Samsung’s new SGH-T139 for T-Mobile is just what you’d expect. As a VGA camera phone with a standard flip design, it offers basic features and minimal style. However, since that’s really the whole thing, we won’t complain. Comfortable control and good call quality give the SGH-T139 a minimalistic appeal and you can’t beat the price tag. Also known as Mayon, the phone is free with the Even More plan (with contract) and $ 59.99 with the Even More Plus plan (without contract).
T139 is the definition of a flip phone. The blue-gray phone has smooth lines and a more compact (3.7 inches by 1.9 inches tall, 0.7 inches thick; 2.98 ounces) thicker for easy portability. Other than the diamond motif on the back cover, there are no design elements that distract the phone’s obvious calling-making intent. The phone’s plastic leather doesn’t feel durable, so we recommend that you carry the phone in your pocket or bag.
The external display is only 1 inch diagonal and low resolution (96×96 pixels). It displays the date, time, battery life, signal strength and caller ID in numbers, but it won’t function as a selfie portrait viewfinder for the camera, which sits just above. On the left spine you will find a volume rocker and a right spine that has camera lock / shutter controls and a combined headphone / charging port. Unfortunately, the latter uses Samsung connectivity exclusively.
The internal screen is also a bit small compared to the size of the phone (1.75 inches). It supports 65,000 colors, so it’s not the most vibrant display either, but it fits on a base phone like the T139. The menus are easy to use, and you can change display options like standby text style and color, dial font size and backlight time.
The SGH-T139’s keyboard and controls are its best design features. Both feature a spacious layout with a comfortable, rubberized enhanced button. The diamond-shaped four-way switch is covered with silver, which sets it apart from the black control buttons. You’ll also find an OK button in the middle, two soft keys, a Say and End button / power button, and the Delete control. Buttons on the backlit keyboard have large numbers and letters. We can text and dial quickly without any problems.
Telephone Directory of SGH-T139 contains 300 contact numbers with place in each entry for five phone numbers, e-mail addresses and notes. You can add callers to the group and pair them with a photo and one of 10 40-chord polyphonic ringtones. Other essentials include text and multimedia messages, alarm clock, calendar, to-do list, pocket calculator, tip calculator, world clock, timer, clock Stopwatch and unit and currency converter.
You don’t get much more than the basics, but Samsung has included the most useful options. There’s a voice recorder, instant messenger, Bluetooth and the ability to send audio postcards with photos and voice recording. There is no built-in e-mail application, but you can always get online through the WAP 2.0 browser.
The T139 does not provide self-portrait camera or flash.