New Music Phone for T-Mobile to Brag About (finally!)
Motorola Rokr E8
Wow, this summer is really the season for new, innovative, and often touchscreen, cell phones– iPhone 3G, LG Vu and Dare, Samsung Instinct… the list can go on (and can be read about here). However, one particular carrier is noticeably absent from that prestigious list: T-Mobile. Not to fear, though, the Motorola Rokr E8 is here– well on July 7 it will be, according to Cnet’s blog Crave– and its generating a lot of excitement; it already won top awards at the Consumer Electronics Show this year, including the People’s Voice award and best upcoming cell phone product (discussed by us earlier). But this phone is very different from the previous models we’ve discussed in the past for this summer…ITS NOT A TOUCHSCREEN! Yes, you heard me. Rather, this phone attempts to become the ultimate Music player Cell phone, or what we call the Mp3 phone for the sake of conciseness. Ever. Hit the more link for details!!
What makes this phone different?
I sympathize with those unfortunate T-Mobile subscribers who have been waiting anxiously for the announcement that has yet to come. But life still goes on; it may not be the touchscreen of your dreams, but the the music player cell phone integration on the Rokr E8 will indeed rock your world– and it does have some “touch” functions embedded if thats still bothering you. Dont believe me? Let me show you.
Mode “Shift” Technology– unprecedented in a cell phone at least, it illuminates only the keys relevant to the mode you are currently in–phone, Mp3, camera– giving the impression of a new device after each change in mode, and more importantly, providing a very clean layout, unlike many non-touch screen cell phones loaded with keys one on top of the other.
Haptics Keypad–while the keys are essentially touch rather than physical–only a light bump protrudes for the buttons– this fun feature sends a vibration feedback when buttons are pressed digitally. (thats the “touch” feature)
Fastscroll Navigation– see that white, frowning crescent in the middle of the phone? Well, its not the moon nor one of the iPods most famous hallmarks– the scroll wheel. Although it obviously misses out on the full wheel (could be patent reasons), the 3/4 wheel is still very comfortable and far better than many alternatives found on other phones.
- Aesthetically appealing and intuitive interface (Linux/Java OS operating system instead of Motorola’s regular OS)
- Similar dimension to a standard phone
- 2GB built in memory with a memory card slot–thats already 1000 songs, and the 1 GB micro-SD card included as a “free” gift from T-Mobile ups that to 1500 (keep in mind: depending on the size of your memory card, you could hit somewhere around 1700 songs!)
- T-Mobile “My Faves” support
- Stereo Bluetooth– wirelessly listen and connect your phone to headphones or car speakers (stereo headset included by T-Mobile for wireless playing T-Mobile also includes a stereo headset in the box that you can play your music off of)
- 2 inch colorful display– decent, though clearly not meant for some of the intense stuff done with the iPhone and others
- USB 2.0– fast transfer of files, and particularly music (T-Mobile includes a USB cable in the box)
- Moto’s CrystalTalk technology– greatly improves call sound quality (I know from having it on my Razr 2, this thing really helps)
- 2 megapixel camera with video capture and playback– like the display, standard but not particularly good
- Windows Media Player 11-Supported Mp3 Player–sync your music directly from your computer to your phone (similar to iTunes and iPhone- though you can also use a different media player if you want)
- Built-in FM Radio
- Compatible with regular headphones (3.5mm headset jack)
- $199 price w/2 year contract from T-Mobile — the exact same as what the other carriers charge for their touchscreen phones–the 8 GB iPhone 3G on AT&T; LG Dare on Verizon; and Samsung Instinct on Sprint (which is actually going for $130 but needs Sprint’s $70 a month plan like iPhone 3G)
So the looming question– which new phone to follow during the summer– has now become even greater. The latest list of choices: the LG Vu or Dare, Apple iPhone 3G or Samsung Instinct, and the Motorola Rokr E8 (even though it differs from the others in that it doesnt really claim to be a touchscreen, its still a very viable choice). Let your thoughts out in the comments.
Want to know even more? Go to T-Mobile’s “Coming Soon” page.