Pros A very good feature set
Cons no UMTS, still trying to configure WPA, speed, bluetooth menu immature
Summary All and All, this is a great peice of equipment. Will do almost anything you want to, but only at its own pace. I googled about the performance about this baby and came accross a few registry edits that should do the job. But I have seen that connecting a GPS via Bluetooth has been a pain (for me). I use the pharos GPS with microsoft streets and trips. I tried I-guidance but do not have enough memory. Expect a second review when I get my memory card (1 GB mini SD/ SD) on the 23rd.
The response times got really painful when i finally connected the device and started i-guidance. MS Streets was pretty light on the procesor/memory. I guess the downside of Cingular's/HTC's decision to put a 200 Mhz processor is showing here.
Coming to the Wireless LAN, i was able to connect to a WEP 80.11b network at work, but not the WPA 80.11g network at my home (yes, i tried mixed mode as well, and the registry hack). I did not see a performance degradation with this.
Coming to the true function, the phone !!! The Signal reception is beautiful. It almost matches my previous nokia 6230. I'd say its about 95% as good as a Nokia. Need I say more ?
I did not like the bluetooth menu a lot compared to my nokia. there was a way in nokia that would allow me to see a history of all devices and then give me the "Connect" option when i selected one of the devices. I do not see this feature and do not know how to keep track of the devices i am currently connected to. Hope microsoft updates this.
Synchronizing is absolutely smooth, no troubles at all, and I mean it. However, Linux users may not find it as attractive due to the microsoft affiliation of this product. I am yet to try it out on linux.
People complaining abt the keyboard, SHUT UP !!!!!!! If you got fingers the size of a coke can, you wouldn't be comfortable with any phone. I have used the keyboard and the stylus based soft key board, they are a beauty.
The sliding function needs no introduction, its breathtaking. however, i have seen performance issues on more than one occassion when it takes too long for the screen to switch to landscape mode. I found out later that this was because of the i_guidance GPS taking too many resorces. I will have to revisit the GPS thing later though.
Camera is good. I have taken pictures with the flash and it makes a difference in picture quality for upto 4 feet in dark conditions. I personally enjoyed the burst mode and ability to delete the whole set at once or file by file.
Volume Control is cool. the slider button on the left makes me wonder why it took so long for someone to come up with this idea. Nice job HTC.
Screen brightness is way too good. think it was about 5 different brightness levels. Clear font was cool too.
Voice Dial: I used this feature only twice and it was wrong on both occasions. However, to judge its quality based on two occassions would be a serious offense against the law of probability by sampling. I will give a full recap in my next review. The direct button for voice dial is placed appropriately.
Still need to figure out what the Push to Talk feature is all about. And its too soon to comment about the batterylife, expect this in the next review too.
I am yet to use it as a walkman, GPS, video camera and a sound recorder.
See ya soon,
Pros High-res screen, PDA functionality, WiFi (b&g), Bluetooth, 1.3 Meg camera,
Cons Weak reception, sliding keyboard does not illuminate on opening
Summary If reviewed on its feature list and form factor alone, I agree that the Cingular 8125 would merit the average 9/10 rating that the other user reviewers here have given it. The great features of this phone (high-res screen, WiFi, Bluetooth, sliding QWERTY keyboard, 1.3 MB camera, fully-functional PDA running latest version of WindowsPC and integrated Cingular phone) are outstanding and have been detailed in the other reviews. I would agree with most of the positive comments except those regarding phone reception and sound quality.
For me, in the areas that I live and work, I found this phone seriously lacking with regard to reception. Inside my home in a suburb west of Houston, TX, where my aging Motorola V400 got 2-3 bars, the 8125 registered 0-2 bars, and I would sometimes have no network access. Same story inside my office building in downtown Houston. Again, poorer performance than my aging V400, which was not great and I was hoping to improve upon. STRIKE 1.
The default text size on the screen is VERY small. It can be increased for MOST but not ALL menus with a settings change. But why not ALL menus? If you are 40+ and need reading glasses, be prepared for some frustration/eyestrain reading text fonts in some menus and programs that are unaffected by the text size setting. STRIKE 2
Have any of the other reviewers used this PDA phone at night or in a dark room? The screen brightness is great when the backlight is on. But where is the dedicated "Backlight ON" button? Sure you can tap the screen or a press a random button when the backlight goes off and you are left, literally, blind trying to operate the phone. But too often I found myself typing an unintended character or executing an unintended function trying to just get the #$%* backlight to turn back on so I could see what I was doing. This is especially annoying when in phone mode. If you pause for too long entering a phone number, the backlight goes off and you are screwed. You can only try to guess where the next digit is on the touch-sensitive keyboard. I know you can increase the default time after last keypress until the backlight turns off. But there should still be an easy way to turn the backlight on without doing anything else. And the backlight should never go off (IMHO) while dialing a phone number - no matter how slowly it is being entered. STRIKE 3
And why the hell does the keyboard not illuminate automatically when you slide it open? If I didn't want to use it, I wouldn't have opened it. You have to press a key on the keyboard to get the keyboard keys to illuminate. BUT - you can't see ANY of the damn keys in the dark. ABSOLUTELY - POSITIVELY - the keyboard should auto illuminate when the keyboard is slid open. I can find no standard, built-in setting to make this happen. DUMB DUMB DUMB STRIKE 4
The screen backlight duration problem and keyboard illumination problem can no doubt be addressed (probably already have been) by some clever 3rd-party utility, registry hack or future firmware update. But the poor phone reception was the killer for me. Other user reviews report great phone reception.
So, as always, your mileage may vary. Try before you buy, or at least thoroughly test the phone in all areas you would frequently use it before your full refund grace period expires. For those of you getting great reception - I'm jealous, and I am sure you will be very happy with your new phone.
FYI - I purchased the phone at a Fry's Electronics in Houston, which did not require me to sign up for a mandatory $40/month PDA data access plan as was the case in the Cingular phone stores I first visited. Fry's also offered a $100 instant rebate off the $489 price for a 1-year contract for Cingular customers who are eligible for a phone upgrade.
Pros Not Available
Cons Not Available
Summary I bought this phone as Friday and got it this morning. I've been playing with it all day and its great. I'm so glad I ditched my palm. It has built in wifi, bluetooth, and IR. The wi-fi is a little tricky to set up on the varying networks but once you get the hang of it its easy. At first I thought the 200mhz processor would be weak, but it performs very well. This phone is so much more stable than my palm treo 650. I haven't had to reset it all day whereas I was resetting my treo constantly.Updated
I watched cnets video just to see what Bonnie Cha would say. She tells you that you have to use the stylus to get back to the today screen. Wrong! All you have to do is hit the red phone key. Maybe cnet should actually do their homework before they post a video.
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Pros Display, Keyboard, Buttons to access often used tasks
Cons A little heavy
Summary This is an amazing device. It is my first PDA so maybe I am biased. But I think it's feature set is fantastic when you consider it's size.
The keyboard is small but I have large fingers and I find it VERY comfortable to use. (Bonnie Cha was wrong about that in her review.) You cannot tell from the picture but the keys are raised just enough to give them a nice feel.
Another thing Bonnie was wrong about is that the call end button takes you back to the Today screen. You do NOT need the stylus. (You would think someone that reviewed so many phones would have tried that intuitively.)
I find the battery life is good unless I am using the PDA features for long periods of time. Having that screen on brightly with wifi and bluetooth does drain the battery fairly quickly.
And the 200Mhz CPU has been working fine for me for normal tasks.
I did find it difficult to setup my wifi connection. But that's a Windows Mobile issue. But now that it's working, it's great.
Having only used non-pda phones before I am getting used to the weight of the device. But it's not too bad considering it's features. And having headsets practically eliminates the need to have to hold it to my ear anyway.
It's really a great device.
Pros Excellent Call Quality; Build; Size; Features
Cons One-Handed Operation
Summary CNET's review claims sub par call quality; too large; too heavy.
Rubbish. The 8125 has better call quality (out & in) than my Moto v551 or my old Samsung 8500 (the gold standard on Sprint). I roam off network in backwoods central Texas a lot, and call quality is great there too. No more "what did you say" on both ends of the conversation.
As for WM5, it is a huge improvement over past PPC, and runs circles around my Treo 650. Just another example of a poor review, the reviewer said you had to use the stylus to get back to the Today Screen - WRONG - just press the red end call button and back you go to the Today screen.
This is the most complete smartphone I've ever used (which includes Samsung i500; Treo 300; Treo 600; Treo 650; Samsung 5600 and Cingular 2125). WiFi works great (if using MediaWorks, disable the proxy service) and if you're in a WiFi hotspot that is open to you, it will use WiFi over Edge until you turn off the WiFi radio, then it reverts to EDGE. No WiFi, then EDGE is the default.
No, this is not a Razr, and it is awkward to use one handed because dialing with the on screen dial pad is not easy. However, voice tags work great, even over a bluetooth headphone, and you can add MS Voice Command to dial ANY entry in the contacts list.
Syncing with Outlook is a snap, and if your office uses MS Server 2003 SP2, you can synchronize wirelessly on a schedule you set. Blackberry type "push email" will be available with the OS update later this Spring. WM5 versions of Word and Excel are much better at viewing and editing any standard Office document.
And that slide out keyboard - puts the Treo and BB keyboards to shame. Since the screen automatically rotates to landscape when opened, it is nearly a mini-computer in your pocket.