Help me pick a smartphone
September 25, 2007 2:04 PM   Subscribe

I am trying to decide on a smartphone.

I want a phone with the following features: camera, qwerty keyboard, at least Wi-Fi 802.11g, web browser, ability to handle office documents, run Skype, and cost around 300 without contract.

I have done a few different searches and ended up with the Qtek 9100 each time. I don't want a Treo or Ipaq. The Helio Ocean was good except I can't put Skype on it or view office documents. If you have any suggestions please let me know.
posted by stuffedcrust to Technology (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
PPC 6800 or Mogul or Tytan (all the same phone from HTC) It is not a smart phone though. One up from that, it is a PPC ( Pocket PC ).

Here is a forum pertaining to this phone.

Here is another.

It can do all you are asking for and more.

Sounds like you do not have a contract right now. If you don't mind 'working' a carrier, you should look into Sprint's SERO plan (Sprint Employee Referral Offer). You need an employee's email address to sign up, but using something like say,, will get you in to look at cheaper phone prices and AWESOME plans. You can purchase your phone and plan online and you should receive it within a few days.

I pay $30 a month for 500 minutes / unlimited data / unlimited texts and another $7 a month for insurance.
posted by B(oYo)BIES at 2:22 PM on September 25, 2007 [3 favorites]

And while HTC's site shows 'Windows MobileĀ® 5.0 for Pocket PC,' the phone actually comes with Windows Mobile 6.0.
posted by B(oYo)BIES at 2:25 PM on September 25, 2007

Skype support can still be spotty, but have you looked at the Nokia E series? Either the E61/E62 or E70 just about meet your needs, although possibly at slightly more than your $300 limit if bought new.
posted by j-dawg at 2:27 PM on September 25, 2007

you want the nokia e61i - it is going to cost you more then 300 dollars though.
posted by bigmusic at 2:37 PM on September 25, 2007

The Eseries is awesome..far better than WM5 or WM6, IMO. I hate touch screens, though, so that's a big influence on me. If money were no object, the E90 is by far the best phone on the market today, but that's way out of your league. (and mine!)

The E61 is a very solid phone, but doesn't have a camera, and the E62 doesn't have wifi. You'd have to go with an E61i or one of the many other Eseries phones to get a camera. They all have VoIP capability using SIP.

One of the features I miss the most from when I had an E61? Printing. Between the .doc/.xls/.ppt support and the best web browser in the business, having the ability to print was what brought it all together for me.

Check HowardForums for reviews of all the phones mentioned. I think PhoneScoop's phone finder can get you a list of all the phones that support your required features.
posted by wierdo at 2:45 PM on September 25, 2007

I'm seconding the Sprint 6800 (Mogul), but you'd really have to do some finagling to get it under $300, and there would definitely be a contract involved if you did.

That said, it really is a great model. I've had numerous Palm devices and three PPC phones, and it's easily the best of the lot.
posted by SlyBevel at 2:52 PM on September 25, 2007

I love the E61 I'm typing this from, and would recommend you have a look at it. It's not for everyone though, certainly there is less 3rd party software than you get on win mobile stuff. I'm in the "hate touchscreens" club too, but the big thing for me was actually having a decent battery life and working well as a phone, the phone part of some smartphones is dreadful.
posted by markr at 3:03 PM on September 25, 2007

If you want a smartphone that will do all that you are asking (and not more) check out the HTC S621.

I've had one since June and it works well. It's small (you can keep it in your pocket and avoid looking like a toolbag), comes with viewers for all the major doc types (xls, doc, ppt, pdf), ms explorer (you can put opera or another mobile browser on it if you want), and you can use skypeout by installing fring and entering your account info. One caveat - you have to use a headset with the unit for skype right now.

I'm in Canada, and I got the unit for $150 via rogers with a three year contract. I know you don't want a contract, but I think this is the low end of the cost spectrum for the functionality that you want. If you don't get a contract, you're paying $500.
posted by tdtd at 9:00 PM on September 25, 2007

I have the Mogul - cost around $140 after rebates for a 2-year plan. Skype works great on it. The Microsoft Portrait client is also surprisingly good and does person-to-person video. Wifi is good although, with Sprint's plan (yes, I am on the $30/month) as well I find it's rare that I bother switching it on (gets between 1 and 2 megs down and around 500K-800K up). And by editing a single registry key (trivial) you can use it as router for your PC over USB or bluetooth. I've downloaded several GBs of torrents through the phone connection so it's pretty robust. It also runs a great native version of Google Maps - you have to get a separate GPS, though, or pay Sprint $10/month. I also installed the Opera Mobile browser on it, which is nice, and the Opera Mini, to do that zooming thing that iphone people are always waffling on about. It gets old fast, but it does look cool. Finally, it basically runs every emulator available for older systems, including DOSBox, so there's basically an unlimited amount of games available.
posted by meehawl at 10:15 PM on September 25, 2007

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