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MOTONOW 2005

Intro Part 1 Part 2 Comments  60  

ROKR Q Smartphone RAZR & PEBL *  

The big official announcement of the first evening was the Q, the company's new RAZR-inspired smartphone running Windows Mobile 5.0. The Q stands for QWERTY, referring to the keyboard layout.

 

This will be the first Windows Mobile Smartphone with a landscape QVGA display. Note that it is the Smartphone version of Windows Mobile, not Pocket PC, so there is no touchscreen on this one.

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It's very similar to a BlackBerry, of course, but thinner and much more capable. Like recent BlackBerrys, you'll find an internal antenna, a large display, Bluetooth, and of course the QWERTY keyboard. Also like a BlackBerry, it has a handy thumbwheel to scroll through emails and lists; and a real one, not the fake kind that just toggle up and down.

Where the Q stands apart are features like the MiniSD memory card slot, megapixel camera, and a Bluetooth implementation supporting all major profiles (BlackBerries are so far limited to just headset and handsfree). Plus the strong developer community surrounding Windows Mobile means there should be a great deal more third-party software available for this device than for a Blackberry. A speakerphone and stereo speakers round out the deal.

My first hands-on impression was very positive. It's a great size, and very lightweight. The ergonomics are quite good. The keyboard looks and feels extremely similar to a Treo, with very rounded raised keys. The other keys, above the QWERTY keyboard, are similar to the RAZR in that raised edges help you feel out each key, but the material is regular plastic instead of exotic metal like the RAZR.

The Q is expected to be available early next year.

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