I have owned and used tons of mobile phones over the last several years. At the last count, the tally stood at 51. Those who have followed me know that my best devices have almost always been those equipped with a hardware QWERTY keyboard. Yes; my QWERTY keypad mobile phones have rocked.
In this feature article, I present you a photo shootout comparing the sizes of three of those devices, plus a few thoughts. The QWERTY keypad mobile phones we are comparing are:
- Nokia E61i – purchased in July 2007
- Nokia E90 – purchased in October 2008
- Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 Mini Pro – my current device purchased this month
Over the years, the level of miniaturisation of smartphones and QWERTY keyboards have been amazing.
For example, packing into a device of the size of the X10 Mini Pro more functionality than either of the older devices like the E61i and E90 is stunning.
Straying a bit, I haven’t handled an E61i in about two (2) years, and I was surprised at how good the keyboard is. Of course, it is a wider device than the current crop of E-series candybars – E71, E72, and the E5, and that gives it larger, more comfortable keys too. The display is also larger, making it quite good for reading, web browsing and watching videos.
I found myself wishing that some manufacturer would put at least a 600 MHz processor, 256mb RAM, an improved operating system, and a 5 megapixel camera in that sort of casing today. That would be sweet.
I still have fond memories of the E90, and if anyone put a 1GHz CPU, 256 mb RAM, an improved operating system, and a 5 megapixel camera in that casing, I’d probably buy it up in a snap.
Lastly, and interestingly, while regular keypad devices and QWERTY devices are looking to squeeze as much as possible into smaller sizes, the touchscreen world is heading in the very opposite direction where it appears that the slogan is bigger is better.
It is certainly a crazy world that we live in.