Motorola Q Blog: Day 1


Monday was an exciting day for me — I got a Motorola Q! Well, technically, our friends at Verizon Wireless sent me a review unit, but why ruin the excitement? So for the next few days (or, with luck, weeks), you’ll be seeing my impressions of one of the most coveted Smartphones yet released.

Before I get to the good stuff, let me set out my biases. The Q is a triple whammy for me — my first converged PDA/phone, my first Windows Mobile Smartphone and my first Windows Mobile 5 device. This means that it may be hard for me to identify whether something was changed due to WM 5 or being a Smartphone, but I’ll make educated guesses where I need to. Anyway, on with the important things.

What do I like in the first full day of using the Q?

  • It’s small. My trustworthy iPAQ 5550 could eat the Q for dinner. The Q is significantly smaller in every dimension.
  • It’s got a keyboard. This should make entering data much easier than trying to use an on-screen keyboard or multiple keypad presses for each letter.
  • It’s a phone. While I’m more of a two-piece person, preferring separate PDAs and cell phones, the ability to use this to browse the Web without having to set up a Bluetooth connection between my PDA and phone is great.
  • It’s got EV-DO support. This should make Web browsing much faster than using my old 1xRTT phone, but I’ll check that out later.
  • It’s sexy. My 14-year-old daughter doesn’t like when I call tech toys “sexy”, but it is. And she already wants a Q when her contract expires later this year.

  • So what don’t I like so far?

  • The display is small. That’s not a bad thing by itself, but I’m very nearsighted and it’s hard to make out the text with my contact lenses in. I increased the system font size, but very few programs seem to take that into account. For example, I visited the mobile site in Internet Explorer and found the text difficult to read, even after changing the Zoom setting to Largest. In fact, the difference between Largest and Smallest wasn’t nearly enough.
  • The keyboard is small. I certainly didn’t expect a full-size keyboard experience, and the keys seem pretty good, but I found it difficult to read the secondary symbols on the keys. Maybe people with normal vision won’t have any problems, but I do.
  • It’s not a Pocket PC. Being a Smartphone, the Q doesn’t have a touchscreen. This makes it more difficult to navigate the system. Also, it means that the applications I’m used to on a Pocket PC either aren’t there (Word and Excel, for example) or are signifcantly changed (there’s only one Alarm in the Clock area compared to four on my iPAQ 5550).

  • Well, I’ve gone on enough for today about the Q. I’ll close with a picture of what I actually got (clockwise from the upper left):

  • The box
  • The manual
  • The Quick Reference Guide
  • The AC adapter
  • The USB charging/sync cable
  • The Q
  • The software CD
  • The holster

  • If you have any questions, feel free to ask in the discussion.

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    About The Author
    Steve Mueller