Sometimes an excellent operating system can be made even better
Motorola MOTOKRZR K3
- HSDPA capable, Great design, Slim and compact, Build quality, A2DP Bluetooth profile, Included microSD card, Improved menu and messaging speed
- Attracts fingerprints, Flat keypad
Adding HSDPA capability, attractive new colour schemes and improved speeds for both messaging and menu navigation, the MOTOKRZR K3 has managed to improve what already was an excellent handset.
Price$ 654.00 (AUD)
The MOTOKRZR K3 blends a stylish metal and glass finish with a number of excellent features including HSDPA technology, a 2 megapixel camera with 8x digital zoom, and the A2DP Bluetooth profile for wirelessly streaming music.
The K3 is one of a new generation of HSDPA phones, so it is capable of data speeds of up to 3.6Mbps. When in a HSDPA coverage area, the K3 displays an 'H' icon on its screen. As users move out of coverage it reverts to standard 3G, and then standard GSM when there is no 3G coverage.
Although the MOTOKRZR K3 has been designed as a fashion accessory, Motorola certainly hasn't compromised on features. Connectivity options include Bluetooth and USB 2.0, and the K3 has a USB cable in the sales package. The MOTOKRZR also features the AD2P Bluetooth profile for streaming music to any compatible Bluetooth accessories, such as wireless headphones. The music player included is fairly notable, with play-list support and repeat play modes available. It also has bass boost and spatial audio settings, and supports a number of file formats including MP3, AAC and AAC+ files. Unfortunately, you'll have to use the included headphones unless you go Bluetooth; Motorola hasn't added a standard 3.5mm headphone jack, instead relying on a mini-USB connection.
You can store your tunes using the 50MB of internal phone memory, or the unit's microSD card slot, located underneath the rear battery cover. Motorola includes a 128MB microSD card in the sales package. The MOTOKRZR has a 2 megapixel camera with 8x digital zoom, but there is no flash or light for night time photography. The camera's performance is average; it's good enough for the occasional photograph, but not adequate for any sort of serious photography. The camera is bare on options as well, as only a five and 10 second timer is included and there are no effects or advanced settings. The K3 can also record video clips, but the quality is below average.
The K3's menu system is much the same as previous Motorola phones, with simple icons in the main menu and a list format for most submenus. It is quite easy to use and we did note the menu icon graphics are much crisper than the MOTOKRZR K1. The biggest improvement is reserved for speed though, as the interface is quick to scroll through and not at all sluggish during navigation.
The MOTOKRZR K3 also comes standard with WAP 2.0, SMS, MMS and email messaging, a hands-free speakerphone, voice activated dialling and a number of PIM features such as alarm clock, calculator and currency converter. For SMS messaging, Motorola continues with its iTAP predictive text input method, which will take time to adjust to should you be used to the popular T9 method. Fortunately, messaging speeds are an improvement over previous models, with no noticeable delay when trying to message quickly.
The MOTOKRZR K3 measures 103.2mm x 42.3mm x 16.30mm, making it one of the slimmest phones currently available on the market. The K3 successfully retains the same popular design as the original RAZR, but it is smaller, slimmer and sleeker. The result is a handset that looks fantastic, and is comfortable to use. The K3 uses a combination of metal and glass to provide an attractive and sturdy feeling build. The phone has a mirror-like finish that is quite elegant. Unfortunately, the surface attracts plenty of fingerprints.
We are impressed with the build quality of the K3, although the top half of the flip mechanism does exhibit some movement when closed. Despite this, the K3 gives the impression of a very solid and well built handset, and the metal battery cover on the rear further contributes to this. Once again, our only complaint with the design is the large area below the keypad. It is quite chunky and stands out a little too much for our liking.
The K3 has a 2in 262k colour screen, with a resolution of 240x320 pixels. The screen is crisper and clearer than the original MOTOKRZR K1 and it again blends nicely into the design of the handset. The screen displays background wallpaper as well as time, date, battery life, reception indicator and caller ID information. On the left side of the phone are external volume controls and a voice recording button, while a voice dialling button is located on the right hand side. Being a clamshell handset, the K3 also has a 1.3in external display.
Flipped open, the MOTOKRZR features the same style metal keypad as the original RAZR. The keys are well spaced out and although they are fairly flat, they feel quite comfortable. The keys do require a firm press to activate though, so messaging with the K3 does take some time to get used to. The keypad's design makes for excellent night time viewing as the soft blue backlight is bright without being overwhelming and clearly marks each key. In addition to the keypad, the MOTOKRZR includes a five-way navigational pad, two selection buttons, answer and end call keys as well as dedicated internet, clear and video calling buttons.
Battery life is average according to Motorola figures, of up to 200 hours of talk time and 300 hours of standby time. These figures slightly increase to 250 hours and 330 hours respectively if you are using a GSM network.
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