Video: Telecom XT Network Phones

This time I reviewed a bunch of phones available on Telecom’s new XT network, launching Friday. Click the image to watch the video.

Video XT Phones

Item: Telecom R6
Price:$149
Product website: Telecom.co.nz
Rating: 3  /  5
Info: The R6 is a basic, entry level phone. It will be the cheapest phone to launch on the XT network, and does all the basics well. It has a 2MP camera and can take up to 4GB of memory via micro SD cards. For that added Kiwi touch, it has Maori predictive text for TXT messages, and will speak numbers in Maori as you dial.

Item: Samsung F480T
Price: $599
Product website: Telecom.co.nz
Rating: 2 / 5
Info: Samsung make some great phones, but this isn’t one of them. If you want an iPhone, buy an iPhone, don’t buy a phone that’s pretending (badly) to be an iPhone. Sure the F480 makes calls and takes photos and sends TXTs and all that regular stuff, but not well. It has no physical keypad, and with a haphazard menu system and worse than useless “home” screen, I’d give it a miss. Perhaps check out the other two more “normal” Samsung phones on offer: the C5220 and the S8300.

Item: Sony Ericsson C510
Price: $399
Product website: Telecom.co.nz
Rating: 4 / 5
Info: This little Sony Ericsson is just a lovely mid-level phone. It does everything really well, and has a great screen and camera. It has built in Facebook integration, with photo uploads and status updates on the home screen. It’s very slim and looks great. No complaints at all.

Item: Nokia E71
Price: $899
Product website: Telecom.co.nz
Rating: 4 / 5
Info: If you want a “qwerty” keyboard smartphone with very few compromises, the E71 is hard to beat. It has a sturdy solid steel construction and a very, very responsive user interface. No chinzty plastic bits here! I was continually surprised by how fast the menu and applications responded. My only complaint would be the tiny keys on the keypad, but I could get used to that. Nokia are improving the E series all the time with new applications, including an newly updated Email system that will soon get social network integration.

Item: Vodafone/Google Android G2 / HTC Magic
Price: TBC
Product website: http://vodafone.co.nz (soon)
Rating: 5 / 5
Info: Not wanting this to be a complete XT-fest, I’ve grabbed the latest and greatest from Vodafone. The G2 is the second generation “Google Phone”. Running the Google-built “Android” operating system. The G2 is the closest competitor to the iPhone that I’ve yet seen. It has incredibly tight Google/Gmail integration, so if you’re a Gmail user you’ll see all your mails and contacts syncronised perfectly. It’s easy to hold and use, and has a lovely screen and a great web browser. There is an app store, like the iPhone, but with nowhere near as many apps and games. It’s hard to recommend it over an iPhone for what I’m guessing will be a similar price, but once again if you’re an avid Gmail user, you’ll love this phone.

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8 Comments

  1. I’m curious why you chose to review the Nokia E71 instead of the BlackBerry Bold. My dad’s got that phone and it’s pretty difficult to use compared to the Bold. Also, am really jealous you got the Magic already.. been waiting for that phone for a looooong time. I want it so bad, well that is until the new iphone gets announced.

  2. Hey Benedict (great name – I’m a Benedict too). I’ve been a Nokia S60 guy from way back, so I’ve gotten pretty used to the interface. The E71 is the epitome of S60: really fast, great screen, great keyboad.

    I’ve never actually used a Blackberry before, so I can’t really do them much justice.

  3. Heh, had a feeling you were a Benedict too when I first saw you on Breakfast reviewing Rock Band and Star Wars:FU. Guess all Benedicts love their gadgets and games. It’s fair ya didn’t review the BlackBerry then, but it’s pretty easy to learn. Cheers

  4. i would just like to know if you can use the same phone from previous vodafones and insert the new telecom simcard in… will this work
    for example use the same phone for both networks.

  5. It all depends on the frequency Erny. Telecom delivers 3G over WCDMA on the 850MHz frequency (and 2100MHz in some places, but not enough to be important).
    Vodafone has been replacing their 2100MHz 3G network with 900MHz sites. To be confusing, they also support old 1G GSM calls on 850MHz and other frequencies (I think, this really is confusing!!).

    Short answer: if your phone does 850 and 2100MHz 3G, you should be fine to swap simcards. Quite a few phones do this (e.g. the iPhone), but some only do 900/2100, and will generally only work on Vodafone.

    Readers: PLEASE correct me if I’m wrong, because this is utterly confusing at times.

  6. I brought my new Sony Ericsson W705 on the first the the Telecom Xt Network came out, from the Telecom online store.
    The service was very easy buying it and a breeze getting the mobile set up.
    The mobile is great, great camera, great MP3 (But will never replace my iPod) and of coarse a great service provider.
    Telecom has done a great job with this XT network. Everything about it is superior!

  7. hey im considering buying the new iphone 3gs as i dont like any of the new xt fones, but want to stay with telecom xt, ive been told this will work fine but mms will work if the iphone is jailbreak and configured is that true?? and where can i get this done
    will i be still able to use my one bill plan?? cheers in advance

  8. I bought the R6 the day after the XT network went live in June, and to be honest I have never had a more unreliable and frustrating phone! It frequently looses it’s network connection without telling me that it’s got no connection – it says I have several bars of signal strength, but try and make a phone call or send a text and it fails. I could be off network for half a day before realising it, and obviously have missed all phone calls and text messages. ONly way to fix it is turn it off, remove battery, remove sim card and wait a minute before returning to normal, turning phone on, and wait literally 5 minutes before the sim card numbers are available!!! NEVER BUY THIS PHONE!!!

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