One feature that I do really like is the “My Menu” screen. If you push the navigation pad UP from the home screen, a small submenu opens with shortcuts to five applications. You can populate the My Menu screen with whichever applications you use most regularly – believe me it’s a real bonus to get to the alarm app in two clicks.
Call quality is as good as I’d expect from a Samsung handset – as long as you have a decent signal the audio quality from the speaker is very impressive. And talking of signals, the ultra thin nature of the D900 doesn’t seem to affect its reception quality in any way. Unfortunately, like the D600 before it, the D900 doesn’t support voice dialling, which is a real pain if you’re in the habit of using a Bluetooth headset.
Talking of Bluetooth, the D900 supports stereo Bluetooth headphones as well as the standard file transfer and headset fare. This means that you can stream your music from the phone direct to a set of headphones, without any cables in the way. Obviously this is pretty cool if you don’t mind having a set of large Bluetooth enabled headphones covering your ears. Far cooler however, is that I’ve spent the morning streaming music from the D900 to a set of Parrot Bluetooth speakers (a full review of which will be coming soon), so the whole office can enjoy (endure) my playlists.
If you happen to get a phone call while you’re streaming music to a Bluetooth device, the music will pause and the D900 will ring as normal, with your chosen ring tone. When you’ve finished the call you can continue listening to your music from where you left off.
One of my criticisms of the D600 was that Samsung moved the camera to the outside of the body, rather than hiding it on the back of the slide like the D500 – this left the camera open to the elements and meant that the lens was often covered in dust and dirt. Thankfully the D900 harks back to the D500 and once again hides the camera on the back of the slide. When you raise the slide you’ll see the camera lens, a self portrait mirror and a flash – although it’s more of a bright light than an actual flash.
The camera is a 3-megapixel affair, producing images up to a maximum resolution of 2,048 x 1,536, which is an improvement over the D600’s 2-megapixel camera. However, I’m not completely convinced that the camera in the D900 is actually better than the one in the D600. OK, it shoots higher resolution images, and if you’re shooting static objects it turns in some good results, but the shutter lag can only be described as horrendous. Now, there was a degree of shutter lag on the D600, but the D900 takes things to a new level. Taking any pictures of my eight month old daughter for instance was impossible. No matter how hard I tried the image came out blurred because she’s always moving. On the D600 however, I have a veritable photo library of clear shots of her.