Bluetooth is also onboard, and music fans will be pleased to find a stereo profile. One-the-go types can make use of the V9m's speakerphone, voice dialing, instant messaging and e-mail, USB mass storage, and PC syncing. Sprint's Wireless Backup is also a feature. Using the service you can transfer your contacts to Sprint's servers for safekeeping.
As an EV-DO phone, the V9m offers full support for Sprint's 3G services. You can connect to Sprint's Power Vision streaming video services for a variety of content, much of which is exclusive to Sprint. Included are Sprint TV, which offers movie previews, live TV, and on-demand programming from more than 50 channels including CNN, VH1, ESPN, Comedy Central, and the Cartoon Network. And in a nice change, the video player interface shows a spiffy new design. Sprint Movies delivers full-length, pay-per-view movies, while NFL Mobile offers same-day football highlights. Furthermore, you get Sprint's On Demand service for access to a host of information such as news headlines, sports scores, and weather updates personalized for your ZIP code.
The V9m's music player is unchanged form other Sprint music handsets. That means the player's interface is rather stark with album art as the only visuals. You can create playlists and there's a shuffle and repeat mode. For your listening pleasure the Sprint Music Store offers simultaneous track downloads both to your PC and wirelessly to your phone. Just remember that you'll need to store them to a microSD card. The airplane mode turns off the phone's calling functions for listening to music while in flight.
The 2-megapixel camera takes pictures in five resolutions, from 1,200x1,600 down to 120x160. Other camera features include three quality settings, brightness and white-balance controls, a self-timer, a multishot mode, three color effects, six frames, a 4x zoom, and six shutter sounds. The camcorder records clips in three resolutions with sound. Editing options are limited to a self-timer and brightness and white-balance controls. Clips meant for multimedia messages are capped at 10 seconds, or you can shoot for as long as the available memory will permit. Speaking of which, the V9m has a generous 65MB of user available memory. That's shared between all functions, so you're better off buying a microSD card for maximum storage.
For easy photo printing, V9m supports Bluetooth photo transfers or you can send them to Sprint for printing and home delivery. In our tests, photo quality was very good. Colors were sharp, object outlines were distinct, and there was enough light.
You can personalize the Razr2 V9m with a greeting and a variety of color themes, screensavers, clock styles, and alert sounds. You can always get more options from Sprint via the WAP 2.0 wireless Web browser. Gamers get demo versions of four Java (J2ME) titles: Brain Challenge, Ms. Pac-Man, Tetris, and Tower Bloxx. You'll have to buy the full versions.
We tested the dual-band (CDMA 800/1900; EV-DO) in San Francisco using Sprint's service. Call quality was satisfying on most accounts. Voices sounded natural, volume was high, and the reception was clear. Only very occasionally did we notice a slight humming in the background but it wasn't enough to be overly distracting.
On their end, callers said we sounded fine. They said the V9m picked up a fair amount of wind noise, but they didn't say it was too bothersome. On the upside, they reported adequate volume and clarity levels. Speakerphone calls were adequate as well. Clarity was somewhat muffled at higher levels but that's to be expected on most speakerphones.
Music quality was quite agreeable. The single speaker at the bottom of the phone provided loud output and clarity. At the highest volume level there was little of the distortion or bass-heavy effect that we've found on other music phones. It still won't replace your standalone MP3 player but it does a decent job for short listening stints. Unfortunately, video quality on the main display was disappointing. On numerous videos we encountered moderate distortion and pixelation. Sound matched the speaker's mouth, and we never paused to rebuffer, but the quality issues were enough to make is stop watching on most occasions. And strangely enough, the quality on the exterior display was better most of the time.
The Razr V9m has a rated battery life of 3.6 hours talk time and 12 days standby time. Our tests revealed a talk time of 5 hours and 4 minutes. According to FCC radiation tests the Motorola Razr2 V9m has a digital SAR rating of 0.71 watts per kilogram.
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