June 24, 2006 fun

Oh La La — Qtek 8500!

I got my Qtek 8500 today. The bad news was that I got the French version of the manual, but that wasn’t so bad, since I wasn’t going to read the manual anyway. However, the worse news was that all of the phone menus where in French, too. The nice folks at expansys.com were quick to send me the set of menus to turn English back on, but the instructions they sent where themselves in English, which required me to do a little babelfish work to translate into French menu text, but I managed.

Things I like about my new phone:

  • It’s a flip phone that looks almost exactly like the famous RAZR, but runs Windows Mobile 5, allowing me to sync my email, contacts and appointments, play my music, load my own apps, etc. Physically, it feels very nice — thin, but solid. Even the flat keypad feels nice.
  • I really like the higher res screen (when compared to my Audiovox 5600) and the larger keyboard (handy when you’ve got sausage fingers like mine).
  • I like the external screen with the clock (a nice round analog one, too), the battery, the email count and three buttons for controlling the audio.
  • The reception is better than my Audiovox.
  • The volume on both my existing bluetooth headset and the included headphones is louder than my Audiovox (which is good for an aging Def Leppard fan…).
  • I love not having to lock the keys on my phone — just flip it!

Things I don’t like about my new phone:

  • The single, proprietary USB port (they call it an extUSB,” whatever the hell that is). It’s for power, data and audio, which is handy, but I’ve got a bunch of mini-USD cables that no longer work, as well no way to connect my fully music-capable phone to the mini-jack in my car. I can get a conversion from extUSB to mini-USB on expansys.com, but so far, I’ve found no way of connecting the phone to my car.
  • The camera’s high-res (1.3M), but doesn’t seem to focus very well.
  • I haven’t yet found the button or option that allows me to set flight mode. Given the amount of air travel I do, that’s kind of a problem. Hopefully the pictures in my French manual will provide a clue…
  • My $19 1GB mini-SD card doesn’t fit — I need *micro*-SD (who knew?!?). Luckily, micro-SD cards are pretty cheap, but it’d be nice to use my existing mini-SD cards, especially since the included storage was just enough to hold a single MP3 file…
  • I don’t like the Start menu laid out in a 3x3 grid — I prefer to have things in a list with numbers by em, like in WM 2003SE. As it turns out, the numbers still work, but they’re not shown.

It’s true that I’ve listed more things I don’t like than that I do, but most of the stuff I don’t like is nuisance and the stuff I do like is very, very cool. I don’t know about battery life yet or what I’m going to think over time, but right now, I really like this phone. Recommended.