O2 XDA IQ preview

/ Updated: 23 January 2007 6:27 pm GMT

The O2 XDA IQ is a compact Wi-Fi enabled phone that runs Windows Mobile 5.0. Originally known as the HTC Tornado and then the Qtek 8310, this phone has had more names than it knows what to do with. It's not the most inspirational handset we've seen, but the dull design is easy to overlook when you realise how much it can do.

It's currently available on a monthly contract with O2.

Upside
With quad-band connectivity, infrared, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, this phone will sync with pretty much anything. Via a GPRS or Wi-Fi connection you can browse the Web using the Internet Explorer application, which can also be synchronised with your PC, so you have all your favourite sites on your phone as well as your computer.

There's also a mini version of Windows Media Player that lets you play MP3s and WMA files and watch videos. We watched clips from the WindowsMedia.com mobile site over a Wi-Fi connection and we were impressed with how easy and fast it was to browse the Internet and download content.

You can also access MSN Messenger and Hotmail, check your personal email via Direct Push Technology and Exchange 2003 SP2 and even access your calendar, contacts, tasks and inbox over the air.

We were impressed by the battery, which didn't drain as rapidly as we expected given the demands of Wi-Fi, and the audio quality on calls was decent.

Downside
After using the IQ for a few days we noticed that the navigation joystick is easy to inadvertently click. This is particularly annoying considering that using Windows Mobile involves a lot of navigation.

The IQ runs on a TI OMAP 850 200 MHz processor and has 64MB SDRAM and 64MB ROM, identical to the HTC STRTrk's specs. We found that at times the interface froze or simply didn't work when we tried to access applications like MSN Messenger or the Windows Media player. There were also loading delays when accessing certain applications and a longer than normal delay during start up and shutdown -- a renowned feature on Windows Mobile handsets.

Another niggle we had with the IQ was the 1.3-megapixel camera. It is good enough for MMS images and taking the odd snapshot, but it doesn't have a photo light or flash. As a cameraphone, it can't compete with Sony Ericsson's K750i, and we were disappointed that an otherwise feature-packed handset fell short in the camera department.

Outlook
The O2 XDA IQ might be a boring handset to look at, but with all its features this pocket-friendly phone provides hours of entertainment and useful services. We particularly enjoyed being able to use it at Wi-Fi hotspots to check our email accounts, download podcasts and even watch streaming videos on the media player.

If you're looking for a compact Wi-Fi enabled phone, this looks like it could be the handset to buy. However, we'll reserve our final judgement until we've spent more time with this Wi-Fi warrior.

Edited by Mary Lojkine
Additional editing by Kate Macefield

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Where to Buy

O2 XDA IQ preview

Part Number: CNETO2 XDA IQ preview

Typical Price: £300.00

See manufacturer website for availability.