BlackBerry Storm 9500
BlackBerry's tried and trusted hard-button keyboard options meant that it resisted the touch screen call until late last year. The 3.3in screen and stylish icon-led menus added to BlackBerry's excellent push email facilities tempted many non-business customers to invest in their first 'Berry, but it struggles a little in this company. Its innovative 'ClickThrough' screen means you have to actively depress the glass cover to activate buttons, making it easy to distinguish between a press and a swipe but the 3.2Mp camera is okay rather than exciting and while it has a nippy HSDPA 3G data connection, there's absolutely no Wi-Fi on board. At 113 x 62 x 14mm and 155g it's a bit of a brick and while BlackBerry's Apps Centre is growing steadily, it's still way behind Apple's. Ideal for email addicts, BlackBerry's expertise in this area is still the main draw for the company's most stylish device.
Reg Rating 70%
More Info BlackBerry
This could be the make or break product for Palm, once a smart phone leader, but more recently failing to keep up with the rapidly advancing competition. It's a slider with four-line Qwerty keypad, which will always beat the iPhone's rather cramped onscreen keyboard for ease of use. The WebOS operating system has a lovely little ripple effect when you touch it and the functions are displayed as cards that you can brush across the 3.1in multi-touch screen. You can multitask with it but navigation by flicking, brushing and pushing takes a bit of getting used to. The Palm Pré's stock of apps doesn't rival Apple's yet, but Palm was always strong in this area in the past, and if the Pré takes off, it's likely there'll be loads. With a Qwerty keyboard and work-friendly apps this could be the new must-have business phone de nos jours.
Reg Rating 80%
Price £450 – UK release TBA
More Info Palm
HTC Touch Pro 2
I didn't buy an iPhone for the sole reason I have an iPod Touch and didn't want to replace it. It's a lovely device but I bought the HTC Touch Pro 2 instead for Outlook and multiple input options.
Nothing will ever be as good as the iPhone.
Practically ALL the touchscreen phones can beat the iPhone in terms of specs. However none of them have the same mad cult of followers - hence difficult to beat.
I however think almost all touchscreen phones are better than the iPhone, especially in terms of price.
The only contender for me
I would have gone for an iphone 3GS but for the same reason as tomjol (too pricey for the minutes and texts and phone you get) I didn't.
I went for the HTC Magic. Certainly it's got failings but email and internet are great on this. I hardly use gmail or thunderbird on my PC anymore. And pretty much every app I've tried work great and the integration is really good, if not perfect. It shines for the same reason that the iPhone shines, if maybe a little less brightly : outstanding usability. My Nokia E71 did more out of the box but despite being a great phone, was a pain to use by comparison. Also the Magic benefits from the same promise of ongoing OS updates as the iPhone but without ever having to connect it to a PC.
Sadly it doesn't look as good as the iphone but much to my liking, doesn't attract much attention.
@AC re: K800i
Yes, the K800i was/is a great phone. It was by far the best phone I had ever owned until I switched to my iPhone 3G. Since doing so the only thing I've occasionally missed is the great camera, but not much TBH. The K800i camera might blow the doors off the camera in the iPhone but it's still just a toy compared with any real camera, even a point and shoot cheapie. So, for the typical "taking a pic for an MMS" usage a phone camera gets the iPhone camera is as adequate as that on the K800i or any other phone camera.
"messing about on the internet using opera mini, which with the zoom on the new version is a joy to use." and "with opera mini and just normal GPRS, I still find it acceptable".
You are joking aren't you?? Granted, Opera Mini is about as good as mobile browsing can get on a screen the size of a postage stamp but it's still a huge chore. To be used only when there's absolutely no alternative. Mobile browsing with Safari on iPhone however is just amazing, as good as using the browser on your PC or Mac. The same can be said for e-mail. Yes, it worked, painfully, on the K800i, but on the iPhone it's pretty much as good as on a PC. When I'm at home I frequently check my mail and surf the net on my iPhone rather than walk 5 yards to the iMac sitting in my office.
Videos on the K800i?? Watching them? See "postage stamp screen" above. Since I've had my iPhone I've been able to watch entire series (like Lost, Alias etc) on the train to work. You really lose nothing compared to watching them on TV.
Oh, and about people's WLAN "obsession". Guess what? My iPhone contract with Vodafone in Portugal gives me a 500Mb monthly data limit. That's perfectly fine for daily surfing (and yes, we can surf the net on the metro here) but you'll soon blow it if you watch a few YouTube vids or use streaming radio, so yes, WLAN is very important.
Know what you are talking about
@The Original Ash
Yes it's an S60 device & yes that OS has had problems and I should know because my last 4 or 5 phones have used it. The problem here though is you are knocking the s60 5th edition without knowing the score because this baby really is much, much better. The speed is near enough instant and smooth & packed with features. Also I'm not tied down to Apple!