14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on November 24, 2009
I owned the HTC TyTNII (Tilt, aka Kaiser), loved it, had HTC HD, then briefly went to the iPhone, now have this phone (known as Touch Pro 2 on other carriers and globally).
The phone itself is gorgeous. The call quality is perfect, the speaker, the mic, and the ringer are all loud and clear. The slide-out full QWERTY keyboard greatly improves usability of many apps like instant messaging or e-mail. Typing long URLs, and having the left-right (and up-down) keys to correct typing mistakes is a huge time-saver. The unit is a bit hefty, just like the original Tilt. The screen is a big, sharp, 800x480 WVGA one. The GPS receiver is ultra fast, it takes less than a second to start tracking using Bing or Google maps.
Second, the OS - WM 6.5 is a fairly minor upgrade from 6.1. The best 6.5 features are the inclusion of the Pocket IE version 6 (along with the ability to display websites with Flash), a nicer start menu, more finger-friendly menus all around, support for widgets (lightweight XML feed apps that draw content from content providers), and Marketplace for Mobile.
Pocket IE 6 is a much better browser than the previous PIE. The AT&T also includes Opera Mobile - some say an even better mobile browser. Browsing experience is not as good and fluid as on the iPhone, but good enough to be fun. Having a stylus is handy for clicking on links, since I could never press on small links on the iPhone.
The Windows Live Mobile (WLM) app lets me stay connected to my e-mail and the instant messenger. The Hotmail gets pushed to the phone as it arrives, no need to check for it. From what I'v heard, the feature is not supported for other web e-mail, like Yahoo, or Gmail. As I am in the Hotmail environment, the WLM also syncs all my contacts between the Hotmail server and the phone, so I don't even need to use ActiveSync, or scribble phone numbers in various files. I would say that WLM suite is the single "killer app" of the Windows Mobile platform, and I hope the MS continues to work on it.
The Start Menu is improved, with colorful high-res icons, which are arranged in a honeycomb fashion. In fact, I don't use the TouchFlo3D anymore, because as awesome as it is, it tends to take too much RAM. I just configure the phone to show the straight minimal Today Screen, and use the Start Menu to launch programs.
The Marketplace for Mobile is a good attemp by MS at having a single standardized retail outlet. The Windows Mobile always had tons of apps scattered around many online retailers and hacking forums, so MS decided to provide regular non-technical users with a single reliable app source (obviously seeing the success of the Apple App Store). The Marketplace is very easy, I would say, trivially simple to use.
In the end, I very much like the phone. Windows Mobile is a powerful, fun, and still somewhat quirky OS. The phone itself is a hub of connectivity, capable of 3G, WiFi, and GPS reception. I find myself always checking on what's going when someone IMs me, or an e-mail arrives. I completely forget that it is also a phone, to me it is the closest thing to having a computer in the pocket.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on April 15, 2010
I'll start by saying that I really like this GPS phone. I did a lot of research, so I already knew it's limitations. Having said that, I completely understand why others are very frustrated with the marketing of this 'feature' phone. It has been pitted against the iPhone, but here are some reasons why that makes no sense:
There are some useful utilities bundled with the phone, but most require an extra subscription fee. There are no applications included, and none are available to add. Even a basic game like solitaire would be welcome for long layovers. I don't use social networks, but the included Ciao service apparently is not widely adopted, so it may be a struggle to get your friends to enroll. None of the popular services (Facebook, Twitter) are supported. There is no support for any instant messaging services. The phone does not record or playback video of any kind (That is such a serious omission, that I can't imagine this phone appealing to anyone, besides GPS enthusiasts). The Web browser is very slow (even over WiFi). Battery life has been poor. So, you can see that any comparison to the iPhone is, frankly, ridiculous.
Here are some reasons why I actually like this phone:
I like that this is a GPS first, and a phone second. I have always liked Garmin GPS devices, and this one is no exception. The map and POI databases are built-in, so there is no need to be connected to your wireless data plan to get around. I plan to use this while traveling internationally (I unlocked the phone for use with other carriers), and I don't need the headaches of no service, or exorbitant data roaming rates. It has an option to use Yellow Pages to lookup anything that's not in the database. There are many map regions available for the phone. Despite several reviews that panned the phone's user interface, I find it quite nice. A number of reviewers complained that there was no home button, but you only need to hold the back button for a second to jump to the home screen. The phone has a nice form-factor. There isn't a single blinking LED anywhere on the phone. The price has come way down on this phone, otherwise I would not have purchased it.
So, if you're like me and want a GPS that can make calls from around the world, then the Nuvifone G60 might be for you. If you've even thought about getting an iPhone, then you probably won't be satisfied with this phone. Garmin has another model called the Nuvifone M10, that runs Windows Mobile 6.5, and is a true smart phone, that I think many might prefer. But, it's not currently available in the United States.
31 of 38 people found the following review helpful
I have tried 6 times to change my review from 5 Stars to just one single star (only 'cuz amazon doesn't allow zero) without success. I accidentally hit the 5 star rating and I wanted everyone to know that I have tried repeatedly to fix my error, but so far, no luck. Oh well, at least you now know my true feelings on the matter...on with my amended and updated review...sorry Windows Mobile fans, you ain't gonna like it, b-u-u-u-t this phone should've never seen the light of day...
Okay, I have had issues up the wazoo since the 4th day of opening up my brand new Tilt 2...(read on if you want my full review)...what you SHOULD know before buying any phone using the Windows Mobile platform is this: no matter WHO manufactures the actual phone, whether it's Motorola, HTC, Palm or whoever, the problem with a WM phone is the Operating System--NOT the actual physical device. I know many people who have used the Palm version, Motorola, the Dash and a few others, and every single person has had more than a few problems, some quite serious, with WM regardless of which version...is this an ongoing situation which should force you to re-think paying an outrageous amount of money for a product that quite simply isn't worth a dime.
Let me start off first by admitting that I was a DIE HARD Palm fan for YEARS...out of nowhere I got the chance to get a Blackberry Bold, and while I was STILL a Palm fan, their extreme absence--scratch that, their complete negligence of updating their operating system despite the requests and the pleas and begging we made over the years was simply put pathetic...so there I was, first time in years with my Blackberry Bold, a non-touch screen phone (which by itself took a LONG time to get used to), and an entirely new OS to get used to--one that in MY opinion just wasn't as user-friendly as the Palm platform. But get used to it I did. In fact, I actually grew to really LOVE my Blackberry, so you can imagine how upset I was when out of the blue, it somehow stopped working as a phone. I could e-mail, text and surf the internet, but no making or receving calls...so what good is a phone when you can't actually use it as a PHONE, huh?
After some extended issues with AT&T, I got my replacement. Initially I pretty much expected another Bold as a replacement, hoping BIG time it'd be the Bold 9700, but imagine my surprise when I was told I wasn't getting a Blackberry. Oh NO! I have dozens of friends who have used Windows Mobile devices over the years and I know of NONE that has anything good to say about them, every one in absolute agreement that whatever they got next, it would NOT be Windows based. So with all of that to draw upon, I began to get nervous. I spent plenty of time viewing as many youtube videos I could find regarding the Tilt 2 and how it worked and the pro's & con's and slowly I began to get excited.
After what seemed like an ETERNITY, the phone arrived. First impression: from looking at it straight on, it looks deceptively like an iphone. Seriously, I think its rather obvious what inspired the design. However, once you pick it up, it is instantly apparent that this phone is hefty...easily the HEAVIEST smart phone I've ever owned (or seen for that matter), and probably one of the biggest since they began to combine PDA's with cell phones. However, after the initial shock of having such a heavy device, I pretty much got used to it...but size and weight really ARE a factor. You NEVER forget you've got it on you or in a pocket.
I haven't owned a phone that had SO much packed into such a small space. Seriously, the Tilt 2 is essentially a micro laptop computer that can do almost everything a typical computer can do (when it works, of course). I cannot tell you how many times I have opened up one program only to find another 3 to 8 programs inside of THAT. It can make finding some programs a bit difficult, but remember, its Windows based, so if you are already familiar with a PC its kinda like navigating a smaller version. They have included games, software for checking the weather, push websites to your phone at whatever interval you'd like so when you want to navigate a site you visit frequently, it'll load MUCH faster, which I think is a pretty cool idea, actually. Palm, Blackberry and iphone ought to come up with a similar app (hint, hint).
The phone actually comes with 3 pre-loaded web-browsers, 2 of which are light YEARS ahead of the seriously outdated browser on my Blackberry (and even further ahead of my older Palm phones). You can choose Opera mobile or the pocket edition of Internet Explorer, both of which work pretty decent to be honest. While researching my Tilt 2 before I received it, I discovered a free download called Skyfire which is on-par with what I've seen from the iphone and Android equipped devices. Pretty impressive all the way around...and pages load actually pretty quick even when my phone isn't getting 3G service (which is an altogether different gripe with AT&T in my particular area).
The Touch Flo 3D screen is pretty slick. My old Bold had easily the best screen I had ever seen up to that point, but the Tilt has an even brighter more clear screen--not an easy task considering how LARGE the screen is, but it really is amazingly clear and brite. The resistive touch screen certainly takes a little getting used to, the learning curve will vary depending on how quick you adjust to it, but it takes some figuring before I got the hang of how to flow through images without accidentally choosing one that I really wasn't looking for. You may learn quicker, but it certainly isn't difficult. I held up my Tilt next to an iphone and the other owner seemed genuinely impressed with the overall design and operation. Don't know if that means anything, but I thought I'd throw that out just in case.
The camera at just 3.2 megapixels doesn't seem all that more than my Blackberry's standard 2 MP camera, but holy COW do the pics come out amazingly clear and so much better than my Bold its actually embarassing by comparison. It certainly could've used a flash, but I won't gripe too much about that, especially since there are so MANY problems with it that bear looking into. Suffice it to say the photo capabilities are the best I've had with a phone--again when compared specifically to my Bold and previous Palm phone.
The keyboard is massive...and I mean BIG. Honestly, after using my Treos & Blackberry, I was used to a much smaller keyboard directly below the screen. Take the keyboard off and the phone is basically the HTC Pure, which is actually a pretty small device next to the Tilt 2. But I NEED a physical keyboard being the texting-centric person that I am. The on-screen keyboard just plain stinks, that is unless you're fingers are on par with a toothpick (its much easier with the included stylus), but if I need to write something with only one hand, lets just say the keyboard is SO wide that trying to do it one-handed is a challenge. All things considered I MUCH prefer a smaller keypad akin to my Blackberry. The keys seem to be a little too flush with the background, making finding them a bit of a challenge as well. I wish the keys were not so recessed, but that is just MY personal problem, you may like things the way they are. With so many keys to get used to, it's nice to see dedicated keys for things I use often like periods, or comma's (something I wish Blackberrys had). One place that my Blackberry RULED was how you had the ability to create your own shorthand and by typing one or two letters allowed your device to know you really meant to write something else and would auto-correct depending how you programmed it. A shortcut ALL smartphones should include.
As an emailing device, this is where the Tilt and the Windows platform falls behind Blackberry, WAY FREAKIN BEHIND--to an almost embarassing degree. Instead of getting my Yahoo and Gmail 'pushed' to my phone, I have to program it to go 'fetch' it once every 5 minutes. It features Direct Push technology for microsoft servers, but the set up is--for THIS user anyway--a bit complicated, especially compared to Blackberry. I still haven't got it worked out. For the more technically savvy folks, this may be a non-issue, but for people like me, who I honestly believe outnumber the techno folks by a large margin, well, it can be a bit frustrating and possibly a deal breaker if you rely on quick reception and replies to e-mail. Definitely something to consider before buying.
As a scheduler, the Windows Mobile 6.5 is actually pretty good. Beating my Bold in this area by a significant margin. Very info-oriented with plenty of options that just weren't available with BB devices. The Palm was great in this area as well (probably the best out there IMO). The Today screen is also quite nice to deal with, especially if you have plenty of appointments to keep track of.
As a multi-media device, so far I am impressed. I haven't watched movies on it yet, but maybe I will (I hate this phone so much I doubt I'll go to the trouble to be honest). As for listening to music, well, this IS one place where it's nice, but not as convenient...there isn't a dedicated 3.5 plug for headphones, instead you plug in this awkward-looking adapter and THEN you can plug in headphones, but it is so big and bulky that attached to an already large phone just makes it worthless and downright stupid...and its a real shame seeing as the phone has a built-in FM tuner with Radio Data Service meaning you can see what song is playing on the screen if you're listening to a station that has the technology to begin with. There are other versions of this phone on other networks where a plug WAS included, making this not just a bit of a head-scratcher and more of an outright snub to AT&T users.
As a phone, I have ZERO complaints. The signal strength once again compared to my Blackberry Bold is improved--but not enough to make me say it is clearly superior. In places where I simply could NOT get a signal big enough to surf the 'net, my Tilt 2 has NO problem navigating the web at nearly 3G speeds--even when not in 3G service areas, a BIG plus if you are hell bent on getting a Windows Mobile device. The speakerphone seems to be pretty good overall, but not quite as clear or loud as the original Bold stereo speakers...but still above-average I must say.
There is more I could write, and I probably will do an update in a few more days or weeks, but my only BIG piece of advice is this: before you buy, take the time to actually go into a store and SEE it for yourself. The photos just do NOT do it justice, and since it ireally IS a big phone, you need to know what you are getting into before buying so you don't regret your decision.
Okay, it's been almost a week now, and I ran into my first snag...while receiving a text message from my wife that happened to also include a photo, my phone simply crashed in a way that was quite odd. Over the course of the next 3-4 hours I tried everything asked by the HTC website, other postings at the TILT 2 forums and even tried a few that I thought up myself. NOTHING worked. Faced with the prospect of having to perform a hard reset, without being able to entirely sync all my calendar and contact information which had taken HOURS to transfer via the small keyboard, I put it off 'til it was obvious the ONLY course of action left was one that I seriously did not want to take. But take it I did. I performed the hard reset (which by the way you can perform by holding BOTH phone keys at the bottom of the screen and pressing the power key on the top at the same time).
Literally now I have a like-new phone, without ANY of my previous info on it at all. Oh well. The phone seems to be working just fine, but I wonder now if/when it'll happen again. I've had this phone now for less than 6 days and while I really like the phone, I can only endorse it IF it doesn't crash on me regularly. Once again, I'll come back and update further in a few days/weeks with anything relevant.
Okay, it crashed on me again, just 4 days after it took a dump on me the last time. How frustrating! I had to do another hard re-set, which of course wiped EVERYTHING I had painstakingly re-loaded onto it over the course of the previous 4 days--which was actually quite a lot. I DID however finally figure how to backup my contacts and calendar using Google--which when you factor in a device that forces you to do hard re-sets so often is absolutely critical, unless physically typing in ALL of that info over and over isn't a problem for you. Another idea is to save ALL your contacts to the SIM card, which will allow you to reload if/when you have to perform a hard re-set (and you WILL).
A few additional items to report: the phone is a fingerprint MAGNET. The fact that it is a touch screen shouldn't come as a surprise how prints transfer, but I've owned other touch screen phones that didn't attract pretty much everything nearly as much. The phone call quality isn't anything to write home about, either. The speaker phone is MUCH louder than when you just hold it up to your ear as usual. I'm not sure why. Weird.
The phone routinely freezes up on me (at least twice per day), which so far requires me to remove the back and press the reset button using the stylus...once it boots back up, it seems to be fine...but still, NO other phone I have owned did this to me quite literally OUT OF THE BOX. Not even close. My 3 year old Palm 755p has crashed maybe 3 times on me--and I am pretty sure each time was due to MY downloading 3rd party software which turned out to not be so compatible. My Blackberry only began to crash after I received a bad SIM card. Its looking more and more like my initial concerns about the Window's Mobile platform were justified.
Let me be clear: when this phone works properly, it is absolutely fantastic, if not gigantic. But if I purchase a brand new vehicle which required me to overhaul the engine once every couple months, I'm relatively certain that I'd take it back...unfortunately, exchanging this phone is simply NOT an option (long story, trust me), so I make due with what I have. I MUST say that I am quite disappointed with the overall basic fact that when I need my phone the most, I just don't know whether or not it will let me down...and in today's world, that really is unnacceptable. You'd think after over a decade, the Windows platform would have managed to get it right at least once or twice, right?
Too bad, because I REALLY had high hopes that WM 6.5 would be the one that finally did things correct. So far, IMO, not even close.
Okay it still lags in speed every now and then (at least 2-3 tims per day) but hasn't froze up on me at all. Hopefully it won't, but then again, who knows?
I'd like to add this observation as well: the battery life isn't very impressive, in fact, its downright poor. If I use it just moderately, I have to charge it otherwise power drops to under 30% fairly quick. In other words, bring the charger with you to work, or you'll regret it. Using WiFi and leaving the Data Connection on saps the battery a lot as well.
The screen while large and pretty well responsive, just isn't as all-out brilliant as my former Blackberry Bold--which had THE best looking, vivid screen I have EVER seen. According to the details, the Tilt 2 has more pixels than either the Bold OR the iphone, and yet both of those phones have MUCH clearer image density and oveall clarity and brilliance. Don't get me wrong, the Tilt's screen IS nice, just not as brite as I was expecting considering all it has going for it.
The next generation Tilt really should have a MUCH faster processor...let's face it, there really IS no excuse not to be able to make these smartphones blazing fast, or at least way more efficient than they are now. If the technology wasn't readily available, well I wouldn't mention it, but good GRIEF, not only is it available, but are fast becoming obsolete. This really is disappointing--and not just for HTC products, but for all major manufacturers and carriers. Wake up and stop treating us consumers like we don't know anything.
Okay, off the soapbox (again).
Okay, I'm getting pretty good at doing hard re-sets...I'm in the middle of my 9th or 10th (I'm beginning to lose count). NOTE TO Windows Mobile manufacturers: should I honestly be expected to wipe my phone absolutely clean every few days and think having to re-load literally everything from scratch is considered normal? The HTC Tilt 2 is my 5th smartphone, and I have NEVER had to do it before-not ONCE with ANY previous model, and I should note that this is my 1st Windows Mobile device. But seriously, how often should I be okay with my phone freezing up on me to the point where the ONLY way to get it back to working AT ALL is to do a hard re-set? Seriously, this is embarassing. AND it isn't at all new to those familiar with this operating system.
If this is any indication, a couple days ago I spent 20 minutes talking with a guy who was bent on buying a Tilt 2 and I did everything in my power to convince him to purchase ANYTHING that did NOT run WM. I am fairly certain that this isn't an HTC problem. I know several friends with HTC phones operating other systems (such as Android) and without exception, NONE of them have had the issues that I experience virtually every single day...and please remember my phone isn't even 2 MONTHS old. I suppose this would be easier to accept were my phone 2-3 years old and been used and dropped and abused, but sorry, my first major problem fell on me on day 4 of opening the box. NOT a good sign. What can I say? Once again, WHEN the phone works, it's really great...unfortunately the time in between my having to wipe it with a hard re-set seems to be getting closer, meaning the product pure & simply SUCKS. When I drop by the AT&T store to talk about these problems, they (literally) act like this has been the norm for pretty much ALL WM phones since the beginning and why would I be surprised by this?
I'll be going with Blackberry next time around...and the sooner the better.