Got my Ativ S today! Updated 12/16.
Updated 12/16 with thoughts on apps, battery life, and thoughts on the screen and form factor. Next update - pics.
Great phone. Solidly built .. very similar to the GS3 with just enough changes to differentiate it. Screen is beautiful.
30 bucks on contract with Telus (Canada). Strange because I hear that Bell and Rogers have vastly different acquisition pricing.
I personally like it better than the 920 that I tested for a couple of weeks, but only because of the overall shape of the phone. I'm not really interested in the size of the 920, and while the Nokia apps are great, they aren't something that I (personally) really need.
Strange that there has been very little talk about this phone. At this price point, it will be flying off the shelves (for WP). I think Samsung and Telus at least have made some smart moves here.
Anyway. Good phone!
Samsung Apps and Apps in General
- MiniDiary - is an app that, like it's name suggest, allows you to quickly enter information in diary style format along with pictures and locations. I haven't had much time to play with it, but the concept is nice.
- ChatON - Haven't had a chance to play with this yet, but it seems to be a group chat app using SMS. Ratings are mixed thus far.
- Live Wallpaper - This is basically a slideshow style lock screen picture. It seems that the lock screen cycles through up to 12 selected pictures. Nothing special here .. kind of a Bing like concept.
- Now - Now is a great app that shows current weather, news, stock ticker info., currency rates, and top tweets by country (great idea). The live tile updates with weather only.
- Photo Editor - Allows filters, framing, editing (color, contrast, sharpness, etc., cropping, rotating, resizing. Seems to work pretty slick actually. Not the best photo editor app, but not bad either.
- Music Hub - I don't really see a point to this to be honest. This is an app that allows purchases powered by 7digital and of course plays the music. If you aren't using Microsoft's store services, and you are using WP8, then you're missing out. My opinion.
Plus all the other typical WP apps.
I do have to say this though. with the fight going on with Google, this phone is going to have a tough time running only Bing maps. The 920 at least has a truly competitive offering with turn by turn, but without G Maps, Nokia Maps, or Apple Maps (obviously), you are forced into a third party map all, and we all know how pricey they can be.
We've all talked about the other missing major apps and if you have a WP or are thinking about getting one, you have already come to terms with the limitations and slow adoption.
Alright, I've been able to use it for a full day without heavy work emailing, but with steady app (non gaming) and browser use. I left the phone off charge last night and used it all day, so estimate 12 hours of standby and maybe 8 hours of non gaming use. Phone is at 1/2 power which is what I expected, but it's still nice to see.
As it says in the comments below, the screen is AMOLED and I gotta say, this is a beautiful screen indeed. Colors are very sharp and crisp and beautiful to look at. We all know that Metro (not gonna call it anything else) is a simplified design language, but I gotta say, the rich colors really help it pop.
Very responsive, and smooth screen transitions. This is a must have in any phone as I'm sure you'll all agree. This is one of the few reasons it took me a long to like Android. When I swipe, the phone better respond. This one does.
As I said before, this phone has a much better feel (to me) than the Nokia 920. Everything else aside both phones are at the top of their game but this day and age, I do not want a brick in my pocket. I know there are valid reasons for the size, but truly (for me again) the camera does not justify the extra size. The Ativ S is basically an S3 with a few differentiating modifications. A little squarer (sp?), but basically the same.