Samsung Epix Gets Optical Mouse, GPS

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The network, when paired with Windows Mobile 6.1 is billed as allowing users to check their email via Outlook and access a full array of Microsoft Office products, including Excel. The smartphone also allows for easy Web surfing and access to video.

One of the interesting features of the Epix is the optical mouse feature. Located in the center of the phone, users can move their finger over the mouse in order to navigate through the menus of the phone or surf the Web. The optical mouse feature can also be used to click and make selections while browsing, checking email or interacting with any of the phone's other features.

But if navigating optically is too much for a user, the feature can be turned off, letting users navigate with the Epix's built-in stylus.

The Epix's optical mouse is just one of the innovative parts of the mobile device.

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Paired with the AT&T Network, the Epix offers what AT&T calls "Video Share." This feature allows two people on a voice call to share live, streaming video from one phone to the other.

Built-in GPS has quickly become a must-have service on any mobile phone. And the Epix offers that feature. Mobile device manufacturers got the memo after the outcry when the iPhone was launched without GPS capabilities. While not all phones have this capability yet, it is beginning to catch on.

The other features the phone offers are quickly becoming standard around the mobile device industry if a manufacturer still wants to compete.

The Epix gets a touchscreen paired with a full QWERTY keyboard, which is a nice touch, but it's been done. The next crop of mobile device that don't go completely touch-based interface will likely continue to be equipped with haptic keyboards.

The 802.11 b/g Wi-Fi is an important element, but Wi-Fi capabilities is almost a given these days. Phone are increasingly trending toward offering more capabilities on the go, and that includes Web surfing. The Windows Mobile 6.1 platform that comes preloaded on the phone is evidence of this.

Finally, the Epix features a 2.0 megapixel camera with video capabilities. The low resolution of the camera is somewhat disappointing for a phone that touts one of its more innovative features as streaming video.

Bluetooth technology that allows the phone to be paired with headsets or stereos is also built-in. Windows Media Player 10 Mobile is also standard. A microSD memory card slot allows users to expand the phone's memory up to 32GB.