As I looked into them more, they seemed to have all the functionality of other phones but with the added Live Tiles and Xbox Live integration. Since I'm a fan of achievements, the though of having them on my phone was interesting. A buddy of mine and his wife both got the Samsung Focus so I was asking him questions to make sure I would get everything I was looking for. My wife was still skeptical but felt better when she found out she can still use her old iPhone on WiFi.
My plan WAS to wait until after the first of the year and we return from our Disney World Vacation, but AT&T was offering 2 deals that I couldn't pass up. First, they had buy one get one free on the Samsung Focus. On top of this, each phone comes with a Free Xbox 360 game. Both offers end on 12/31, so we headed to the AT&T store so my wife could try one out. After she did, we weren't allowed to leave the store without them and we got out cheap :)
So far the phone is really slick looking and the interface is beautiful and fast. Having a camera button that works quickly is a huge upgrade not to mention doing HD video. Setup was incredibly easy...I just put in my Windows Live login info and had Hotmail, Xbox live, etc all ready to go. The way it integrates all of your contacts from various email accounts, Facebook, etc is really nice. I've only had one evening with the phone, so can't yet speak to it's every day use but will update once I've had more time with it.
I'm really interested to see some of the rumored phone + Xbox Arcade integration. I'd love to be playing a game on my phone along with a buddy at home on his Xbox. This also makes me anxious to pick up XNA Game Studio 4.0 Programming and see how easy it is to create something on my own.