The V350 runs Android 2.2.2 Froyo which, as Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich is creeping into the mainstream, seems positively antique. The next disappointment is the 600MHz Qualcomm MSM 7227 processor, that dates back to 2009, supported by 512MB RAM. It’s surly and slow, never seeming to be in any rush to do anything, and generally taking its time when launching apps or switching between menus. This lethargic impression extends to the call quality too, which lacks fidelity, with voices sounding slightly distant.
Choosing the Sim for calls and data is easy to get to grips with
Yet all those misgivings aside, the dual Sim aspect is really rather good. It has room under the hood for two quad-band 3G Sim cards, with each clearly marked as Sim 1 and Sim 2. A 2GB microSD card is supplied as standard, with the capability to handle up to 32GB.
When you key in the number you want to dial, there’s a choice of green phone icons so you can decide which Sim you want to make the call, and the same goes for text messages. You can have both Sims active at once, so you can receive calls on either, and it will flag up which of your two phone numbers is being called.
You can choose to use one Sim for voice and another for your data, with the status bar revealing which one is connected to the internet. All useful stuff for avoiding high data charges when you’re abroad, or if you have a Sim from work that offers voice but no data.
You can also set which Sim is your preferred one to make calls from or you can disable one or both of them altogether, which could come in handy if you’re abroad, and you want to make absolutely sure you don’t incur any roaming charges on one or other of your Sims. All in all, it’s a neat and well thought out making it very easy to use two SIMs on one phone.
As a dual Sim device it does the job well, but as a smartphone it's a bit creaky
The 5Mp camera has no flash, but includes autofocus, as well as face and smile capture, plus a panorama function and geotagging. The panorama feature automatically stitches five pics together as you rotate the camera through 180 degrees. Picture quality isn’t bad, though you’ll need to be careful with your light, and while video quality is only VGA, it will just about do for YouTube. The 1500mAh battery held up OK but was nothing exceptional, offering a little over a full day of steady use.
A dual SIM handset is a great idea, and sure to find more than a few willing customers. While the Viewsonic V350 nicely executes switching Sims, as a handset it is just a bit too low-rent for comfort. For use as an extra or spare phone, it just about passes muster, but as your primary smartie, it’s likely to get frustrating. ®
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ViewSonic V350 dual Sim Android smartphone
This is the product that I've been waiting for for ages... I am part of another community that would really benefit from a good dual-sim smartphone: I'm a Tech Support Manager for a software company, my work phone # is published to all and sundry, so I keep a personal number as well (so I can turn the work one off from time to time...).
This means I have to carry 2 handsets, maintain 2 sets of contacts, keep 2 phones charged etc (not to mention that the work handset is a BB so I have to know how to drive 2 different phones, have different peripherals, cables and chargers...).
What I want is essentially a dual-SIM Desire S; a great Android smartphone with 2 slots so I can choose which SIM to use. I've tried various 'dual SIM' plugin cards but they always want you to reboot the phone when switching...
Now the apparently perfect phone comes along and it's cheap, plasticky, slow and out dated! Gah!
Shame there aren't more
Shame there aren't more dual sim phones, but doubtless from the mobile manufacturers point of view they're seen as a quick way to reduce sales rather than increase them.
We've got cameras in our phones so no longer [u]have[/u] to carry a separate camera just for quick snaps.
We've got MP3 players in our phones so no longer have to carry around an additional device, including charger and headphones, just to play music.
But most of us have jobs so we still have to carry a second phone, often with a different charger. Yes, there is a *standard* mobile charger connection however some manufacturers have decided to continue ignoring the rules. From a business point of view it makes a lot of sense - an employee would take better care of a personal phone compared to a business phone so just supply a SIM instead.
I own this phone, and have for awhile, he's my review
It did come with 2.2, and a version of the Viewsonic launcher app that could be turned off. I did an OTA (over the air update) mid December and that put it up to 2.3.7 Gingerbread, but then the new Viewsonic launcher app was always running, and I could not go with the Android default. I though 2.2 was slow, but 2.3.7 was slower, until I rooted it and removed the Viewsonic launcher and all the other crap that was slowing it down, now it works great.
Under 2.2 the loudspeaker volume sucked, but 2.3.7 fixed that for the most part. Speakerphone is still hard to use while driving, as it is still too quiet.
Dual active SIMs
OS is nice after updating from 2.2 Froyo to 2.3.7 Gingerbread and rooting to remove all the non-removable junk.
3.5 mm standard headphone jack.
Battery is OK for having 2 radios on at the same time.
I'm not nice to it, but the screen still doesn't have a mark on it.
Camera is OK.
Deals with contacts nicely, lots of options.
Fast enough to run Angry Birds.
USB/charging connection is behind a lame little cover, and is on the side. (this really is lame)
2.2 had a weird "Airplane mode" error that drained the battery quicker.
Not the fastest CPU, not even close, needs to be better.
No flash for the camera.
Only about 100mb free on the "phone" for adding apps that can't be moved to the SD. (most can be moved, but not all)
Under 2.2 sometimes after powering on or rebooting, Apps stored on the SD card didn't show up, or showed up with a broken icon. This error has gone away completely under 2.3.7.
Speakerphone is too quiet and the person on the receiving end hears background noise pretty badly. (normal non-speakerphone is fine).
Battery will last about 4 days if Wifi and Bluetooth is off and you don't make or receive any calls.
About a days worth of calls will drain the battery in a day. I charge it every day of two (usually every day)
As everyone who watches the wire will know, to be a drug dealer you need burners.
Dual SIMS *&* three phone numbers on the cheap!
I use a "down-market" Mobile with TWO SIM with TWO numbers on one of them.
One has a single Hong Kong Mobile number, and the other SIM is for another service provider's local HK Mobile number *&* a PHILIPPINES mobile number as well.
This allows me to receive SMSes (only) from the Philippines at a cost of ONE Peso - an almost microscopically small amount compared with the rest of the world (i.e. about 1.4 UK Pence per SMS) and for that the SMSes have reached me in Australia, Russia & the Baltic.
All this from a "cheap as chips" Chinese "Malata" brand phone costing me HK$240 = about GBP20, and the previous one of a similar brand cost me little more than GBP12 - and I sold that at a profit after using it for about a year.
Okay, so it's not got a huge screen or Android on it - but I only use it for phone calls and the occasional outgoing SMS when on the move. "SendmAssage.com" is my totally FREE SMS sender from my computer. and NO, the URL is spelt correctly!