Hands-on with the Helio Mysto

mysto1A stork flew over our offices today and dropped a bundle of Mysto joy at our doorstep. By stork, we mean FedEx man, and by bundle of joy, we mean a box. Nonetheless, we couldn’t help rushing back to the lab to get our hands on the freshest handset to leave Helio’s offices. First and foremost, the Samsung Helio is beautiful. Its exterior is a mix of gunmetal grays and blues with silvery accents. It even comes packaged with a headset, which we’ve found to be a rare addition to any Samsung phone. The keys have an aluminum-metal looking finish with a white backlight. They’re flush against the surface, much like a Motorola Razr. The sliding function on the phone feels solid and wonderfully smooth and is similar to the Samsung Katalyst. Instead of push-buttons on the front of the phone, Samsung opted for small haptic touch buttons which give a small buzz each time they’re touched. There’s also a circular navigation wheel with the usual up-down-left-right functionality, but it isn’t haptic. Since the haptics aren’t on a touch-screen like the LG Venus or Voyager, it can take some getting used to. Perhaps the most stunning feature of the phone is its beautiful user interface. The main menu offers eight icons in a circular fashion: Surf, Snap, Games, Apps, Message, Plan, Video + Music, and Customize. Songs can be downloaded from the Helio music store for a $1.99 each, which is a bit expensive, but there’s a solid selection of music. Navigation throughout the music store is amysto2.jpg bit slow, even with the phone’s 3G connection. It took us a minute and fifteen seconds to download a song, which isn’t too bad though. Music sounds great on the phone, but you can’t pause or skip songs unless the slider is open—when it’s closed everything is locked. We would have preferred a lock option and the ability to switch songs on the fly. You also can’t exit the music player to text message or perform any other function—once you leave the audio stops. The Mysto also supports streaming video and TV. Helio’s premium TV subscription offers seven channels: Comedy Central, Discovery, Logo, MTV, Spike, TLC, and VH1. We weren’t able to test the premium subscription for this hands on, but stay tuned for our results in the full review. Music videos can be downloaded for $2.49 each. We watched a Jay-Z video and the quality was pretty solid and didn’t skip, but the picture was a little washed out. Browsing the Web is really easy, and we love that the Mysto will automatically bring up a menu of “.com” or “.edu,” etc. so that you can quickly complete a Web address. The mobile version of CNN.com loaded in just nine seconds, with pictures. We tested the call quality outside on the streets of New York City, where had a full signal. We were able to hear the other end clearly without any static, and the person at the end of our call found the quality to be just as clear. Pictures snapped with the 2MP camera indoors looked crisp on the phone, and we’ll keep you updated in the review how they turned out after printing and displayed full-size on a monitor. There you have it, our hands on of the Helio Mysto. Stay tuned for a full review, where we’ll explore GPS functionality and more, once we’ve had our hands on it for a few days.

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  1. Helio.Wireless Says:

    The Helio Mysto is a terrific product for our Kiosk here in the Washington DC area. We are seeing very popular demand for our handsets especially in the younger age group due to the new no deposit promo from helio:

    http://www.heliobuy.com/helio-no-deposit-promo.html

    This exclusive promotion allows new Helio Members to get on board Helio with absolutely no deposit requirements. You can also contact the exclusive online promotion department by calling (800)319-4757.

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