Friday, April 8, 2011

Motorola Ex 115 (Starling) : Review

Motorola EX115 Unlocked Dual Sim, Full QWERTY, 3 MP Camera, FM Radio, Micro SD Slot, International Version - Unlocked Phone - No US Warranty - TitaniumToday, I am going to write review of Motorola ex 115, also known as ‘Startling’.  
You might be wondering why the hell I am writing review of a mobile phone suddenly and that too of simple phone Motorola ex 115. The reason is simple, I just purchased this phone a week before :-) You will lot of sites on the internet that have reviewed this phone, but all of them mostly talk about the phones specification. I will try to list all the advantages and disadvantages of this phone. So, first things first, the specifications [in short :-) ]

[UPDATE]  Added PC  Sync Screenshots.


  • Motorola EX115 Unlocked Dual SIM Phone with 3 MP Camera, MP3 Player, Bluetooth and QWERTY Keyboard--International Version with Warranty (Silver/White)Dual sim dual standby (GSM-GSM).
  • Camera: 3.0 mp.
  • QWERTY keypad.
  • 65K TFT display
  • Color: smoke gray
  • expandable upto 35gb
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Micro USB connector
  • Bluetooth, wap, gprs etc
The box contains,
  • Motorola EX115 GSM Dual SIM Quadband Phone (Unlocked) TitaniumMobile phone
  • back cover
  • 930 mAH battery
  • Hands-free kit
  • user manual
  • warranty card that’s it




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Yes, you are correct, there is no USB connector nor any memory card included in the box. You need to purchase them separately.

Appearance: 
The phone is slim at the sides and has a single port that on the left hand side which is used to connect the charger and the data cable. On the right hand side of the phone are the volume control keys. At the top is the 3.5mm jack where one can connect their own headphones/ earphones or the default hands free kit provided with the phone.
The keypad is good and has responsive keys which make messaging a nice experience. The D-pad is used to navigate the menus and control the media player. There is a dedicated camera key as well.

User Interface:
The phone comes with the typical Java based user interface which has been so common in phones based on this OS but it has an up market and refined feel to it. It has quite a lot of features to offer. The navigation is simple using the D-pad. There is no lag and everything works smoothly. Everything is quite detailed which makes the operation of the handset rather easy. The menu animation and overall appearance of the phone can be changed by playing with various themes. The phone comes with 50 Mb of inbuilt memory. I am using Transcends 4Gb micro-sd card. The file manager is good and offers detailed information along with many options to play around with.

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The phone comes with 50 Mb of inbuilt memory. The file manager is good and offers detailed information along with many options to play around with.

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The Organizer section has the standard features such as the calendar, world clock and alarm clock along with tasks. Calculator and currency converter tools are there as well.

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The settings section has the usual phone settings, network settings, security and connectivity settings and the dual sim settings.

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Calling:
The signal reception on this phone is good. The in-call sound was crisp and clear. There were no call drops or reception issues at all both in the single sim mode as well as the dual sim mode. The loudspeaker is excellent and offers loud, crisp and clear sound. The phone has both SIMs active at all times. One can receive calls on both sim cards and can select the sim card to make outgoing calls or outgoing messages. The sim selection can be done in the settings menu.

When on a call from SIM1; SIM2 is not reachable or switched off. But if your using SIM1 and get another call simultaneously on SIM1 it becomes a waiting call automatically.

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Messaging:
Few things are missing in the messaging department like,

  • Group Messaging is not possible on this phone.One cannot send bulk messages. We have to manually select one contact after the other.
  • Another missing feature is that we cannot select multiple contacts at one go to send the message to.
  • If you forward a message to multiple people, only the first person gets the message the rest get blank message. But, if you type a message and send it to multiple people there is no problem.
  • when you are sending a message to multiple people , it shows “sending” window for the first recipient and goes to background when it is sending to the other recipients. When sending is going in the background, if you perform any message related operations like write new message etc you start getting message “Not available” (like when you click reply or new message option). You cannot do anything, the only solution is to restart the phone !!!

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Multimedia:
I was expecting the multimedia capabilities of this phone to be somewhat dull but  its has amazing sound quality and acceptable camera performance. The media player supports MP3, H.263, WAV, AAC, MIDI, AMR NB formats. The sound quality of the loudspeaker was really good. Playback through the bundled hands-free was not so satisfying however this phone comes with a 3.5 mm jack. The music player has visualizations as well.

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The phone has a fixed focus 3.2 MP camera with digital zoom. The daylight snaps were decent with good colour reproduction and the night shots were acceptable but not very good due to the lack of flash. The camera has loads of customization options and one can expect decent snaps at all times. The video recording is of poor quality.

The image viewer application is decent and the phone also comes with a bundled photo editing software. The FM radio functionality is good and the signal reception is good. There is an inbuilt sound recorder as well. FM recording functions are present as well.

Battery:
The 930 mah Lithium-ion battery offers talk time of nearly 180 minutes and a standby time of almost 240 hours. The battery last for around 2 days for me, with heavy messaging, moderate calling and few min of GPRS and music playback.


[Update] PC Sync Screenshots:




Conclusion:
The SAR ratings are low as well for the more health conscious users. Overall Motorola seems to have done a very good job with the EX-115. The Motorola EX-115 cost me Rs.4800 inclusive of a data cable, 4gb memory card and VAT. If one plans to spend Rs.4000-Rs.5000 on a decent QWERTY keypad based dual sim phone the Motorola EX-115 should definitely be considered.


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11 comments:

CoOl_PrAbHaT said... [Reply to comment]

Nice Review
Can you post some review regarding its messages pc sync ?

Screen shot of pc suite !
total no. of message tat can b stored in each sim?

nISHi said... [Reply to comment]

@CoOl_PrAbHaT

There is no official pc suite for this phone, but you can use the PC sync manager of chinese phones. You can just import/ export the messages and contacts.

450-500 messages can be stored in the phone + your sim storage.

Surya Sunder said... [Reply to comment]

Now, you have been using this phone for the past three months. So you'd know more about it.
I have two questions.
a) Does it have something like T9 of Nokia phones? A Motorola equivalent perhaps?
b) Does it show your messages in a threaded view? I mean like you text Person A and then Person A texts you back then in threaded view you'll see your sent message first and then the reply and then again your message and like that. Many modern handset manufacturers are incorporating this feature these days. Is it available in this phone?

Thank you. :-)

nISHi said... [Reply to comment]

@Surya Sunder

a) never checked the t9 :) I am used to normal typing. will check and let u know.
b) it is normal view inbox and sent items no thread view.

if you are messaging freak go for nokia x2-00 it has nice messaging features like flash msg, audio msg, thread view, reply to all options, choosing recepient from logs etc....

nISHi said... [Reply to comment]

@Surya Sunder there is no t9 like thing in this phone :)

kamal said... [Reply to comment]

plz kind me d step by step procedure for d manual config settings of d internet settings for my motorola ex115,my cellular network is MTN NIGERIA(KAMAL,NGR)

nISHi said... [Reply to comment]

@kamal
Please get in touch with your customer care for the settings or goto motorola site.

Surya Sunder said... [Reply to comment]

@nISHi
But Nokia X2, wonderful device that it is, doesn't have room for two SIMs.
Given the way I have to share my private and work life two SIMs have become a priority. Plus, I do a lot of typing in my handset (at present I'm using a hoary N-70 Music Edition) to write text and diary entries. T9 would have helped. Guess one cannot have it all. :-)

jimmy said... [Reply to comment]

Hi can you please provide me with the link for PC suite? Atleast the China Phone PC Suite... I bought this phone and is yet to arrive in courier. Please help.

nISHi said... [Reply to comment]

@jimmy
You can get the PC suite from here

https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&pid=explorer&chrome=true&srcid=0B3fsjQI6CBXYOTU4ZjFmYzEtYWE3Yy00YzJmLWFjNmYtZjg5ZjczZjA2ZjI4&hl=en

goto file->download original

lavakumar said... [Reply to comment]

tried above pc suite not working.
anyone able to import contacts from mobile?