Sharp has produced a new exclusive mobile phone - this time for the chaps over at T-Mobile, but does it live up to the GX30 and more importantly will it make you switch operators? We take a look and find out.
Taking a leaf out of the Sony Ericsson’s S700 book (it might have been the other way around) on first glance you see the large screen and a couple of buttons, but no keypad. The back houses the camera lens and the front the screen. On the side, a capture button and while it doesn’t have that same compact camera feeling as the S700 you can see that Sharp are expecting you to take pictures a la compact nonetheless. A simple slide up of the screen and the square keypad is revealed. The keypad is well balanced with nicely rounded keys that are big enough to use without being all thumbs.
What is nice however is that you can access texts and the camera without ever having to slide out the keypad - a nice feature if you are of the up most laziness.
Like the GX30 and Samsung’s P-730 the TM100 comes with a clear 256 colour screen and its surprising how much difference this makes to the quality of the display and even the images you view on it. Of course with such a large screen the phone is slightly power hungry and we found the suggested 200 hours standby time hard to prove.
Inside, the phone offers the usual stuff, however T-Mobile has customised it according to its beliefs and this means puts the downloads option at the centre of the nine option menu matrix. This is probably because of T-Mobile’s focus on offering content through its T-Zones service and because they are keen to push Euro 2004 info and downloads. Get past the football backscreens (again part of a summer campaign) and you’ll find the camera has quite a few features tucked away including the digital camera. For the digital camera fans, they might be disappointed to hear that the camera is still only VGA (640x480), strange considering that we know Sharp has cracked the 1 mega pixel mark with the GX30.
With no Bluetooth, MP3 player or FM radio this isn't the phone for you if you are looking for a multimedia experience. However the styling, reminiscent of another Sony Ericsson this time the 610 and 630, is still very stylish, overall the phone is easy to use offering a good reception and call quality.
Will it make people swap over to T-Mobile? We very much doubt it. Then again Sharp's GX10 wasn't the greatest of devices when it launched and look at its successor the GX30 now. Sharp has made a good name for itself in the mobile market and this model isn't a glitch, its just not as good as we had hoped.