Before opening the box containing Motorola’s MOTOKRZR K1 I felt a slight sense of foreboding. Motorola may have rocked the world with its original flat keyboarded handset the RAZR, and followed up with the similarly flat SLVR and PEBL, but there was a thought going round and round in my head that the format, and indeed the naming convention, had been overplayed, and the MOTOKRZR K1 couldn’t possibly build on the basic idea of a flat keyboarded handset any further.
So my first five minutes with it were telling, and the short of it was that I was impressed. The MOTOKRZR K1 is not the first clamshell in the range but Motorola has done itself proud with this new design. The PEBL feels lovely in the hand but I found its clam opening system pesky, while the V3 felt just too big. The KRZR K1 is narrow – 42mm – and feels very comfortable in my fairly small hands. Its deep blue is also very appealing.
The outer CSTN display delivers 96 x 80 pixels in a space that measures almost an inch corner to corner. It is bright, clear, and embedded in a shiny surround which, while it picks up fingerprints like a forensic scientist on a piece-rate, manages to look stunning as long as you rub it against your clothing from time to time.
The sides and back have no such problems. The sides are primarily made of silver plastic, with metal for the buttons, while the back is blue plastic with a rubbery finish that helps make the phone feel comfortable in the hand.
The MOTOKRZR K1 comes with a drawstring carrying case. I can’t see the point of this, to be honest. It won’t protect the handset from fingermarks, and if you store the thing in it on a day to day basis, then you have to take it out of the bag whenever it rings, which is annoying. Better to ship with a case that can be left on the handset while you are making calls, methinks.
The MOTOKRZR K1 is not unduly thick at 16mm, or too tall at just 103mm. It fits neatly in the pocket and it weighs just 103g. But remember this is a clamshell and with the lid opened it grows to a little more than 170mm. This is one of my major gripes with clamshell mobiles – when the handset is opened and being used it does feel something of a giant to hold.