash. Everyone will get time alone with it to 'do their worst'. Sadly I don't have any pigs to feed it to . Open to suggestions. Jules
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Reviewed by Frankie from UK on 11th Sep 2008
Hate it! when i first saw it i was like omg i love it to pieces i want it! and when i signed up for a 18 month contract i didnt realise how conmfusing and annoying this phone could be! and know im so annoyed i have to out up with thisn stupid touch screen phone which has the occasional freeze! for antoher 16 months not impressed!
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Reviewed by Katy from england on 3rd Sep 2008
the phone is great. outstanding. the best phone i have ever had!!! all the people who say that you can see it in the light. you can just change the theme or download a new theme and get a new one. its sooooooo simple. really good phone!!!!
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Reviewed by Claire from United Kingdom on 30th Aug 2008
I came upon this website when googling my phones fault to see if anyone has ever experienced it also. My samsung F490's touch screen freezes or is always quite a bit behind and for the past few days i have no idea why but the touch screen wont work at all! To make it all worse I have only had this phone for a week and a half! If i could go back in time i would no doubt about it choose a different phone.
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Reviewed by a person from a country on 30th Aug 2008
really good phone had it for over 4 months now - no problems with the touchscreen and have dropped it on concrete oon numerous occasions. camera takes to long to take a picture though so if its a moving thing you have no chance haha.
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Reviewed by frankii from united kingdom on 29th Aug 2008
ive had my samsung f490 for just over 2 weeks and the touch screen has broke twice already. Apart from this its a really nice phone, camera is a bit too long to take a picture and if you havnt had touch screen before takes quite a while to get used to but i find it easy and the best phone i've ever had :) the phone memory is huge and it comes with a memory card which is even better. if it didnt lock during a call then you'd probably end it half way through so i think its a good idea it locks :)
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Reviewed by Telide from Uk on 27th Aug 2008
I got the F490 On contract had it 2 months and cracked the screen (being repaired now) I love the idea with touch screen technology however the F490 does not to much for me with slow answering times (about 10 second longer than a normal kepad) does not accept Vcard from other phones a feature that should be standard with our level of technology and it is just generaly hard to use Summery: If you are thiking of upgrading to one of these save your money and go for an erricson or nokia or another good brand I just wish i had never got mine :(
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Reviewed by Andy from UK on 23rd Aug 2008
I've had the phone for 3 months and i'm very pleased with it, it's a change from my U600. My only gripe is that the camera does take it's time in taking a photo. The screen responds impresivley fast when texting, as quick as using buttons. Accesing files on the memory card is instant, a lot faster than the U600. Video and photo quality is really good as is sound. Seriously recomended.
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Reviewed by Samarah from LA on 21st Aug 2008
worst phone ever i can't believe i spent my life savings on this electronic piece of junk. i first bought my first phone that was the nokia 6020. i bought that with my life savings as well but then i had to work three jobs to get my money back to how much i had. the camera was pathetic and the reception was absoluty dreadful and im not just kiding here tottaly bad and i thought the olsen twins were ugly! i rate this phone -1 out of 10000
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Reviewed by peter from scotland on 21st Aug 2008
the phone really good but after a few days the phones touch screen doesnt seem to work.
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Reviewed by joshua from India on 1st Aug 2008
Ihave bought it 3days ago ang its exellllllllent mind blowing. No need to compare f490 to any other cell,coz they r no worth it
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Reviewed by Sajid from U.K on 29th Jul 2008
Camera Quality is not good.
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Reviewed by Lucy from England on 16th Jul 2008
I just bought this phone and think its awesome!The touch screen is really easy to use - got used to it straight away! The cameras okay - but if the main feature you're looking for is a good camera - this probrably isnt the phone for u.. theres nothing majorly wrong with the camera - its just not amazing. Txting is easy and for those who dont like the fact that the phone locks when your on a call - if u want a touch screen phone that has to happen, or your calls will always be cut off! (and it isnt exactly a big deal tbh - u have to be pretty lazy to worry about having to press one extra button!) so overall i would recommend this phone!
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Reviewed by Daniel from England on 11th Jul 2008
I have had this phone for nearly a week now and so has my dad, and I think it is pretty good. I did want an iPhone, but this was not possible as I can't get the damn thing on Vodafone, and the fact it is so expensive... Anyway, the F490. I love the touch screen, especially when you use the music player. I just need a bigger memory card, the 1GB one supplied is enough for taking a few holiday snaps, but I want to replace my iPod with this thing, so an 8GB card is on the way. The 5MP camera takes some good quality snaps, and the LED flash is brilliant. The only problem I have found, and by the looks of it so have others, is that it takes ages to actually take the picture. OK if you're taking pictures of still objects, or your subject can stay still for long enough, but if it is a pet or your kids then oh dear... The battery life is variable, my dad has charged his on Monday morning, left bluetooth permanantley on, and it is still at least half full. I have used mine a little bit more, exploring the 3G functions and the music player and it has been charged twice since Saturday (averaging 2-3 days battery life) which I think is terrible, my old Moto Z3 lasted 2-3 weeks in some cases under the same conditions, but now I tend to turn my phone off at night, or when I leave it in my locker at work and after charging it on Wednesday it still has a full battery. My only other niggle is that you have to press the camera key when you want to use the in call functions, I can see why they did it, so that you don't mess the call up when you put it to your ear, but it is annoying when you are trying to end the call. My dad hates all of this, he says the touch screen is OK but he is a heavy business user and he has chopped it in for a Nokia 6500 Classic, a lower spec phone but it will work better in his car, and is simpler to use. But I say it is great, apart from one or two minor faults it is almost the perfect alternative to the far more expensive, and on paper at least, inferior iPhone. If you are in the same boat as me, wanting a touchscreen phone which you can use as an MP3 player instead of your iPod but cannot afford an iPhone, then get this. If you are considering an iPhone, don't bother, get this as its cheaper and better specced. But if you are a heavy user who requires imnmediacy and simplicity then don't bother.
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Reviewed by J McLean from UK on 26th Jun 2008
Good phone, best I've had in a while. A few niggles though. When you receive or want to end a call you have to press the camera button on the side to unlock the keys. Second is the manual, with a high spec phone you'd expect a weighty manual, but no, only 85 pages (not including troubleshooting section). I've had problems find text on 'how to' on the phone and ended up just sitting for a few hours just going through each application on the phone. Third is the camera, it takes AGES to take a picture, a good 3-4 seconds. I found this a real issue due to my kids never sitting long enough at the best of times. NOW THE POSITIVES....and there are many !! general ease of use with the touch screen. Once you get the hang of running you finger of the screen to move the icon about it's a dream to use. I liked the 1GB Micro SD card supplied, this is pretty good for pictures and video as the internal memory is pretty low. All in all it's a great phone. Highly recommended. J
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Reviewed by Ali Hussein from UK on 24th Jun 2008
No doubt this is the best phone I have ever had. After about 2 years now of running 2 contracts; 1 for myself and 1 for my wife, and collecting all the freebies that come with them (such as a free PSP with one contract, Xbox360 with another, and a Wii with another) I was questioning what other freebies can I get with a contract since I already have them all. Caphone warehouse is offering some free low-spec Acer laptop at an over-valued suggested retail price to get you locked into an 18 month contract with a garbage little phone, so that was out of the question. So what else was on the market that was free and could compete with my spoiled expectation of getting something amazing along with my phone contract? Enter the Samsung 490!! My little PDA, media system, phone, camera and "satnav"! All be it, I'm stretching the terminology here, but I'll explain how it is all these things... First thing's first...got a £23 8gig memory card (instantly on par with the iPod!) The iPod by the way is £169 with a contract for the 8 gig model. The F490 is free on Vodafone with a £30 contract!!! So eat that Apple. How it is a PDA: Memos, neat calender, alarm, converter, calculator and all the usual bits. Down side is memo has a character limit so you can't go nuts and write epic notes to one's self. In this way it can't truely be a PDA as it doesn't have a word processor. None the less it does a damn good job. How it is a media centre: Grab a video converter off the web to convert videos to 3gp format. I currently managed to pack 28 Full length movies I ripped from my DVD collection!!!! Each one is about 100 to 150 meg, taking up a total of 3 or so gig. I also packed on about 3 gig of music; standard MP3 format will do. It also has a subscription service like iTunes but I can't be bothered with that personally. There are other ways to get an MP3 file if you ask me. For £5/month I also picked up a TV 30 channel subscription from Vodaphone with about 8 Sky channels, 2 music video channels, and 2 kids channels, plus more. In the car I plug in the earphone jack and we end up having a little in-car TV and movie player on the stereo speakers! Also, the F490 has full internet webrowsing, but sadly doesn't seem to support flash content such as used by Youtube. iPod seems to have won on this front. Keep an eye out for a Flash plugin. Also, crucially, it has amazing screen resolution and when viewing webpages that dont seem to fit on the screen either vertically or when flipped horizontally, you can also force higher resolution page viewing, essentially shrinking the text and page to fit!!! This is limited by how much you care to squint. I usually set my resolution to view a full hotmail page horizontally laid at about 80%, i.e. I can read the font and see both the left hand side folders list as well as read the email subject headers. The dates get cut off though. However simply drag your finger across the screen to pan anywhere on the page. In terms of viewing images, it not only has a nice viewer with scroller, but also views PDF files, for all you who need it for business on the go. I'm still searching for a CAD viewer plug-in for my professional needs though! The downside here is no FM radio though! Very little downsides when it comes to media! How it is a phone: This one is pretty obvious. It has great reception, great clarity, and easy to use menus. Downside's here are only mentioned becuase as a phone it has so many other features, the phone aspect suffers slightly. Due to its touch screen nature, bright sunlight makes it hard to see the touch screen key pad. Also due to the touch screen, it gets locked out during a call, so you have to press a button on the side to activate the screen again for keying in anything such as when checking your messages. This can be a bit tricky at times with one hand. Seems to ergonomically work best when using the left hand. When using my right hand, reaching that button with a spare finger requires holding the phone in a certain way that may lead to dropping it, and this is one phone you don't want to drop!!! My previous Sony walkman phone was a tough little phone that could take a beating, this one is a bit of a jewel you want to cherrish and baby! Texting is a tad slow due to the software's lag, but I'm not some flirting teenager to really care much. 3G video phone calls are all but dead these days until someone makes them inclusive in the contract. Who has the money to pay 50p per minute to call someone who may or may not have a video call phone?!? So like me, you can use your 3G camera (mounted on the screen side) as a mirror!!! Vanity bonus points! How it is a camera: 5 megpix sound great but I must admit my old Sony Walkman's 3megpix produced better images. The F490 pictures lack due to the following: Autofocus is markedly slow! From the moment you snap the picture, at least 2 seconds pass before the image is captured. Which means NO ACTION SHOTS. You will not get what you see. For example, you snap a shot of a car passing you; what you get will be no car, as it is 50m down the road from you! Also it tends to be grainy in low light conditions and lacks the white balance capability of the Sony Walkman phone. Autofocus is poor in low light conditions and often produces a blurred image. This hower ever is also true my my middle of the range Canon SLR as it is a typical downside of autofocus on any camera under £700. If however, its well lit, and stationary it will come out as pretty good picture. One feature I miss from my Sony Walkman phone was that the camera's flash could be used as a light and a damn bright one too! G reat for a dark parking lot, or finding your seat at the movies. The F490 has a flash though lacks that feature. Admittedly few other phones provide this very handy tool. How it is a SatNav: It's not in the true sense as instead uses its bundled Google Maps program and what appears to be mobile mast triangluation to find your location. Open the Google Maps application and tap the location icon, and a blue dot shows you where you are within 100-200 meters. Out in the country side this can stretch out to 1km. This is why it isn't a true SatNav. But it does find routes and does give written instructions at various junctions on the route. It has both map and sat image views as well! It won't however give you a driving view and oral instructions like a true SatNav device. The net package was unlimited and part of the contract on Vodafone which matches the iPod, and allows for the an essentially free "SatNav" tool, as opposed to some other devices which charge an additional terrif for that feature. The over all package is a slick sexy phone. Due to this I am possible in love with it and it can tend to irriate me as after I use the phone my greesy man face sullies the slick elegant facia of the phone and I obsessively wipe it down with the handy carrying pocket. The material also serves as a great lense wiper! Pull this phone out and table it at a meeting and you will have instant kudos and respect. With the knowledge you got it for free while those iPod suckers shelled out nearly £200, you will also have the confidence of a business accumen that will inspire in said meeting. You can also sneak off the the loo/can and catch up on Sky sports or a movie! Last but not least, the battery life: As you can guess, if you run every last feature on this phone for 3 hours a piece the phone will be flat by 5pm! The first couple days I ran it down doing everything I could on this phone and calling everyone to tell the about it. Now I have settled in a bit and I run it like this.... -60 mins MP3 usage in the morning on the way to work (30mins of which on the speaker while im in the bathroom, shower, and getting changed. The other 30 mins on the earphones on the way to work). -At least another 60 mins MP£ at work -Another 20 mins TV or video vieweing at work -Quite a lot of Google Mapping and time wasting -10 to 15 full webpage vieweings (i.e. 5 pages each or so) per day (hotmail, weather, whatever -40 mins MP3 on the way home -5 or 6 pictures over the day -constant use of memos and calender (screen use) -6 to 8 calls (short 5 mins a piece) -Once at home a couple more calls -Maybe an hour or so of movie watching while I wash the dishes or do something dull as hell and need some mobile entertainment. and by the end of all that I put it on the charger at bed time with about half its battery left! The one or two times I ran it down to flat was a total of 2 hrs video watching, 1 hour MP3 on speaker, 4 hrs MP3 on headphones, 5 (20 min calls), downloading of 8 (3 meg) PDF files for checking and issueing over email to a client, 200 pictures or so, and heavy Google Maps usage to find my way to and from a site I had never been to a couple hours outside London. I hope you enjoyed my informal ranting review and it helps you out. To be honest I can't really imagine what could make this better! It is a 10/10!!!! To want more is bordering greedy. Just think back to 286 computers, Nintendo NES, those brick cell phones in the 80s, and what they forsaw as the future of communication in Startrek, and if you think this phone is less than a 10, you got issues! I certainly didn't think when I was 6 years old watching breakdancers out on sheets of cardboard in the streets with their "ghetto blasters", that by the time i was 29 I would have (in 80s terminology) a ghetto blaster, camera, cam-corder, diary, rolladex, TV, VCR, (internet, WHAT? that wasn't until I was 15), computer, game player, map book/globe, calculator, photo album, alarm clock, watch, calender, notepad, and a damn phone (with call tracer like the cops had, also post 80s). If all that stuffed into 102 grams in your pocket doesn't make you wet your pants with glee, I simply don't know what will.
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Reply by Mobile Phones UK from UK on 24th Jun 2008
What a review! Way to go, Ali!

Reviewed by anna from hong kong on 21st Jun 2008
I have this phone and think it's really good, touch sensitive is easy and practical, a big thumbs up from me and it looks good to! i am not going to be a geek and write an essay, in one word OUTSTANDING!
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Reviewed by Jude B from Scotland on 17th Jun 2008
Had my phone for nearly a week and overall I love it. Pros - it looks great, love the touchscreen which I have had no problems with so far. Picture quality and graphics great. Cons - hard to see the screen outside, having to unlock before answering and hanging up calls, it is quiet even when turned up, I had trouble figuring out how to send texts at first. The user manual wasn't much help but saying that, maybe that's just me!! You'll never be completely happy with any phone and the few things I've mentioned here haven't put me off. I would recommend this phone to anyone
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Reviewed by Richard from uk on 13th Jun 2008
I agree with Josh about the locking key. Great phone, excellent features, I actually find texting with pretext and using the pen provided is quicker than my old Nokia. Not used the camera much yet, but looks impressive so far. Touch screen is fantastic and very easy to use. Looks very stylish, feels great to hold and use, only draw back I can see is that the phone really needs to be kept in the pouch provide to avoid the large screen getting scratched. I would highly recommend it.
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Reviewed by Josh from UK on 12th Jun 2008
I dont know why every1 is so annoyed with the phone locking during calls, if it doesnt lock then u might turn it off with your cheek accidently! Fantastic phone, no faults BUY IT!!!!!
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Reviewed by Paul from Uk on 12th Jun 2008
This phone is so lush to use. It's easy, it is packed full of features and all in all a really pleasant phone to use. Gripes are that it will never replace a dedicated keypad for ease of use [tho has nice function of vibrating everytime you touch a key for some feedback] and teh touch sensative screen could be more accurate when viewing smaller text links. Tho you do get a stylus for difficult navigation. All in all top phone
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Reviewed by voodoo from UK on 10th Jun 2008
should you buy this phone? yes, simple as that, ignore all these " i've had my phone repaired 3 times in the space of two weeks etc", if that is the case, then there is a fault with the phone and it needs repairing. Touch screen is great, anyone insists they keep pressing the wrong button must have fingers like bricks, the buttons on the screen couldnt be any larger if they wanted to. Yes the camera is good but no where near as good as the N95, but then again the F490 isn't advertised as a *camera phone*. luckily my old phone is the N95 :P. Very classy looking, solidly made, i would highly recommend this phone.
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Reviewed by Jericho the 14th from africa on 7th Jun 2008
Where do I start with this phone? Well this phone has great features such as the massive touch screen, 5MP camera, great battery life and good internet access. As with many phones it takes a while to get used to. (3 month to find out how to change message alert!!) The touchscreen for texting takes a while to get used to, although 7/10 I press the wrong button. This is where the pen comes in handy which attatches to an accessory on the top of the cell. I bought this phone late april early may and within 1 day I had to send it back because it had a major problem. Problem being as the WHOLE phone is touchscreen, the touchscreen didnt work!! Yes. I could not press anything, after getting a replacement the same day. A few weeks later (5 minutes previous to writing this) It has broken once more. I left my charger in my car so used the usb link to charge my phone. Half way though sending a txt message it turned off. I cannot get my phone to turn back on and will sort out this issue with Vodafone in the morning unless I find a resolution tonight. Overall its a good phone but has many techinal faults as stated by my local vodafone outlet. I rate it 4/5i mad my dad buy me this on the 1st day it came out,im 13 and it took me half a day to figure how to use it...!! its a really really good phone, its loud and the internet on it is great! i got free internet on it and im using it everyday! i got a free pen with it so people who use it dont get their muky fingers on it! the camera is good! The contacts management hasn't been thought through very thoroughly its sometimes hard to find you contacts quick enough but you get used to it if you are thinking of getting it your making a great move! :D Overall good phone, very clear screen, great battery life, takes a few days to get use to the phone locking its self, makes answering the phone a bit of a giddle to start with but once your use to it its a fine phone, Camera is good quailty can be a bit slow in taking the picture its self. Easy to navigate, slim design adn well worth the money.
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Reviewed by James from UK on 28th May 2008
Where do I start with this phone? Well this phone has great features such as the massive touch screen, 5MP camera, great battery life and good internet access. As with many phones it takes a while to get used to. (3 month to find out how to change message alert!!) The touchscreen for texting takes a while to get used to, although 7/10 I press the wrong button. This is where the pen comes in handy which attatches to an accessory on the top of the cell. I bought this phone late april early may and within 1 day I had to send it back because it had a major problem. Problem being as the WHOLE phone is touchscreen, the touchscreen didnt work!! Yes. I could not press anything, after getting a replacement the same day. A few weeks later (5 minutes previous to writing this) It has broken once more. I left my charger in my car so used the usb link to charge my phone. Half way though sending a txt message it turned off. I cannot get my phone to turn back on and will sort out this issue with Vodafone in the morning unless I find a resolution tonight. Overall its a good phone but has many techinal faults as stated by my local vodafone outlet. I rate it 4/5.
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Reviewed by mark from uk on 28th May 2008
this is sooo rubbish WARNING DO NOT BUY IT. Y because the touch buttons muck up all the time, it turns off without warning and whenever i call someone or they call me it turns off.ive had it repaired 3times this month. DO NOT BUY
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Reviewed by Joe from uk on 25th May 2008
Samssung F490 is like marmite, you either love it or hate. and im afraid i hate it. The problems are numerous, but i will start off with the good points about this phone. The touchscreen is fanstatic, camera is as sharp as any lastest phones out now, battery life is good too....but, like most bad comments and one of the reason why i sent this phone back, was due to having to unlock phone to hang up. trying to scroll takes alot skills, and 9/10 u will press the button by accident. overall, unless your a samsung fan, (im a sony ericsson) you problem would love this phone.
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Reviewed by gabz from uk on 25th May 2008
i mad my dad buy me this on the 1st day it came out,im 13 and it took me half a day to figure how to use it...!! its a really really good phone, its loud and the internet on it is great! i got free internet on it and im using it everyday! i got a free pen with it so people who use it dont get their muky fingers on it! the camera is good! The contacts management hasn't been thought through very thoroughly its sometimes hard to find you contacts quick enough but you get used to it if you are thinking of getting it your making a great move! :D
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Reviewed by Mark from Scotland on 22nd May 2008
Overall good phone, very clear screen, great battery life, takes a few days to get use to the phone locking its self, makes answering the phone a bit of a giddle to start with but once your use to it its a fine phone, Camera is good quailty can be a bit slow in taking the picture its self. Easy to navigate, slim design adn well worth the money.
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Reviewed by clive from uk on 22nd May 2008
Grate phone
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Reviewed by Kris from uk on 14th May 2008
Got to say i love this phone. just got it today. the menus are very easy to navigate, the software on it is great. do not recommend for beginners or old ppl as they wont have a clue how to turn it on never mind use the phone, and then they will write a bad review on here as they have done already lol. why would you hate this phone???? its cutting edge and state of the art.
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Reviewed by bob from England on 13th May 2008
This phone is brilliant sooo worth its money.The best phone ever released.
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Reviewed by Ben from UK on 12th May 2008
Excellent phone, menus are a bit dull but ive grown to like them now, just have a light wallpaper to cheer yourself up. Camera isnt great but i knew this when i bought it, i jus like the fone, its good. Dont buy it if u intend to use musicstation however... the backlight stays on all the time while running musicstation.
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Reviewed by Steven from England on 12th May 2008
The F490 is a great phone, just takes a while to get used to it. The user interface is different to other phones especially if you are used to non-touch phones. Cut and paste facilities are missing - This can be useful if sending emails.... Over all I like this phoen. MP3 player options are great and the web browser works very well.
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Reviewed by Amelia from UK on 9th May 2008
Ive had this phone for a few days now. At a first tour of the phone, I wanted to send it back straight away, but I am glad that I didn't...As a touchscreen, it has (and still is) taking quite a bit of getting used to as it is very different from the average 'keypad' phone. At the moment there are more negatives than positives, but I am hoping this will change as I get used to it more. Here are a few examples: The camera is very slow, taking about 5 seconds to actually take a picture. When receiving or making a call, the touchscreen automatically locks itself, so you have to press a button at the side to unlock the screen to then be able to end a call. I am slowly getting used to this. Compared my previous phone, the sony erricson W850, the Samsung f490 speaker is a lot quieter. Since i listen to music a lot on my phone, this is quite a big negative to me. The positives of the Samsung f490 are as follows: It has a lovely big screen with a very clear picture. This is also makes accessing the internet on the phone and enjoyable experience rather than a task! The touchscreen is very responsive when using the special pen that comes with the phone. It is very sleek, stylish and as a woman - It is beneficial that it fits very nicely in a small clutch bag when going out! Although the camera is slow, the quality is excellent for a phone at 5megapixels. The bluetooth is very quick. At first I hated the texting process, but after practise, it is very easy to use - Although I would recommend predicitive text for this phone. Overall I would recommend this phone to more experienced phone users. As many of the other reviews have stated - It does take getting used to, but it does get better and better as you're always finding new things that the phone is capable of doing! Its worth the struggle! Promise :-) I hope that helped you decide whether its the phone for you or not.
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Reviewed by Rob from Wales on 9th May 2008
Absolutely rubbish phone, had it for 13 days, this was way too long. I thought the camera was rubbish, k800i i had was better.took ages to take a picture. making calls was extremely annoying, having to unlock it to answer and to hang up. rubbish. found it annoying going through my contacts, thought the scrolling on the phone was rubbish 2. In all couldnt wait to send this phone back. boring and rubbish.
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Reviewed by Luke Wilson from UK on 7th May 2008
I had this phone for around 11 days, and that was enough for me. I have to say without a doubt this is the worst phone I have ever had. The interface was total rubbish. No voice activated dialling, no built in stylus. The phone book was a total chore to use, and very often I would not be able to select my contact, as the phone would scroll right past it. I really tried to like this phone, but the only positive thing I cam away with was it's aesthetics. Samsung's backup was also poor. The phone doesn't even show on their website, there are no software updates planned, and by god does it need it. Stay away from this phone.
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Reviewed by Paul Honeyford from UK on 6th May 2008
Rubbish phone interface is rubbish everything about this phone is rubbish.
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Reviewed by Ben from England on 4th May 2008
when i went to get a new phone i found the samsung f490. it was to expensive but i bought it. after a couple of days it wasn't great but when you get used to it its fantatstic. leave it a week and you get used to it.
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Reviewed by visha from england on 4th May 2008
I LOVE THIS PHONE IS IT SO EASY TO USEAND I THE CAMERA IS GOOD TO
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Reviewed by 1 from UK on 2nd May 2008
Phone great, no problems so far, give the touch screen time to get used to (should only take a few days).If you're scrolling up and down pages use the tip of your finger/nail then it should be fine. The screen can be a little hard to see outside in the sun but not impossible. I agree that answering a call isn't the easiest as you have to unlock the phone first, but this can't really be helped due to the touchscreen design. This isn't a major issue either and dosen't take long to get used to. The phone will never be perfect for all and in every way. If you like the design i'm sure you will be able to live with quirks. Just ask yourself do you want a touch screen phone or a more traditional key pad design. If it's the touchscreen then you won't go far wrong with this phone.
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Reviewed by katrina kaif from india on 2nd May 2008
i think its a good phone but it could do with a little more improvement its not completely rubbish its ok =]
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Reviewed by master from uk on 30th Apr 2008
this fone is brill absolutely amazing the people that say it's crp are talking rubbish. total,utter uncontrolable rubbish
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Reviewed by the man from england on 27th Apr 2008
i think ur just all 2 old and cant use these phones if cant use it y buy it let the younger generation 16-24 years olds have them they wont complain trust me this phone is amaing
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Reviewed by AndyF from England on 24th Apr 2008
On the surface, the phone is a great concept as an alternative to the iphone however it just doesn't pull it off. The menu navigation is frustrating (the touch screen "slide" movement leads to selecting the wrong options a number of times), the time keeps changing itself on a Sunday morning (it thinks it's Monday morning so the alarm goes off!), and the camera is also very poor. The 3.2mp camera on my Nokia N80 was infinitely better quality than this on a lesser size and quality screen. Another fault is that on some 3G coverage areas, the phone wont let you make or receive calls, you have to switch it manually to only pick up GSM networks which, frankly, is pathetic. That may just be a Vodafone issue however. Overall, it's an ok phone however I dont feel the technology is quite advanced enough to really make it work right just yet...
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Reviewed by Paul from england on 23rd Apr 2008
Although the phone looks the part and yes slim and smooth, its impossible to do anything quicklyy texting takes ages, as does trying to take a picture. The quality is poor on pictures other than on a bright sunny day, the flash is poor compared with nokia and S Erik, and the lense is in the top corner right by your finger, so not in a good place. Gets very boring very quickly, and lost my patience with it after 2 days. The only thing is that it fits nicely in your pocket as its smooth, light and thin
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Reviewed by James Ride from UK on 22nd Apr 2008
Great
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Reviewed by David Jones from UK on 21st Apr 2008
Initially, I hated this phone. It made me want to cry. However, having given it a few days to get used to the touchscreen and it's grown on me enormously. It's stylish to the point of not being very manly and although it is initially fiddly, now that I'm used to it, it's quicker and easier to use than my old SE. The contacts management hasn't been thought through very thoroughly (no grouping), but overall worth the teething pains.
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Reviewed by John Kerans from England on 15th Apr 2008
This is a very nice looking phone, unfortunately it suffers from a number of significant flaws. the biggest is the touch screen, whilst it's an excellent idea it doesn't work very well, i find that every time i touch my finger to the screen to move down a list in a menu rather than letting em scroll it just selects the the first item i touch, making it virtually impossible to scroll through menus. secondly the fact that the screen locks when a call comes through, meaning you have to unlock it to answer, it then locks during the call, meaning you have to unlock it again to hang up. The camera takes about 5 seconds from pressing the button to taking the picture which is appalling. Overall its a very nice looking phone, but it's totally unusable
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Reviewed by John Ratcliffe from UK on 15th Apr 2008
Absolutely unuseable. Can't see the screen in any sort of light to see which button to press. Intuitive it is not. Can't describe how useless it is. I've given it 5 days but goes back tomorrow.
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Reviewed by Ben from england on 14th Apr 2008
i think that the new samsung f490 is great but i think it is to expensive
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Reviewed by Daddy from UK on 14th Apr 2008
Great phone, (back button fine & no resetting problems) takes a little getting used to... READ THE MANUAL ITS A MUST.... Camera is good - you have to set the res, otherwise you think its poor when you first get it, as it's set to low as default. It has got Autofocus (some reviews say it hasn't) Internet is very quick. PC software link up is a must, the samsung software is very good (if you dont link up it would be a nighmare to manage) Screen is reponsive (again takes a little getting used to) Would agree answering and hanging up is a little fiddle but can't see how else they'd do it - and the phone looks amazing!!! 5* no complaints (WARNING GIVE YOURSELF A WEEK TO GET USED TO IT!!!)
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Reviewed by JK from UK on 9th Apr 2008
i have this phone i got it the day it came out and i love it, im a bit disappointd on the camera because its the worst 5mp out on the market, but its a great looking phone. The touch Sensitive is better than sister phone the F700.
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Reviewed by carole from uk on 9th Apr 2008
As with all new things it takes time to adjust to change. Got the phone yesterday and its great. Play with it and read instructions you will be surprised what it can do. Have fun all who buy.
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Reviewed by t6o6n6y from UK on 8th Apr 2008
Top Stuff, I like this phone, have always been a nokia fan but this samsung F490 touch phone is simply the best at this moment in time i can not fault it and with the 8gb minisd card i have put nearly all my favorite music on and still have a couple of gigs left for photos and vids. Once again most impressed and i would highly recommend.
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Reviewed by harry kay from scottish on 7th Apr 2008
superb phone lassie
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Reviewed by Ste from United Kingdom on 5th Apr 2008
Bit disappointed by this phone, got it on Thursday when it came out and within 4 hours rang vodafone to change it but have it till Monday when they swap. Far too much messing about to answer/hang up a call, cannot see the screen very well when outside in daylight even with the brightness turned right up. Quite big to hold, back button can be unresponsive and mine one seems to reset itself after a few hours if you dont use it. I understand that new phones do often have "bugs" on software when first released but this phone just doesnt do it for me. Waited to upgrade my phone till this one was realised but not at all what I was told this phone would be. Have had samsungs for years, the E700, E720, D900, U600 and dont rate this one. Maybe the complete touch screen just aint right for me? Enjoy it if you can get on with it.
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Reviewed by dee cook from middlesbrough uk on 3rd Apr 2008
I have just got the new f490 3rd april and i must say iam a little bit dissapointed with it i cant put my finger on what it is iam hoping its goning to grow on me otherwise it will b on ebay nxt week
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Reviewed by lema from uk on 2nd Apr 2008
best fone eva ya gotta by dis fone so all u out der by it its bear cool so get it ar u all dumb.
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Reviewed by ***kirsti s*** from birmingham on 12th Mar 2008
well this phone has not got a fault with it as yet i think its brill, it looks amazing aswell as actually being one of the best phones on the market.....best upgrade i could ask for!!!!
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Reviewed by Lily from Leeds on 6th Mar 2008
Brilliant phone, great to use, and looks very nice too.
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Reviewed by Ian Cook from Preston on 22nd Feb 2008
Well what can i say apart from what a fabarooney fone!!!!
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