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Motorola Harley-Davidson V60i (Cingular) review: Motorola Harley-Davidson V60i (Cingular)

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The Good Stylish; durable; strong features; solid sound quality; external LCD; impressive battery life; works on high-speed networks.

The Bad Expensive; no downloadable apps.

The Bottom Line Motorola's sleek V60 now comes in a Harley-Davidson version, but that may not be enough to breathe new life into this former "it" phone.

Visit manufacturer site for details.

7.0 Overall
  • Design 8
  • Features 6
  • Performance 7

Review Sections

Intro

Following up on the success of the V60c and other models in the series, Motorola has put out a Harley-Davidson 100th-anniversary edition version of this stylish, reliable mobile. The new model is the same size and weight as the original V60, but it has some biker-inspired enhancements, including a chrome casing and custom-fit ring tones, that will obviously appeal to Harley fans. However, hog-lovers should be aware that other phones in this price range are usually tricked out with high-end features.

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Pocket-friendly: Whether hooked to a belt or in a pocket, this phone is barely bigger than a pack of gum.

Available in CDMA, TDMA, and GSM versions, the Harley-Davidson 100th anniversary V60 edition comes in two styles: a black-and-silver casing or an all-chrome version. Like Nokia's 8860, the chrome version attracts fingerprints, and you may find yourself constantly buffing the phone. This model shares the original's size (3.4 by 1.7 by 0.9 inches), weight (3.9 ounces), and second, external LCD, which allows you to view caller ID, text messages, or the time and the date without flipping open the phone.

The phone's screen displays only three lines of regular-sized text or two with the larger font. That's not exactly ideal, especially if you plan on using the phone to access the wireless Web over high-speed GPRS networks. If you have less than stellar eyesight, we recommend that you really check out the phone's display before purchasing it.
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Chrome phone: The shiny silver casing isn't smudge-proof.

Like the V70, this phone has customizable menus--a feature that the first batch of V60s didn't support. We found the phone's controls easy to navigate once we figured out how to access the more-advanced features. These include a voice-recognition system that allows you to create voice-command shortcuts to favorites or dial up to 20 contacts by saying their names; a voice recorder that stores up to two minutes of voice notes; a 500-entry phone book; a date book; games; and a calculator with a currency converter. The phone also comes with call history, caller ID, an alarm, three-way calling, and customizable ring tones. In addition, keeping with the Harley Davidson theme, the V60i has biker-inspired tones such as "Layla," "Born to be Wild," and "Free Ride." If those tones don't fit your fancy, you can always download more.

For further functionality, Motorola offers TrueSync software (including the cable) so that you can sync the phone's address book and date book to a PIM on your Windows PC. The phone is also compatible with Motorola's optional FM-radio accessory and data kit, which turns the mobile into a wireless modem.
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Packing some power: This V60 has impressive battery life.

When it came to talking, we had no complaints about the phone's ergonomics and had an easy time finding the earpiece's sweet spot. As with the previous V60 models, the world-roaming (GSM 900/1800/1900) Harley-Davidson version boasts pleasing sound quality, and we found that signal strength was good using AT&T Wireless service in San Francisco and New York City. Battery life was impressive, as well; we managed to meet the rated 245-minute talk time as well as the standby time of 220 hours.

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