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At A Glance:
Panasonic makes quite a lot of phones. However, very little information is given out about their products. This one is the successor to the earlier GD88, and even works the same way, making that little click sound when you extend the top half of the clamshell out in preparation to use the device.
This click is also found in the Sharp GX27 that was powered by Maxis way back in late 2003 or early 2004. Either way, shall we have a look and see what is new?
Measuring in at 97 x 49 x 24 mm and weighing in at 107g, the Panasonic X700 is Panasonic,s first Symbian OS phone. It is one of the lightest Symbian user interface handsets in the market at the moment and is housed in a sleek, silver clamshell casing. It has a pretty solid build quality and finish to it and the clamshell opens with a satisfying click to reveal a 176 x 208-pixel, 65K-color TFT screen.
When the clamshell is closed, a small screen can be seen on the front which usually shows either an analogue clock or a digital clock depending on the settings. The speaker is also housed in the front of the clamshell, together with the camera lens and infrared port.
Using the phone
The Panasonic X700 is pretty big for a clamshell and it comes with big buttons to boot. However, although the buttons are big enough for users with large fingers, they are still too shallow and can result in the wrong button being pushed at times.
Two soft keys allow the user to customise and select which applications they would like to launch when these soft keys are depressed. The menu layout is pretty similar to that of its series 60 counterparts with a default setting of three by three icons, then expand out into simple text menu commands on the second tier of the menu tree.
The phone comes preloaded with applications that some users might find useful. They include Quickword, Quicksheet and Quickpoint, which allow users to view and also make changes to Microsoft office documents. I find the keypad a bit restrictive to enjoy the full benefit of the given Office programs, but their inclusion is still a boon to the executive who is frequently out of the office.
The phone also comes with a built in VGA CMOS camera, which allows users to capture still images or video clips. Image quality, while not exactly great, is still clearer than most of the camera phones out in the market. However, VGA cameras are making way for their megapixel counterparts even as we speak.
Sound wise, the X700’s polyphonic tones are melodious and audible. In fact they can be downright loud, which is a good feature when one is in a crowded location. The phone even supports MP3 songs and you don’t even need headphones to hear them as the phone speakers can play them out crisply and clearly.
The phone connects with infrared and Bluetooth, and you can also pay to use GPRS but there is no Push to Talk. You can also choose to connect with a USB cable. Reception and voice quality on the phone are clear and the audio output from the phone speakers is good, especially when MP3s are being played on it.
The best thing is the X700 offers expandability options for applications and memory through the use of the Mini SD format. The phone even comes packaged with a Mini SD adaptor in case you’d like to use it for other devices or easier data transfer.
The only low point of the Panasonic X700 is the speed at which its applications load and run. It can be really slow and annoying when it takes forever to get a program loaded into memory and ready for the user to make input into the device. The X700 is nice phone but the slow loading applications make it a rather tough choice especially to those who like a little speed in their smart phones.