Thursday, December 17, 2009

Motorola CLIQ Review - Part 1

Technology Review

Last week I bought the Motorola CLIQ.  Admittedly, I’ve not spent enough time with the device to give it a meaningful review.  So, instead I’ll chronicle my use of the device as the weeks and months pass.

My point of reference is the Blackberry Pearl Flip, model 8220.  Previous to that I owned the Blackberry Pearl 8100, and before that the Blackberry 7100t.  These were all multi-touch devices.  I enjoyed having a full QWERTY keyboard without all of the keys, in such compact form factor.  I was quite unhappy with the Pearl Flip, enough so that I wrote a post about it here.

This was the start of my search for a new Smartphone.  I’d been unimpressed with Blackberry’s showings.  The devices were most certainly reliable, but they’ve become uninteresting, as uninteresting as the big businesses they support.

I was in search of something exciting and interesting. I wanted an innovative device.  Something that was nascent and  on the cutting edge.  I wasn’t as concerned about whether the device worked without issues.  The Pearl Flip certainly had its fair share of issues, and this was supposedly a mature product! 

I thought that if I had to live with a device that had issues, I might as well have something that I could have fun with. That meant it had to replace my notebook computer on many fronts, such as provide an alternate path to social networking, email, note-taking,  Google Apps, music, video, and some tangentially interesting games. 

Given that I didn’t want to incur the expense of switching providers, I decided to stay with T-Mobile.  You may be wondering what expenses.  Well, I’d have to pay a cancellation fee on my contract and higher fees for similar services elsewhere.  I have an unlimited family plan with T-Mobile at reduced fees due to my five-year loyalty to them that none of the other providers were willing to match.  If you’re listening AT&T and Verizon, you may want to take note that you lost my business.

So, I read up on other Smartphones available through T-Mobile.  I considered the Android and Windows Mobile device platforms. Everything I read about Windows Mobile told me I should stay away from them.  They are so far behind on the technology that likely they’ll be out of the game in very short order.  That left Android devices.  Between those offered at T-Mobile, the Samsung Behold 2 certainly seemed to have a wonderful display, both in clarity and size.  However, neither the HTC myTouch nor the Samsung Behold 2 have a keyboard. A keyboard is a necessity for me, especially given that I have big thumbs and I like the tactile feel of keys.

That left the HTC G1 or the Motorola CLIQ.  As I played with both devices in the store, I realized how much easier it was to use the keyboard on the Motorola.  What’s more, the screen on the Motorola was substantially easier to read.  The CLIQ, though using the same Android OS as the G1, seemed a more mature product overall. 

This left no question in my mind that I wanted to get the CLIQ.  Keep in mind, the whole process took me about a week, with three visits to the T-Mobile store and a couple of calls to T-Mobile customer service to decide on a new plan.

I’ve taken you through my process of selection at a very high level.  Next week, I’ll begin my review of the various features, feel, and experience of the CLIQ.  Stay tuned.

What Do You Think?

If you’ve used the CLIQ or any similar device, feel free to comment below.

Related Posts

Motorola CLIQ Review – Part 2
How I almost Dumped the CLIQ: Review – Part 3
Motorola CLIQ Review – Part 4 
Motorola CLIQ Review – Part 5

 

Photo Credit: All photos are Motorola’s and RIM’s.