I did make it to the Cingular store today, and as I started to type on the Samsung BlacJack, I remembered Bill’s comment regarding the BlackJack keyboard. I found myself making more typing errors than usual, and when using the 5-way navigation key, I was accidentally hitting the center key too often (it seems to be too pronounced compared to the side and up/down keys).
I also noticed that the device has a trackwheel (or thumbwheel as the Motorola Q calls it) and Escape button on the side. This reminded me of the Motorola Q which I used earlier in the experiment (picture on the left) . It seems that the BlackJack has a lot of similarities to the Q --the size of the device, the shape of the keys, and the trackwheel/thumbwheel, and Escape button. However, my experience with the Motorola Q keyboard, and especially the Motorola Q 5-way navigation key were far more positive.
So what is up with the Samsung BlackJack?
When I researched the BlackJack earlier, I was quite impressed by the fact that it is the first device that brings high-speed and international support together into a slim device that has a QWERTY keyboard. It seemed to an ideal business-and-social device for business travelers who do a lot of typing and need international support. On paper the device looked great. The in-person hands-on experience was not as satisfying. However, usability is a subjective matter. So if you’re considering the BlackJack, get some hands-on time with it and find out for yourself.
Tomorrow, I will continue with some observations and news about the Cingular 8525, the Treo 680, and the Treo 750.