Motorola Q 9h smartphone

Will this smartphone eat BlackBerries for breakfast..?

Motorola Moto Q 9h smartphone
Where the hell is the Wi-Fi connection?

Battery performance is harder to judge since the device draws power from your PC every time you plug it in – and that will happen a lot if you're using the cable to sync or to mess with files on the MiniSD card. Worryingly, Motorola doesn't state a guide time for talk and standby in its official stats, but when we did take it away from its natural habitat and use it for longer than a day the indicator never sunk below two bars.

But it's the sound quality that really impresses when you playback your MP3, WMA and AAC files. The built-in speaker handles difficult songs well, even at the highest volume, and it's possible to stand the device up and use it as a mini-stereo. There's also Bluetooth support for a wireless stereo headset, using A2DP and AVRCP technology. The phone also boasts a 2-megapixel camera – something that a BlackBerry shuns for corporate security reasons.

This offers up to 8x zoom and takes images up to 1,600 x 1,200 pixels. It will also shoot video, although it only goes as high as 320 x 240 resolution at 15fps so won't make you the next Spielberg. Sadly, the screen size isn't used to full advantage, with menus placed at the bottom of the picture rather than in the unused space at the sides or as see through menus over the image. You can put the camera into full-screen mode for when you actually take the shot, but it defaults back again after that.

The camera does have a flash of sorts, although this consists of a static light that stays on while you size up your image. If you're not into night photography, it doubles as a great torch, although expect your battery life to be affected appropriately.

Verdict

Not the prettiest of smartphones and crucially lacking Wi-Fi, document editing, and GPS functions, the Moto Q 9h is nevertheless very easy to use. Its robust and well spaced keys make it easy to handle messaging and the entertainment functions outperform its uncool looks.

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Motorola Q 9h smartphone

The ugly duckling turns into a swan when you put some tunes on and get into your messaging groove...
Price: around £320 RRP