Thursday, January 10, 2008

UTStarcom XV6800 (Verizon Wireless)

The good:

The Verizon Wireless XV6800 smartphone brings upgrades such as Windows Mobile 6, a 2-megapixel camera, and a sleeker design than its predecessor. You also get Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and EV-DO.

The bad:

The XV6800's speaker is on the softer side, and call quality could be better. The smartphone doesn't support Verizon's streaming media services, and there are some slight performance delays.

The bottom line:

The Verizon Wireless XV6800 comes with most everything a power business user will need from a smartphone, but its less-than-stellar call quality gives the Samsung SCH-i760 the slight edge.


The Verizon Wireless XV6800 is reminiscent of the Sprint Mogul in shape and size, which makes sense, since both devices are made by HTC. The XV6800 measures 4.3 inches high by 2.3 inches wide by 0.7 inch deep and weighs 5.8 ounces. Although it's on the larger side and you'll probably want to get a belt holster since it'll make for a tight fit in the pants pocket, it sits nicely in the palm and is comfortable to use as a messaging device. We will say that the phone's construction didn't feel as solid as the i760. The XV6800 has the same battery cover as the Sprint Mogul, which we found quite plasticky and flimsy. As far as aesthetics, the XV6800 isn't the most attractive smartphone on the block but has an appropriately business look.


The one area where the Verizon Wireless XV6800 ups the Samsung i760 is the camera. The XV6800 is equipped with a 2-megapixel lens (versus 1.3 megapixels) with flash, autofocus, and video-recording capabilities. For still images, you have your choice of five resolutions and four quality settings. You can adjust the white balance and add various effects, and there's also a self-timer and the option of adding a time stamp to your photo. As usual, your options are a bit more limited in video mode but you do get white balance settings, effects, and two resolution choices. Picture quality was mixed. We were impressed by the sharp definition, but the colors were a bit off and looked harsh. Video quality was OK for a camera phone--slightly pixilated by fine for short spurts.


The XV6800's 920mAh lithium-ion battery is rated for 5.4 hours of talk time and up to 14 days of standby time. We are still conducting our battery drain tests but will update this section as soon as we have final results. According to FCC radiation tests, the XV6800 has a digital SAR rating of 1.3 watts per kilogram.

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