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Samsung’s SGH-F400 comes hot on the heels of several swanky handsets from the company. We’ve had the Steel, F490 and Tocco F480 over recent weeks.And while we wait for the much anticipated i900, along comes another Samsung handset, the F400. This one came to me courtesy of Orange where it is free on contract. It had a link to Orange’s music store preconfigured on the main screen. It is also available from other operators and will cost you around £200 SIM-free.
It is a tri-band GSM handset with GPRS, EDGE and HSDPA to 3.6Mbps. There is a front facing camera for two-way video-calling. But the key selling point of the F400 is its musical ability. Yes, I know, many handsets sell themselves on that basis, and a side-mounted button that activates the music player isn’t enough to generate a raised eyebrow. But how many mobiles can you name that can use the kudos of the Bang and Olufsen name to back up their musical pretensions?
That’s what the SGH-F400 has up it sleeve along with several other components, including a 3.5mm headset jack on the phone itself. Completing the mix is Bang and Olufsen's ICE power audio, which is meant to give you high quality sound, while Smart Bass adds its own tweaks intended to give better, richer base notes. The DNSe 2.0 sound engine used in Samsung’s digital audio players also features.
Meanwhile there is an extra hardware element in the form of dual speakers. Mentioning these actually highlights one of the other aspects of this handset. It is a dual slider. The last time I saw that particular wheeze on a handset was Nokia’s N95. There the second slide was used to add music playback controls. Here it unveils a large speaker array sitting atop the screen. This is what delivers the music when you are not using headphones.