A basic prepaid phone of a design that harkens back to days of cell phone yore, the Samsung Gusto 2 is specifically designed for those who need and want little else than a reliable phone. In that regard, it is excellent. Beyond that, any effort it makes at things like taking pictures, running applications or browsing the web are a failed endeavor.
The Gusto 2 is all about "easy." It's a word that's used frequently in reviews. Alex Colon, reviewer for PCMag.com, likes the "easy-to-press keys," and CNET's Jessica Dolcourt appreciates the "easy navigation" through the phone. She says, however, that having to wade through multiple submenus to find certain functions is not fun. The contoured design makes for a comfortable and secure grip, and the rubberized buttons are big and user-friendly. Colon cautions "low resolution lets you read just a few lines of jagged text at a time," making messaging a serious chore.
Solid, but no frills. The Gusto is built well and it's also an excellent little cell phone. However, Dolcourt says voices come through with "unusual quality," while Colon says call quality is "above average." The speakerphone is clear and loud, but the two reviewers dispute whether it is loud enough to be heard in a noisy environment. Reception is very good through Verizon Wireless's extensive network. A slow browser and weak screen make anything beyond telephone use tedious. An above average battery impresses both experts.
Strong Construction with a "thick hinge." CNET's Dolcourt says the Gusto 2 is a "vast improvement" over the original Gusto, and is built with "a sturdy, comfortable design." It has a strong and responsive hinge and survived well her testing of dropping it multiple times.
Designed More for Use than Looks. "The look is either sleek and minimal, or cold and drab, depending on how you see it," says Colon. Dolcourt describes the finish as "gunmetal" in color, a look she finds appealing. Its sole effort at accents is a black plastic band in and outside of the phone's body. Its lack of a standard 3.5 mm jack is mystifying in any modern-built device. Both the external and internal displays fail to impress, and the best way to describe the Gusto 2's design is highly functional.
Basically nonexistent. That's how Colon describes the Gusto 2's multimedia capabilities. It does have a little 1.3-megapixel VGA camera that takes images suitable only for web use. There is no music or video player, and apps are limited and primitive. The web browser is a couple of notches above useless. Although there is little use for them, there is no Wi-Fi or expandable memory.
The Samsung Gusto 2 is a "flip-phone faithful," says Jessica Dolcourt. Other than a few minor quibbles, it "excels" at its primary purpose of being a basic cell phone, especially for "people who prefer to rely on audio, rather than visual, inputs."
Review: Samsung Gusto 2 Review (Verizon Wireless), Jessica Dolcourt, April 25, 2012
Alex Colon says the Gusto 2 is a "good, simple voice phone for Verizon Wireless." Still, he shoots down any multimedia value for the phone and recommends several alternatives.
Review: Samsung Gusto 2 (Verizon Wireless), Alex Colon, April 26, 2012