i-mate PDA2k

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now
i-mate PDA2k
  • i-mate PDA2k
  • i-mate PDA2k
  • i-mate PDA2k
  • Expert Rating

    3.00 / 5


  • Plenty of Features, Two Stylus, Full QWERTY Keyboard, Large Display


  • Rather large and Bulky, Sliding Mechanism, Small Keyboard keys, Camera, Voice Call Performance

Bottom Line

The i-Mate is a rather large and bulky unit, but it does have a pretty good list of features and functions without any major problems.

Would you buy this?

Sporting a full slide down QWERTY keyboard and a large display, the i-Mate PDA2k is a feature packed smart phone, but is hindered by its size and a poorly implemented slider.

The 210 gram and 125mm long PDA2k is one of the largest smartphones we've reviewed. While smartphones are generally larger than standard mobiles, it is hard to cup the PDA2k comfortably in your hand. Nevertheless, somewhat justifying the size is the QWERTY keyboard that i-Mate has built into this unit. The keys are responsive and work well, although their small size may present a problem for larger fingers. The slider that provides access to the keyboard feels stubborn and, while the slider does open and close adequately, greater force than is expected or indeed warranted is required.

The PDA2k has plenty of buttons on its exterior. Contacts and calendar keys are located above the screen with Start, messaging, Internet Explorer and OK buttons laid out horizontally underneath the display. There's also a 5-way navigational pad and answer/end call keys. Most of the buttons are easy to press and operate, although the navigational pad seemed a little flimsy and wasn't comfortable for long periods of use.

The controls don't end there with dedicated camera and notes buttons on the left hand side of the phone, with a volume key in between. The volume slider is spring operated and doesn't protrude enough to be used easily - you'll find yourself digging in with the tip of your finger to operate it. i-Mate conveniently includes a spare stylus in the package, so you won't have to worry if you lose one of them.

The PDA2k has a large display, although its performance doesn't match some of the more recent smartphones we've seen. With a resolution of 240 x 320 it's not outstanding, but it does suffice comfortably for everyday use. If you are planning to watch videos or view plenty of photos then the PDA2k's screen isn't going to be ideal. The unit also does not include a screen protector.

The quad band PDA2k has a pretty impressive features list and only lacks a GPS receiver. It supports SMS, MMS and e-mail messaging and runs on Microsoft Pocket PC 2003 Second Edition. The PDA2k is equipped with an Intel PXA263 400 MHz processor and includes 128MB RAM and 64MB ROM. An SD card slot is located at the top of the unit for extra memory options.

As with all Windows Mobile OSs, the e-mail function is very simple to use on the PDA2k and it supports mail access to POP3 and IMAP accounts. All you need to do is enter your e-mail address as well as the mail server and provided your wireless connection is available, the device will import all other settings directly from the Internet. The Pocket PC 2003 platform also includes a full suite of Microsoft applications including Pocket Word, Pocket Excel, Pocket MSN, Windows Media Player, MSN Messenger, Microsoft Outlook and Internet Explorer.

Connectivity is also a strong point of the PDA2k and it includes Bluetooth, Wi-Fi (802.11b), infrared, USB and GPRS. Bluetooth is quick and easy to access with the included Wireless Manager software. The LED in the top left hand corner will glow blue when this function is turned on. This is the same with Wi-Fi - the right LED flashes green when you are connected to an available wireless network.

The PDA2k includes a VGA camera. We were disappointed that this wasn't upgraded to a megapixel or greater sensor. It's good for quick snapshots, but with the limited sensor and no flash or light we wouldn't recommend it for anything else. Other multimedia features include an MP3 and AAC player and Java games but there is no FM Radio. The PDA2k has a 2.5mm audio jack rather than the more common 3.5mm.

Purely as a phone, the PDA2k isn't without its issues. The volume levels during calls aren't loud enough and it just doesn't have the same clarity or crispness as a regular standard mobile phone.

Battery life is about average, with a talk time of four hours and up to 168 hours of standby time. For a device with such a plethora of features, this is a pretty good result. During testing, we found we only needed to charge the unit every three days. i-Mate includes a rather large cradle in the sales package and the unit can also be charged via the included adapter. The phone can also be charged by USB .

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?