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      05.12.2012 10:17
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      A brilliant "my first smartphone"

      I got one of these back in 2004, and at the time, flip phones were still popular, and this had the highest quality camera of the time, so instantly it was cool.
      It was pretty straightforward to use, not as much as an iOS device is in this day and age, but back then it was pretty simple. The screen had a decent resolution, which was handy because this had a 1MP camera. This sounds like absolutely nothing these days; the camera on the front of most phones will do better. But in 2004, this was the best camera you could get in a phone.
      The phone I had prior to this was a bit strange; it had a camera, but there was no way to get the photos onto your computer. This was much simpler, as it took an SD card. Not micro SD, the full size SD, which in this day and age is unthinkable as it's too big and impractical, but back then it worked brilliantly.
      It could double up as a music player, which was pretty cool as back then neither I nor my parents could afford an iPod, and the iPhone hadn't been invented yet. Although reflecting on it, there were no EQ settings available, and the phone could only take up to a 256mb SD card, so it was rather limited. Still, it meant less stuff in my pocket at school.
      The only bit where it fell down was Bluetooth. Sure, it worked fine for the headsets, and in car systems, but at school everyone shared everything via Bluetooth, and this didn't support file transfer, which irritated me quite a lot, so I ended up swapping it out for a Sony K750i, which did. But these days, my iPhone doesn't support file transfer by Bluetooth, so I guess on balance, it didn't matter.
      All in all, as a 'my first smartphone' it was pretty good, save for the Bluetooth file transfer not happening; although Sharp did release a GX30i which did support it. Back in 2004 this was probably amongst the best phones out there, and if you're looking for a smartphone for your children here in 2012, but don't want to spend too much money, then look out for one of these on eBay.

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      26.06.2008 20:33
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      I had the GX30 around four years ago, and when I upgraded I passed this phone onto my grandmother, who is actually quite good on a mobile phone for a 75 year old women. Having upgraded several times since, I recently gave my grandmother my last phone, Sony Ericsson and I had the GX30 back from her so I could use it as a back up plan.

      When I originally had this phone, at that particular time, it was one of the best mobile phones that I had owned to date and I was sad to part with it, however since, I have become a Samsung person now and haven't owned another brand that has competed with them at all, not even Nokia.

      The GX30 was reletively stylish in its day and still is now, you wouldn't be embarrassed using this phone in public now. Although it is slightly outdated, you cannot tell a great deal. The phone itself is silver in colour and on the front it has a small rectangular screen which displays the usual information, signal, battery, new messages. Although its a pretty chunky phone, and they appear a ot slimmer these days, it is a lot smaller in width and height than some of the phones that are on the market today, so it still has its benefits. It is a flip phone, which when you open it up, it clicks, so you are ensured that it is securely in position. It then displays a colour screen, with the same information on the small screen on the outside.

      The keys are good on this phone, slightly larger than some, I think that is why my grandmother found this easy to use, as there is no chance of pressing the wrong number because the keys are too close. Its not to complicated either. It has the green and red phones on the keys so you know which to press when calling someone and which to press when you are hanging up, this however still confused my grandmother a little as I associate the colours with traffic lights and she isn't a driver and its hard to explain to an old lady that has never drove in her life.

      The phone has a 1 mega pixel camera which isn't too bad as camera had only really become a distinguished feature on majority of phones then. It produces not brilliant quality pictures, but they were good four years ago conpared to some of the competition on the market then. Usually the camera, you also had the viedo option too, and it has the capability of producing quite lengthy video's.

      The phone was also one the first phone that I had with an MP3 player on. The phone itself doesn't have as much memory on it as they do these days, therefore couldn't take a great capacity of music but the actually player itself was really very good.

      Text messaging from the phone is simple, you have the varioius options oif whether you want to use predictive text or normal text. The messaging folder had all the optons that you would expect to create message, inbox, email, drafts, outbox, sent items and setting to set it to your own specification.

      I found with this phone that the battery life was really good on it. CHarge it up for a good 24 hours and it would last a couple of days even with plenty of use. Some phones today, you have them constantly on charge and can't get them to charge to a decent level.

      Overall, I am quite happy to have this phone back and will use it as my back up plan phone.

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      • More +
        17.06.2006 20:20
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        Sturdy, Strong, probably the best built in camera on any phone!

        Heres a bit about this sharp little phone! I have had this phone for over a year, its great. Personally I was looking for a phone with a great camera, and the other features up to date with other phones.

        This phone was the best for me. I, being a clumsey person! have dropped this phone so many times, its been bashed and dropped, One time I dropped it in my garden, 'paved' and went to pick it up and kicked it even further! smashing it into my wall! That (despite from demonstrating how clumsey I am) shows that this phone it built to last.

        I think the camera is fab, excellent quality for taking photos, though the video capture isn't the best i've seen. The phone also has an edit feature for your photos, which is useful indeed.

        I have not even considered changing this phone yet, I am very happy with it. Apart from the lack of speaker phone capability I am happy.

        Right heres the raw info about the phone:-

        Features of the Sharp GX30 include:

        1 Mega-pixel CCD Digital Camera
        Video capture/playback (up to 400kB) - including sound
        Removable SD Memory Card for storing videos, music and pictures (supplied)
        SD Memory Card expandable to 512 Mbytes
        260k colour QVGA CGS LCD
        MP3 player
        40 chord polyphonic ring tones
        Bluetooth V1.1 (Support for headset and car-kit profiles)
        Downloadable Java games & applications
        Wallpaper - create wallpaper from your photos
        Caller ID with photos
        MMS multimedia messaging
        6MB Internal Memory
        USB/IrDA connectivity
        WAP, GPRS
        Built-in Flash/Mobile Light (I love this feature, flashed different colours when ringing, also you can put the light on when taking a photo, so the subject is in a different colour)
        Quad Band (GSM 850, 900, 1800, DCS 1900)
        Weight: 110g
        Size: 26 x 95 x 49mm

        Right, there is your basics for you... Lets have some detail!


        The camera - If you are looking for a phone with a great camera, this one is for you! That is what I wanted, and I am over the moon with the little phone!

        The screen - The 260k colour and LCD screen really adds to the advantages of this phone. When recieveing pictures from other phones the quality appears so much better on this phone, for example; My sister had the sharp GX25, She sent me a picture I wanted off her phone of the two of us, when I recieved it, it displayed on my phone so much clearer than hers.

        Memory Card - Very useful, bags of extra memory for those who don't want to save all their stuff to the handset or sim.

        Ringtones - This phone does not support true tones. I would have liked this feature but the polyphonics sound good on this phone and play very well. I have this phone unlocked on o2 and have put in my settings for WAP and MMS, it works brilliantly, allowing me to use the internet on my phone and download new polyphonics when I wish to do so.

        Wallpaper - As well as creating your own and downloading wallpaper, there are some good wallpapers already on the phone, really good photos if you want to use them.

        Bluetooth and IrDA - Great, I use this alot, never had a problem with either of them personally. Very quick and simple to use features.

        The second screen - There is a small screen on the front of the flip phone. This is useful for checking out the date and time, also displays missed calls and messages. Another plus of having this screen is when taking photos, when taking a photo press * and the screen on the front will display what is being seen on the camera, ideal for taking photos of yourself, so you don't end up with a head missing!

        Size and weight - Now some people think this phone is bulky and big, but I disagree. Yes the phone isn't as small as some flip phones, but its not big, its very light weight and looks great. I feel that the design of the phone, the fact that is isn't very small goes in its favour. Like I have said this phone is built to last, they designed it in mind with the 'drop factor'.

        Battery and talk time - The phone has up to 230hrs of standby, also 3.5hrs of talktime when fully charged. I use my phone alot for long conversations as o2 provide me with 300 free minutes each month. so I talk for hours on this phone and it lasts as long as it says it does.

        Overall this phone is a great buy, there are 3 disadvantages with this phone:-

        1. No speaker phone capability
        2. Video capture isn't great quality
        3. Does not support true tones

        I love this phone and it has lasted me over a year and I intend to keep it for as long as possible, I've dropped it on numerous occasions and part from a few scuffs it is in perfect working order! It is a cute phone with bags of features, a great camera and a useful second screen. I recommend this phone to anyone!

        Hope this has been helpful to you - Tara

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        • More +
          20.05.2006 22:00
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          Has one of the best Cameras i have seen/used!

          I've had this phone just over a year now, and despite it being dropped and banged, still works brilliantly.

          The phone features a 1.0 megapixel camera which in my opinion is just as good, if not better then the latest phones offering 2.0 megapixel cameras. The phone is straightforward to use, has a large 260k colour QVGA CGS LCD screen and space for a 512MB Removable SD Memory Card for storing videos, music and pictures. At first i found it was a little bit tricky to upload songs from the computer, but when you get the hang of it, it's simple.

          Unfortunately despite the execellence of the camera and the ease of use, i was abit dissapointed with some of the connectivity features, such as Bluetooth and Infra Red. The bluetooth can only be used with a paired headset and searching for other devices, and not for connecting and sharing files with other bluetooth enabled phones. The same can be said for the Infra Red, which can only be used for connecting with PC software. Other things that let the phone down slighlty is the size, weight and short battery life.

          Overall, despite the disadvantages i would definitely recommend the phone to anyone.

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          • More +
            17.10.2005 00:50

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            A fun loving out going phone believe it or not. A must get for all.

            Well what can i not say about this phone, its stylish , has amazing photo qualities 1.0megapixel camera , a video recording time of up to 90 seconds and also very easily usable even my Grandma used this phone with ease.

            Well this phone is great except one thing. The actual phone memory is very small so vodafone has a way of conning you although the phone cost 300GBP brand new you also had to spend 15 on a memory card and also another 20 on a Card reader. But its really worth it because it saves pictures onto the computer and etc. so its a bonus as well as a con.

            I would personally give the phone a rating of 4*'s out of 5.

            Tips for Vodafone/Sharp , next phone try make a little smaller and also make the phone have more memory.

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            03.05.2005 17:23
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            I got this phone as an upgrade on Vodafone contract. Didn't know anything about it until it arrived on my doorstep, but when I got it going I was delighted with my choice. The internal screen is simply huge when compared to other phones, older or newer and everyone comments on how clear and bright the display is, appearing as it does behind glass. The camera is superb, and has replaced my dedicated camera even on holidays and other trips-the photos are unbelievably crisp, and you can save hundreds of hi-res pics onto the SD card, which you can remove and upgrade if you wish. This phone seems made for Vodafone's "Live" GPRS service, and anything you do on it looks great. The phone's mp3 player is superb with capacity only limited by the SD card choice which in practice can be upgraded to 1GB-equalling many card based dedicated mp3 players!! The external speaker also does a fine job of music and voice recordings and can be turned up surprisingly loud!! This is the only phone I have ever had that has not let me down once-no glitches etc and the battery life is very good, surprisingly for a phone with such a large display and array of extra features. Small niggles include not being able to use mp3 tracks for ringtones, and the video capture time which works only for a few seconds and is limited to 400Kb. Despite this it is a brilliant phone which I would (and often do) recommend to anyone.

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            02.04.2005 16:41
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            The Sharp GX30i is an amazing quality phone and you will have to look hard to better it. I purchased this phone on contract on Vodafone, so would like to state the contract detais.
            --------------------------------
            VODAFONE
            Phone cost: FREE
            Monthly rental: £15.99 (18 months)

            Texts = 250 per month
            Calls = 600 minutes off peak
            ---------------------------------
            The range and quality of phones that you can pick up for free on contracts varies greatly. So it is important that you get the one of the best phones available and by getting the Sharp GX30i, you will.

            The Sharp GX30i is exclusive to vodafone and features flip phone design. It is high specification, having many features that many phones do not have.

            SCREEN
            The Sharp GX30i has a stunning 262k colour display, and a 128k external display. The intenal display is the best quality display i have seen on any phone. I believe that mobile phone screen performance can not do much better than what the Sharp GX30i has accomplished. The images displayed are razor sharp, and colourful. If you are looking for a phone that has a great screen, then you must definatly look into getting this phone.

            CAMERA
            The Sharp GX30i features a fantastic camera. It has a 1meg pixel camera which not only takes superb quality photographs, the phone also has video capture abilities. Yes the phone does take amazing quality photographs (one of the best on the market for a cameraphone) but the only criticism I have of the Sharp GX30i camera is that you have to hold the phone still to take a sharp image. Slight movement can make the image blurry. That aside, the Sharp GX30i has stunning picture capabilities.

            PHONE CALLS & TEXT
            As specification of phones has increased and new technological advancements have been made in the market, the fundamental reason of having a phone has been ignored. While there is not much room for innovation in this feature, what the Sharp GX30i does, it does very well. Calls are presented well, clearly and potentially loudly. The text function on the Sharp GX30i is same to any other phone, featuring T9 etc. The only criticism I would have of the text feature that sometimes the phone limits how fast you can text. This is not an issue though.

            BATTERY LIFE
            Improvement in phone technology such as colour screens and cameras have generally meant that the battery life on phones has decreased. The Sharp GX30i features a very good battery life, with myself only having to charge it every few days. This compares to other phones I have had, by sony ericsson that have had in the past been required to be charged every night. So battery life is important to you, then the Sharp GX30i is a solid performer in this catagory.

            MP3 PLAYER
            The Sharp GX30i does have a built in mp3 player, which is of a suffice quality. The phone comes supplied with earphones, which aren't the greatest quality. If you are at the bustation and desperate to listen to some music then this may be appealing but the Mp3 player on the Sharp GX30i certainly won't replace your ipod. The phone has about 6mb internal memory which is about average but does have one other feature that allows fantastic options...

            MEMORY CARD
            The Sharp GX30i has a SD card reader. This means that you can put little memory cards into the phone. The obviously attraction of this feature is that it is EASY to transfer pictures and ringtones onto your phone... FAB. You can stick a load of mp3s on the card too, to listen to. The Sharp GX30i coems supplied with a 8mb card.

            OTHER CONNECTIVITY
            The Sharp GX30i also features bluetooth and and infrared, which have been compatible with all phones i have tried them with apart from Samsung. You can send pics... ringtones... whatever. Bluetooth also allows the option of a headset.

            RINGTONES
            Although this wasn't a huge concern for me when purchasing a phone, i can understand if it is to a lot of others. As far as ringtones go on the Sharp GX30i performs well. The criticism i have of the phone is that mp3s can't be used as ringtones, but can be concerted to another format and used, overcoming this problem. The volume of the ringtones is louder than usual.

            CRITICISMS
            In regard to a comment, I acknowledge that I have not really addressed criticisms of this phone. The first criticism I guess is the size. While it is average, and a good size for me, there are smaller phones on the market which may suit some people. Another criticism of the Sharp GX30i is that it is not 3g. This means that it is not third generation and so does not work on the high speed network. This is not an issue for me since I don't want to do video calling and download sport clips. As already commented, other criticisms include the picture going blurry when you move the phone when taking a photograph and the mp3 ringtone niggle. A very final criticism of the phone is that the navigational interface (like menus) isn't beautiful. Its a simple red and white structure, which may put some people off.

            To conclude the Sharp GX30i is a very good phone and I urge you to consider it if you are purchasing a new phone. Available from FREE on contract, it is definatly value for money. Some people are put off that Sharp are perhaps not a ronound for making phones since they don't market them that much, but Sharp are a leading manufacturer. The Sharp GX30i is well built, has an awesome screen, great features and superb battery life. Definatly recommended!

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              28.01.2005 14:58
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              2 colour screens is a great touch and resolution on inside screen is particularly good – partic when taking pix with the 1.3 megapixel camera. Nice to get photos that finally don’t look like they were taken with a phone! Removable SD memory card is v useful for extra memory space. Only flaw is that it’s quite chunky – but then what do you expect for a phone packed with this many features!
              Got mine from FoneShop.com and would recommend highly - great price and delivered to my home the next morning

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                08.10.2004 18:58
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                My Sharp GX-30 is not only my toy, but also a great gadget. When I bought it it was the first time I ever purposely set out to buy what was supposedly one of the best phones on the market, but so far, I'm fairly pleased I did!

                The Sharp GX30 is currently only available on the Vodafone network, and at the time I bought it it was, on average, quoted at costing in the region of £100 (with a contract - it's still a lot more if you want to buy it without taking out a contract), depending on what tariff you opt for on the Vodafone network. As my boyfriend and I went shopping for the same phone at the same phone we hoped to get a bit more of a bargain, and fortunately we did! £23.97 each on the Vodafone Anytime 200 tariff from Phones 4U after negotiating with a very helpful salesman! Incidentally though, I recently saw on the Vodafone website that it was being given as a free phone with certain contracts.

                I was a bit concerned about buying a Sharp mobile phone. It's not that I'd heard bad things about them or anything like that, in fact quite the opposite. My reasons for being a bit apprehensive is that ever since I first owned a mobile I've always gone for Nokia and I've never had any problems with them - they've always been reliable and easy to use, in particular for texting.

                The Looks
                ***************
                Silver in colour, the GX-30 is a clam shell style phone, with a small slightly bigger than a postage stamp sized screen on the outside. Folded up it looks neat and tidy, but it's not the smallest of phones (though not the largest either!) At 26 x 95 x 49mm it's definitely compact enough for the pocket, and at 110g it's not heavy, in fact it's much lighter than you'd expect it to be from looking at it.

                Opened out it reveals a much larger internal screen in the top section of the phone. This is a nice large size, more than four times bigger than the external screen.
                The bottom section contains the key pad, function buttons and directional buttons. These are metal buttons and they sit flush to the phone as opposed to sticking up. I first thought that this would make them more difficult to press and use, but it actually makes it nice and comfortable to use.

                The Display
                ***************
                I was instantly amazed by the quality of the display from the moment I switched it on and was greeted with the Vodafone welcome screen. (Seems sad I know, but I was also pretty taken with the way it displays 'How Are You?' when you switch it on, plus it gave my boyfriend a laugh when I said 'Fine thanks' back to the phone when I first switched it on!).

                The screen is made of something called Continuous Grain Silicon (CGS) colour LCD. The images are crystal clear and are as good as the quality of the screen on my laptop! At the top of the screen are various icons showing what settings are in place and whether you've received a message etc. At the bottom of the screen is a tool bar that shows what the left and right function buttons will do.

                The external screen is also colour but it's not quite so high quality. Both the internal and external screen can display whatever wallpaper you choose (background image) - this can be one of the images already on the phone or you can take your own pictures. If you like you can have a different external picture to internal picture. The external display also shows a clock (one with hands as opposed to just displaying the time in numbers), the day and date and icons showing the signal strength, battery strength, message icon etc.

                Using The Phone
                ***************
                The easiest way to navigate through the phone's functions is to use the menu screen - this is accessed by pressing the circle button. From here you select the icon that represents the menu you want to look at. In case you can't work out what the icon represents the name of the menu is also displayed at the top of the screen.

                The first icon represents Games and More. Self explanatory really - here you'll find any applications (including games) and screen savers you have on the phone. It comes with one game - BombLink, which is a bit of a strategy puzzle type game, fairly easy but fairly addictive.

                The next icon is for Vodafone Live! This basically connects you to the Vodafone Live WAP site - browsing the site is free, it just costs to download information etc.

                Third icon is for applications. Here you'll find such accessories as Vodafone (help, information, leisure, answer phone and phone services), MP3 player, Calendar, Alarms, Calculator, Voice recorder, Melody editor and Phone help.

                Fourth icon is for messages. Here you can create messages, access your media album and Vodafone mail as well as the Messenger service. You can also choose whether to accept cell broadcasts and decide whether to have the Area Info option on or off.

                Fifth icon is for the camera. Here you can choose between the options of taking a picture or recording a video.

                Next up comes My Stuff. This is where you can access your stuff! This includes your pictures, sounds, videos, bokmarks, text templates, memory status as well as your games.

                Seventh icon is for your profiles - this is where you can switch between the standard profiles such as normal, car, headset, silent etc.

                Next is your Contacts - basically the area for your phone book. You can record up to 500 entries, each with up to 3 phone numbers as well as e-mail addresses, address and the likes.

                Finally is the Settings icon, where you can change (quite obviously) the settings on your phone!

                It would be pointless, and boring, for me to go into detail on every single function on the phone, so I'll just cover the main points that I think most people are interested in!

                Texting
                ***************
                I'd been concerned about how easy it would be to text on the phone, having become accustomed to Nokia phones. I was pleased to find it's just as easy to use! You can choose whether to have T9 (predictive text) on or off, and it work's in pretty much the same way as the Nokia texting works, only you use the up and down buttons to change the word you've written if it hasn't come up right. The only downside is that you can't seem to add words to a dictionary like you can with Nokia phones - if they added this feature then texting using this phone would be just the same as with a Nokia. It can be frustrating when you've got predictive text on and you're trying to write a word that's not in the dictionary as you have to split it into shorter words, for example imagine the word caring wasn't in the dictionary, you'd have to type in the word car (which it would understand) then press ok, then type the word ing and press ok. Only a minor niggle though - I've got used to it now.

                The Camera
                ***************
                The camera is excellent quality (for a mobile phone camera), in fact it's the best quality camera you can currently get on a mobile phone at 1 mega pixel (as far as I'm aware). Using the camera is really easy - there's a button on the keypad that will activate it, or you can go through the menu screen.

                To take pictures of other people or objects you just look through at the main screen of the phone then press the circle button to take the picture. If you want to change the viewfinder to take pictures of yourself, you choose that option then point the small external screen at yourself - the external screen shows you the image it's looking at, so once you're happy with it you press the circle, and easy as that you've taken a piccy or you!

                Using the video camera is just as easy - once you've selected the option to take a video you press the circle to start and stop the recording. The recordings you can take are only short, but they do include sound.

                There's a light on the front of the phone that you can use as a flash. You turn it on using the option buttons. You change the colour of the light giving a different effect to the pictures you take - colours include red, green, blue, violet as well as many others. When you press the button to take the picture the light flashes much brighter like a flash would.

                Once you've taken a photo you can add effects to it, such as making it look embossed, adding various frames, changing it to sepia tones, or adding 'stamps' to it, such as speech bubbles, moustaches, light bulbs, crowns, lips, kisses etc.

                Photo's can be saved to the handset or the SD memory card. If you've got the right sort of adapter you can then use the SD memory card with your PC - this means you can put the photos from your phone on your PC and things from your PC onto your phone!

                Quality
                ***************
                Both sound quality and picture quality really are excellent. The phone can play true tones, as well as polyphonic and mono tones. It also plays MP3's to a high quality.

                The battery life is really good, though as you'd probably expect it runs out quicker if you spend a lot of time playing with the digital camera and video recorder... still, on my first day of having the phone I spent a long time playing with it (a good few hours) before the indicator suggested it needed charging, and even then it never actually went flat, it just eventually went to the last indicator on the battery icon to show it's about ready for charging up again.

                This is the first time I've owned a clam shell style phone, and I was also a bit worried that it would be a bit flimsy and likely to break. Fair enough, I haven't had it long, but it seems plenty sturdy enough and unlikely to be easily damaged. My only gripe here is that if you drop it (which obviously you should try not to) the silver paint it's coated in does chip slightly - the phone doesn't break or anything, but if you're prone to dropping your phone then it can look a little bit more battered than other phones might do! Mine's been dropped a few times, and has chipped a little at the corners - you can't really tell unless you're looking for it, but it does disappoint me that they didn't give it a more robust coating or use plastic coloured all the way through rather than coating parts of it with this satin silver paint like finish. Saying that, it's only really if you drop it on the pavement that it chips.

                Summary
                ***************
                I'm extremely happy with the phone and would certainly recommend it. If you can get it at a reasonable price (or free!) it really is a suberb quality phone, and the extras such as the camera and video clip recorder make it a really useful and versatile phone / gadget! It will never replace my digital camera, but it will certainly increase the number of digital photos I take as I'm more likely to have my phone with me when I'm out than my camera. The video camera feature is also handy to catch some funny moments on!

                There's so much I could write about the specification of the phone, but to be honest you can read that on somewhere like the Sharp website. Hopefully this review has given you a good overview of the phone!

                Definitely worthy of high marks, though one start knocked off for the fact you can't add
                words to the dictionary and the fact the paint can chip slightly if you drop it on tarmac!

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