Motorola showed off its latest Milestone XT720 handset to the technology press today, while the Flipout device announced last week was also available for a hands-on.
The new Milestone is thinner than its predecessor as it is touch-screen only and lacks a slide-out Qwerty keyboard, but the first thing we noticed about the device is how shiny and reflective the screen and front bezel are - see photo. This could make the phone hard on the eyes if you are trying to use it outdoors on a bright sunny day.
However, the phone itself seems quite promising. Motorola showed a movie clip being played with the phone connected to a large LCD monitor, and also some footage taken using the high definition camcorder function of the handset itself.
Movie playback looked impressive but was standard DVD resolution, while the phone looked like it was struggling a little with the high definition playback.
The Milestone XT720 seemed quite responsive during the brief time I was allowed to use it, although the handset's processor is clocked at 550MHz rather than the 1GHz of rival devices such as HTC's Desire.
That said, when I fired up the browser, its performance when opening and navigating around web pages did not seem to match up to my experience of using the Desire.
Despite the 3.7in display, the new Milestone does not seem overly large when compared to other smartphones, and should easily slip into your pocket for carrying around.
In contrast, the Flipout seems quite chunky, because its Qwerty keypad swings down from behind the 2.8in screen. However, at 17mm, it is not actually that thick, but its small footprint (just 67mm x 67mm when closed up) makes it appear fat.
This format is a novel one, and seems to work quite well, making for a very compact device to carry around and use until you need the keyboard.
However, the keys themselves are tiny and crammed together into a grid layout rather than the staggered layout of most Qwerty keyboards. This does not make for speedy keying in of text, and Motorola could perhaps have done better here.
The Flipout also features Motorola's Motoblur user interface, which puts feeds from social networks and updates from tools such as Google Mail directly on the home screen.
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