By Jonathan Charles | Jul 31, 2012 03:23 PM EDT
Talk about Windows Phone and often Nokia isn't far behind. The Finnish mobile phone manufacturer has produced arguably the leading Windows Phone device with the Nokia Lumia 900, but come August 1, Samsung's Omina M aims to present a challenge with its arrival.
The Omnia M is pitched as a budget 4-inch phone. It resembles the Omnia 7 launch Windows Phone - generally considered the best of the launch devices - with its black-on-silver form factor. Hardware's the differentiating aspect of Windows Phone devices, even though the software is almost identical.
When it comes to software, the Samsung Omnia M launches with Windows Phone 7.5 Mango. Since Windows Phone 8 is based on the Windows NT Kernel, non-Windows Phone 8 devices get the feature-limited Windows Phone 7.8. It's strange that Samsung is launching a device knowing the update is coming.
The phone uese Samsung's customary Super AMOLED display, used in the Omnia 7, with a 480x800 resolution. Samsung says there is glare reduction technology in the display, improving battery life, and making for easier viewing under sunlight.
In comparison, the iPhone 4 and 4S use a 960x540 resolution on a 3.5-inch display. The Samsung Galaxy Nexus and Galaxy S3 have 720p displays.
As a budget phone, the specs aren't anything to write home about. The Samsung Omnia M uses a 1GHz processor, sports a 5-megapixel camera, has 4GB of internal storage, and 384MB of RAM. Windows Phone is typically optimized across its devices, so the low internals may not be an issue.
Owners also get 25GB of free storage for SkyDrive, Microsoft's cloud storage service. Samsung is also including the ChatON messaging app, a cross-platform messaging tool. The phone also includes AllShare, Samsung's rival to AirPlay (the Smart DJ feature for creating playlists from music), and the Family Store service for sharing via the cloud.
The phone is arriving on Phones4U in a 2-month exclusivity deal in Europe. Deals start at £15.50 a month with a £49.99 one-off cost, rising to £36 a month. The contract time period for deals ranges from 18 months to 36 months.
The Samsung Omnia M doesn't seem like great value for money, purely because Windows Phone 8 is arriving later in 2012. A slew of comparable devices, like the iPhone 4S and Samsung Galaxy S3, will arrive alongside the update.
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