When I first picked up the Samsung Highlight, I wasn't sure whether I was going to like it or not. Spoiled by its two older brothers, the Behold and the Memoir, it seemed to be the low-end, playful rabble-rouser of the family. What's more, anyone can tell that Samsung is doing its best to latch onto the touchscreen phone trend at all levels, which made me wonder what I could expect out of the overall build quality of the device. But as time went on, my skepticism left and I was quite impressed; the feature set is quite decent, and it does many things well. I'm not a fan of resistive (admittedly, I prefer the capacitive technology found on the iPhone and the like), but I was pleased with the Highlight's ability to correctly interpret my typing.
The Highlight comes in two colors: fire (orange) and ice (turquoise). Though Samsung sent me the first model, both variations have the exact same feature set. When you pick up the phone, you're working with a 3-inch (400 x 240 pixels) touchscreen, which despite sounding small is adequate given the Highlight's size. I wouldn't want anything smaller, though. Other features include a 3.0-megapixel camera, full HTML browser, 3G, and a respectable 6.5 hour estimated talk time. Standby time seems to be great as well: it stayed on for just under eight days (with little use) before powering down.
The design is a mixed bag, and like many devices on the market, will be loved and hated by many. The Highlight is not a device you would expect to see in the boardroom or any other corporate environment, primarily because of its small size and radical colors. That being said, this device should appeal primarily to hip, texting teenagers seeking a device that will stand out from the crowd. The Highlight offers Samsung's TouchWiz UI, with customizable widgets and more. If I had to choose my favorite feature about the device, it would be TouchWiz. The level of customization in the OS is nice, and it allows you to make the phone more "you."
That being said, we're far from being finished with poking, prodding, and testing this device. Stay tuned for a full written review from John - and in the meantime, check out Noah's unboxing video!