Above the screen, is the earpiece with a small flashing LED. Below the screen is a four way navigation pad with an action button in the middle, surrounded by a dial and disconnect button as well as a short cut button for the calendar and your contacts. On the right hand side is the power button – which is also used for switching off the backlight. In the corner is the slot for the stylus while towards the bottom right is the IrDA port.
On the left hand side are three buttons – going from the top town there is a camera button, a volume slider and a combined voice dial/voice recorder button. The voice dial function is pretty hit and miss, mostly dependant on how similar contact names are and the amount of background noise that is present. I presume some of it also has to do with my non-English back ground, but occasionally it seems to decide to pick a completely random contact that doesn’t even sound remotely similar to the name I thought I’d said. You can’t set up your own voice profiles either, nor could I get it to work over a Bluetooth headset – something of a major limitation.
The bottom of the SPV M500 is covered by a rubber flap that protects the mini-USB port, the headset connector and the reset button. I’m not that fond of flaps like this, as it gets in the way when you plug in the headset and it’s just something else that can break, but it does a good job of keeping dust out of the connectors. The supplied wired handfree headphones are identical to that of the SPV C500 – not the best around, but they do the job and can be used to listen to MP3s.
Apart from the handfree you get a charger, a USB to mini-USB cable, an extra stylus and a carrying pouch with a belt clip in the box. Two very thick manuals are also supplied as well as a CD with Outlook 2002 and ActiveSync.