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3 ZTE F930 review: Hands-on with a cheap chatter

Recessionistas and kids on a budget looking for a touchscreen phone could be tempted by the ZTE F930, which includes HSDPA for fast Web surfing

If you're looking for a little touchscreen treat that won't break the bank, take a gander at the ZTE F930. 

The F930 is no smart phone, but it does aim to give users a bit of touch-feely Facebook and Skype. The phone is exclusive to the 3 network and it includes free phone calls to other 3 users and free Skype-to-Skype calls when you buy it on contract.

There's no Wi-Fi on board, but you do get HSDPA for fast Web surfing over 3G. A music player and FM radio should keep you entertained, and there's room for a load of tracks thanks to a memory card slot that supports up to an 8GB microSD card. 

A-GPS helps keep you on the straight and narrow, and a 3-megapixel camera with a dual LED light can capture a quick snapshot. 

We're keen on all the hardware features that ZTE has packed into the phone, but it's up against some tough competition, with budget touchscreen phones like the LG Cookie Fresh and the Samsung Genio Touch impressing us with their range of features and low prices. 

The F930 includes a handful of shortcuts to features like Facebook, which links to the Facebook site rather than being a self-contained app.

This is where the F930 falls down compared to its competitors, since the Cookie Fresh and Genio Touch both offer widgets and fun software options that go beyond just a shortcut to a Web site. However, the F930 wins on hardware because of its 3G support.

The 61mm (2.4-inch) touchscreen is as small as you can get away with for Web browsing, and it's also the resistive type. That means that you'll need fingernails -- or the included, teeny stylus -- to make the screen respond to your pokes.

The F930 is a decent-looking phone for the price, and in white it reminds us of a very cut-down HTC Magic.

The F930 costs £69.99 on pay as you go or from free on a £12-a-month contract.