O2 XDA Exec reviewed

O2 Xda ExecIn the world of Windows Mobile devices we come across lots of incarnations of the same model, with different names. The O2 Xda Exec seems to follow the same rules. While it’s well known by more tech-savvy users by its codename HTC Universal (HTC is the manufacturer and Universal the product code), end users will know it with a variety of names: Dopod 900, i-mate Jasjar, O2 Xda Exec, Orange SPV M5000, QTEK 9000, T-Mobile MDA Pro, Vodafone VPA IV.

This device has a very interesting form factor, and it will work by default as a mini-laptop – when open it will have a QWERTY keyboard, including soft keys for the new menus available on Windows Mobile 5.0, and dedicated keys to access Pocket Internet Explorer, Inbox, Start, [OK] and context menu. It also has keys for the Call, Video Call and End Call functions.The backlit keyboard was a nice surprise. I got used to it quite fast and was able to type emails and posts in our forums without problems.

One new feature on Pocket PC devices introduced with Windows Mobile 5.0 is the Soft Key. This has been used before on Windows Mobile for Smartphones, but these context sensitive menu options make their debut on the Pocket PC world with this new OS version. The soft keys are areas on the bottom of the screen that act like menus, and can be activated with a tap on the screen or through special hardware keys – in the O2 Xda Exec these are marked with a “-“ (dash).

However, when using the device as a Pocket PC (i.e. with the screen completely open and converted) you will notice some buttons are missing: there’s only a directional pad with an action button on the right side of the LCD, and a small secondary video camera, used for live video calls. There are no Calendar or Contacts buttons there. This is a shame because we can swivel the screen (pretty much like those convertible Tablet PCs) and use the device as a standard Pocket PC, but losing the quick access to some functions.

Read the full review at Geekzone.


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