T-Mobile Sidekick 4G Review
Just because it’s part of the Sidekick line, don’t think for a second that this doesn’t pack some horsepower under the hood to make it contend with some of the great ones out there. Impressively, the same usual 1GHz Cortex A8 Hummingbird processor used by many of Samsung’s Galaxy S devices is employed by the Sidekick 4G, and fittingly, it provides a sensual experience. Actually, we’re gladly accepting of the peppy response exhibited by the device – and it’s evident in almost everything you do from loading apps to scrolling smoothly between its homescreens.
Naturally, one of the other beloved aspects of the Sidekick line is the heavily animated and flashy looking interface employed by the handsets, and of course, we’re treated with a customized Android 2.2 Froyo experience with the Sidekick 4G. In fact, it’s vastly different from what’s currently found with other Android smartphones since it flaunts an edgy look to its guise, and at the same time, it’s more in line to attract the youthful crowd out there. From the all caps fonts in use with the handset to the spelled out clock with its unlock screen, there’s plenty attention to detail with the Sidekick 4G which drastically differentiates it from its Android siblings – and that’s the kind of thing this device needs to stand out on its own.
Packing a total of 7 homescreens, it shares the same set of useful Samsung widgets that are found with Samsung’s Galaxy S smartphones. However, it manages to carry along a few other ones specific to it, like the sticky messaging and group texting widgets, which profoundly showcase its affinity to its messaging roots. Also, it borrows the same helicopter view used by other handsets and displays all homescreens simultaneously by executing a pinch gesture on the homescreen.
Organizer & Messaging:
Continuing to flaunt its unique spin on things, there are many organizer apps that have been given a makeover to better expand the handset’s edgy style. Tapping on the “Contacts” button on the homescreen, we’re transported to our typical address book, but we find it very handy in quickly calling or messaging someone by executing a left or right swipe gesture. Moreover, it’s integrated well with social networking aspects since it aggregates content from our respective accounts all at one place – while tastefully providing some basic functions like replying to Facebook posts or retweeting.
Meanwhile, the Feeds and Updates widget is the centralized hub for all your social networking needs seeing that it works with Twitter, Facebook, and MySpace. Not only can you post messages to all three services at the same time, but you can even attach and upload photos simultaneously – which beats having to run separate apps for that. All in all, it might not utilize anything new that we’ve haven’t seen before with other devices, but it’s nice nonetheless to see that it caters to the inner most desires of social networking conscious individuals.
Increasing its messaging focus, the T-Mobile Sidekick 4G hosts a bevy of messaging apps that are sure to keep anyone conversing all through the night. First, the Group Texting app provides a linear and organized experience seeing that you can carry on a conversation with multiple people. Meaning, if someone replies to you, it’ll be seen by everyone else included in the group so that they’re constantly in the loop. Secondly, the Cloud Texting service will allow you to manage and track your text messages online through a computer. However, it’s not yet available and will go live once the device is commercially launched. Finally, there are tertiary things like the sticky message feature, which basically allows you to pin some of your favorite messages to the homescreen. That increasingly shows off the Sidekick 4G’s focal attention to messaging.
Gmail experience – which isn’t bad at all since it functions perfectly.
Strangely enough, one of the most sought out feature with prior Sidekicks is omitted with this one. Although you’ve got the Android Market for all your app needs, it would’ve been nice to see some sort of preloaded instant messaging app on board, but sadly, it’s completely missing in action. Sure it’s not a complete bummer, but considering the Sidekick name, this is one area that should’ve gotten some face time.