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Alcatel OT 355 review

Alcatel OT 355 review
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The compact One Touch™ 355 features a 65,000 color screen, polyphonic ringtones, interchangeable cases, three embedded games with the capacity for downloading additional games using Java™ MIDP 2.0. It accelerates message transmission via a key dedicated to vocal MMS.
Review On : Alcatel OT 355
By Jonathan Cheah
At A Glance:
Price: RM488
Local Distributor: Perform Communication Sdn Bhd.
Contact: 603-7782 3799
Build quality: 8/10
Applications: 7/10
Interface: 8/10
Value-for-money: 8/10
Overall rating: 8/10
+ Compact and comfortable in the hand
+ Battery lasts very long
+ Voice MMS
- Slow response
- No Camera
- No Bluetooth/infrared

Alcatel has finally got rid of their funny looking phones, and finally made one with a pleasant form factor. This candybar is coloured Pearl White, and its slightly rounded form makes it very pretty and comfortable to hold in the hand.


Indeed, if Alcatel keeps up their development work here, we could see them seriously competing with the big boys in just a few short years.
Build quality Maybe it is just that I handle my review phones with care. In this case, I found that the shell of the OT 355 scratched a lot less than that of Samsung’s E800, which is much more hyped than the OT 355. The rubber grips on the side of the phone helps the user to keep hold of the phone, while the protruding handle on the top of the phone allows the user to attach a lanyard to the phone.
Admittedly, I would take the E800 over the OT 355 any day, but when you consider the gulf of difference in the price asked, it makes little sense that the cheaper unit is more durable. Either way, although the OT 35’s shell is great, it is spoiled by having a cheapskate-looking keypad coupled with putrid keypad backlighting.
Aside from that, the overall build of the phone is quite good. However, I wonder what the tiny little pinhole on the bottom of the phone is for. This pinhole is located just on the left of the socket into which you plug the charger. I wonder whether this is the reset hole just like the one on a CD player. If so, one wonders what a handset needs that reset hole for, if not to reset the phone.
However, after using the phone for a few days, I have yet to find it necessary to reset the OT 355, which leads me to believe that the OS for this phone is rather robust and the aforementioned hole just mars the beauty of the cover.

Operational matters
In the age of colour screens and camera phones, one would expect that simple things such as the SMS functions of the phone operate well without much ado. However, it is a sad fact that most of the phones out there on the market today have processors that are so slow that the user is not able to make decent speed when typing out an SMS.
A good point of this phone is that it has MMS. The not-so-good thing is that the SMS is a little slow in response. I have seen worse response speeds from other brands, but this was a minor irritant in the OT 355.
I did not like certain operational aspects of the phone, such as when the screen does not light up when fielding an incoming call. You need to squint at the screen and tilt it against the lighting to be able to see who is calling you. There was also the funny tendency of the screen to light when the screensaver function kicked in. And I thought that the whole idea of the screensaver is to save some battery power, not waste it by lighting up the phone in its full glory.

Editor's Opinion

The screen is acceptable for a phone of this category, but the directional controls of the phone are not. The keys feel a little soggy, and this is painfully apparent when trying to type SMS messages into the phone. Although Alcatel claims that the screen is a 65K CSTN one, it really does not appear to be bright enough.
Either way, the phone wouldn’t operate if the SIM card wasn’t active, such as when I placed one of my demo SIM cards inside the phone. I would venture to say that preventing me from accessing my phone without the SIM card isn’t very nice.
Either way, for RM 500, there is little to complain about. The best Feature would be its class 10 GPRS, but why this is paired with the older 1.2.1 version of WAP is quite beyond me. I would say that the product carries a fair price, and it appears that the OT 355 might be an alternative to the usual phones that all your friends have and are carrying around.


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