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Motorola i530


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Nextel i530 Buyer Beware


Sep 23, 2005 by craigsdal

We use three of these phones in our business and the problem is poor garbled/muffled sound quality. These phones have 6-1 technology compared to 3-1 technology on some their older phones. The 6-1 technology compresses the signal that causes the very very poor sound quality...Nextel knows this and will not offer any solutions to fix this problem. Don't buy this telephone!

Excellent Phone


May 22, 2004 by FriscoJohn

I have either owned or used just about all the iden Nextel phones since the start. Recently upgraded form the i90c, and I like this phone a lot. I bought my wife (and business partner) the i730; she likes colors etc. I like durability, and this phone is rugged. Several drops so far onto concrete, no problems. I also carry the t730 (Verizon). The audio quality of the i530 is so much better than the t730 that it's not even in the same ballpark. If that's the trade off for the larger size, it is worth it. I'm not positive, but I also am under the impression that my i530 has slightly better reception than my wife's i730. I'm pretty sure it has better audio.

The one thing I would prefer is a second (outside) screen. But that might compromise the mil-spec ruggedness, and that is an acceptable trade off.

I love this phone!

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Nice upgrade from previous series


Apr 20, 2004 by TM787

Once again Motorola has teamed with Nextel Communications to offer a superior cellular telephone. For obvious reasons Nextel revolutionized the cellular phone industry with Direct Connect technology, familiar "walkie-talkie". Their first series of phones were well thought out and performed exemplary. I personally owned an i60 and used it for two years on and off duty. I am a Police Officer in a medium sized Florida City. I found Nextel's Direct Connect (D/C) feature extremely revolutionary. The i530 phone is a great upgrade. I have found it to be at least as durable as my i60 and much easier to hold onto if your hands are damp (due to the rubberized plates).The signal reception is stronger than the i60 and the battery (standard) lasts two days of heavy usage. I enjoy the additional ring tones available and the improvements in the software. I need a durable phone and have found this one to be an excellent choice. It is small enough to carry on my duty belt (and this is a BIG DEAL for a Police Officer). My partner, a new Nextel subscriber, just received his i305. Looks like it will be very durable, but I found it to be a bit too large. We plan on using the he#& out of these phones and comparing their durability. More to come.....

You'd be hard pressed to find better!


Mar 10, 2004 by BLubak1

I've always been pretty loyal to Motorola as far as cell phones go, and while I like my other Motorolas, this one is by far the best I've ever had. Living in a more rural area, signal strength is my first priority when it comes to picking out a cell phone, and the reception on the i530 here in northwest CT on Nextel's network is absolutely incredible. Calls are loud -- so loud that if you put the earpiece volume up past the halfway mark, you'll go deaf -- and very clear. The antenna is extendable, though I've never actually had to extend it out from its stub form -- the reception is that good. The built-in speakerphone is a very nice feature for having a hands-free conversation at your desk while doing two-handed computer work, too, and unlike the i205 where you have to download the speakerphone feature into the phone for a $20 fee, the i530 comes preloaded with this feature right out of the box. Unlike a lot of flip phones across the board, this phone doesn't feel even the least bit flimsy -- it's built like a rock, and complete with its rubberized outer shell, I'm convinced it could take several hits to a brick wall -- though I hesitate to try it for obvious reasons. :o) The phone itself is really sharp looking, too (I have the black version, not the yellow). The menu system is a bit different from the other Motorolas I've owned, utilizing Motorola's Falcon operating software, but after a couple of days of getting used to it, it comes naturally. The ability to attach multiple phone numbers to a single contact in the phonebook is a very nice feature that I've always wanted in my other Motorolas. The only thing left to possibly be desired on this phone is an external caller ID display (though it's not a huge inconvenience for me, and those who really want it can move up to the less rugged-looking i730) and maybe even a couple more MIDI ringtones, but if you're looking for serious phone for the buck, the i530 won't disappoint you.

Ideal phone without the flare...


Aug 16, 2004 by sdac-inc

Firstly let me state that I truly hope that this review helps in your decision, as many I read in my (insanely thorough) investigation seemed to be merely copy & paste's of others read elsewhere, leading me to believe that reviews were becoming nothing more than cookie-cutouts of one another.

That being said, the key to appreciating this phone is that you want a quality phone that has a great reception, is durable, and that carries a solid signal. Period.

I went with Nextel because of the free incoming calls after "sticker shock" on a $400 cell phone bill (when I'm used to $70) and so began my quest through an un-Godly amount of research and web pages in an attempt to find the right phone. That being said:

PROS - This is a durable phone. While I questioned why people seemed to drop their phones all the time (as I never had in the past), I sure enough dropped it just this AM on hard tile...and from waist high (I hadn't attached the belt clip securely). Phone still works like a charm. The sound is clear and while I carry another carrier for home use (family plan reasons), I have sat with phones side-by-side with this having 3 bars, and the other (I won't mention their name), having none. Too, while it is a bit larger than other phones, it feels solid when I am using it. I don't quite feel the security with the phones is see people holding with two fingers.

CONS - It's not a fun and fancy, JAVA based play toy that takes pictures and plays video games. (I have a digital camera and laptop for those reasons.) Believe it or not, that's it.

So…to sum it all up; if you want a PHONE that will hold up under duress, that will provide a solid feel while you are talking, and a clear signal where most fail, this one won't be beat. If, however, you are looking for a "latest & greatest" play toy to show off, this is not the phone for you.

Shawn Thompson
CIO / Chief Business Strategist
Strategic Data Alliance Consulting, Inc.

New Falcon Platform not User Friendly


Jan 22, 2004 by andersonsly

Motorola decided with the old line of phones(condor platform) to switch the send and end keys around, the just as we were getting used to it they went and switched them back. The new platform also is a little tricky, if you are used to navigating through the old phones, you almost always get to a point in the phone were you need to go one more step and just can't seem to get there. On the up side the new nextel models are way more durable, with the seams of the phone actually overlapping making it more water resistant. the software and signal have a vast improvment, much quicker and stronger. Overall I am impressed and believe they have a platform they should stick with. They have fixed the port problem which was a major defect with the last phones, but with that comes new chargers, so if you have any old equipment almost all accessories are not compatible.

ok, even though I chose the i60c


Oct 26, 2010 by narn3049

When I was getting a NEX-Tel phone I had no clue what kind of phone I wanted, but I Wanted one that was capable of the walkie-talkie thing, and the i60c I got from a family member had this feature. I got it switched and this phone was amazing. However I did test between thei530 and the i60c. Part of the reason I didn't want this phone, was I texted a lot back then, and this did not have the firm-texting keyboard, it was hard to press, and the i60c DID have the keyboard I'd wanted.

This phone save my butt. Literally!


Sep 20, 2007 by thefallguy

I have had a lot of fancy phones. You know-the cameras, built in FM radios, color screens, etc. I kept breaking them. I switched to Nextel because everyone loved the service. I upgraded to this phone for $30 and could not be happier. Excellent reception. Built super tough. It survived 15 minutes underwater. Then it spent a minute in a bonfire (last time I put my phone in my shirt pocket). It has survived a 5 story drop onto concrete. Then it saved my butt. Literally. I was practicing archery with my friends. I went to gather my arrows in some bushes behind the target. With my back turned I felt a strange thud into my back. I turned around to discover an arrow sticking out of my back pocket. The arrow pierced the speaker on the back of the phone, continuing through the star key and grazing the other speaker. The screen was destroyed. The phone doesn't work any more. I replaced it with a used i530 (Nextel discontinued it). Anybody in need of a tough phone needs to look at ebay for an i530. It's bright yellow color makes it easy to spot when you loose it. It's rubber coating means no scratches (but it does melt easy). Drive a truck over it-it won't care. It just keeps going. Battery life is a bit less then I would expect in a black and white screen phone (i get a bit less then two days from it). After market batteries are cheap and easy to find and dramatically increase battery life. That's my only gripe. It just works.

The worst phone & service EVER!!!


Dec 2, 2006 by i530crap

I had the phone about 3 months when I began sending it off and having it replaced (7 times and was charged $55 each time). Since then the ear speaker has been replaced 6 times and it's gone again now. Every other time at least I could hear on my speaker phone. Now I never know. I've had this phone almost 3 years. I paid $249 for both my husband's (replaced 5 times w/ $55 charge each)and my phone with a hefty activation fee for each. I've literally spent thousands and thousands and only have a piece of crap that still doesn't work! During this time Nextel has given me only one full month of credit.

There is not enough bad I can say about the phone or the service. I have found not one person at Nextel who gives a crap about my problems with the piece of crap they sold me!

This phone is pure junk


Jan 22, 2006 by writedom

We received these phones as upgrades to our i60 and i90's. The phone appears to be have a "bullet proof" design. The first thing we noticed is that the sound quality was absolutely horrible especially when raised to use in a work environment. Female voices are unable to be understood due to the "tinny" sound this phone produces. We found ourselves saying "I didn't copy that, can you repeat?" every other sentence.

That's not how "Business Gets Done"

With reference to the "Bullet Proof Design" what good is a rugged rubber coated phone when debris and metal particles get stuck in the speaker (stupidly located and exposed on the back of the phone)?

After 3 days of using these phones almost everyone requested their old phones back. The new ones were unusable.

I asked Nextel for a solution to the problem, they told me noone had ever complained about the phone. Yeah Right!

Don't buy this piece of Junk or any other Nextel with the speaker located on the back!

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