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Review: Motorola BackFlip

Motorola BackFlip is currently exclusive to SingTel due to the fact that it offers MotoBlur. Motorola BackFlip is a new phone form factor with the keyboard at the back which you flip to the front like opening a book cover, except it is the cover you’re reading, and not the contents inside.

Specifications

As usual, I will only show the significant specifications I feel that are important.

Motorola Backflip
OS Android 1.5
Display 3.1″ 320 x 480 256k TFT
Camera 5 megapixel, auto-focus, LED flash
Processor 528Mhz Qualcomm 7200A
Any MultiTouch? No
Connector Micro USB

Nothing really significant except the special form factor. Let’s go through what’s interesting about the phone.

Interesting Features

BackFlip

First of all, the most significant will be the new form factor, where the keypad is actually behind, and it flips out to give you a nice keypad size. The keypad is rugged-ized with this flat 1 piece plastic. The keypad takes some time to get used to because it’s so flushed and the tactile feedback isn’t that great.

Compare Milestone and BackFlip

This is a comparison between the keypads from the Motorola Dext and Motorola BackFlip. Take a look at the amount of space you have for the keypad from the BackFlip. That’s essentially the greatest plus point.

Trackpad BackFlip

Instead of offering you a trackball, they gave you a trackpad behind the screen. This means you get your control your screen from behind. However, I thought the trackpad was slightly too far away for my tiny Asian fingers, and I had to stretch a little behind. It is essentially just a replacement for your trackball, which works great while scrolling pages without obscuring your view.

Back cover

Back cover 2

The back cover is an interesting slide lock. It took me a while to figure out how to fit the back cover in. Essentially, you put the cover behind, and slide it to your right until it clicks. To release, press down the button with the lock sign and push it left.

Insides

You have your usual removable battery, 2GB microSD card that comes with the phone, and your SIM card. Notice that there is a red lock near the microSD card. Push that upwards, and you can remove your microSD card without removing your battery. Why didn’t they do the same for the SIM card?

TableTop Clock

If you put the Motorola BackFlip on your table, and lifted it up, the clock application will open much like the Nexus One when you dock it.

Watching TV

Motorola BackFlip is an awesome companion device if you like to watch TV. SingTel offers MobileTV for a subscription fee (similar to StarHubTV). The keypad acts as a dock or a stand for the device, allowing a great viewing experience. Notice how good the viewing angle is too. This is probably the 1 most compelling feature that will make me get this phone.

Camera

This is an awesome idea to include the camera as part of the keypad. It allows you to take photos as usual, and when you flip it open, it becomes a front-facing 5 megapixels camera. 1 camera that acts as 2 types of cameras. Simply awesome benefit from a flip. However, you will smudge the camera protective lens when you type, so remember to wipe it off before taking photos.

Charging

A small minor thing, but great. If your phone needs charging, the MicroUSB will glow, indicating you need to charge. I like it.

Thickness

This is how thick the Motorola BackFlip is compared to the Nexus One. As you can see, it is pretty thick at 15.3 mm.

Summary

This phone is really targeted at the low-end consumer market, for those who want a cheap smartphone with a keypad. Compared to the Motorola Dext, it is just a small step up. It also comes with MotoBlur, which is the same service you get on the Dext.

+ Love the ability to stand
+ Huge Physical Keypad
– Keypad is difficult to use
– Android 1.5 only

It is currently exclusive to SingTel from Saturday, 1st May 2010 from as low as S$0 on selected price plans.

Slideshow

About Justin Lee

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2 comments

  1. The comparison Motorola Mobilephone was Dext, instead of a Milestone, right?
    .-= @victortan´s last blog ..S.H.E is the ONE =-.

  2. Thanks. I’ve updated it to Dext instead. My mistake.

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