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Acer Liquid E review

Niall Magennis



Our Score


Review Price free/subscription

We had a feeling of deja vu when we took the Liquid E out of the box as it looks almost identical to Acer’s first Android handset, the Liquid A1. Externally little seems to have changed, but under the bonnet there are some interesting tweaks, not least the update of the Android OS to version 2.1 and the fact that this finally allows the handset’s capacitive screen to support multi-touch – something we bemoaned the lack of on the original handset. However, plenty of fine Android handsets have hit the market since the original Liquid A1 appeared, so has Acer’s refresh of this phone done enough to help it keep pace with these newer models?

The Liquid has an identical chassis to the original phone, so it unfortunately suffers from the same problems. For starters, at 63mm it’s just slightly too wide to feel totally comfortable when you’re holding it. In addition, the white plastic used on the battery cover and edges looks rather cheap, especially given the phone’s high price tag. The same complaint can also be levelled at the chrome painted volume, camera and power buttons, and overall the design just lacks the premium feel of competitors like the HTC Legend. That said, there are some neat touches. For example, we really love the LED indictors at the top of the phone that light up to show you when you’ve got a new message or a missed call, as they allow you to take a quick glance at the phone’s status without having to take it out of your pocket.

The Liquid’s 3.5in screen is also impressive. Not only is it relatively large, but its crisp WVGA (800 x 480) resolution and multi-touch support means it’s a pleasure to use for web browsing, or even just catching up on your emails. Colours look ace too and it produces surprisingly deep black levels for a non-AMOLED display.

As with the Liquid A1, the phone runs on a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. This usually ticks over a 1GHz, but Acer has reined it back a bit here to run at 768MHz. However, it still has plenty of welly and in combination with the responsive capacitive screen makes the handset feel very quick and smooth to use.

The big difference between this handset and the previous model is the upgraded OS. The Liquid E uses V2.1 as opposed to the V1.6 used on the Liquid A1. Not only does it bring that all important multi-touch support, but also means you get the new, improve browser, native Exchange email support as well as a range of interface tweaks. Acer hasn’t customised the user interface much, so what you get is pretty much the plain vanilla Android look and feel. However, it has added a few extra widgets including two wheel-style menus that sit on the two furthest panels from the centre. One shows browser bookmarks while the other acts as a mini multimedia viewer for photos, videos and music.

The company has also preloaded a number of apps including the Nemo multimedia player and a Media Server that lets you share videos, music and photos stored on the phone to uPnP compatible media players and TVs over Wi-Fi. Another addition is the Acer Settings screen that gives you quick access to stuff like the screen brightness level as well as switches to turn off and on Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and GPS.

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August 11, 2010, 1:53 pm

I just picked up a Liquid A1 for 200 notes .. lots of places selling them off at the moment. As far as I can tell there's no change in hardware and it has the same 2.1 update as this .. £200 for a full-fat Android handset is a bargain.


August 11, 2010, 2:48 pm

Why are some of the shots showing 1.6 if this phone runs 2.1?

Also, while £350 isn't exactly cheap it's definitely not high end either (hello £499/£599 iPhone 4!). You compare it to the Legend which is basically old tech kitted out in a shiny outfit but I'd argue that the Legend is actually overpriced for what you get, premium materials accepted.

Good on them for not customising it though.


August 11, 2010, 3:10 pm


You'll have to admit that compared to the FAR better-specified Samsung Galaxy S (http://www.trustedreviews.com/..., which is currently available for under £400 sim-free, this is overpriced...


August 11, 2010, 3:45 pm


Definitely. I don't think it's worth £350 but was just making the point that £350 isn't really high end.

The Desire and Galaxy s can be had for £319 from O2 on PAYG. Now that's a bargain. My mate managed to 15% staff discount off that too.

Geoff Richards

August 11, 2010, 3:50 pm

@ravmania: is that in-store only? I can't see either handset on O2 PAYG on their site:


Denis iii

August 11, 2010, 4:01 pm

it possible to drop vanilla android 2.2 on this?

...:( when will Phone OS's behave like PC OS's!!!!


August 11, 2010, 4:45 pm


Saw them both in the O2 store in Westfield.


November 3, 2010, 11:16 pm

Android phone looks good but can crash and erase everything on the phone, so that is a minus. It also takes minutes to load some pages. Some days I don't get no text messages.

So for now, this phone has too many glitches and I regret buying it. I rate it a 3 on a scale of 1 to 10.


August 27, 2011, 12:54 pm

I just got this phone 2 days back & let me tell you that acer needs to work a lot .......I initially replaced 2 phones & the 3rd one which i have too is having some issues which include-:
1) Automatic restarting of the phone while on call
2) Battery life really sucks
3) charging takes a lot of time
4) Phone get heated up a lot when applications are used for may be 20 min at a stretch

I am gonna replace this phone and go for some HTC phones....but this was totally unexpected from acer....

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