Product Type: Sharp mobile phones
Newest Review: ... about it is the casing, it chips pretty easily and kind of looks a mess now. Sharp phones aren't very readily available in the UK anym... more
Member Name: pishey
Date: 08/10/04, updated on 10/10/04 (2443 review reads)
Advantages: Smart, Good menu, Good battery performance
Disadvantages: Rotten web sites, Rubbish hand set manager, simple software features missing
I just obtained the Sharp GX10 free from Vodaphone with a new account.
What I want from a phone is to talk, so don't expect me to comment on the camera or test messaging, games etc. I will say that I don't expect a phone camera to be any good and I wasn't dissappointed. I use a digital camera for the simple reason that I have more control over my pictures and if i want to send them anywhere, I e-mail them. It's tough sending a phone picture to people who don't have camera phones (or am I missing something? it doesn't matter) and it has to be lots cheaper even if you have a dial up connection.
Apparently the expectation of the manufacturers was that they'd make 48p a minute every time someone took a picture and sent it to someone. The supplietr told me that most youngsters take the pictures and then show them to their friends, they never leave the phone.
It appears that when I list my real desires I get the camera whether i want it or not, but fortunately Vodaphone don't require you to take the pictures option in the account and I also ducked out of the text service, I can recieve but not send which suits me fine. That isn't to say that "free" means free. It just means that I don't really have the option of not having a camera if i want the other features.
So what did i want?
Tri band: I settled for dual band, but I would value tri band more than a camera. But not at £59 extra for the GX10i.
Infra red so I can:
(a) connect my PC to the internet from strange hotels (the phone charges make even mobile phone charges seem cheap and many hotels have strange facilities if they have them at all) and that's because I want my email in my PC where i can read it and not in the phone where i doubt if I can. Don't foget, for some pople emails are more than just text. I use emails for fax to email service (incoming) and for file transmittion so most of my emails require the PC for composition and proper filing.
(b) synchronise my Outlook address book with the SIM card.
All very well, it has infra red and a good organiser structure.
I expected the necessary software would be on the CD rom.
It wasn't, all it contained was a driver for the infrared modem. In fact, why send such a basic file on a CD and not load all the other support files on there aswell?
There is a handset manager on the Sharp web site but for the GX10i, not on the GX10 site. As a down;load file, they don't include all the help files in all the languages. Now that's very odd.
They have carefully set up a variety of country web sites, so why can't i get the english langauge help file with the downloads from the english web site? Why weren't they all on the CD?
Incidentally, the web site was very poor.
Even with braodband I was getting very very slow downloads which frequently locked up.
In the end i finally managed to download from Australia as the only English language site option open to me. The handset manager download has several languiage files for help, but not english.
The help file logs you back to the internet site where there is no help file, just the phone manual which is, as another reviewer says, incomprehensible, especially for setting up the infra red.
I was advised by the phone shop that the GX10i handset manager would work with the GX10. It doesn't. It might work with the GX10i, but I have no way of knowing.
In anyevent, it doesn't matter since this would have to be the very worst handset manager I have seen. The graphics are amateurish and the functionality pitiful.
It supposedly allows you to upload images, but no evidence of any other functions.
Instead, I downloaded a trial version of another progam which worked first time and allowed me to successfully upload my outlook contacts. The Sharp program still doesn't work. Apparently it may work if i first connect using cable, or so the supplier says and he has a cable he lends out to his customers to get them past this hurdle. Frankly, this is a nice looking product but badly packaged and supported.
About now i was much disillusioned and wasn't surprised to find some simple ommissions.
Another reviewer has mentioned that when you open the lid you still have to press a key to answer the call... a sad oversight.
But for lacking simple software functions, that isn't the worst.
I went into the profile manager and selected "car" expecting that when I plugged in my "hands free" kit (a eupemism for an earpiece) that, like Motorola, Nokia etc, a new menu would open or that in the car progile i would find the "Automatic Answer" option.
I didn't. This means that it is not truly a hands free system since to answer a call you must either open the lid and press a button (any-key answer excludes the top two keys, so you can't just blindly press lterally any button) or you try and answer using the two side buttons which usually are for volume adjustment (this hint was found somewhere in the manual for the GSX10i, i don't know if it is in the GS10x and i haven't bothered to try it so the side keys may or may not work. It doesn't matter. The simple thing is that it is such a simple feature that has been around for years in other phones that it ought to be standard.
Its just software, but it isn't there.
Oh yes, Voice dialling and voice answer/end would be nice. Forget the cameras, concentrate of a phone that meets its primary functions.
On the plus side, I liked the menu and appearance and I liked the battery life claimed. I like the feel of it.
I will be taking it back and "paying extra" for a better phone.