Normally when reviewing a phone the first things we would talk about are design and features. However, with this one the feature that warrants the most attention is the new TelstraOne interface.
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The Telstra One interface is actually rather good. At the desktop it gives you access to basic things like the applications menu, dialling and messaging as well as the MyPlaces button. My Places is where the interface really shines. It is essentially just a list of web shortcuts presented via iphone like buttons. You can easily sort them or add new ones from a large list of popular sites. Social networking sites like facebook and twitter have their own icon as well as popular news and sports sites and a number of service like weather and whatnot.
It makes a simple phone interface seem sophisticated and more in line with the iPhone stylistically. The interface sits on top of the phones regular interface and while it is heavy on Foxtel and Telstra related links, they aren’t obtrusive and can be removed if you wish.
The W705a is actually a rather decent phone. Navigating through the menus is quick and easy to understand and from a design standpoint, it’s rather attractive. It is a walkman phone and as such handles a wide range of video, audio and image formats, all of which are displayed on its bright and colourful screen. YouTube videos played well, although not in their current aspect ratio. Naturally, our sample unit was connected to the Telstra NextG network and we found that the phone was fast to load up pages and videos were able to be streamed well without any lag.
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The only real complaint that can be targeted toward the phone is that its slide out keypad is a little fiddly to use and doesn’t feel as responsive as you would expect. It also has a matte finish making it feel a little odd to the touch. However, it’s only a small blemish in an otherwise great phone.
If you are on the lookout for a multimedia phone and aren’t interested in one of the many touch screen options on the market, this may be a phone to consider. The TelstraOne interface is actually quite good and has the look and feel of much higher end smartphones.
Check out our review of the other TelstraOne phone currently on offer, the Motorola Motosurf A3100