The design of the Q9m is more streamlined and professional looking than the previous model, however the red striping around the perimeter is something it could do without. The construction is a combination of metal, glass, and plastic, which give the phone a very sturdy feel while in your hand. However, despite the phone only being 0.47” thick, it is quite noticeable and bulky when placed in your pants pocket. This however cannot be helped, since there is a lot of technology packed into one device.

ModelDimension (Inches)Dimension (mm)Weight (oz)Weight (Gramms)
Motorola Q9m4.64" x 2.63" x 0.47"118 x 67 x 11.94.76135
Motorola Q4.57" x 2.48" x 0.45"116 x 63 x 11.54.06115
RIM BlackBerry 88304.49" x 2.60" x 0.55"114 x 66 x 144.60130

1 - Q9m next to Jabra BT250 and Motorola S9; 2 - LG ENV, Motorola Q9m, Motorola V9m; 3 (from bottom to top) - Motorola Q9m, Motorola V9m, LG ENV

The Q9m features a standard 65K Color 320x240 Pixel QVGA Display in landscape orientation, which allows web sites to be shown with greater ease and less horizontal scrolling. The screen is an average 2.4” in size, which is only slightly larger than what most normal cell phones use. Images and Text are shown with good color representation and without jagged edges. Using the phone in direct sunlight can be problematic, as the display becomes much harder to see and reflects the surrounding light. There are no adjustments for setting the contrast or brightness levels manually; only a Smart Backlight option that will automatically adjust the brightness of the display, depending on how much light is picked up by the sensor. This is good in theory, but in practice we felt that the display was too dark when used indoors, thus causing us to turn the Smart Backlight to Off, which keeps the display set at the brightest level.

Since the display does not operate as a touchpad, you must reply on the 5-way Navigational D-Pad, which is easy to use thanks to its large size and good placement, or the use of the side scroll-wheel. The Left SoftKey is used to access the Start menu, in the same fashion as the Start button on a Windows PC, with the Right SoftKey providing access to the Contacts. The white backlit QWERTY keypad has been redesigned from the earlier Q model. The actual buttons on the keypad are smaller, but they now feature a more rounded design, which makes typing easier and less fatiguing. The keys have a greater tactile feel to them and provide good feedback when pressed. Overall, we found typing on the Q9m to be an enjoyable experience, more so than on the enV or the Blackberry 8830.

On the right edge of the phone there is a small scroll wheel and back button. The scroll wheel is used in similar fashion to the navigational pad, for making menu selections, yet we found its location more difficult to use. We are unsure as to why the Q9m still uses the scroll wheel, when the 3G GSM Q9h variant has replaced it with Up, Down, and Select buttons.

The left side of the phone features a MiniSD card slot, which can accept Mini-WiFi Access cards, MiniSD Memory cards, and MicroSD Memory cards up to 4GB in size (there is a Micro-to-MiniSD adapter included). Directly below that is the MiniUSB port, which is used for connecting the phone to your Computer for downloads and synchronization, as well as for charging the battery. We were glad to see that MiniUSB was used, since those cables are more readily available than the MicroUSB, which the Q9h uses. Located on the top edge is a 2.5mm headset jack that can be used with a standard wired headset or stereo earbuds.

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