"Great design, super keyboard, great range of features . . but bad software and no touchscreen"2.0 starson by timgollin
Pros: Sleek, great keyboard, good voice quality, nice materials, good coolness factor
Cons: Terrible software, sluggish response, system hangs
Summary: You can check all the boxes with this unit's huge feature set and great connectivity options. The keyboard is great, and there are many clever features built in. WiFi works acceptably, the browser is a good one, and
However, practical operations are terrible. For people used to the Treo's one-handed, event-driven software, plowing through the E61's hierarchical menus is a miserable experience.
Email is very non-intuitive, and the software is buggy and occasionally illogical. SIP doesn't work at all for me (maybe T-Mobile blocks the port ?) but who cares ? Setting it up is such a misery that no one would actually realy want to try; you have to configure multiple settings in multiple menus.
On-line help or support beyond the manual doesn't exist. And since this is the latest and greatest Symbian version, a lot of Symbian Series 60 software won't run on it.
All of this is a pity, because voice quality is great, the keyboard is really wonderful - I'm a Treo lover who's had Blackberry intervals, but this is really a good one - and the form factor is really nice. The shell is titanium, and the unit is really solid.
But, at the end of the day, who cares ? The contacts software is painful, the calendar is difficult, and there's nothing about any of the PIM apps which appears at all modern. With a modest size address book, drilling down to a single contact can take 3 - 5 seconds, and it requires 5 - 6 clicks of the joystick actually to dial a number. These things Palm figured out a long time ago.
A few things about the phone are really cool. It seamlessly hands off packet data connections from network to network as you move around. Since I live in the USA, I can't test it on a real 3G network, but just moving between WiFi and EDGE on an email connection is pretty neat. The screen is bright and the backlighting is good.
If the interface and set-up don't drive you nuts, however, the pokey performance, the kludgy software, and the frequent hangs in the system may. I really can't recommend it. Too bad . . . I had hoped to upgrade my Treo 600 to the E61, but instead I will have to 'sidegrade' to the Treo 650.