Thursday, September 24, 2009

Hands-on with the Motorola Cliq smartphone [review]

by Andrew Nusca

The CLIQ is a Google Android smartphone with a 3.1-inch touchscreen display and a full QWERTY slide-out keyboard. Building on the timid path that the T-Mobile G1 and myTouch 3G (both built by HTC) laid before it, the CLIQ combines the best elements of those Android-based devices and improves on the worst.

To me, the CLIQ is a power user’s dream phone: it combines touch and keyboard for choice of input; it offers Microsoft Exchange support as well as built-in Google services integration; it’s got robust support for images, audio and video; it offers Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and 3G GSM connectivity.

Adding to that solid Android feature set is Motoblur, a Motorola interface that’s built on top of the Google platform. Much more than a skin, Motoblur preserves most of the Android experience but allows Motorola to compete more directly with the Palm Pre and Apple iPhone on certain fronts. Like webOS on the Palm Pre, Motoblur bases contact and conversation between people on an identity, rather than the protocol (IM, e-mail, text, etc.). Similarly, Motoblur uses a feed-based widget architecture to surface content on the home page, rather than require you to dive into an app.

Hands-on with the Motorola Cliq smartphone [review]

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