I bought this mobile 2 years ago, having wanted a touch screen for a while but not wanting to spend a vast amount on it. On the face of it, I guess it was good value for money at the time but if I could turn back the clock, I would try something else.
WHY I hear you ask? Well, the main draw back of this phone in my opinion is what happens when you've got it in your pocket and you receive a call: the screen becomes live and as you draw it out of your pocket to answer it, you inadvertently hit the "reject call" "button" on the touch screen and lose the call! Also, the sensitivity of the screen seems variable - many times I have had it on the table, received a call and as I have been frantically pressing the "accept call" "button" to no avail, the caller has got fed up and hung up.
Another reason I wanted a touch screen was because I suffer from RSI and thought a touch screen might be easier on my hands for texting ... not the case if you use the built in stylus that comes with the phone. However, using a normal pen (with the nib retracted) seems to be a lot more comfortable.
Also, the camera isn't very good - I have only got reasonable photos in perfect light conditions
In summary, I personally wouldn't recommend this phone as I find its` touch screen functionality frustrating when I receive a call and it is in my pocket ...
We bought the Vodafone 541 mobile phone for our son who is 9, originally we wre going to get a very basic phone but this one was on special offer and we got it for about £20 including postage.
The phone is quite basic but does have some good features on it.
The camera is 1.3 megapixel which although not great by today's standards is fine for fun snaps, there is also a video feature but the picture quality is quite poor.
The phone has no internal memory so a memory card is a must if you want to download music or save pictures, we picked one up for under a fiver.
One feature of this phone is that it has a stylus which can be used on the touchscreen although I would say that you do have to press quite hard when using it compared to using your finger.
There are lots of little features on the phone such as blue LED lights on the front which light up as the phone rings and can also be used to navigate through the menu.
The touch screen is not as smooth to use as some of the more expensive phones on the market, but for the money I really have n complaints.
The phone is locked to Vodafone but we have a package set up for our son which is £10.00 a month and he gets 100 free mins plus 300 texts.
I bought the black version but it was also available in red or pink when I bought it.
Over all it is a smart stylish phone with added features such as bluetooth for very little money.
A great starter phone for a child, our son was 9 when he got his.
I currently have one of these phones. They are really usefull as they are good for texting and using the internet. They have a pen built into the bottom of the phone to use on the touch screen and they have blue LED lights on the front of the phone witch are touch buttons which change every time you go onto a different menu page. They are small and slim so they dont take up much room in your pocket or bag. They only have small phone memory space but u can put a memory card in them so thats not really an issue. once fully charged the battery should last around three days, thats with around 12 hours talking time. Using the internet doesn't really use much battery life either unless your on it for hours and hours at once. The speaker quality is also very good as it has loads of different sound settings. It has a 1.3 mega pixel camera there is a button on the left hand side of the phone witch is the power button and your keypad lock If your looking for a new phone this phone is definatly worth taking a look at as they are good all round phones and very cheap so they are well worth the money.
This phone my nine year old son saved up for out of his pocket money. He bought it brand new off ebay for £25.
For a first phone all I can say is it is brilliant. All children seem to want touch screen nowadays and this has to be one of the cheapest touch screen on the market.
WIFI is available on it even though he does not use it.
There is an option to put a micro SD card in it, which is absolutely essential if you want music on it, as it has no internal memory.
The screen is easy to navigate, if you use the built in stylus.
It also has blutooth on it.
The battery life is good and tend to charge every three days.
It is locked to Vodaphone, but I buy him a freedom pack once a month. This costs £10 and he gets 100 minutes and 300 texts. This is more than he needs.
You can get them in a variety of colours. It is very lightweight, but he has dropped it a few times and there has been no damage, so sturdier than it appears.
If you want a bog standard touch screen phone for your child this is the way forward.
The real beauty of this phone is its price. You can get this in stores for £40 (if you look in the right places, don't let bigger brand stores rip you off when you can get it much cheaper elsewhere). Why is it so cheap? Well, it doesn't have the reputation for a start - the market is dominated by the much more widely circulated iphone - and, quite honestly, it isn't the best quality touch-phone out there, but for what you're buying, it isn't all that bad a deal.
For one thing, the design of the model is actually pretty nifty - simple, efficient, classic, and available in different colours, although the standard black looks the best IMO - while the phone itself is of a fairly small, pocket-filling size and is lightweight to boot. The on-screen design is similarly well-done and the phone comes with a fair few features, including internet access, FM radio and mp3 player. A big downside for me - the phone comes with games BUT they are only demos. If, like me, you have a few situations where you're stuck on public transport throughout the day with nothing but your phone by your side, a few games on your phone can keep you entertained. This phone is lacking, which I have to say is disappointing.
Also disappointing is the camera that comes with the phone - the quality is not great, often dark and grainy, when using either still photos or video. What's more, the music player isn't of the best sound quality.
A disadvantage for me, which I think just applies to touch-phones of any kind, is that the touch system can be a bit fiddly and even frustrating at times. The stylus provided is never always that responsive and, when writing out texts or an email, a typing system always seemed less time-consuming to me. However, this is simply my opinion on touch-phones in general, so if you don't have a problem with them then scratch this issue off the list.
Overall, not the best phone, but certainly not the worst either - this is more for someone who isn't that bothered about mobile phones and just wants it for the standard texting and phoning but with the side-bonus of internet access. Plus, it's cheap to boot.
It's quite a good phone for it's price. One of the cheapest touch screen phones around. Even though it is a bit cheap, it's still a very usefull piece of hardware. It feels kind of plastic like, but the design is very slick.
Another plus is the size, the phone is quite small and fits easily in your pocket. The only downside on the design is that the phone is too thick. So it may easily fit in your pocket area wise, it does feel like a bump.
The user interface is really user friendly. It's not a smartphone, but the touch screen and the external look make it look like a smartphone. It has a 1.3 megapixel camera and that's quite nice for such a cheap mobile phone. Taking pictures is really easy using the software on the device. Other pluspoints are the fm radio tuner and the GPS receiver.
So even though it's quite a thick phone and it has a plastic feel. It does have a really nice looking interface with a touch screen and GPS. So for it's price it's definately recommendable.
Quite honestly, I had no idea you could even buy a touch screen phone for as little as £40, but it appears that you can - in the form of the Vodafone 541. This phone is actually made by Alcatel, although, as far as I can tell, it does not tell you this anywhere in the documentation or on the product itself. I imagine this is quite deliberate since it doesn't have quite the same reputation as Nokia or Samsung, for instance.
My reasons for choosing this particular model were that firstly, it is small, compact, slim line and easy to hold and carry around; secondly, it's lightweight, which I personally think is important; and thirdly, it has a touch screen and no buttons at all apart from the volume and the keypad lock which are located one on either side of the phone. The fact it is available in black was a bonus as I am fussy about colour, but I believe this model is also available in red, white or pink.
I am quite impressed with the screen size of this phone, which is approximately 5cm by 4cm, and the lack of buttons does rather appeal to me since I hate the idea of carrying around a miniature computer all the time. Having said that, if you are someone who wants to write emails on the go, the 541 would not be the most efficient way of doing it since it does not have a Qwerty keyboard. Instead, the letters (along with the numbers) are displayed on images of keys on the screen, which you can press either with your finger or with the stylus provided. While the stylus obviously has a much smaller surface area than a finger, making it more precise, I have found the phone to be much more responsive using a finger or even a nail. It seems that you also need to press a little harder when using the stylus.
An interesting and unusual feature of this model is the blue LEDs, which are invisible when they are off, but which are located along the bottom of the phone. These light up for several reasons. Firstly, if the phone rings or you receive a text message, the LEDs will flash. Secondly, when using the phone, certain LEDs light up and correspond to specific menu options on the screen, and in this instance, they act as buttons, although you only need touch them rather than press them hard. Thirdly, you can navigate backwards and forwards through menus by sliding your finger or thumb across the LED area to the left or right and they will light up in the shape of an arrow in either direction accordingly. This is a little bit of a gimmick, although I have to say I do actually use the feature as it's there.
One thing I have found annoying with some phones I have owned in the past is the fact that you have to press a sequence of buttons (albeit usually only two) each time you want to lock or unlock the keypad. Of course, this is to prevent you from unlocking it accidentally, but the Vodafone 541 has only one lock button and it's located on one side of the handset. So far, carrying this phone around has not caused me to unlock it by mistake or make any erroneous calls so it seems to be effective.
Another feature that surprised me, given the low cost of this phone, is its drag and drop capability. There are two menu bars on the main screen - one vertical and one horizontal - and each contains symbols corresponding to various functions, including weather reports, a music player, the camera, access to Vodafone Live!, the inbox, the main menu, text messaging, the keypad for making calls and the call records list. The first five of these can be "dragged" onto the main "desktop" area, much like you would with a computer, and the applications remain open until they are dragged back. This is quite useful when it comes to your inbox for text messages and missed call list because it provides you with quick access to both. If you don't do this, you do need to press a couple of extra buttons each time a text message comes in that you want to read. In the interests of speed, I leave this one open all the time.
Additional features of the 541 include internet access, Profiles (enabling you to quickly adjust the handset's volume, ring and vibrate settings in accordance with your environment), Notes (which allows quick recording of written or spoken memos), Calendar, Image Viewer, an FM radio, a music player (for mp3 files), Ebook, a calculator, Bluetooth (for easy transferring of files between devices and for use with Bluetooth headsets, etc.), a world clock, and an alarm. There are a few games already on the phone when you buy it, but these are only demos with the option to download the full versions should you so choose.
This model features a 1.3 megapixel camera, which doesn't do a bad job for the money, as long as there is sufficient light. Although there are quite a few features within the camera, including Night Mode, I have found that without plenty of light, the photographs are quite dark and not of fantastic quality. There is also the option to shoot moving video, but this is really quite grainy even with adequate lighting.
The sound quality for mp3's is about what you'd expect from a phone in this price range; it's perfectly adequate through the headphones which come with the phone, although if you remove them and turn the volume right up the sound does distort somewhat. That said, if you wanted a fantastic sound system, this probably isn't the product you would be buying!
What Vodafone doesn't tell you is that, ideally, you should charge this phone for twelve hours before using it, not three hours as stated in the manual. In addition to this, since most phones are sold with some charge in them, it's advisable to allow them to run down completely before charging them fully. I found that the battery was running out pretty quickly until I did this, but it does seem to have resolved the issue and the battery life is now pretty good.
Being a fairly cheap phone, the reception is perhaps not as good as it might be on a high-end model, but, whilst this is admittedly noticeable, it hasn't been too much of a problem so far.
So far this phone has exceeded my expectations, considering the price. If you want a really responsive touch screen phone, I would have to suggest you spend a bit more, but if you just want something that looks modern and does a bit more than an average job, this is a good choice.
TWO AND A HALF MONTH UPDATE: Unfortunately, the LEDs have now stopped working, which is bad luck indeed since Vodafone are completely incompetent when it comes to customer service and cannot even decide whether I should send the phone back to them or take it into the store.