HTC Universal review aka Imate Jasjar
The HTC Universal is by far the most advanced hybrid PDA available in the market right now. Like other HTC products it has many names. The HTC Universal is also known as Imate Jasjar, Qtek 9000, Orange SPV m5000, T-mobile MDA PRO, O2 XDA EXEC etc. The PDA runs the latest windows Mobile 5 OS and resembles a tablet pc.
The screen of the universal rotates 180 degrees and closes, the exact same as tablet laptops. The Universal has a 512 mhz Intel processor and is capable of doing anything your home computer can. Also if the built in 50 Mb free memory is not enough you can also get a SD card with a capacity of up to 4GB and 8GB is coming soon.
The Universal was designed to perfection. Not only does the screen have a resolution of 640x 480 for viewing html websites efficiently the screen also rotates 180 degrees. For a PDA this is a brilliant idea because when you rotate the screen and close it the screen is on the outside and looks exactly like a normal Pocket Pc. When it is in this mode the screen flips to portrait view. Also you can still navigate the screen because there is a 5 way directional pad on the right hand side of the screen. Under the navigational buttons there is a secondary camera. The secondary camera is mostly for video conferencing and often runs through 3G networks because of the high speeds required. In places where there is no 3G network you can still do video calling on Windows mobile phones with a program called Microsoft Portrait.
The Keyboard on the universal is also magnificent. It has a full QWERTY keyboard, with all the necessary buttons you need like tab, caps lock, ok button to close programs etc. The keyboard backlight depends on which model you have, but comes in blue and red.
A lot of people think that since there is no external display, you have to open it every time to see who is calling and to answer the phone.
This is not true at all!! The Universal has two buttons on the side: Talk and end, and are perfectly positioned for your thumb when holding it. You do not even have to open the phone because there is a mic on the outside (3 slits) that you can hear from when on a call. Voice Command in my opinion is a must for this phone because this way you do not have to a) dial the number you want to call because you can pronounce it and b) Voice Command reads out the contacts name or number so you don’t need to open the phone every time to see whose calling.
The Universal has all the basic features you need. You can set up your home screen so that you can see the following: Date, Owner info, messaging, tasks, calendar, pocket MSN etc. You can customize the home screen just the way you like it and have shortcuts for the programs you use the most. The Universal supports .mp3 ring tones as well as picture I.D. The Universal also has all your PIM functions like alarm clock, calendar, appointments etc.
The HTC Universal has all the advanced features that a phone/PDA can offer. The Universal does not only have a 1.3 mega pixel camera with flash, it also has a VGA camera built in for video calling. The Universal also has Bluetooth to connect to headsets and other phones. Although the OS is limited in offering Bluetooth file transfer, you can use a file explorer called “Resco Explorer” and right click any file and have an option to send either from Bluetooth or infrared.
The HTC universal does not have EDGE and I do not see any reason why it should!! The Universal has WIFI built in and is perfect for web browsing, instant messaging or even live video streaming using windows media player 10. Although windows media player 10 is fine for listening to music and watching videos you recorded yourself with the camera, it is not ideal for many different types of videos like Divx, .avi or MPEG. A program called TCPMP formerly known as betaplayer is excellent for playing all types of videos; the best part is that it is totally free. This program does not only work for this phone, it works for all windows mobile 5 and 2003 weather its Smartphone or Pocketpc.
The HTC Universal has a screen resolution of 640x 480 which is incredible. This is the first phone that I have seen with this resolution. The display supports 65,000 colors. The Universal’s display is also touch screen which is a must for all Pocket Pc’s. The screen can also be rotated from landscape view to portrait when the screen is rotated. The display is also very bright and should not be on the highest level of brightness because it wastes a lot of battery and is too bright to stare at.
The Universal has dual speakers located in the front of the phone. The speakers are too loud when on full volume, meaning there one of the best speakers on a phone I have seen. Although you can put the volume so high that it makes the speakers make cracking sounds, it is not necessary to put the volume that high. This phone comes with stereo headphones which have a mic, volume control and a button to answer calls built in.
When listening to music with TCPMP you can make play-lists your self and also save them on the phone, which is not possible with windows media player. The best part about this phone is that the headphone jack is not 2.5mm it is 3.5mm. In my opinion 3.5mm headphones should be the new standard for all cell phones because nowadays most phones are used as mp3 players when not on a call.
Like all windows mobile phones the possibilities for entertainment are endless. Since programming is alike for Pocket Pc’s and computers, minor adjustments make it possible for computer programs to run on Pocket Pc’s. Most phones that are available in the market support only java apps and java games, this is not the case for windows mobile phones. With windows mobile phones you can get thousands of programs and most are also freeware/shareware too. In my opinion, TCPMP is a must have program on all windows phones, because it has far more capabilities than windows media player. Also a cool new program has just been released for windows mobile phones it is called “cool camera”. With this program you can use your phone’s camera as a webcam for MSN Messenger, Yahoo messenger, Skype and a lot more. Although the program doesn’t work with all versions of instant messaging, you can go to the following site to find out more.
The universal supports WAP internet browsing with class 10 GPRS that is capable of speeds of 32 to 48 kbps. I have not used WAP for this phone because I have no idea what the settings are because the phone is not yet available to the North American market. I use the built in Wi-Fi all the time. Depending on the connection you can browse the internet fairly fast. Just like a computer you can download stuff straight to the internal memory or save it on the SD memory card.
Different versions of this phone have different sizes of space due to different sized ROMS that are preinstalled on the phone. My Universal has 43.5 Mb of available memory and 50 Mb of program memory. The Universal also supports external SD memory cards. I have a 4 GB SD card which I find is more than enough space for media, but I wouldn’t mind getting an 8 GB SD because very soon they will be released in the market. I think it was a good idea to place an SD card slot as opposed to other kinds of memory. SD has one of the biggest sizes and has the most features. There are SD cards that now have a built in TV Tuner, and once again will only work on Windows mobile phones. Even though the Universal does have WIFI built in, there are new SD cards (now even mini SD) that have WIFI built in to make your device WIFI compatible. The point is that SD memory was the best choice for external memory because all the extra features available.
The HTC Universal has built in Bluetooth version 1.2. In my opinion Bluetooth options are not very advanced on the older windows mobile 5, unless you have other apps that do what you need. For example you cannot do file transfers easily over Bluetooth. In order to send files over Bluetooth from your phone to another Bluetooth enabled device, you need a program called Resco Explorer. Although there are probably many programs out there that do the same thing I have only tried Resco and it works just great. All you have to do is click and hold the file for more options and click “Send via Bluetooth”. I have noticed that newer phones for example the Motorola Q has way more Bluetooth capabilities built in due to the newer ROM
The HTC Universal is designed to perfection. The universal is one of the highest quality products around too. Although in my opinion it seems very durable, it does have a lot of crucial parts that if damaged the device may not work properly anymore. The only part that is extra fragile is the rotating screen. If turned the wrong way or dropped on a bad angle it could potentially break. Since the screen rotates 180 degrees, you have to be extra careful because it is only joined at one point. Therefore the quality of the phone is very high and very durable as long as you take care of the phone and refrain from dropping it!
In conclusion the HTC universal is one of the most powerful Pocket Pc’s on the market. The best part about this device is that it replaces your laptop, mp3 player, PDA and cellular phone into one compact device. Instead of having to carry numerous devices you can just carry this one compact device. Before I received this device I was thinking that it is very big in size and would be very heavy due to its capabilities. After seeing it for myself I have realized that it is just the perfect size and weight. In my opinion the only downside to this phone is its battery life. Depending on how much you use it and how much features you use on a daily basis all depends on how long it will last. If you watch a lot of videos or listen to music, play games, use wireless internet and make a lot of phone calls, your battery will not last too long. Keeping in mind that this device has a 520 MHz processor and a huge display it does need a lot of battery power.
The good news is that you can get an extended battery that doesn’t stick out from the back or a battery pack that uses the mini USB port. The Universal is capable of doing virtually everything you need on a daily basis and is the ultimate business tool. Although this phone is not targeted for young users due to its EXPENSIVE price tag, it does have all the features that attract young teens like: WI-FI, video calling, Music and video player, digital camera. In conclusion I would recommend this phone to anyone who is able to afford it, and needs the advanced features that it offers.
I do believe that this phone(unlocked of course) will work on any GSM carrier (T-mobile, Cingular, SunCom).
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