BenQ and mobile phones? Really? Sure. It has been a while, admittedly, but the company does have previous phone experience in the UK. The last BenQ handset I looked at was a product of its relationship with Siemens, the very consumer focused EF61 Mia. But, despite ditching its relationship with Siemens, the company is very much active and has a lively portfolio of devices that just don't make it to the UK. Check them out here.
Anyway, the long drought of BenQ handsets in the UK has ended with the arrival of the E72. Currently you have to be a BT Fusion customer to get hold of it, which does limit its reach somewhat. But it may become more widely available, and more BenQ handsets might get let out to play over here.
The E72 is a quad-band GSM Windows Mobile Standard device. In design terms, I really like this handset. The red and black livery is visually appealing to me, and the mirrored screen area, while an absolute fingerprint magnet of the first order, should have quite wide appeal too.
As Windows Mobile Standard devices with a candybar format go, this is one slim and light phone. At just 90g in weight, it easily gives other less well-featured handsets a run for their money and its 108mm of height, 46.3mm of width and 13.8mm of thickness make it comfortable to hold.
The number keys are large and individually shaped with a raised lower long edge, so that hitting them accurately isn't too much of an ask. The Home and Back keys are on a red band sitting above the otherwise grey key area, while Call and End keys are above this band. The two softmenu keys sit beneath the screen.
The D-pad and its central select button are raised quite significantly from their surroundings, which makes them easy to find. Side buttons run to a volume rocker on the right edge and voice record and messaging shortcuts on the left. These sit on a red band that runs all around the edge of the phone.