For personal organization, the handset includes a calendar, a memo pad, a calculator, an alarm clock, a voice recorder, a unit converter, and more. You also get a WAP 2.0 browser as well as MySpace and Facebook mobile apps preloaded on the phone.
Of course, with the full QWERTY keyboard, the X-tc better have some messaging options and it does. The handset offers a Mobile Email app that lets you connect to various accounts, including Yahoo, AOL, Comcast, and Earthlink. We were able to connect our Yahoo e-mail with the phone after simply inputting our login ID and password. The in-box view is pretty simple, but you can delete messages, turn on signatures, easily tab through your various e-mail folders, and more. The X-tc also comes preloaded two instant messaging clients: AIM and Yahoo.
The Kyocera X-tc comes with a 1.3-megapixel camera. It doesn't record video, but there's a multishot option as well as settings to change the image resolution, picture quality, white balance, color tone, brightness, and more. Once done with your pictures, you can do a number of things with them, including sharing with friends and family via e-mail or My Pix and viewing them as a slideshow. Though you could make out the images in the photo, picture quality was a little fuzzy and colors slightly washed out.
Finally, the X-tc comes with a basic music player and supports Virgin Mobile's Headliner music service. Unfortunately, the latter doesn't offer music downloads, so the best way to get music onto the phone is via microSD card. The X-tc's expansion slot can accommodate up to 8GB cards, and there's about 72MB of internal memory.
We tested the dual-band (CDMA 800/1900) Kyocera X-tc in San Francisco using Virgin Mobile service. Be aware that Virgin Mobile is an MVNO and doesn't operate its own network; instead it leases space on Sprint's network. Call quality was OK. While we could hear our callers, there was some slight background noise and voices could occasionally sound garbled. At midrange, the volume was also a bit low, and turning up the sound to high only made audio sound blown out.
On the other side, friends said they could tell we were on a cell phone and had some minor complaints of tinny voice quality and echoes, but not enough to prevent conversation. We didn't have any problems using an airline's voice automated system and we didn't experience any dropped calls during our testing period.
Speakerphone quality also wasn't the best, but more for the volume issues. In a quiet room, we could hear our callers with very little problem with the volume set at about midlevel, but out on the street, it was impossible to hear at midlevel and very difficult at even the highest volume. On the plus side, we had no problems pairing the X-tc with the Logitech Mobile Traveller Bluetooth headset and the Motorola S9 Bluetooth Active Headphones.
The Kyocera X-tc comes with a 790 mAh lithium ion battery with a rated talk time of 3.25 hours and up to 8 days of standby time. We are still conducting our battery drain tests and will update this section as soon as we have final results. Our tests showed a talk time of 3 hours and 15 minutes.