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Samsung Xcover 271 / Samsung B2710

 Samsung B2710 / Xcover 271 Available now
20th September 2010

Billed as the successor to the formidable B2100 and a long-overdue update to the old B2700, the Samsung B2710 (called the Xcover 271 in some markets) is a rugged 3G phone with a full feature set including GPS, which should make it a versatile companion.

Last year's B2100 is one of our favourite phones. A simple but useful device, it is highly resistant to dust, comes with a torch. and best of all, it works underwater. But as a handset the B2100 was a fairly basic GSM-only device, so the B2710 is a very useful upgrade.

The Samsung B2710 is a straightforward and uncomplicated mobile phone. The front of the handset features a rubberised keypad and a smallish 240 x 320 pixel display, which is a little on the small side.. but remember that bigger screens tend to be more fragile. On the back is a 2 megapixel camera with the usual Samsung features such as smile shot and panoramic stitching. Low-end Samsung phones tend to be a bit poor on video capture, and the B2710's 160 x 128 pixel resolution is frankly not good for anything.

Inside, the Samsung B2710 supports Bluetooth 2.1, quad-band GSM and UMTS connectivity, and there is a large 1300 mAh battery that can provide up to 7 hours talktime and 20 days standby time on 3G, or a whopping 19 hours talktime and 25 days standby if you switch down to GSM. There's also a multimedia player, microSD slot and FM radio as well.

 Samsung B2710 / Xcover 271 There is a web browser and email client, perhaps more importantly the B2710 comes with built-in GPS and Google Maps, plus a digital compass. The small screen means that the Xcover won't be suitable for use as an in-car navigation device, but its pocket-friendly design and large power cell should make it useful if out walking or doing some other outdoor activity. There's also a built-in flashlight and a pedometer.

This is an IP67 certified device, which means that it is completely dustproof and waterproof for a depth of up to 1 metre for thirty minutes. It is also shock and drop resistant, although no phone is indestructible. All the ports are hidden under waterproof panels, but it is quite important to check that everything is sealed before you get it wet.

The Samsung B2710 (or Xcover 271) should be available in certain European markets from October onwards, with an estimated SIM-free retail price of €175.

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Samsung B2710 (Xcover 271) at a glance

Available:

October 2010

Network:

GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 + UMTS

Data:

GPRS + EDGE + UMTS (3G)

Screen:

2" 240 x 320 pixels, 262k colours

Camera:

2 megapixels

Size:

Medium monoblock
121 x 53 x 18mm / 116 grams

Bluetooth:

Yes

Memory card:

MicroSD

Infra-red:

No

Polyphonic:

Yes

Java:

Yes

GPS:

Yes

OS:

Proprietary

Battery life:

7 hours talk / 20 days standby (3G)

19 houts talk / 25 days standby (GSM)

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