Telstra EasyTouch 4G Android phone

An easy to use Android phone that could use some further refinement

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now
Telstra Corporation EasyTouch 4G
  • Telstra Corporation EasyTouch 4G
  • Telstra Corporation EasyTouch 4G
  • Telstra Corporation EasyTouch 4G

Pros

  • Good ergonomics
  • Easy widgets are useful
  • Decent battery life

Cons

  • Dim screen
  • Poor quality camera
  • Slight performance issues

Bottom Line

First time smartphone users and seniors will find the Telstra EasyTouch 4G's custom designed widgets easier to use than most alternatives. However, we feel there could have been further customisation and the dim screen and poor quality camera are downsides.

Would you buy this?

Telstra has often released its own-branded devices in Australia and the EasyTouch 4G is another example of that. An Android smartphone designed for first time users, the EasyTouch 4G's custom designed widgets make the smartphone easier to use than most alternatives, but we feel there could have been further customisation to suit first time users.

Simple but bland

The EasyTouch is a little thick, but relatively comfortable to hold.

The Telstra EasyTouch 4G, manufactured by Chinese brand ZTE, is best described as bland. It's constructed entirely from solid feeling plastics, with a glossy, black bezel surrounding the screen and the brushed aluminium-look camera surround on the back the only real attempts to add some style.

We like the removable plastic cover on the back of the EasyTouch 4G, which has an etched, grippy surface and therefore doesn't easily slip out of your hand. Both the top-mounted power/lock button and the volume controls on the left are fairly well positioned for one handed use. The phone is a little thick, but it's relatively comfortable to hold and use. This is important for users who may be switching to a smartphone for the first time.

The screen is quite reflective and viewing angles are poor compared to more expensive phones.
The screen is quite reflective and viewing angles are poor compared to more expensive phones.

The screen is quite reflective and viewing angles are poor.

One nice addition that you don't normally see on many smartphones is an external antenna port that allows users to boost the mobile signal if required. Combined with a Blue Tick rating that denotes recommended coverage in rural and regional areas of Australia, the EasyTouch 4G is clearly well targeted to customers who live in the bush.

The Telstra EasyTouch 4G has a large 4.3in screen with a reasonable resolution of 540x960. The qHD (quarter HD) display does a good job of rendering text, so it should be ideal for seniors or first time smartphone users. Unfortunately, the screen is quite reflective and viewing angles are poor compared to more expensive phones. We found the automatic brightness setting erratic, too, as it often resulted in a dim and dull image.

The back of the EasyTouch 4G has an etched, grippy surface and doesn't easily slip out of your hand.
The back of the EasyTouch 4G has an etched, grippy surface and doesn't easily slip out of your hand.

Handy widgets add to usability

The Telstra EasyTouch 4G runs the 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich version of Google's Android operating system, but the key point here isn't the software version. Telstra has made a number of unique customisations to the interface, highlighted by a set of "easy widgets" that provide quick access to commonly used features.

Four widgets are included. The phone widget provides quick access to the phone dialler and call log, contacts and messages and also displays any missed calls or unread messages. The Internet widget opens the browser, saved bookmarks and the email app, while the media widget will open the camera, photo gallery and default music player. Finally, a settings widget allows users to adjust sound settings, manage Wi-Fi and set an alarm clock.

Telstra has made a number of unique customisations to the interface, highlighted by a set of
Telstra has made a number of unique customisations to the interface, highlighted by a set of "easy widgets".

The widgets are a good idea and work reasonably well, though its not possible to edit the apps they open.

The widgets are a good idea and work reasonably well, though its not possible to edit the apps they open. For example, the email shortcut will open the generic email app on the phone but can't be set as a shortcut for Gmail. The lock screen on the EasyTouch 4G has also been revamped. A large green rectangle can be held down to unlock the phone, while a red missed call notification and a green new message notification appear whenever appropriate. The feature is straightforward and well designed.

A large font size can be selected from the settings menu, but this doesn't increase the text of icons in the main menu, or the notifications bar. The clock, for example, is small and may be difficult to read for those with reduced vision. The icons in the dock aren't labelled, either, so there may be an initial source of confusion for first time users. A nice touch is the fact that the user manual of the EasyTouch 4G is loaded onto the device as a PDF file.

The customised lock screen of the Telstra EasyTouch 4G.
The customised lock screen of the Telstra EasyTouch 4G.

UI customisations aside, the software that powers the Telstra EasyTouch 4G is very close to a "vanilla" UI. It uses the standard Google icons and topography, so the user experience is similar to a stock Android device like the Google Nexus 4. The TelstraOne app comes pre-loaded on the device, along with a file manager, an FM radio, a notepad, a sound recorder, a world time app, the X-Office suite and a TouchPal keyboard. Thankfully, the latter is optional so you can revert to Google's standard Android keyboard, but both are likely to be a little small for users who require a large font.

The Telstra EasyTouch 4G offers reasonable but not outstanding performance. Basic tasks are relatively smooth and fast, though we did notice some slight lag and slowdown when scrolling through long lists and opening and closing apps. First smartphone buyers may not notice this slowdown too much but anyone who's previously used a well performing Android phone may be left disappointed.

None

Poor quality camera, reasonable battery life

The quality of photos is quite poor.

The Telstra EasyTouch 4G has an 8-megapixel camera with single LED flash but the quality of photos is quite poor. Most of the images we captured suffer from excessive image noise, a lack of detail and inaccurate colour reproduction. The camera is fine to take the odd happy snap, but compared to most of the better camera phones on the market, the EasyTouch 4G falls well short. Video recording quality, too, is below average, and although the front facing camera also lacks quality, it works reasonably well for video calling apps like Skype and Tango.

A photo we captured with the EasyTouch 4G (click to enlarge).
A photo we captured with the EasyTouch 4G (click to enlarge).

The EasyTouch 4G comes with just 4GB of internal memory but annoyingly, only 2.5GB is free for user space. A microSD card slot can expand this memory, supporting cards of up to 32GB in size.

Despite being a 4G smartphone, the Telstra EasyTouch 4G has reasonable battery life, usually pushing through a full day of use. Heavy users may struggle to achieve the same results, but the smaller screen and mid-range internals are certainly more kind to the 1900mAh battery than many high-end Android smartphones.

The Telstra EasyTouch 4G is available through Telstra stores and online and sells unlocked and outright for $456.

Related content

Our brand strong enough to sell 4G smartphones: Telstra
Telstra Frontier 4G review

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Read more on these topics: Telstra EasyTouch 4G, 4g, mobile phones, ZTE, smartphones, Telstra

David

1

As of 21 Feb 2013, it is $199.00 at Telstra. However, even though you say it comes with a PDF manual on the phone, I can't find it on the whole Internet. This is my most basic way of researching products before purchase: RTFM. I guess I cannot seriously consider a purchase.

Garry

2

Try the downloads tab on this page http://www.zte.com.au/telstra/T82.htm for the manual

Debbie

3

we bought the phone today and pressed the voice activation button and now can't deactive it, it won't let us scroll up/down or sideways, have taken battery and sim card out have turned off and on but still can't find a way to reset the phone!! any ideas?

Robyn

4

Bought the phone; as a first time user of a touch phone, and a senior, I find it fairly easy to use. Still haven't completely worked it out but getting there. The camera isn't the most wonderful camera I've had but it works for what I use it for, quick photos on the 'go'. Can't fine a cover for it though...any on the market?

Robyn

5

A further post from me.....one of the main reasons I chose the Easytouch 4G was that it takes a 'patch' cord for an external aerial. I believe this phone is the only touch phone that can hook to an external aerial and as I'm in areas with poor coverage quite often, it is very helpful.

Logan

6

I acidentally changed the type of keyboard and I don't know how to change it back. Someone please tell me how to change it on the easytouch.

Logan

7

I can't find a way to get free music.

Don

8

I bought a cover and screen protector at Telstra Northland in Melbourne

Christine Adams

9

Phone rings but i don't know how to answer it! The flashing sign or green telephone doesn't allow me to answe.

Heather

10

Hi Christine. I had the same problem. As the phone rings, a black flashing icon appears. You drag this over to either the green or red phone symbol. Green to accept, or red to refuse the call. Hope this helps if you haven't already found out.

Kathy

11

where can I buy a leather case for this phone
Kathy

Russell

12

For some reason after a few weeks the reception gets very poor to non existent,took first phone back to telstra and it was replaced,second phone is now doing same thing.
Funny though when connected to external antenna it works well.

Mark Asher

13

Bought the EasyTouch for the external aerial capacity to have it come apart the first time I plugged a patch lead into it and tried to remove it. It appears that the plug in the phone is unlike the older phones as it is near the surface of the phone back and doesn't offer any support for the patch lead (unlike the older phones). This is probably because the smart phone being thinner maybe? I bought a new patch lead matched to the phone so I am concerned this may become a common fault. There maybe a newer patch lead being put out but I couldn't find any which would offer better support to the connection. Otherwise was going great with the phone and liked it. I also use an Iphone so have a good comparison basis.

tina

14

what is the latest price for this phone

arra

15

Just got the 4G EasyTouch last Wednesday. Left the plastic on the screen to keep it nice. Took it to show off to daughter and she pulled back the plastic and showed me a fine crack. Took it back Saturday, bit disheartened they think I dropped it. Another store looked at it and said looks like a problem within the phone...maybe from the charger as crack is only on that side and looks odd going from a hairline crack to a deeper one. Sending it away to be fixed. Store manager treated me like a crook. I was enjoying my new toy now I am not so sure.

Brent easytouch g4

16

Leather pouch google ZTE T82...OR Telstra Easytouch 4g EBAY. AUSPHONE.

dianne

17

hi, has anyone used Skype on this phone?
as I am considering buying one , but need Skype for doctors visits.
thanks
di

Grant

18

What year is this phone

Wendy

19

What year is this phone thank you

Ebonie

20

Put phone on silent now when I try to get it baack it shows telstra screen then shuts down for a second then starts up again. went into settings and its says sound not available... anyone help ?

Nicky

21

How can you screenshot on this phone??? I cant find out anywhere!??

Denis

22

phone is locked onto emergency call, how can i fix this?

steve

23

You will never get 300 hours stand by time!

I live in a strong signal area and do very little downloads.

Your report of oneday of battery life is good?

You must be joking, my old dumb (smart) phone battery life was 6 days!

Wendy

24

This phone will not turn on or charge! What can I do? Can't even find how to remove back cover to check battery isn't loose.

Zita Fuchs

25

Zita
I was going to buy one of these phones but after reading all the negatives iv'e changed my mind

Doreen

26

Why does my ZTE T82 import videos I have taken on the phone to my computer sideways and I cannot rotate them does any one else have this problem. This phone has given me a lot of grief.

Mick

27

Don't drop the ZTE because it is over $360 to fix with Telstra. It served me well as a phone in remote areas because of the external aerial capabilities, but it is a very expensive paper weight now.

Samantha

28

This phone will not turn on or charge! What can I do? Only bought it a week ago. Live in regional area, so can't take it back for another week. Trying to find online solution.

melissa

29

How can u screen shot ???!!!

Post new comment

Users posting comments agree to the PC World comments policy.

Login or register to link comments to your user profile, or you may also post a comment without being logged in.

Most Popular Reviews

Follow Us

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Shopping.com

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?