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I sent off for this phone as a christmas present to myself as my previous phone had just been misplaced at the bottom of a pond, not great. I chose this phone because the price was great and at the time it came with a free 1GB SD card, bargain. When it arrived it turned out that vodafone had accidentally sent me 3 handsets instead of just the one, so naturally things were looking good from the beginning. This i just a bog standard slide up phone, its a decent size and the screen is quite large, making it easy to text and read. It has a rubbery style coating on the back which means that if you have greasy hands you get huge grease marks on the back of your phone which are quite hard to get off, not a great look! For a very cheap phone it is packed full of goodies, such as interesting sounds when you slide it up or press a button (which of course get disabled about a day later) and some great games come as standard. The camera on it is also a very good quality considering the price of the handset. The keypad on the phone is also a very good size, each button being very easily accessed and used, and the sliding mechanism is faultless. The main thing I remember about all of these phones is that they were completely indestructible. I mean boy did I put this thing through its paces, constantly dropping it down flights of stairs onto concrete floors and sitting on it etc and never the less it always worked perfectly. Once it even went in the washing machine! Result? It was so clean it looked brand new, and still worked as if it were. All in all I probably would recommend this phone to anyone else who has also misplaced their phone in some very bad place and needs a cheap one fast as overtime this handset proved itself to be sturdy and quite enjoyable to use. It don't look half bad either!
I bought this phone for my husband as the price was good and it looked smart to be honest I wish I hadn't bothered. Style Well this is a very smart looking phone it is a slide phone and is shiney black with silver detail, the screen is large and easy to read. Quite a heavy phone when compared to similar styles and to chunky to fit in your jeans pocket. The sound quality is not great and texting is a bit of a pain as the keypad can be too sensitive. The slide feature on the phone became very loose after only a few months meaning that it could slide down during a call and cut you off. The battery life was always very poor ad within 6 months has to be charged every day even if the phoe had not been used since the last charge. Overall it is not a phone that I would buy or recommend to someone as their main phone, perhaps as a back up it would be Ok Unfortunate as I have had a lot of Vodafone products in the past and since this one and never had any problems with them.
Just after Christmas I once more found myself in the position of needing to replace my Pay As You Go mobile phone. As the sales were on I checked out the Argos sale booklet and found they were selling the Vodafone 810 for an extremely reasonable £29.99. The blurb in the booklet told me that the 810 boasts most of the features of a far more expensive make and model. Among the features that caught my eye were the 2MP camera, MP3 player and Bluetooth. So I was hooked and splashed out my cash on what appeared to be just about the most full-featured mobile in my very low price range. The Styling Once I'd purchased the phone and taken it home it was time to see exactly what I had got for my money. Well new out of the box it was certainly very shiny and it looked fairly stylish. This is a slide phone in black with silver detailing, it is however quite large and it has a real feeling of weight behind it. The thing is it looks as if it's almost the twin of another manufacturer's phone, namely the Nokia slide phones. Now to me this is an advantage of a sorts in that it actually looks far more expensive than it really is, but for the individualist this could be the first of many stumbling blocks. The screen is large, clear and bright enough to show off any photos taken and pictures downloaded. A nice touch is the way all connections are neatly hidden away to give a slightly more svelte appearance. All in all, new out of the box, the phone looks pretty good, note I say new out of the box, as the look of my particular phone has deteriorated somewhat in the last six months. As I've said this phone did look very nice straight out of the box, but six months on it looks cheap and tacky. The silver effect covers to different ports looked very nice, but one of them has already fallen off. The whole casing is very prone to scratching and was looking tatty after just a month or so, the screen also seems to positively attract smudges and fingerprints. All in all this now looks like the cheap and cheerful (nasty) phone that it is. Setting Up The phone did come with almost everything I needed to make full use of it's many functions. Along with the battery and SIM card, there were a USB lead, earphones and charger (which once seems to be Nokia's twin, but with a strangely different actual connector). The battery was easy enough to fit, but I did struggle a little removing the supplied SIM card so I could insert my own. Although there is a USB lead there was no driver disc, instead the drivers are loaded on the phone itself. Now this is all well and good, but I lost my USB lead before I could manage to connect to a computer, and yes, that means I cannot physically connect the phone to my computer so I couldn't set this up. On starting up the phone there was the bog-standard wizard for setting the time, date etc. Making Calls Now even though most mobile phones have all the fancy extras I do mainly buy a phone so that I can make calls and send texts. So how does this phone perform when making calls? Well it was reasonable enough to start with, there is plenty of space for all my contacts and I can assign a different ringtone to each contact if I wish along with a photo. Now this feature looks just as if I was using a Sony Ericsson (as does the whole operating system). And on to the problems, to be begin with call quality was ok, not fantastic, there is some echoing and even full volume can be too low. But as time has gone on making calls has become very hit and miss. Sometimes it works fine, but others I literally get no sound at all. There's no rhyme or reason to this, it just works (or not) when it feels like. I could also make video calls with this phone, if I knew anyone else who had a video phone and was willing to pay the extortionate cost, but I've never tried this function out, so can't tell you if this works any better than voice calls. Texting After making calls the second most important function of a phone (for me) is of course texting. And guess what, this phone once more struggles to perform adequately. I have reasonably long nails, long but not so long they interfere with my typing and I struggle big time when it comes to writing texts. The keypad is just so difficult to use, I'm constantly getting the wrong letter or symbol come up and it gets so frustrating. Yes there is a reasonable dictionary, but I prefer to use multi-tap, and with this phone there's just too many times when it's just too much hassle. There is, however, one aspect of texting that I do like on the phone, and that is the little smiley faces. Once texts are written and sent, there is a fairly large memory to store them, I managed a total of about 200 over both the in and out boxes. Connectivity The 810 features a USB connection (that I've not used) and Bluetooth which I have used fairly extensively. The standard Bluetooth features are all available (connection, visibility, file transfer), and most of the time it works fairly well if a little slowly. There are occasions when it struggles to make a connection and times when it totally fails. Again there is often no rhyme or reason to this it just works when it feels like it. One place where it seems to always fail to make a connection is the Boots digital photo booth, where I never manage to get past the pairing stage. Camera As one of the selling points to this phone you would have expected a fairly decent camera. Well this is a very good 2MP camera as long as you are in very good light, and don't want to zoom in on your subject. There is no flash and even though there is a mode for poor light this changes the colour balance in the picture, and photos become quite grainy. Neither is there any form of zoom, now I wasn't expecting optical zoom, but come on would 2x digital zoom have broke the bank. When I do get a reasonable photo, they are good, honestly I can print them up to 5"x7" and they look excellent, really they do. But it's so hard to get the decent photo. There are also a number of effects that can be carried out after the photos have been taken, for example black and white, and sepia. But for some reason there is a whole section of editing that you can't use if you've taken photos at the best quality. Now that was the main camera, just for a little extra there is second camera on the phone. This is a 1.3MP camera that gives an internal view and is mainly used for video calls. There is little to say about this as the picture quality is even worse. Music Player The 810 also doubles as a MP3 player and plays most MP3 (but not WMA) tracks displaying information on track title, artist, and album info. When played through the headphones the sound quality is actually brilliant. But when played through the loud speaker it is simply atrocious, tinny, distorted and far too quiet. There is the ability to make play lists, but you cannot move tracks around in that list although there is a shuffle function. There is also an equalizer, but unless I'm using headphones there's not much pointing in using it as absolutely nothing improves the speakers sound quality. Yes it's nice to have a music player, but the sound quality really lets it down. 3G The 810 is a 3G enabled phone, which means it can be used to access supposedly faster mobile internet. Ok, it does connect and I can browse but I swear this is one of the slowest phones at loading pages. There is also mobile TV on the phone, which is quite nice. But this does have to be paid for, and there isn't a huge choice of programmes to watch. Other Features The 810 does have a lot of other fairly standard features. It has a calendar, stopwatch, calculator and alarm. It also plays video clips and it does a pretty good job at all these little extras. There are also a total of four demo levels of games, but these are in a word pathetic and certainly not worth even taking the trouble of opening up. Memory Internal memory on the 810 is slightly measly, there is room for maybe 5 tracks and half a dozen photos. But this camera takes micro SD cards up to 2GB in capacity. These cards are cheap (I paid £6) and will hold literally hundreds of tracks, photos and even a few video clips. Battery Life I've now got to a section where I'm going to do nothing but praise an aspect of the phone. Battery life is fantastic, 2-3 days of making calls, sending texts and playing music, and even better it only takes about an hour to charge. Durability After praising the battery life I'm afraid I can't be quite as complementary about the durability. As I've already mentioned, bits have fallen off the phone and the screen is heavily scratched. As time has gone on it has looked more and more tacky, and there have been a number of other problems. There was a time that whenever I pressed the end call key the phone would go into SOS mode, then there is the problem where the phone decides I really don't want to hear my call. Then there are the times when certain keys decide not to work, you get the picture. As time has gone on the phone has become less and less reliable, so much so that this week it was finally retired and replaced by a phone that actually works. Availability I bought this phone from Argos, way back in January 09 for the princely sum of £30 (which was reduced from £80), however they longer stock this item and I have been unable to find an alternative source, but I'm sure they must pop up on eBay from time to time. Conclusion For the first few weeks after buying this phone I thought it was the bees-knees, but it really didn't take long for it's faults to show. It is unreliable, and falling apart with a so-so music and temperamental camera. There really is very little going for it, except the price I paid. I couldn't wait to upgrade, and there is no way that I am going to recommend this phone to anyone. Save yourself the stress and pay a little more for a phone that works.