This so-called candy bar phone is a compact companion measuring 4.25” x 1.75” x .75” and weighing 3.25 ounces. It runs on a Window Mobile 2003 second edition for Smartphone operating system and will not be up gradable to the 2005 version. Memory consists of 64 MB ROM and 32 MB SDRAM. It offers GSM/GPRS functionality with an internal antenna, SIM card, Bluetooth, and a mini-SD expansion slot. It also has InfraRed capability, a VGA quality camera, and a 64k color transflective LCD screen. The cost is $369.
Let’s take a walk around the unit starting on the left side where you’ll see a multi-functional rocker switch that adjusts volume when in talk mode. In standby mode, pushing the volume up will activate the voice recorder, and the volume down will activate the voice-tag function for the phone directory.
On the top we find the power button and the InfraRed port. Holding down the power button turns the unit on and off. A quick tap on the power button brings up the Quick List that allows you to lock and unlock phone settings.
The button on the top right side activates the camera mode and will take a picture or begin recording a video depending on the sub-mode setting. At the bottom of the right side is an opening for attaching a lanyard.
A mini-USB port and earplug jack are found on the bottom. The mini-USB port may be used for charging with the AC adapter or for synchronization with a PC using a USB cable. A nice set of earplugs is included with a volume adjustment wheel.
A panel on the back is removable for access to the battery, SIM card, and mini-SD card, which fit snugly under the battery. There seemed to be a non-functional silver button on the back, which turns out to be a tiny mirror for self-portraits, a clever touch.
The front of the phone has the usual keypad, a home button, back button, send and end buttons, and two soft buttons. I like the way the keys have an inclined plane face making them easier to strike individually. The normal navigation ring and action button are replaced by a diminutive joystick that I found highly sensitive and a bit frustrating to use at first. At the bottom of the keypad is a sensor that will turn on the backlight if needed-- another thoughtful feature.
The SP3i comes loaded with software including the Windows Mobile Smartphone suite: Outlook, Inbox, Contacts, Calendar, Tasks, Media Player, MSN Messenger, Internet Explorer, and ActiveSync. There are some high-end games included, such as Tennis
Addict, Cannons, Jewel Master and Snake, as well as additional exclusive ring tones
and themes from i-mate™. Club i-mate members may download several free third-party games.
Club i-mate is free to join and features a forum, downloads, and online help for users, but I found the help and customer service practically non-existent and finally gave up. Club i-mate is also an online store where members may purchase ...