ETEN M600 Review
The hardest part in releasing a Pocket PC brand is not only in portraying a balance of both a PC and a phone in a single device, but actually ensuring it can perform in this capacity. E-TEN designed this device to have the look and feel of a phone, with the screen and battery power of a laptop.
However, similarly to laptops, Wi-Fi connection can really drain the battery. The M600 includes an extended 1440 mAh Li-on battery which is swappable.
Talk time was tested to be 3.5 hours with a standby time of 150-200 hours. These times take into consideration that the devices Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity is disabled. When running either of these connections for periods longer than an hour, it is recommended to keep a charger or spare battery nearby.
Overall, I felt comfortable using the device as a Pocket PC in a daily setting. Initially, users reported trouble hearing my voice on the other end. Sure enough, E-TEN provides a utility that can adjust the microphone gain separately for GSM, recording and Bluetooth use.
This device was tested on both the T-Mobile and Cingular network. Both browsing and calling reception were better in my area when utilizing the Cingular service. Calls were rarely dropped, but reception did hover at low bars in areas where other phones would have shown stronger signals. With the robust PC capabilities of this device, when comparing reception to a top of the line cell phone, the reception was shown to be usually a bar or two lower.
The speakerphone was lacking in comparison to the rest of the device. It is a weak conference call companion, but is capable as a speakerphone in a quiet solo setting. The same audio shortcomings are evident when listening to the compatible ringtones and mp3s.
Overall incoming calls were received very clear, although low at regular volume settings. The M600 has a microphone gain adjustment utility to cater your speaking experience. This increases the microphone strength for calls using the handset, recording and Bluetooth headsets. This extra boost is a needed function on this device as overall volumes are low at default settings. Aside from the need to customize your volume settings out of the box for the best in call experience, this device competes with the top Pocket PCs on the market.
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