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Thread: The Master of Multitasking: My P1i Review

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    The Master of Multitasking: My P1i Review

    The Master of Multitasking is here and itís brought along the wifi and Cam too! My P1i Review.

    My last UIQ review left off with ďWhereís the wifi and cam?Ē That lovely device was the m600i. Itís almost been a year later and SE has rolled out the P1i. Has SE finally offered a solution that will bring back some respect to their smartphone lineup after the P990 fiasco? Read on to find outÖ



    Iím my review Iíll draw comparisons against its predecessor the m600i and also match it up against some of the s60 devices. Iíve played with some windows and linux smartphones but they really donít interest me so theyíll be excluded probably.

    Build quality/design
    The m600i was very plasticky but fairly solidÖ SE has upgraded the p1i with blends of rubber (back plate), glossy plastic (seems to be a trend right now) and aluminum metals. Quite frankly, I love the feel of it. Kinda feels like that HTC S620 (or is it the 630?).

    So far Iíve experienced no creaks, wobbles or loose battery covers. This device finally feels like a premium product. For most people though I think itíll look like a glorified calculator. The use of black, silver and red makes it quite attractive in a sophisticated way though imo.

    SE has also improved the jog dialÖ. itís still 3-way but the hump that protects the wheel has been removed and that makes the scroll much more pleasant now. It glides along smoother and doesnít feel stiff like the m600i before. The p990i uses a nice big wheel but SE had decided to not incorporate that into the p1i probably due trying to minimize the size. Itís nice to see SE listening or at least realizing faults and addressing them.

    The memory card slot is located on the side and is hot-swap. The P1i uses the traditional SE dual-front look as it features a 3.2 cam with AF and dual led lights. No nasty k800/790 hunchback here folks the camera sits nice and flush but sadly there is no lens protector. The glass protecting the lens looks easy to clean though and seems like itís made with a scratching resistant material.

    The keypad keeps the m600ís unique design and I find it quite easy to use. Thereís a bit of a learning curve Iíd say (or comfort zone). I remember hating it when I first used the m600i.. But now texting with it is a breeze. I can use one hand or two but itís a little hard when driving lol.

    SE has also added a service light at the bottom of the phoneÖ an odd place to put it but itís still usefulÖ you get various updates from the lightÖI.e.: it flashes and keeps flashing if you have unread messages.



    Voice quality and reception

    Taken from m600i review
    ďWell SE decided to leave out the 850 and edge so it obviously will not appeal to the North America 850 freaks. Itís triband with 3g. So far Iíd have to say the RF is solid on this phone. The bars fluctuate like crazy (typical SE style) but it seems to have solid RF on the 1900 channel. Iíve noticed that triband with 3g generally have pretty strong antennas. (The v3x, the k608i, w900i and sharp 903sh all rock solid in RF. I donít go through any intense testing but so far where Iíve been itís been fine.

    Voice quality is excellent, has a better balance in tones compared to my w810i. Earpiece is fairly loud. Paired perfectly with my jx-10 and seems to give the general performance as most of my SE phones.Ē

    Yep everything is pretty much the same in the audio/rf department if anything itís gotten better (could be the network though)Ö but Iíll stick with it being pretty much the sameÖ.

    Itís interesting that there has only been one SE smartphone with 850.. the p910a. Guess theyíre not sold on North Americans forking over the cash. I honestly think itíll bite them in the butt cause weíve seen success in the nokia n95 and iphoneÖ but then again Iím not crunching their P/L and we canít base popularity strictly based on bitter Hofoers that need 850. LOL, SUCKA!

    UI/screen/performance

    There were a lot of complaints about the screen on the m600i, w950 and p990i. Mainly about itís visibility in the sun. I can say this has been improved significantly. Itís not the best screen in the sun but it is very, very legible similar to k790/k800 but not quite as good as the n95 for example. The screen remains 262K, itís quite vibrant and everything looks great on it. People have been harping on SE for not moving up to 1.6 MM coloursÖ but I donít see it as being an issue I prefer respectable battery life (cough, cough cheap shot at n95 I know, I know) I personally would rather have a higher resolution before more colorsÖ. The n80 screen was fabulous minus it lacking brightness.

    On a bright sunny day


    Another chomp from the m600i review to get people up to speed
    ďI donít know what it is about SE but the way these use icons and stuff really appeal to me. Even though theyíre not using the best screens compared to others they certainly pack a nice wow factor.

    Right way the shortcut bar on the bottom sticks out. Itís a SE version of appleís dock I guess. Nice bubbly icons. They are preset but you can change to based on your preferences and customize to your liking to the apps of your choice.Ē

    SE has modified their today screen. Itís like a blend of the p990i and m600i now. Theyíve added 10 additional shortcuts and itís quite a treat to use. The icons are a good size and easy to activate by simply using your fingers. The nice thing about SE touchscreens is you can drag your finger across to select things. Whereas on windows (I think they changed this with the touch) you canít drag, you have to lift and touch, lift and touch to move around.

    Main screen Ė you can switch the views from list to icon.. and everything moves pretty fast.


    The biggest issue I think Power users today experience on their smartphones is the lack of operating memory; Ram. Ram has always been a problem for virtually every device Iíve played with until now. Thereís nothing more annoying then having apps randomly close or constantly getting ďmemory full please close appsĒ promptsÖ Iíve seen this on s60, uiq and windows phones so Iím not picking on anyone in particular.

    Multitasking Ė Look at all the apps running, no issues at all between switching and when you close them all it frees up a whooping ~20megsÖ lol thatís more operating memory available on a freshly booted n95. (in fairness nokiaís n76 is loaded with tons of ramÖ sadly the phone sucks.. but I think all the manufacturers are moving in this direction.)
    Iíve got word, excel, powerpoint, webbrowser, agile messenger, a game (brother in arms great graphics), music player, tomtom and the list goes on and on.. and Iíve got about 30megs of free memory left lol.


    Special thanks to Swissmanger proÖ probably the best taskmanger Iíve ever used on any phone.

    multitasking video Ėhereís a quick vid of the device at work switching through some of the apps. As you can see when everything is started switching is fast and seamless. Truly amazing and makes the smartphone experience wonderful and you can see why Iíve dubbed it the Master of Multitasking
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DU_8QB51FTY

    People have also knocked this phone for itís weaker processor (old) If you were to go head to head on starting apps with say a n95 youíll notice that the p1i is slightly slowerÖ. But honestly for me I rather wait a little longer to get all my apps running and have them never crash then to have it boot up faster only to be limited by the number of apps I use or to have them close due to memory errors. Obviously the best solution is to have both, but Iíd choose more ram over processing speed for now.

    Multimedia

    Taken from my old m600i review
    ďThe music player seems to be a toned down version of what weíll be seeing in the w950i
    The sound quality is on par with the current SE phones and supports a2dp.
    The music list has to be refreshed now to find tracks but you can also apply a filter to sort out ringtones.Ē

    Music Ė nothing has changed here.. still doesnít read embedded album art from the mp3. But album art is supported you have to drop an jpeg file in the folder where the songs are. This of course means you would need to have all your music setup like this:
    Artist>Album>Songs and jpeg for album art to work.

    The filter is a brilliant idea.. I hate hearing ringtones in my music player. I personally think they should revamp this a bit and use the space better. Bigger buttons for stop, play etc.. and also some hotkeys on the keypad would be great.


    Video, picture gallery etc..
    The video player is pretty good, I was able to get it to play the usually HQ mp4ís Iíve used on the n95 etc.

    The gallery is simple but works.. you can do slideshow with music and different transition effects. Not as fancy as the n series galleryÖ which Iíve actually gotten to like a lot. What Iíd like to see is more display options.. View as list, thumbnails, details etcÖ(you can do it on the k790a SE!!!) For some reason the gallery only letís the DCIM folder view as a thumbnail grid, any pictures outside of that folder set up as a thumbnail detail list.. which is quite frankly, annoying. I havenít found a replacement gallery appÖ but if one comes out Iíll be the first to try it.

    Camera- The m600i without a camera really sucked for me. Iím glad se has put a nice 3.2 cam into this device. The camera is decent Iíve had no challenges with it. Itís not as good as the k790a and itís missing a real flash.. but nevertheless Iím quite happy



    Pics Ė are all shot in automode, some are using macro and some are using flash.. EDIT.. about 10 secs to start up first.. after that 5 secs to startup from taskmanager... capture and display is about 4-5 secs to my 2 gig card at full res.. this is the only part where the phone can lag at times IMO.






    Video recording has been bumped up a bit as well. Itís not the best but itís a lot better then what SE was giving us before. The P1i records 15 frames, QVGA in 3gpp format. Nothing great when you compare it to the n93 or n95.. but hey at least I can make out peopleís faces now.

    Iíll try to attach a sample later.

    Connectivity
    Whatís this? Weíve got wifi too nowÖ SE is trying to spoiler us lol. Other smartphone users having been enjoying wifi for a while now so itís nice to SE not entirely missing the boat. Yes there was the P990iÖ but meh that was the p990i. Itís B only but Iím not complaining.

    Web Ė Opera 8.65 works pretty well, has a lot of settings (landscrape. Fit to screen etc) No flash support but soon I hope! The browser still isnít as good as the s60 mainly cause it doesnít seem to be as fast. Navigation on a normal view can be a little difficult to get use to.. I wish they could use the keypad as a dpad for navigation that would make this much better IMO.

    Iíve also started experimenting with the new opera mini and think itís great also.


    Mail- Love the send screenÖ everything is there and you donít have to drill into more and press send. Switching mailbox isnít as good as s60 tab system though. Wish theyíd incorporate that. Looks like UIQ hardscreen has that type of system (SEE RIZR Z8)

    There is support for Blackberry connect and active exchange. Iíve used neither and donít plan to start. But I do have my gmail setup. Thereís an option to ALWAYS PUSH. But it doesnít seem to work. Iím new to this email setup stuff. But you can set it to auto-retrive every minute. Which is essentially the same but may hit the battery harder as itís always refreshing where as push is only using battery when you get mail. (I think thatís how it works)



    isync- se has finally added apple isync support and it works great..

    Agile Ė A great msn appÖ just thought Iíd share. Fring is really good too..and does VOIP.

    Bugs and Annoyances
    Iíve had the phone for about a week now and honestly donít have any major complaints. Iíve had 1 crashÖ the Bluetooth isync rebooted the phoneÖ otherwise itís been rock solid. The UI hasnít changed much from before but it is slightly more polished. I think the UI still suffers from odd inconsistencies in the core apps and does have itís quirksÖ
    For example: You can use the delete key in the gallery but not in the file manager.
    Also Iím still having network issues with SMS timestamps. The p1i like the m600i reports SMS inbox messages in GMT+/- time. So if itís 9 now. My sms will tell me itís 5 GMT time. Outgoing SMS, email, mms (in/out)and phone calls all report the right time thoughÖ

    SE can you please also add Toronto to the location listÖ You idiots!

    I forgot to mention battery life. Well itís great.. Itís 1120 mah and Iím going about 1 Ĺ days, but on a heavy day itíll always last till the night.

    Just a quick comparison against a lovely n93i ďsuperbrickĒ I happen to have lying around. And it really is a brick it died in the NSS updater lol.


    Overall
    Havenít been this happy with a device for a while. Itís currently SEís best attempt at offering a complete Smartphone solution. With the added ram it truly makes it one of the best out there imo cause everything now works as it should.

    For some, theyíll feel shunned by SE again with no edge, 850mhz and HSPDA. Itís a loss for both really.. SE doesnít get to make the sale and the Enduser misses out on a wonderful experience. Well that's it... FYI-grammer or spelling I'm not responsible for... i haven't even read it over yet lol enjoy!

    My final words....
    Its what computers have become - the new Sony Ericsson P1i
    Last edited by shaolinmonk; 08-02-2007 at 02:37 PM.


    Resistance is Futile! get the nokia n8 housing for your iphone lol
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    great review!!!!!!!!!!!!! me thinks i may have to pick one up.
    how do we end world hunger and homelessness? feed the homeless to the Hungary

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    Very nice review! Looks like P1i is a quite nice device

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    my brother!!!

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    Those pics look great. What about some low light example photos?

    It's under $550 now, I really want one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ken.vs.ryu
    Those pics look great. What about some low light example photos?

    It's under $550 now, I really want one.
    haven't gotten around to that yet..but the car shot in a parking gsarage

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    great review

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    i can link people to the theme and icons later tonight...

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    Do you have tomtom? I'd love to see it on this phone.

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    yep...tomtom is the 2 red hands icon on the phone.... i also flip through it on video... while demonstrating the multitasking....

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    http://www.se-uiq.com/forum/index.ph...opic=62&st=400


    n series theme and others are here

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    excellent review!!!!!!!!

    by any chance can you post a pic of this next to one of your k790's? i'd like to see the thickness comparison so i get a better idea of the size.

    thanks!!!

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    Excellent!

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    Opera mini browsing is so cool it's like iphone browsing with your finger

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    i just move my thumb and i scroll the page

    HOLLA on opera!!!

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