My New Toy

I've been getting a little tired of my bulky Treo and have been looking to upgrade to something with faster Internet. Chris, our IT guy, said that we definitely should get something with the Windows Mobile operating system to better synchronize with our Exchange server at work, so I was doing some research the other day and found this little beauty was fresh on the market.

It's the Verizon XV6900, also known as the HTC Touch. Sleek looks, very compact, with lots of great features. Not to geek out on you, but it has a QVGA touch screen, 128 megs of RAM, 256 megs of flash ROM and a microSD card slot that supports SDHC, and 2 megapixel camera. The only things that seem to be missing are, no WiFi, and no GPS. And I still don't understand why they can't make a smartphone with at least 3 megapixels, but this an improvement over the more common 1.0.

The XV6900 has only a few buttons and -- big change from my Treo -- no keyboard. Not even a number pad. Instead there is several on-screen input methods including a keyboard or handwriting recognizer to enter text. It seems to do an excellent job of handwriting recognition, but I still prefer the simulated QWERTY keyboard. The on-screen keys are just barely large enough to be pressed with a finger. (Every once in a while my fat fingers hit the wrong letter.)

It weighs just 4 ounces and isn't much larger than a Moto RAZR. Here's a size comparison between the Touch, the Motorola Q, and the Ipod.

The Windows Mobile operating system has a nice touch-friendly Today screen with the time in large characters, message and missed call indicators, and shortcuts to the phone, messaging, screen lock, software shopping on and the camera album. There are tabs for weather, application launcher, and email. Stealing features from the ipod, you can swipe your finger up in the Today screen for other menus, and navigate through the internet, email, photos and other screens by swiping.

The voice recorder is a nice touch (I've needed that a few times but my Treo didn't have it), and the camera can take photos at several resolutions, the largest of which is 2 megapixel or 1200 x 1600. Lower resolutions are more suitable for screen backgrounds, MMS and caller ID. There are many adjustable settings, metering options, a self-timer and more. But no flash. There are also two video capture modes. Here are two pictures I took in the next-to-highest resolution mode. (The first picture is a golden color because that's the color of our bathroom at work, it's not the camera's fault! Also, the picture of Betty in the post just below this one was also taken with the Touch).

I love it. More reports to come, I'm sure.

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