I have to be honest here and say that normally I don’t like Motorola phones because the menu system has traditionally been poor. However, the E1000 is a breeze to use and most things are where you would expect them to be. The E1000 has a range of handy software applications that you would expect to find in a modern phone such as a calculator and a calendar.
I’ve used a fair few phones over the years, but I’ve never come across a phone with such a comprehensive list of contact options. Once you’ve entered someone into the phone book you can enter full address listings, attach a photograph and even add their date of birth. You can also group your contacts in several different categories, so you can keep your private and work contacts separate.
The E1000 also supports voice dialling and it’s very easy to set this up. Voice dialling can be set individually for each contact and you record each voice tag twice to improve the accuracy of the recognition. The only slightly annoying thing is that the voice tag is read out each time you scroll past a name in the phone book.
One thing that finally seems to be improving is the battery life of 3G phones. The E1000 seems to have a much better battery life than my older 3G phone. It’s still not as good as a GSM phone, but you can at least use the E1000 for more than a day without having to charge it up over night, which is a big plus. Another upside is that the E1000 seems to have much better reception than my old 3 phone and is usable in areas where my phone reports no coverage.
The innovative design does mean that you sometimes end up pressing the buttons by the side of the screen when you’re taking the phone out of your pocket or picking it up. But as long as you turn on the key lock, this isn’t something that you encounter too often.
Overall I’m very impressed by the Motorola E1000, let’s just hope that 3 doesn’t remove any of its Bluetooth functionality in the retail version – the Bluetooth in my current 3 phone can only be used with a headset and not for file transfer.
There is one thing left to talk about, and that’s the price. Unfortunately you can’t get the E1000 for free, or at least not as long as you buy it from 3 on a £35 or below tariff – even going for the £35 a month tariff 3 wants £49 for the E1000. You’ll probably be able to find some of the online mobile phone retailers doing the E1000 for free, but even at £49 it’s pretty good value.
The Motorola E1000 is one of the first of a new wave of 3G phones to enter the market. Motorola has impressed me with a very feature rich phone, although a more common memory card format would have been preferable. There are some minor flaws with the E1000 but none of them detracts too much from this otherwise excellent 3G phone.
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