Motorola Clutch i465 Review

Software:

Not much new to report here.  The Motorola Clutch i465 runs the same outdated Motorola UI we’ve seen on iDEN units for years now.  It’s still as bloated (23 main menu items) and as complex as ever, and with elements of Sprint’s OneClick  UI making their way down to lower level models like the Rumor2 and the Sanyo 2700 we can’t help but be frustrated with the archaic interface Motorola’s iDEN unit clings to.

There are decent elements to it, most notably customization.  The user can rearrange the menu as they please, including adding and removing apps, as well as assign the soft key functions.  This, however, is not enough to make us overlook the clunky overall experience.  Redesign!  Redesign now we say!

The Clutch i465 allows for up to 600 numbers in the phone book. Individual entries can have 7 phone numbers, a DC number, an email address and an IP address each. It should be noted that the 600 number limit is total, not 600 contacts with up to 7 numbers each.  The phone is listed as having voice dialing, but short of initiating from a Bluetooth headset we couldn’t figure out how to work it.

The web experience is awful, but then again what do you expect from a network that peaks at 19.2kbps and a 1.79” display?  Bluetooth v1.2 is supported, including stereo for some reason.  Other profiles include HSP 1.1, HFP 1.5, OPP, DUN, PBA and BPP 1.2.  The Clutch supports GPS services, as well as Sprint’s NFL and NASCAR programs and their Mobile Email suite.

Messaging is pretty much the same as we’ve seen in the past, but conversations are now threaded on the  Motorola Clutch i465.  It’s not enabled by default though, and the implementation is pretty dreadful; nothing like we’ve seen from OneClick devices.  Nextel’s SMS service is notoriously bad, and while the hardware and software may be improved the overall experience is much the same.  iDEN was built for instant voice communication, and in this respect it is unparalleled.   Other services have not been its strong suit, and while we understand the limitations of an iDEN data network we continue to be perplexed about the horrible handling of SMS.




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