Samsung has put out, among others, a phone called the :)

Samsung dropped a few high-end feature-phones today into T-Mobile’s lineup: the Gravity 3, Gravity T, and the :). “The :), you say? Surely not.” But yes, the phone is called the :). I guess if companies like Motorola get to choose all-caps for their product names, we mustn’t begrudge Samsung an emoticon.

The phones themselves are of the full QWERTY feature-phone variety, focusing on social networking and text messaging. They use T-Mo’s new “Social Buzz” feature, which has alerts and popups for social events like status updates and so on.

I’m going to set my cynical blogger cred down for a second here and say that I like these phones for some reason. They’re colorful, they’ve got nice big keyboards, a straightforward interface… they’re perfect for the adolescent/teen crowd that texts incessantly doesn’t really care about GPS, Bluetooth, or tethering. And buttons. Tons of buttons. If it’s good enough for a Japanese schoolgirl, it’s good enough for me. It’s not often I get to say that, so I jump at the chance today.

The Kins aimed at this crowd too, but I think they overshot the mark. The high-concept UI and robust web features were gilding the lily, if you ask me. The kids like their texting the way I like my whiskey: straight up and easily accessible.

The :), though — I thought they might have saved the name for a more impressive phone. I mean, this thing’s cute, don’t get me wrong, but :) is a powerful name and they might have used it to more effect elsewhere.

[via Pocket Lint]