Virgin Mobile Samsung Intercept is an entry-level Android phone, first with this carrier. If you have a feeling that you know this phone already from somewhere, this might be because Sprint, who owns Virgin Mobile, was the first to add this phone to its lineup. However, this phone differs in pricing from Sprint’s offer. Now it can be bought for $199.99 when initially was priced to $249.99. Both prices can seem a lot but if there is no credit check or activation fees, this is not too much. If you pay as low as $35/month for the texting and browsing or choose $45 or $55 Beyond talk plan with more advanced service with signing no contract, than Samsung Intercept can sound like a good deal.
This phone’s design isn’t much different from its Samsung relatives. It has black front and rounded shape but differs in silver frame around the corners. It is 4.43 inches long, 2.19 inches wide and 0.59 thick, which could be sleeker. It weights of 4.9 ounces. The Intercept features 3.2-inch WQVGA capacitive touch-screen display, which is of course, reasonable size for a touch screen but still it could be larger. To access Android menu options there are Home, Back and Search buttons right below the display. For easy texting use Samsung Intercept’s slide-out QWERTY keyboard as well as virtual QWERTY keyboard, that can be accessed through landscape and portrait modes.
Samsung Intercept was running on Android 2.1 operating system but recently has been upgraded with Android 2.2 (Froyo). As a matter of fact, Sprint’s version of this phone is updated for some time now. But now when upgrade happened to Virgin Mobile’s version of the Samsung Intercept, the phone is much richer with features. Users will be able to install applications to external memory card and to have dedicated phone, application and browser icons on every home screen. Also, some features that already exist as Exchange Active Sync are updated, Bluetooth device support improved, Bluetooth Voice dialing is added and operating system performance improved.
Those improvements are thanks to upgrade but apart from it, users will enjoy and other features that Samsung Intercept offers. Android apps like voice-to-text capabilities and GPS through Google Maps Navigation add a lot to the functionality of the phone. Other Google apps available are Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Talk, Google Places and YouTube. You can sync your e-mails for POP, IMAP, Gmail (as already mentioned) accounts as well as your corporate email via Microsoft Exchange. Access to Android Market for choosing from over 150,000 apps as well as option of using Opera Mini are available. You will also have access to social networking accounts like Facebook and AirG Chat, which are preloaded apps. More preloaded apps like Virgin Mobile Live, Amazon’s MP3 music store app, Virgin store downloads online and more are offered by Samsung Intercept.
The Samsung Intercept runs on 800MHz processor, which means higher-quality graphics and faster performance, as opposed to LG Optimus V that has only a 600MHz processor. It also comes with a 2GB card installed and a microSD card slot for expandable memory to up to 32 GB. Decent photos taken by 3.2 megapixel camera, videos and downloaded music now can be stored on external memory card when phone’s been updated. Wireless features like Wi-Fi and Bluetooth add to the functionality of Samsung Intercept but the music player and a 3.5-millimeter headset jack add to entertainment.
The phone’s performance is satisfying. The call quality is quite good. The speed is fast, thanks to the Virgin Mobile’s 3G speeds on the faster EV-DO Rev. A compared to the slower EV-DO Rev 0 for Intercept at Sprint.
Even though the Samsung Intercept is the entry-level Android phone, it is still the one of the most advanced and priciest phones from Virgin Mobile’s lineup. However, many of the features that this phone offers justify this status.