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Orange SPV E650 review: Orange SPV E650

A rebranded HTC S710, the Orange SPV E650 is great if you want an email-centric device but don't want to lug around a massive handset. At first sight it looks like a standard candybar phone, but flicking the top section out reveals a small Qwerty keypad

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The Orange SPV E650 is a rebranded HTC S710 -- a great device if you want an email-centric device but don't want to lug around a massive handset. At first sight it looks like a standard candybar phone, but flick the top section out and you reveal a small Qwerty keypad, which helps you tap out long emails and text messages.

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8.3

Orange SPV E650

The Good

Good looking design; slide-out keyboard; good range of features.

The Bad

No 3G support; sometimes feels sluggish.

The Bottom Line

With its large screen, slick design and slide-out keyboard, the Orange SPV E650 is one of the most impressive Windows smart phones we've seen in a while. The lack of 3G support and sometimes sluggish performance are disappointments, but despite these shortcomings, the E650 is still a very desirable handset

The Orange SPV E650 is currently available for free on a monthly contract with Orange.

Strengths
Full Qwerty keypads are great if you need to write long emails, but they can be annoying when all you want to do is send a quick text. The E650 solves this problem by having two keypads: a standard numbers and letters keypad on top and a full Qwerty keypad hidden beneath the slide.

The E650 looks like a standard candybar handset when it's shut

This dual-keypad system is not only useful in terms of providing alternate ways of inputting text but it also saves on space. Another feature we liked is the ability to access work emails via a Microsoft Exchange server using Wi-Fi and the easy-to-access SIM-card slot on the back.

For more detailed information on the Orange SPV E650's strengths, have a look at the full review of the HTC S710 here.

Weaknesses
For an email-centric phone, it's a real shame the E650 doesn't have 3G connectivity, which means you can't get high-speed Internet access unless you're near an open Wi-Fi hotspot. Another issue we had is that it feels a little sluggish when opening some of the apps, and also when it changes screen layout from portrait to landscape.

On the back of the E650 there's a 2-megapixel camera

While it may look like a standard mobile phone, it runs on Windows Mobile 6 Standard and therefore can be trickier to use than, for example, a Nokia running on the S40 platform. As with the full-blown desktop version of Windows, there are a few things that might annoy you.

For more detailed information on the Orange SPVE E650's weaknesses, you can read the full review here.

Open the E650 up and you reveal its full Qwerty keypad

Conclusion
Aside from adding a small Orange logo on the front of the handset and a few minor changes to the interface, the E650 is identical to the HTC S710. If you're looking for a compact email-centric device, then this is definitely worth checking out, but if it's high-speed Internet access you're after, you should probably opt for HTC's TyTN or MTeoR.

Edited by Jason Jenkins
Additional editing by Nick Hide