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Hands-on with the Samsung Omnia II for Verizon

updated 08:40 pm EDT, Thu October 8, 2009

Handset offers a slightly different case finish

Samsung previewed several upcoming handsets at CTIA in San Diego, including the Omnia II headed for Verizon later this month. Although the company representatives cautioned that the software is not yet finalized, the demo devices ran Windows Mobile 6.1 paired with the custom TouchWiz interface.

While the core OS on the CTIA devices remains unchanged from the original Omnia, the company has made several minor tweaks to the TouchWiz UI. The main menu can now be switched between pages of apps by swiping across the screen, while the overall presentation has been refined.

Users will be able to acquire TouchWiz widgets from Samsung's store, along with Windows Mobile apps from Microsoft. The interface also integrates a 3D cube with a different application on each face. Navigating between each app requires the cube to be rotated.

Externally, the basic form of the GSM Omnia II has been retained. The center button below the screen has been changed from the cube design, while the 3.5mm headphone jack has been moved to the side. The back panel features a chatoyant red finish that is only visible from certain angles.

Compared to the first-generation Omnia, the latest model integrates a much more vibrant AMOLED touchscreen similar to the Moment. Resolution jumps from just 400x240 to 800x400 while adding a half inch corner to corner. The expanded resolution is welcome for a smartphone that will likely be used for web browsing and multimedia.

Pricing and an exact launch date have yet to be announced, while it remains unknown if the finalized OS will be Windows Mobile 6.5. Recent reports suggest the phone may ship with v6.1, while a v6.5 update will be released sometime later.













By Electronista Staff
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