Sanyo Zio Review
The Sanyo Zio currently runs bone stock Android 2.1, but will be upgraded to 2.2 in the future. Out of the box there is no carrier customization whatsoever, save for the dock which has shortcuts to the phone, app drawer and Sprint ID and some widgets that walk the user through how to use Android. With an increasing amount of carrier loaded apps on Android it is refreshing to see a carrier embrace the stock experience, allowing the user to choose what apps they want loaded on their phone.
The Sanyo Zio, along with the Samsung Transform and LG Optimus S (coming at the end of the month,) are the launch devices for Sprint’s new Sprint ID service. The theory behind it is that users can download different ID packs, then quickly switch between them as they see fit. Each pack is themed and contains relevant applications, wallpapers, ringtones and widgets. The idea is to let users choose things of interests and have apps delivered to them instead of having to wade through the sometimes intimidating Android Market. The Sprint ID will install the carrier apps, such as Football Live, NASCAR and TeleNav (curiously no longer called Sprint Navigation.) We actually like the widgets the Sprint ID pack has a lot; they are both pretty and functional.
Initially there are only a handful of packs available- mostly lifestyle options such as fashion, golf and auto enthusiasts- but the number is already growing and at the CTIA press conference partners such as ESPN, eBay, E!, Notre Dame and MTV were on board. Embracing the open source nature of Android, developers will be able to create their own packs in what Sprint hopes will become a large ecosystem.
The default pack is My ID, which is stock Android. Before you can actually use the device you have to install a second pack, however, but once the download starts you can get into the unit. At that point you can cancel the download and keep the stock Android experience if you so please. Up to 5 downloaded packs can be installed at any time, and similarly to the Scenes in HTC’s Sense UI, when the user customizes an ID pack it is remembered even if you switch to another ID pack. The idea is pretty solid, but as always we will have to see how the market bears out before we can deem it a success.
The Zio utilizes stock Android programs for things like messaging, email, calendar, browser and voice dialing. Of course most of these can be replaced with alternatives in the Market if the user sees fit. We definitely recommend a high quality voice input program like Vlingo, because with the touchscreen issues typing out a message on the QWERTY keyboard was downright maddening. Like all of Sprint’s other Android phones, it uses Sprint’s Visual Voicemail system. Something to note is that the Zio does not support multitouch in the browser, which in this day and age is a huge omission.
Camera and Multimedia:
The Zio is outfitted with a 3.2 megapixel camera that lacks flash. Outdoor and well-lit images turned out passable, though color reproduction was a bit off and it had issues with exposure at times. The Samsung Transform, under the exact same conditions, consistently turned out more life-like images. Indoor samples on the Zio show a lot of grain and blur, and as you can see from our macro test the camera was unable to focus from even a foot away. Not helping things was that the shutter is annoyingly slow; we often had to retake pictures because the extreme lag from pressing the shutter button and image capture was so long. The camcorder can capture video at WVGA resolution which is acceptable for a device of this class. Image controls are sparse and video controls are even sparser.
Sanyo Zio Sample Video:
As a stock Android device, the Zio utilizes the Android music and video players. They are perfectly capable of getting the job done, but lack the polish and refinement of skinned versions available from HTC, in the Market or on competing platforms. Still, with support for up to 32GB microSD cards and a decent 3.5” display, the Sanyo Zio can successfully double as a multimedia player.
Internet and Connectivity:
The Sanyo Zio uses the stock Android browser, but as we mentioned lacks multitouch. It is an EVDO Rev. A device, so data speeds are plenty quick. The Sanyo Zio doesn’t have the processing power behind it like the HTC EVO 4G, but its browser still moves along at a good clip. Unfortunately, with the lack of multitouch and the not very well-thought our double-tap to zoom in the Android browser, zooming in and out is not the most comfortable task to do.
The Zio also has Wi-Fi and GPS, features that have become standard on smartphones in this day and age, and is Bluetooth 2.0 compliant with support for the HSP, HFP 1.5, A2DP, AVRC, OPP and FTP profiles.
1. MaxABC (unregistered) posted on 20 Oct 2010, 01:55 0 0
It's really rare to see a 4 rating.. any other phone with low ratings?
2. TREY (unregistered) posted on 15 Oct 2010, 12:46 0 0
That thing has to be better than a 4
3. Joshing4fun posted on 15 Oct 2010, 16:40 0 0
Dang. I can't even remember the last time i've seen a phone with ratings that low.
4. depeche (unregistered) posted on 15 Oct 2010, 18:06 0 0
I am pretty sure it did the multi-touch feature... this makes me want to go back to the store and see if a 4 is actually warranted ! ! !
5. stuntz posted on 17 Oct 2010, 12:11 0 0
IDK Phone arena, things like the screen responsiveness might be fixed by a firmware updated, and i thought multi-touch was there too, but i havent received my demo unit here so im not sure, as for the feel, I love how light it feels, and I like the soft touch of the plastic.
7. Mikal (unregistered) posted on 10 Dec 2010, 15:14 0 0
Come on Phone Arena, give Sanyo a break, it's there first Android phone and you can't expect far too much and you must admit that it is a good phone. You can have the touchscreen fixed, probably and they made it with plastic because it is nice and light, and it makes it a great start for a first Android phone both for Sanyo and the user. Besides, Sanyo has plans to make more Smartphones and Androids and they will probably be even better. So give the Zio a break, it's a good phone with plenty of features and is the best from Sanyo.
8. Mikal (unregistered) posted on 22 Dec 2010, 04:27 0 0
The Zio is a good starter and Good Android phone. It is better than how PhoneArena describes it. I think PhoneArena has something against all Sanyo phones. They never recommend thei phones over other branded phones, even when Sanyo makes some high quality products. Sanyo/Kyocera IS a major phone manufacturer, not a minor one just because of a little problem on the phone. You can have some of these problems fixed anyway! Treat all phone manufacturers equally and don't be so much of a critic toward Sanyo and Kyocera. The Zio deserves a way better rating.
9. Mikal (unregistered) posted on 22 Dec 2010, 04:33 0 0
Phone Arena must have something against Sanyo/Kyocera as they never recommend their phones over other phones of a different brand. The Zio is a great phone for a first Android and a great budget Android phone. It deserves a way better rating than it has. Treat all phone manufacturers equally and don't be so much of a critic towards Sanyo and Kyocera.
10. Scream.X (unregistered) posted on 27 Dec 2010, 10:04 0 0
I just got this phone and i think its great. The screen looks great youtube videos are great. Facebook app works better then anyother smartphone iv had. Dont listen to 1/2 these people leaveing comments about this phone there just babys and everything has to work how they want. This is a great phone!!!!
11. XSR (unregistered) posted on 09 Jan 2011, 22:30 0 0
just got this phone and ill admit the qwert keys are a little annoying but so far the entire experience is extremely appealing. its light and easy to use. the android market is bitchin and much more user friendly than the itunes market. a 4 is way too low for a phone with this much capability.
12. zumio (unregistered) posted on 20 Feb 2011, 18:09 0 0
This is phone got a quadrant score of about 360 average and a neocore of 28 fps. That fps is better than a nexus one and an evo. I wouldn't call a phone like that bad and it's only got android 2.1!
13. SpecOps2 (unregistered) posted on 20 Apr 2011, 04:14 0 0
A "4" is too high a rating for this piece of ABSOLUTE JUNK! I have always hated screen typing, and prefer a slider keyboard, but since this was provided to me by my employer I gave it a try. Worst screen tracking ever and no internal settings to adjust, freezes constantly, lags, totally unresponsive, slooooow, and that's if it works at all since sometimes even Android (2.2) is too much for this "smart" phone to handle. About the only thing that works all the time is the camera (and I do mean ALL the time). Since the raised external push button is VERY raised and right in the path of your fingers while just trying to hold the phone, well you can guess the rest, you get to Seriously, save yourself a lot of aggravation and pick another phone. Kyrocera has always been a few paces behind everyone else, and this is no exception. There is not enough memory available to handle even the basics, and then you run a couple background apps and it becomes a paperweight..Nope, not even good for that as it's so light!
Mine came re-branded as a Sanyo, not surprising since most who know the K brand wisely shy away from it. I gave mine back to my employer, and told them I would gladly pay the up-charge for the Samsung Epic 4G or Evo Shift 4G. Since 4G isn't the reason for them wanting employees to have smartphones, from now on they are issuing Samsung Transform or Intercepts for company phones and either one (I've had both and like them equally) blows this lightweight away like a pro MMA fighter VS a high school wrestler.
About the only things they got right are the size, slick chrome touches and the trackball is really nice, they should put one on every smart phone.
14. juicy (unregistered) posted on 16 Jun 2011, 16:09 0 0
if u have always liked slide qwerty board WHY would you purchase this phone? and THEN s**t on the review?! people come on shopping for a phone is like shopping for a car. The best one that suits you. if i like to sit high i wont buy a dodge neon and then complain about it sitting low. with all that said i am big on responsiveness and accesibility with my phones. this phone over exceeded my expectations givin the width and lightness of this phone. i am impressed with sanyo's first android. fits my needs in a phone... just make sure it does for you before you buy it! its fiine...
15. pissed (unregistered) posted on 29 Jun 2011, 20:39 0 0
This phone is terrible . Rings when it wants to ,has download issues. Cant assign ringtones, shuts off when it feels like it. Sprint is not owning up to problems. Instead they want the general public to keep the phone until sanyo desides to release the software to fix the problem. And as of yet no release date. Missed calls, mixed txt's. This is the worst phone ever.
16. Thomas willis (unregistered) posted on 21 Jul 2011, 21:21 0 0
This the worst phone I've ever had I would not recommend this phone to my worst enemy. The touch screen is horrible, you can never touch the letter you are trying to type, the fronts are too small and can,t be increased, there is no end program function on most apps. In other words this phone sucks. I wasted $130.00 on this piece of junk.
If you are in the market for a phone, DON'T BUY THIS ONE
17. Sucks (unregistered) posted on 15 Aug 2011, 23:44 0 0
Worst phone ive owned for about five years which is sad. I used to be with t-mobile and I would gladly switch back too my nokia nuron way faster phone it is ayearolder then the zio. This phone lags like crazy loading videos is slower than old people driving.i hate this phone it close s out of theinternet browser like crazy don't even think about surfing two web pages at once it won't happen.don't even give angry birds a half a thought lags like crazy the swype keyboard technology is the only thing I like.ig ii kinda like the camera to its ok but ever y thing else gets two thumbs down I'm just glad I still have my thirty days I'm saying f**k going for a free phone and goimg with the evo 4g. f**k this phone is all I have to say.if ur getting a phone just drop a hundred dollars and get the evo u won't regret it trust me
18. Zio is garbage (unregistered) posted on 16 Aug 2011, 06:43 0 0
They should pay people to use this phone. Those defending it I seriously doubt own one, ether that or have never used another "smart" phone. I got it for free and can't wait to go change it out, hell I'd have been happier if I had got a beeper instead.
19. phoneinezer (unregistered) posted on 22 Aug 2011, 16:41 0 0
THIS PHONE ROCKS ITS THE s**t
20. pi***d off sprint customer (unregistered) posted on 31 Aug 2011, 11:41 0 0
i got the phone a couple years ago with an upgrade it sucks a** it has a ringing that just happens when it wants to and the only way to stop it it is to turn down the incall volume wich makes it where u caint hear anyone on the phone it freezes up u caint set ringtone the internet sucks on it it is always coming up with errer messages i absalutly hate it i would pay somone to take it and use it when i went up to sprint with my problems they wouldent do anthing the 6th time i went up there i threaten to shove it up somones a** and they said sanyo will come out with a software to fix it well its been a month and still no date on when it will come out im about to take this phone to the shooting range and be rid of it forever
21. pi***d off sprint customer (unregistered) posted on 01 Sep 2011, 14:54 0 0
o ya i almost forgot screen freezes alot! battery sucks ass after a couple weeks it gets slow as hell sends txt to wrong people keyboard a f**king joke but main problem is the ringing it has a wierd ass ringingthat comes from it restarting the phone somtimes works for a whole 2 minuts i put my phone on vibrate when im in a place that ur suposed to but that f**king ringing has gotten me into all kinds of s**t
22. jclubb (unregistered) posted on 05 Sep 2011, 22:12 0 0
This phone is junk and i would never recommend it to any one i rate it a 1...
23. giveitabreak (unregistered) posted on 06 Sep 2011, 10:38 0 0
I had a lot of the same problems that everyone else has had, the phantom ringing, the lagg, texts being sent to the wrong people ect......what i did was swith to my wifes old bb for two months, with the thought that maybe if i gave it a break it would relieve some problems....i just recently swithed back and so far my idea has worked....its nottop of the line or anything, but for someone who is new to andriod or smartphones in general phones like the zio are good ways to get your feet wet.....sometimes i think some of us smartphoneaholics forget that not everyone is ready for the top end phones, the zio is just my personal phone, it shys in comparisson to my work phone (thunderbolt) but that doesnt mean it isnt a decent phone for new smartphone users
24. Disgruntles_Sprint_Cussor (unregistered) posted on 16 Sep 2011, 13:41 0 0
A horrible phone. Delayed text messages and mostly inoperable keyboard, can't enter phone numbers so can only receive calls. Been a Sprint customer for 10 years now and would have gladly gone back to my first Sprint phone. Took it back after 3 weeks and traded for a Samsung Galaxy S. Much better but had to pay a $35.00 restock fee. On the restock fee, not sure what I actually paid for--Sprint Store drug their feet on returining it to the mothership. I have had to do all the leg work to keep from being charged a $200 early termination fee. Still unresolved.
25. mad phone user (unregistered) posted on 24 Sep 2011, 21:55 0 0
I AM curenty using this phone. I HATE IT!!!!! It rings at random times, is slow nomatter what you do with it. Battery life sucks. I can't upgrade, i'm not paying a Sh**load of money for a new phone. guess i'm stuck with this crap. I'm tired of hearing all of my friends and coworkers tell me how they hate my phone and about how crappy it is. I HATE THIS PHONE. i read this and i think it deserves less than a 4!!!!!! it sucks!!!!!!ughh, sombody please come take this crap away from me.!!!!
26. TDC (unregistered) posted on 29 Sep 2011, 08:03 0 0
I've had this phone for 9 months and have had nothing but problems. I was given a new phone 30 days in and still have issues. It drops calls, sends them right to VM, will just shut down without any reason, does not put through text messages. I have done every update and been to the service centers. This phone is not worth the money or time.
27. embrashine posted on 24 Oct 2011, 22:51 0 0
This phone is awful. At first I thought the lagging problem is because I'm a multi-tasker. So, I watched what I was doing & started being patient...it takes 45 seconds for the camera to load. AND that is if I press the camera button for that long. If someone calls, the LCD starts to blink, the phone vibrates but the screen remains blank until the 3rd ring. Then when I unlock to answer - it lags. I have missed so many calls just because of the lack of response, it's pathetic. If I get the market updates for any app (gmail or google maps too), the internal memory goes nuts - starts warning me of low memory & starts rejecting my text messages. It freezes at least twice a day & I have to remove the battery. I just despise this thing. And there is nothing I can do as I cannot afford a different phone.
28. Babydolla posted on 27 Dec 2011, 13:16 0 0
This is a CRAP phone. We got them as an upgrade. Can we say downgrade! They shut off all the time. There is no space internally that when you get an upgrade it causing you to have a message that says, "phone space low" and starts rejecting my texts!! I have no voice mail or texts and that stupid message will not go away.I hate that is syncs to my email. No thank you! That should be a choice and if you delete the messages on phone they delete off the server. Other phone gave me option to just delete off phone. Battery life is horrible. My husband can't take his off the charger or it dies within a few minutes. If my daughter sets hers down it shuts off. The charger piece is a joke too. After awhile it seems to loosen and you have to find angles and other ways to get it to charge, Today was the final straw. My phone reset and I LOST everything. I feel like throwing it against a wall, but it is all I have. It wiped out everything!!! IMiss my blackberry.