Huawei IDEOS X5 Preview
This is our preview based on a preproduction unit, expect the review soon.
Huawei IDEOS X5 quietly arrived on the scene with its mid-range specs in tow. Although we had some brief hands-on time with the upcoming Android 2.2 Froyo smartphone during the event, we're getting some intimate one on one time with a prototype unit that should allude to what we'll all expect once it's officially released by one of the major US carriers. And just because it doesn't have the brand recognition of its competitors, the IDEOS X5 may seemingly open the doors for Huawei in breaching the US market. However, it may take more than a well rounded performance and decent specs to leave its mark amongst consumers.
Quickly picking up the prototype handset, there isn't anything overly compelling about it to make us assume it's something refreshingly new. As a matter of fact, it follows in tradition to any other slate-like device on the market, but surprisingly resonates with an overall quality feel. Specifically, its chrome trim bezel accents naturally with its soft touch rear cover – which of course, keeps it looking clean and free from scratches. Moreover, its ample size actually doesn't make it feel bulky compared to devices packing 4” and up displays. As a whole, we're quite satisfied with its build quality, The Huawei IDEOS X5 easily separates itself from the manufacturer's previous effort found with the T-Mobile Comet.
You can compare the Huawei IDEOS X5 with many other phones using our Size Visualization Tool.
In recent memory, devices packing on displays with WVGA resolution were generally deemed as high-end, but we're starting to see it become more common – thus permeating into the mid-range segment. And that's what we're treated to with the 3.8” WVGA (480 x 800) display of the Huawei IDEOS X5 as it brings forth some clear and crisp visuals that are happily agreeable to anyone's tastes. Furthermore, the display is able to exhibit some neutral looking colors.
After getting situated with its layout, the capacitive buttons beneath the display have enough space between them and the bottom of the handset to reduce accidental presses. Additionally, the piercing back-lighting allows us to view them in any situations.
In terms of physical buttons, there are relatively few clinging onto the sides of the handset; we find a reasonably sized volume rocker on the left edge and a dedicated power button on the top side. Aside from that, the IDEOS X5 boasts the traditional 3.5mm headset jack and microUSB port we're accustomed to seeing on most smartphones.
In the rear, the 5-megapixel auto-focus camera juts out from the surrounding area and is a cause of concern because the lens is in direct contact of whatever surface you place the handset on. In addition, we find both the LED flash and speakerphone grill placed to the right of the camera. Sliding off the back cover provides access to the SIM card slot, battery, and microSD card slot – the latter of which is hot-swappable.
Overall, it'd be almost unlikely to find the Huawei IDEOS X5 undergo some drastic design changes with the eventual production unit – except for the carrier branding it'll be flaunting. Ground breaking by any mean? Definitely not, but it's a stark contrast to the undesirable look and feel of their previous attempt in the US with the T-Mobile Comet, which is to say that... yes, we like it.
1. XProflmfao (unregistered)
It would be definitely interesting to watch how this phone plays out in the USA. Huawei is taking stake by getting serious about their American handsets, as evident by this mid-range smartphone.
2. JJ (unregistered)
Having bought my first smart phone back in January, a Ideos U8150, I instantly fell in love with the whole Android/Google setup (My wife even bought one). Being able to sync all your contacts, birthdays, tasks and calendar with the phone and the web is fantastic. So 2 weeks ago I upgraded to the X5. While I loved the little U8150, the X5 is so much better, not only the larger screen/resolution, but the speed as well. And Android Market is amazing, so many apps, both free and to buy. I've downloaded about 12, including Poweramp, Lookout, Quickpic, Batterychecker, iSyncr to name a few.
At NZ$549 it was the best value for money on the market. This model from 2 Degrees came with a 2gb internal card, and I fitted the 8gb card from my old phone, more than enough room for my photos and music. And no it doesn’t have a radio, but I’d never use it because you need the corded headphones to act as a aerial, I much prefer my Bluetooth head phones (no dam cords to get tangled). If you are thinking about getting a smart phone, don't hesitate, they're not that hard to operate (I'm no spring chicken and I didn't have any trouble) and I would highly recommend the X5 to anyone.
3. Said (unregistered)
4. Boy (unregistered)
Can it be upgraded to android 2.3 gingerbread?
6. georgenz (Posts: 1; Member since: 19 Dec 2011)
Yes it can, I recently loaded 2.35 beta and instantly noticed a performance increase, and battery life improved by at least 50% even with gps and bluetooth turned on.
Apparently ful version of 2.35 Gingerbread is due to be released 31st Dec 2011 but the beta works great.
5. Ree1 (unregistered)
I bought the X5 last weekend - quite surprised myself with the $349 spend, but am very pleased I did. My son now has my old phone and I am learning to become a savvy user of the android. I like the smooth look with only 2 external buttons and find the touch-screen responsive and easy to navigate. Camera is great quality although shutter speed is a little slow -maybe I just need to practise more. Love the phone and would recommend to anyone without an iPhone budget. Using 2degrees is awesome too.