Motorola Milestone (Droid) review
And the hardware, though powerful on paper, is less than stellar in the flesh. The chassis is all sharp, hard edges and feels less than comfortable to hold. The sliding mechanism for the keyboard feels stiff and slow, and the keyboard itself, with its flat, indistinct keys, is deeply average. The touch sensitive buttons below the screen work fine, but we’d prefer physical keys to press.
The highlight is undoubtedly the screen. It’s slightly larger than the iPhone 3GS’s display at 3.7in, and more than double the resolution at 480 x 854 – which makes text and web pages easier on the eye. Its 5-megapixel camera, equipped with autofocus and a dual-LED flash, takes decent shots too, and there’s nothing missing on the communications front either. Some might bemoan the lack of FM tuner and internal storage (the 8GB you get is all on Micro SD), but those are the only weak spots as far as specifications are concerned.
But we can’t shake the feeling that the Motorola Milestone could have been so much more. And that feeling is confirmed by unimpressive performance figures. To start with, battery life is below average: we measured 50 per cent remaining after 24-hours (rounded to the nearest 10 per cent), which puts the Milestone on an equal footing with the iPhone 3GS and behind rivals such as the T-Mobile Pulse and HTC Hero.
And we measured disappointing browser performance too. Loading the BBC home page took an average of 18 seconds, where most other Android handsets manage around 13 seconds. Add to that the fact that general responsiveness while panning and zooming web pages doesn’t feel particularly smooth, and you have one seriously underwhelming handset.
It’s expensive, too, with no UK network deal yet announced, so if you’re desperate for the benefits that Android 2.0 update brings we’d counsel patience. The HTC Hero on Orange will soon be updated to the latest version, as inevitably will other existing handsets in the fullness of time. Or you could, of course, just go and buy an iPhone 3GS – which remains the easiest to use and snappiest smartphone around.
|Cheapest price on contract||£50|
|Contract monthly charge||£35.00|
|Contract period||18 months|
|Talk time, quoted||7hrs|
|Standby, quoted||16 days|
|Dimensions||60.2 x 14.6 x 115.8mm (WDH)|
|Camera megapixel rating||5.0mp|
|Resolution||480 x 854|
Other wireless standards